James Barclay has been described as the Sergio Leone of Fantasy.
Well I can finish now, I think that just about says it all.
What the ...!
OK, I'll keep going, even if I can not match the brevity of the comparison mentioned above.
Barclay has written a couple of series about a mercenary group called the Raven, led by a mysterious giant of a man called The Unknown Warrior. Set on the continent of Balaia the adventures of the Raven are set out in two series called Chronicles of the Raven, and Legends of the Raven. These tales are pacy with lots going on and the fate of the world hanging in the balance, they make good page turners.
And like Leone the action is brutal, and people get hurt. Usually the people getting hurt are the Ravens enemies, but tragedy also strikes the group as well and characters die.
So if you're looking for a quick read in the heroic fantasy genre try something by Barclay, but make sure you carry a towel to dry the blood of with.