The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Perhaps 3.5 stars is too little and I’m being overly negative. But wonderful as it is, this book still have some glaring problems. Oh and btw: others have written about the plot, I don’t have to copy it.
Let’s get the praise over with: Patrick Rothfuss’s writing is brilliant, and when the story works this is a page turner deluxe. And yes, you still care about the characters with some minor glitches (see below). So all in all I finished this book in less than a week despite the fact it is a door stopper.
Door stopper. Well, here’s the first criticism then, and one I keep coming back to: where the hell are the editors when it comes to epic fantasy? Not that I imagine it would be an easy job with a book like this, it fits seamlessly together and ripping something out would be horrifying. But still, large parts – or even the majority – of this book have nothing to do with the plot as I understand it. Certainly, it tells us the story of Kvothe’s rise to power, but it doesn’t move us very further from the end of the first book.
Let me clarify. This is a character story and it aims to tell us the life of Kvothe. It frames the narrative in the differences between Kvothe the legend and Kote the barman. The first book we get his journey from childhood to young man. In the second we get next to nothing. The driving force of the story is the Chandrian, and of them, we get to see nothing.
Oh and I’m sorry, but the lengthy stretches of fairy sex bored the hell out of me, it read like a teenage fantasy geek hot dream.
The first book developed a character, but the second did not. This goes for all characters, they stay more or less flat in this volume. That’s not to say there’s not a fine story here. Patrick Rothfuss obviously has an imagination big as a house, I really, really look forward to read more of him.
And that’s more or less it. This is a straight forward adventure tale with fairy sex. Conceptually there’s very little here we haven’t seen before (apart from the evil tree, I really enjoyed that concept). It’s told with a fantastic flair, and a prose to die for though. But how on earth he’s going to manage the rest of the story in just one book is beyond me. But I’m dying to find out.
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