A Lazy Sequence

Chronicles of the Black Company

As previously noted I have a lot of books I mean to read. As I finish (or stop if its terrible) reading a book, I plan to write a couple of paragraphs about it here. This is the first.

Chronicles of the Black Company is an omnibus edition of Glen Cook's first three Black Company novels; The Black Company, Shadows Linger, The White Rose. Written in 1984 and 85, and weighing in at 700 pages, the three stories form a complete trilogy. General consensus on the internet places these books in the Military Fantasy sub-genre. The books follow the misadventures of the titular Black Company, an elite mercenary company, as they try to survive a large semi-civil war in a strange land and in the employ of the wrong side. The telling is from the perspective of the company's surgeon and chronicler Croaker.

I really enjoyed these three stories; easily some of the best fantasy stories I have read in a long while. While the company takes part in some very epic conflicts much of the actual fighting happens off screen. The story keeps a tight focus on Croaker, and later Raven (A real Bad-ass's Bad-ass), and their friends and comrades in the company. The writing is fast moving and action scenes are not bogged down with the confusing mysticism of flowery descriptive blather of a lot of more recent fantasy.

24 September 2010