Episode 62 of Speculate! — Joe Abercrombie Novel Review (Red Country)


Welcome to Episode 63 of Speculate! The Podcast for Writers, Readers and Fans.  Join us as we begin a new triptych of shows on the work of Joe Abercrombie. In this episode, as we review Red Country, Brad and Greg find themselves at opposite ends of the fantasy-western continuum, a phenomenon we didn’t even know existed much less applied to us before reading Abercrombie’s latest book. We also talk about our impressions of the three main characters, the no-nonsense Shy South, the quiet giant Lamb, and Temple the Not So Heroic. Don’t forget to check in with us next week when we speak with the man himself, Joe Abercrombie. Until then, please share and enjoy!


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5 Responses to “Episode 62 of Speculate! — Joe Abercrombie Novel Review (Red Country)”

  1. Paul Weimer December 6, 2012 at 10:04 am #

    I’m not a big fan of the western, in any form, unless it has a healthy dollop of genre elements. (Or to use the Robin Laws term: nerdification). So I am not sure I am going to enjoy this quite as much as his other fantasy novels.

    As far as gonzo throw fantasy and SF stuff into the western blender from a gaming point of view, there is always DEADLANDS.

    • bradbeaulieu December 6, 2012 at 10:50 pm #

      I’m not a huge western guy, either, but I liked Dark Tower and I do like the occasional (good) real western like Unforgiven or True Grit. I suspected, as much of a movie buff as Joe seems to be, and as much as he seemed to like Clint Eastwood’s films, particularly Unforgiven, that I would like Red Country. I was right. But yeah, if it’s not your cup of tea, there’ll be a bit of a headwind working against the enjoyment of the work.

      I’m eager to eventually get to his first trilogy. You liked them?

  2. Tim Ward December 11, 2012 at 7:19 am #

    Great show, guys. You did a good job of not spoiling anything. Your discussion about the coward character, and maybe the main character (hard nosed guy?) reminded me of Chimera by T.C. McCarthy. The main character in that is a mercenary who is both of those characteristics at times and, even though T.C. is a great writer, there were times when I just didn’t want to pick up the book. I’m curious if you could go into how this book motivated you in spite of characters you didn’t enjoy reading. You sort of mentioned how, saying there was a combination of factors, but maybe you could go into it more in the next show, if you haven’t already recorded it.

    I haven’t read Joe before, but he’s up there at the top of my to read list. People have told me to start with the First Law trilogy (that’s the name, right?).

    • bradbeaulieu December 11, 2012 at 6:35 pm #

      Thanks, Tim. Interesting about T.C. McCarthy’s series. Those have been on my radar for a long time. I need to pick those up soon. And yes, we may dig into that a bit on the writing discussion ‘cast. Thanks for the suggestion.

      Joe’s first trilogy was indeed The First Law Trilogy, more books I’m looking forward to getting to now that I’ve read Red Country.


  1. Ask me Anything | Joe Abercrombie - December 6, 2012

    […] other news, writers Greg Wilson and Brad Beaulieu are doing a triptych of shows about my stuff over on their Speculate! podcast.  They’re starting with an in-depth review of Red Country, then next week they’re […]

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