Book Review & Giveaway: Half A King by Joe Abercrombie

Jess McGlynnJuly 11, 2014

Half A King by Joe Abercrombie

As part of my relaxing summer plans I had made the decision not to read any heavy duty books and instead to stick to light contemporary fiction.  That was, of course, until I was asked to review Half A King.

Half A King is Joe Abercrombie’s first foray into the world of Young Adult fiction with this book being aimed 15 years plus.


Prince Yarvi has vowed to regain a throne he never wanted. But first he must survive cruelty, chains and the bitter waters of the Shattered Sea itself. And he must do it all with only one good hand. Born a weakling in the eyes of his father, Yarvi is alone in a world where a strong arm and a cold heart rule. He cannot grip a shield or swing an axe, so he must sharpen his mind to a deadly edge. Gathering a strange fellowship of the outcast and the lost, he finds they can do more to help him become the man he needs to be than any court of nobles could.

But even with loyal friends at his side, Yarvi’s path may end as it began – in twists, and traps and tragedy…

My Other Half has read some of Joe Abercrombie’s other works but this was my first experience.  I’m a fan of YA fiction anyway but having read the book I think it is easily suitable for adults as well.  I really enjoyed reading it.

It’s very much a coming of age story, the protagonist Yarvi has everything and then some stacked against his progression in the world.   When his father and brother are murdered he must abandon his dreams of stepping away from his royal life to become a minister and take the throne.  However through a series of betrayals he loses his newly acquired throne and swears a vow to regain it, whatever the cost.  He finds himself amongst a ragtag band of misfits and together they must overcome the odds.

At times, the story is very bleak.  I’m not sure there is actually anything which goes right for Yarvi but somehow Abercrombie manages to write it in a way that you don’t feel like putting the book down and walking away.  You continue to root for Yarvi and to see his life become all that he wants it to be.  I think it helps that the story is quite snappy and short.  It is action-packed so you keep on turning the pages; there aren’t any parts of the book which leave you wondering when you are going to get to the end which helps with this particular style of writing I think.
I read this book in two days; from the very first paragraph I was utterly hooked.  It is full of twists and turns that you absolutely don’t see coming, the very last reveal on the final two pages of the book made me gasp out loud.  I was so absorbed in the pace of the story that I had completely overlooked some major facts which would have lead me to guess the twist and I love that.  Predictable books are so boring!

This is the first of a new series and I can’t wait to read the rest when they come out.  I thought it was amazing which is why I’m excited to be able to offer one copy of the book to one of my readers.  Even if you’ve never read Joe Abercrombie before I would really recommend this book.  It definitely gets a rare 5 stars from me.

To enter, simply complete the rafflecopter below.  The giveaway will end on Friday 8 August.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you read anything good lately?  Why not come and share it on my July Book Love Linky.  I’d love to see you there!

Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of the book for the purpose of this review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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  • Richard Randall

    July 11, 2014 at 11:14

    A thinker.

  • maci234

    July 11, 2014 at 11:49

    a bit of both

  • Kathy D

    July 11, 2014 at 12:01

    Thinker every time

  • clairdownham

    July 11, 2014 at 12:34

    keen thinker thankyou

  • Keith Hunt

    July 11, 2014 at 13:24

    A thinker with a cup of tea.

  • Tracey Peach

    July 11, 2014 at 13:42

    Keen Thinker xxx

  • Christopher Packer

    July 11, 2014 at 14:11


  • Sandra Lane

    July 11, 2014 at 15:30

    I'm a lover not a fighter so it's a keen thinker for me.

  • Andrew Bailey

    July 11, 2014 at 17:42

    A keen thinker that leads from front as a warrior

  • laura stewart

    July 11, 2014 at 19:15


  • Corinne Peat

    July 12, 2014 at 06:25

    A keen thinker would get me into less trouble I think.

  • ann clements

    July 12, 2014 at 09:00

    A keen thinker

  • Debbie Patrick

    July 12, 2014 at 09:23

    a keen thinker

  • Dawn Chapman

    July 12, 2014 at 20:26

    Keen Thinker

  • Mummy on a Budget

    July 12, 2014 at 20:54

    Think I'd be a keen thinker!

  • Holly Nelson

    July 13, 2014 at 01:00

    Wow, 5 stars! Ok, this is going on my to read on goodreads!

  • lynn heath

    July 13, 2014 at 10:37

    I'd be a warrior – out there fighting for whats mine!

  • rebecca beesley

    July 14, 2014 at 22:24

    a thinker i guess but if that had said wOrrier – then that would definitely be me!

  • chantelle hazelden

    July 15, 2014 at 06:43

    well now I need to know what happens in the end!!! thanks for linking up with #ReadWithMe I have pinned and tweeted this post x

  • Honey

    July 15, 2014 at 08:27

    Great review! I also reviewed this book. I really enjoyed it too. #ReadWithMe

  • Honey

    July 15, 2014 at 08:28

    A keen thinker!

  • Scott Fallon

    July 15, 2014 at 12:26

    keen thinker

  • Michelle Ferguson

    July 16, 2014 at 19:35

    A keen thinker

  • AgentAllan

    July 19, 2014 at 02:13


  • sbroadley

    July 19, 2014 at 11:43

    I'm definitely a thinker – I run away from violence

  • Harriet

    July 19, 2014 at 16:49

    A keen thinker

  • Hannah Ingham

    July 31, 2014 at 14:27

    Keen thinker!

  • Michelle Banks

    August 1, 2014 at 19:23

    a keen thinker x

  • Kay Panayi

    August 2, 2014 at 20:21

    A warrior

  • Simon Harrington

    August 3, 2014 at 20:29


  • Claire Thomson Little

    August 4, 2014 at 01:31

    a warrior 🙂

  • Sarahann

    August 4, 2014 at 10:19

    A keen thinker x

  • Justine Meyer

    August 4, 2014 at 12:19

    a keen thinker

  • Heather

    August 4, 2014 at 14:38

    I think a keen thinker so I could get myself out of the fighting situation!

  • Tammy Tudor

    August 4, 2014 at 19:54

    keen thinker 🙂

  • Bhavesh Mistry

    August 4, 2014 at 20:33

    A keen thinker!

  • Sheri Darby

    August 4, 2014 at 21:18

    A thinker, I think

  • Caroline Blaza

    August 4, 2014 at 21:44

    A keen thinker

  • Katherine Coldicott

    August 5, 2014 at 09:44


  • Stephen Little

    August 5, 2014 at 17:38

    Keen Thinker

  • Jo Glasspool

    August 5, 2014 at 23:39

    A thinker xx

  • michelle muirhead

    August 6, 2014 at 03:21

    A keen thinker

  • cristalfiona

    August 6, 2014 at 06:47

    A thinker

  • Clare Scanlan

    August 6, 2014 at 07:14

    A Thinker

  • Rory Campion

    August 6, 2014 at 08:21

    A Warrior

  • zoe bryan

    August 6, 2014 at 12:26


  • Paul Witney

    August 6, 2014 at 13:03

    Keen thinker

  • Liz Ferguson

    August 6, 2014 at 14:37

    a keen thinker

  • Chris Fletcher

    August 6, 2014 at 18:46

    keen thinker!

  • Viv C

    August 6, 2014 at 19:23


  • PamGregory

    August 6, 2014 at 20:00

    A warrior

  • Heather Scoggins

    August 6, 2014 at 20:30

    A thinker

  • Angela L Paull

    August 6, 2014 at 20:33

    Keen thinker 🙂

  • Barbara Handley

    August 6, 2014 at 23:13

    Keen thinker

  • Mimicat

    August 6, 2014 at 23:28

    A keen thinker.

  • Pretenna

    August 7, 2014 at 00:17

    A keen thinker

  • snarepuss

    August 7, 2014 at 06:17

    keen thinker 🙂

  • Stephanie Burchatt

    August 7, 2014 at 09:33

    Keen Thinker

  • jamesholyland

    August 7, 2014 at 12:36

    A keen thinker

  • Helen Warrener

    August 7, 2014 at 15:22

    i would like to be Keen Thinker


    August 7, 2014 at 21:59

    A keen thinker.

  • Happy Homebird

    August 7, 2014 at 22:15

    A warrior.
    (sam fernley)

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