The Wise Man’s Fear {The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day Two}

The Wise Man's FearThe Wise Man’s Fear
{The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day Two}

By: Patrick Rothfuss

www.patrickrothfuss.com

(Fantasy)

1107 pages (Paperback)

“There are three things all wise men fear: the sea in storm, a night with no moon, and the anger of a gentle man.”

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I love Kvothe. This series is awesome. Read it.

Hmm…I’m supposed to say more than that aren’t I? I’m terrible at reviewing the books I love. I do so much better pointing out faults, but I will give it a try.

I love Kvothe. He’s the reason these books are good. You get to know him so well he’s almost an extension of your own being. He’s got personality, talent, and a propensity for getting into trouble. He doesn’t always know when to keep his mouth shut, and things often go badly when he gets carried away. He does wonderful things and terrible things, and seeing the truth behind the legend of Kvothe the Arcane and Kvothe the Bloodless is fascinating.

Apart from Kvothe, Elodin and Auri are my second favorites in the series for their quirky and mysterious qualities. Elodin is brilliant, spontaneous, irreverent, and just a little bit mad while Auri is a delicate and intriguing character with her way of speaking in imaginative and nonsensical ways. Really, there isn’t one bad character in the series, bad people certainly, but never bad characters.

The story moves slowly, and yet not too slowly. There is so much to move through that it takes time to do so, but it never felt slow or long to me. I feel like Patrick Rothfuss thought of everything when writing this, every detail of the world, the characters, and the history. The entire creation is fit snugly and completely together.

I also love how each book begins and ends with “a silence of three parts.” I wish I could write like that. The interludes, returning to the present day, create a nice little break from the story of Kvothe’s past. It’s wonderful to see Kvothe seamlessly transition into Kote the innkeeper when he has customers.

This may be the longest book I’ve ever read. Nope, make that second longest, but an achievement nonetheless. So many great fantasy novels are extremely long, so I’ve had to get comfortable with thousand page books, and I have to say, it’s been a lot easier than I thought. Perhaps I’m choosing the right titles. When I first got The Name of the Wind, I was a little daunted by the number of pages and wondered if I could really like something that long. Now, after reading book two, I can firmly say that Patrick Rothfuss is my favorite author and The Kingkiller Chronicle is my favorite series. The only thing that could change this is the ending of book three. If it ends badly, I might reconsider, but I don’t think it’s likely to happen. I will be patiently awaiting the release of Doors of Stone, and for all those people complaining about it not being released yet, I say this…it will be ready when it’s ready. Do you want a crappy story done quickly or do you want an amazing story done slowly? I would happily wait ten years for this one. Let the man do his job and do it well. Until next time…

Happy Reading!

The Name of the Wind {The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day One}

The Name of the WindThe Name of the Wind
{The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day One}

By: Patrick Rothfuss

www.patrickrothfuss.com

(Fantasy)

722 pages (paperback)

I knew I’d like Patrick Rothfuss!

I first came to know of him from the two wonderful book endorsements he did for Libriomancer and Stormdancer. I figured anyone who loved those two books would certainly write something I’d love, and I was right.

There is something so completely absorbing about this story and my interest was driven by curiosity more than excitement. Most of the books I’ve loved in the past have been full of action, with that action moving the story along, so I was a little surprised by how much I enjoyed this much more evenly paced story. Action-driven stories are great, but stories driven by curiosity are even better. They pull you in on a deeper level than guns and swords and magical explosions.  It’s easy for a long book like this to get boring, but bits of information and action are fed slowly to the reader, always giving you enough to want more, without feeling like you’ve had enough. The last book I read that was this long and held my attention this well was Harry Potter, and that was quite some time ago.

What made the story so absorbing was Kvothe, the main character, who’s story this is after all. He fails and succeeds in equal measure which is important. A character who always wins is predictable and boring, and a character who always fails is depressing. The balance here was perfect. His bad decisions create the necessary catalyst, while his triumphs are uplifting.

This book is really stories within stories, which could easily have been overly complicated or tiring, but it wasn’t. In the present, we have Kvothe telling his life story to a chronicler. Then we have his story. Within his story, are the stories he hears along the way, which are largely myths and legends. Once again the story is wonderfully balanced here. There is never too much time spent on a particular story or legend. You never feel like you’re being info dumped upon, which is really remarkable.

I loved this book. I’ve started off reviews saying how I didn’t expect much from a book and how it was so surprisingly amazing. Here, I expected a lot from this book, and while it wasn’t the story I expected from the cover art and the blurb on the back (to be honest I always expect something totally different), I wasn’t disappointed in the least. I highly recommend this one. Until next time…

Happy Reading!

Patrick Rothfuss has a way with book endorsements…

Mr. Rothfuss has graced the front cover of Stormdancer and the back cover of Libriomancer, two of my favorite recent reads. What I love so much about his quick blurbs is how they’re not your average endorsement. Normally, you get something like “a gripping tale of heroism” or “so and so has taken the fantasy genre to a new level” or whatever, but Mr. Rothfuss’ comments are much more personal.

~

Stormdancer: “What’s that? You say you’ve got a Japanese steampunk novel with mythic creatures, civil unrest, and a strong female protagonist? I’m afraid I missed everything you said after ‘Japanese steampunk.’ That’s all I really needed to hear.”

Libriomancer: “I picked up the book meaning to read a few pages. My first thought was, ‘This is a cool concept.’ The second thing I thought was, ‘This is really, really clever.’ The third thing I thought was, ‘I should have gone to sleep three hours ago.”

~

See what I mean? They’re personal with a touch of humor. It feels more like he legitimately enjoyed the novel and wants to convince others to read it, while other book endorsements just seem flat and stale. While I would have bought Stormdancer and Libriomancer regardless of what Patrick Rothfuss thought of them, these brief quotes convinced me to add The Name of the Wind to my short list. The man seems to love the kind of books I love, and seems clever and genuine as well, so how could I not enjoy his work?

If you are somehow lucky enough to be publishing a book, do everything you can to get Patrick Rothfuss to endorse it. Then you’ll be all set!