I don't usually review or recommend books on my blog, but I do have Library Thing down the side to show what I'm reading or have read etc. However, I've just finished two books which I'd like to endorse to anyone who enjoys a fast paced fantasy and they are:
Although I normally read SF, Neal Asher, Gibson, Reynolds, Richard Morgan, etc etc, now and then I enjoy reading something in the fantasy genre, could be because in my younger days I played D&D turn based board games with a gang of drunken friends and had some great times, could be because I like MMORPGs too and they are mostly fantasy-based. Anyway, it was a joy reading these two books and I have a feeling that Joe might have delved into the D&D & MMORPG worlds now and then too. Both books are of the non-stop page turning variety and should be read in sequential order, the third, and I think final book is due out March 2007 ( a long time to bloody wait!)
His characters have a flair to them that has you rooting even for the nastier of the bunch, take Glokta the torturer for example. A character that was once the best swordsman in the land but now crippled through being tortured himself. Glokta has embraced the only skill left to him, inflicting pain, seeking out confessions (whether or not the person has done it!) with an expertise born from an intimate knowledge of suffering, you can't help but like him!
Logen, the barbarian who seems to have death sitting on his shoulder, wherever he goes bodies are usually left in his wake, broken, torn and always bereft of life (and that's not only his enemies, his friends can also end up the same way)
There are loads more of well-drawn characters within Joe's novels and even if you are not a fantasy genre reader I'd still say give these stories a try, you may become converted!