Book Review: ‘The Grim Company’, by Luke Scull

Grim CompanyI dived into this without really knowing too much about the premise, instead starting it because I know it’s been very well received. This makes it difficult for me to stay that I wasn’t too sure about it. I didn’t not enjoy it per se, and I thought the writing was very good, but I found myself not liking the characters.

Having had time to consider, it feels like there are distinct similarities between The Grim Company and Abercrombie’s style, both in terms of cast and the general bleakness of the world. Many of the character archetypes seem overfamiliar from several of Abercrombie’s books (at this point I’ve read The First Law, Best Served Cold, The Heroes and Red Country).

This is by no means a bad thing –I very much like Abercrombie- but I felt that it fell somewhat short, and I found it very hard to empathise with many of the characters, in particular Davarus Cole, who just downright annoyed me and seemed to have very little in the way of common sense.

Alongside this, the plot initially seemed a little directionless, while the exploration of the world took place. That is to say, there did not seem to be any clear, realistic goal in mind. I always enjoyed trying to work out where the plot is going before it gets there, as I find it really helps me to explore the minds of characters – almost as if I’m trying to think from their perspective.

Having said all that, I do very much like the history of the world. I also enjoyed the refreshing magic system, with magic as a physical resource to be harvested. While this seems so simple, I don’t think I’ve ever read anything like it, and I always massively appreciate original fantasy.

‘The Grim Company,’ by Luke Scull is the first in The Grim Company Trilogy.