The Blade Itself – Info Release

The Blade Itself – Info Release

Well it’s finally here, and i’m really excited to release details for our next release; Joe Abercrombie’sThe Blade Itself” – the first instalment of his critically acclaimed “The First Law” trilogy and illustrated by the legendary Tommy Arnold.


This will be Curious King’s first published project and I am overjoyed to release details of each of the three states as well as the INCREDIBLE Dustjacket by Tommy Arnold (exclusive to the standard edition).


Without wanting to drone on too much about the process (i’m sure you’re all here for the dustjacket and prototype pictures!) – it has been an awesome few months working with Joe Abercrombie, Tommy Arnold and Rich Tong to produce the first of the three First Law Books.


Whilst I always knew it was going to be a tough act following the RPO rebind, this required a completely different approach and thought process and I hope you are pleased with the outcome. I’m honoured to have Joe’s seal of approval on this as that was a particular goal of mine.


I won’t bore you with the details of the conceptual journey we embarked on to find ourselves here, that will come in a podcast at a later date for those interested.


Tommy Arnold is producing 9 colour illustrations (1x Dustjacket exclusive to the Standard Edition, 1x Endpaper and 7 portrait pieces within the book).

We are incredibly pleased to reveal the Dustjacket for our standard edition depicting Logen Ninefingers and Ferro Maljinn. I think Joe’s wife Lou summed up my thoughts on this when she said “she’d never seen anything like it”.

We wanted a statement and we wanted iconic, and Tommy delivered. The jacket will not feature any text, and books two and three have already been taken into account with this design. 

I’m so excited to see the rest of the art Tommy produces, and i’ll keep people updated with sketches and such. It’s worth noting that Tommy has had some ill health of recent, so progress on the art isn’t quite as far on as I’d hoped but I will always wait for someone like Tommy.

Standard Edition

Limited to 500 copies only, the standard edition is 480 pages, printed letterpress two colours (black and navy) on Omnia Natural 120gsm by Pat Randle from Nomad Letterpress on his Heidelberg Windmill Press.


This is the only version that comes with Tommy Arnold’s incredible dustjacket of Logen Ninefingers and Ferro Maljinn. This edition is signed by the artist and artist only.


It is bound in black buckram cloth with two hit foil stamping to the cover and spine, with rounded spine, tailband and coloured ribbon.


The endpaper will be a landscape illustration by Tommy Arnold, and the book will have a further 6 tipped in colour plates, a frontispiece and a fold out map approved by Joe Abercrombie.


The book is protected by a black buckram slipcase with unique design foil stamped onto the cover side, and lined with custom printed papers.

This edition comes with rights to “Before they Hanged” and “Last Argument of Kings” (as well as any future abercrombie works we do) but does not come with rights to rights to our other titles.
Pre-Order Price: £200
Published Price: £215

Numbered Edition

Limited to 150 copies only. The numbered edition is 480 pages printed letterpress two colous on Omnia Natural 120gsm paper by Pat Randle at Nomad Press.


The book is bound in the finest blue leather goatskin and three-pass foil stamping on the cover, spine and back.


The tailbands and ribbon are also unique to this state and the foreedge is coloured blood red with white splashes. This design has been worked up alongside books 2 and 3 to ensure they flow.


As with the standard edition, this book comes will an illustrated endpaper by Tommy Arnold and a further 7 tipped in plates (including a frontispiece) and fold out map.


Housed in a curved mauve cloth slipcase with the blade design foil stamped across all three sides.


This also comes with rights to future Curious King numbered editions as well as books two and three in The First Law trilogy.


 This edition is signed by both the author and the artist.



Pre-Order Price: £550
Published Price: £575

Lettered Edition

Just 26 editions of the lettered state will be produced. Printed two colour letterpress on Magnani Mouldmade 130gsm paper by Pat at Nomad Press, this edition features unique bindings, case and title setting.


Bound in finest Harmatan black goat with 2 blue leather labels and an inlay on the front board with hits of foil stamp designs unique to this edition. It includes 4 raised bands, rounded spine, coloured headbands and all 3 edges gilded gold, this is the most luxurious edition of The Blade Itself ever produced.


As with the previous editions there will be 7 tipped in pieces of art (including a frontispiece) and a fold out colour map. The lettered also comes with a marbled endpaper and foldout piece of art (the illustrated endpaper used in the other two editions).


It’s housed in a black and blue leather solander box with a rounded spine, and blind stamped cross hatching across. There are also 3 hits of foil stamping on the leather covering and inside is lined with a sumptuous dark blue suedel. I also hope to include a few more surprises with this one.


This edition is signed by both the author and the artist.



Pre-Order Price: £2300
Published Price: £2350

Pre-Order Information

Pre-order date is going to be Monday May 16th at 20:00 BST to try and account for different timezones, and I will be contacting all RPO owners who have rights in the period running up to this date.


Should any lettered editions come available then I will orchestrate a lottery for any interested parties.


Production will not be as quick as I hoped on this due to various scheduling constraints, but I sincerely hope we should be shipping in Q4 2022, with a potential for it to slip to Q1 2023. I will make sure I keep people updated regularly on production updates.


I hope you’re as excited as me for this book, I can’t wait to get it finished and into people’s hands.