By Robin Hobb
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| Genre: Epic Fantasy, 13+
| ISBN-10: 0553565699
| ISBN-13: 978-0553565690
| Publisher: Spectra (January 5, 1998)
| Mass Market Paperback: 757 pages
| Cover art by Michael Whelan
| Source: Personal copy
| Read an Excerpt
| Rating: 5 Stars
This book starts slow then ends really fast. Fitz is his lovable conflicted self. This poor guy is pulled in 12 different directions, all at once. It is a wonder that he retains any sanity. However, this is what makes this book, and the ones preceding it, so popular. Robin Hobb has created in Fitz a very real person and by keeping the POV squarely in his head, you get to live the story through his eyes. This means you get to experience every ounce of angst, conflict, quilt, indecision, and recrimination this poor guy goes through. This story goes beyond being character driven; it is better described as emotionally character driven.
Fantasy Series Book Review by Mulluane
♦ My Thoughts. Action/adventure lovers will find some of this here, but mainly in the final chapters. Most of this story is spent either watching Fitz come to terms with his return from death, or it is taken up by the extensive journeying he does. This makes things plod along a bit but the true journey he takes is one of Fitz the boy becoming Fitz the man. Tension is provided by the fact that he is in constant danger from Regal and his Skill users. At no time is Fitz ever truly safe, including within his own mind. It makes for a dark and depressing tale.
There are other fascinating storylines outside of Fitz himself. There are some surprises about Fool, the Elderlings, the origin of the Red Ships, and a mystery character in the form of Kettle. Kettle is an old woman with alot of secrets, and she holds on to them tightly. You will learn more about the magic systems too, both Wit and Skill. The ending is a bit rushed, or atleast it felt so to me, but it leaves things all tied up, while leaving them open enough for a sequel. It is not an "and they lived happily ever after" ending either. It is bittersweet and in some ways, very tragic, but if it was otherwise, it would not be true to the story or Robin Hobb's writing style.
♦ Conclusion. A definite page-turner, one that will make you force yourself not to skip ahead and keep you up nights. You develop so much of an emotional connection to this story that you just HAVE to know what is going to happen to Fitz and his companions next. The whole storyline involving the Elderlings is fascinating too. I found it to be unique and unexpected. Actually, the whole series is like that, full of unexpected wonders.
Content is not over the top, there is mention of sex and rape, but not in detail, there is torture, murder and battles, but not overly gory and not very often. If you love flawed heroes who never quite get their due, understandable but still easy to hate villains and a story which tugs at your heart, this series comes highly recommended!
Librarything Rating 4.13/5
Amazon Rating 4 out of 5 stars
(351 Customer Reviews)
What Should I Read Next?
|Kindle: Assassin's Quest|
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Epic Fantasy Book Review of Assassin's Quest (Farseer Trilogy: Book 3) by Robin Hobb - Reviewed by Mulluane - on January 17 2009 - Rating: of 5 Stars