View Full Version : Abercrombie's "The Heroes"

05-24-2011, 10:36 AM
Finally I gotten around to purchasing "The Heroes" by Joe Abercrombie. Read his previous books with great joy and love his gritty world. So opening this new book I look forward to perusing the map that he finally included.
Now he carefully explained to his fans that the reason for there not being any maps in the first trilogy was that he wouldn't settle for a poor map - if there should be a map it should be of high quality. I can only applaud that, while of course missing having a map to guide me to his world. So I was looking forward to an actual map, having only had pieces of a map in his 4th book. So when I look over the map I quickly find some city names, see the stone formation called The Heroes and slowly going over the other details I find something that sores my eyes. His river(s)....

you can see the map here:

Knowing only the basis of river movements myself and criticizing a map here and there for river violations I'd like to hear from the true geological experts in here ... he describes the river as flowing towards the swamp area, and the shape of the bends lends me to believe that the two rivers in the bottom of the map is flowing south ... how long can such rivers exist? Long enough for bridges to be built? Of course one could argue that a bridge could be built over a river that is dry most of the year but fills up once in a while...

what do you say guys?

05-24-2011, 11:18 AM
Dunno, it doesn't look wrong to me, other than the fact that it is obviously isn't flowing towards the swamp (unless I am misreading it and the swamp is not that area on the left of the map) Those two rivers in the south are obviously flowing north as you can see by the tapering and the fact that they are emanating from the hilly ground at the Black Fell. The main river is flowing west to east as evidenced by the weirs (or maybe waterfalls, not sure about scale). The river narrows a lot when it leaves Osrung which makes it look like it could be flowing the other way though I guess that could be just down to it flowing swifter there, hence the narrowing.

05-24-2011, 11:31 AM
I agree with all that... if the river was flowing west to east - no problem.
So double checked and now I'm not sure about the direction, cause the old bridge is mentioned after the swamp... maybe I was "distracted" by his term "loosing itself in the bog" (or something like that) which made me think it ended there. It flowing the other way would settle everything. However it wouldn't be the first fantasy author that made that mistake *lol*.
I think I'll write it down to me misunderstanding the sentece - cause then I can enjoy the beautiful map instead *hehe*

05-25-2011, 12:22 PM
I think that with this book Abercrombie really hit his stride; intense, believable action scenes, good characterization, and an advancement of the meta-plot that runs through all his books. The thing I love is seeing characters from previous books turn up, switching from POV characters to supporting cast, or vice-versa, and then seeing how others view them. It really rounds out the characters in a way I don't think I've seen before.

But yeah. That map was a little... suspect. :D

05-26-2011, 05:46 AM
I've only had the time for a few chapters, mostly being to tired to read when I turn in for the day. But its looking good indeed - and yes, I like the characters coming back too :)

05-27-2011, 08:52 PM
If the rivers are flowing west to east, then it makes sense to me. The rivers are confusing. The river where it says "Mossbeck" seems to be flowing westward where it meets the one that goes under Old Bridge. However, the tributaries east of Adwein seem to be flowing eastward where they meet the main river. If the rivers were supposed to be flowing eastward, then with a minor adjustment to the Mossbeck river, it would be perfectly fine. If the rivers are supposed to be flowing toward the swamp/marsh, then there are some problems - I have never seen a river that flows into another river going the opposite direction. Such a river would have some fast acting erosion working to reshape it.

05-28-2011, 01:05 AM
They all have to be flowing east-ward to make it realistic - agreed, but I'm glad I'm not the only one having to think about it *lol*