The Wise Man’s Fear (Kingkiller Chronicle: Day Two) Review


Author and Genre

This is the second novel in the fantasy fiction series by Patrick Rothfuss. You can find my review of the first in The Kingkiller Chronicle series here. He is a college lecturer as well as an accomplished author of fantasy novels.

What is The Wise Man’s Fear About?

The narrative is carried on seamlessly from The Name of the Wind, with an older Kvothe recounting the adventures and trials of his youth.

Young Kvothe continues to study at the University, making friends and carrying on an intense feud with the easy-to-hate Ambrose, a fellow student. There is also a complicated, intriguing romantic relationship building between young Kvothe and Denna.

What’s so great about it?

This second novel in Rothfuss’ epic fantasy series takes the reader in a new direction. Kvothe is drawn into the service of a great and powerful figure, and is given his first lessons in surviving as an agent of a political giant.

Everything is considered to the minutest detail by the author so that the author isn’t left grappling with loose threads in the plot. But suspense is built throughout and the reader is drawn into the fantasy world Rothfuss creates.

What’s not so great?

One complaint which I would make about this fantasy novel in particular and the series as a whole is that the pace is somewhat slow for my tastes. We spend a lot of chapters learning about Kvothe’s childhood.

There is nothing wrong with this as such, but we are told at the beginning of the series that Kvothe becomes a great and feared sorcerer. So the reader is left wondering how the author is going to build his protagonist to such greatness in the final, third installment when Kvothe still seems trapped in his youth.

I suppose we can only wait until The Doors of Stone (Kingkiller Chronicle: Day Three) release date!

Where can you buy it?

You can find The Wise Man’s Fear on Amazon Kindle here.

You can also now find a historical / fantasy novel written by me here.*Version*=1&*entries*=0

The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day One) Review

The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day One) Review

This is my first review on this blog so I think I’ll ease into it with some buzzwords: magic, travelers, powerful enemies and a lute. What am I talking about? Allow me to explain.

Author and Genre

The Name of the Wind is a fantasy novel written by celebrated author Patrick Rothfuss, whose blog can be found here. What you really want though is a picture of him. Alright then, here you are.

What is The Name of the Wind about?

This fantasy novel follows a young man named Kvothe from childhood into adulthood. It is a coming of age story but the transition is far from gentle. Without giving any spoilers, our young hero is very suddenly plunged into a violent, frightening world after a life of happiness and leisure.

He grows up with a band of traveling performers, a tight-knit family known as the Edema Ruh. Kvothe himself is a talented musician but not when compared with his father, who is something of a legend in traveler circles.

Things begin to change when an old scholar joins their party. His mind holds many secrets which he imparts to Kvothe, such as science and sympathy. What does being sympathetic have to do with anything? Sympathy is essentially magic in Patrick Rothfuss’ world and our hero comes to learn that it carries a great price.

What’s so great about it?

Sympathy is one of the reasons that The Name of the Wind is one of the best fantasy novels I’ve read. Like I’ve said, sympathy is pretty much magic but Patrick Rothfuss goes a bit further than that. He makes it almost a science.

Now I know that might be a bit off-putting to some fantasy fiction readers, but it shouldn’t be. The author pulls it off by expertly blending science and magic. Your belief is still suspended as he doesn’t try to explain how magic is in this world, just how it works. You lift one thing and a thing lifts up. Energy is expended in the process. It’s logical magic and it draws you deeper into the world of Kvothe.

How did it catch my attention?

The Name of the Wind caught my attention with the opening. It doesn’t start with a boy traveling around with the Edema Ruh, performing and having adventures. No, it starts with a middle-aged, average innkeeper.

The whole narrative of young Kvothe’s life is occasionally interspersed with the story set in the ‘present’. An older man is recounting the adventures of his youth to a scholar. It’s a method that’s been used in other fiction and it works.

You’re drawn in at the outset by a brutally simple life being led by the old innkeeper. This prepares you for the real body of the story, where events are anything but simple.

Should you read it?

Absolutely. It’s a brilliant fantasy novel set in a deeply imagined world, with a compelling plot, carefully developed characters and twists which will leave you hungry to read more. The Name of the Wind is a rich story filled with fantastic details that won’t fail to disappoint even the casual fantasy reader.

Where can you buy it?

Here is the Amazon link (no, you missed it, click the word “here“. Or click that one).