This is a vague and impressionistic review of Red Country, a book by Joe Abercrombie, and also kind of a review of The Heroes by the same, because I forgot to write a review of it when I finished.
I think I'm beginning to distill the elements of a Joe Abercrombie book; maybe not to the degree I could write one myself, but to the degree it isn't quite as fun to read it anymore. It's like after you've played No Man's Sky for a while, and you know the algorithm. Or something like that. After watching, you know, 100 episodes of anything, whether it's Community or My Little Pony, the formula begins to grow a little obvious. The phase-space is densely populated.
Even so, I enjoyed these books at least somewhat, Heroes more than Red Country. Heroes had a plethora of interesting characters, many of whom died, and had good observations about war. Red Country, well, sometimes felt more like knock-off Cormack McCarthy than it did like anything else: characters trudge across the wilderness, observe horrible violence, and observe the indifference of the Deity if the Deity should happen to exist. Additionally, it really felt like characters had plot armor in it more than in some of Joe Abercrombie's other books.
So, anyhow, that's enough Joe Abercrombie for a while.