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The Age of Madness Trilogy is the second trilogy set in the First Law World by British author Joe Abercrombie. The first book, A Little Hatred, was published on 17 September 2019, with the final book The Wisdom of Crowds, released in September 2021.

Works in the Series[]

# Title Release
1 A Little Hatred September 2019
2 The Trouble With Peace September 2020
3 The Wisdom of Crowds September 2021

An unabridged audiobook version of each of the books is narrated by the widely acclaimed Steven Pacey.


The Age of Madness Trilogy is set approximately 28 years after the conclusion of Last Argument of Kings, or 15 years after Red Country.

The Union has entered an Industrial Age, with chimneys rising all over Midderland, but that doesn't mean that the ancient powers have gone away, or that things have gotten any better. Gone are the days of the honest farmer making enough money to get by; here comes a glorious future, a future filled with machinery, a future where commerce means prosperity; but what happens when the poor and downtrodden workers are pushed to their limit?

Some old friends return, though much older and no longer central to the story. Now the focal characters are often the sons and daughters of our previous cast

  • Rikke is the daughter of The Dogman, blessed, or perhaps cursed, with the Long Eye, which gives her glimpses of the future, accompanied by paralysing fits and loss of control over her bowels.
  • Leo dan Brock is the son of Finree dan Brock, and a young man confused by romantic assumptions about reality, especially, the reality of war.
  • Savine dan Glokta - socialite, investor, and daughter of Arch Lector Glokta, the most feared man in The Union - is determined to claw her way through the ranks of the Union's new barons of industry, and won't let anything stand in her way.
  • Prince Orso is the son and heir of King Jezal, and suffers the burden of being the heir apparent to the throne. He hides behind the persona of a foolish, foppish, lech of a prince. But as his enemies might find out, playing the role, and actually being a fool are completely different things.
  •  Vick dan Teufel is the daughter of Sepp dan Teufel, who Glokta convicted on trumped up charges in the original trilogy. Having grown up in the work-camps of Angland, she has become a member of the King's Inquisition.
  • Jonas Clover was once known as Jonas Steepfield and reckoned a famous warrior in The North. After being defeated in the Circle, he developed a new perspective on life, wanting nothing more than to lie low and look out for himself.
  • Gunnar Broad is an ex-soldier who returns from fighting on foreign shores to find his own country have changed, and not for the better.

The plot picks up the threads left over from the First Law Trilogy more directly than the standalone books. Thus the struggles of The Union's dysfunctional government to cope with the social changes brought by industrialisation and enclosure of common land. Whether The North can find a path out of its cycle of violence to a better world. The bitter rivalry between the Magi; Bayaz, Khalul, Zacharus, Cawneil, Shenkt etc. And maybe even the other powers in the Circle of the World such as The Other Side, or Ferro Maljinn, or the Dragon People.


Joe Abercrombie’s plan for the trilogy was to write a rough draft of all three books first, in order to get the best and most coherent end product. Thus, there was a considerable wait for the first book but then a regular publication schedule thereafter. The final edition for the trilogy, The Wisdom of Crowds, was released in September 2021.