The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
My Rating: 5/5 Stars (can I give it 10 stars?)
Short Summary: Stories within stories. Kvothe tells his eventful and magical tale of how he became a notorious wizard.
This review is really hard to do because there is so much to tell and so much going on in the book. I will try to keep this short and to the point.
First, let me say that on the Goodreads ratings there are only 2 people who did not like this book (not that Goodreads means much), and to those people I say: You are bastards. I went ahead and read some of the reviews on Amazon that the haters wrote too, which was a mistake because now I’m angry at all of you and want to throw a book at your heads. I won’t go into why I think your opinions of this book suck, just know, they do.
Maybe it was the combination of reading the context of the book and listening to the audio version that made the difference for me. The audio version is fabulous, flowing together so well. Nick Podehl’s voice was the perfect fit to tell Kvothe’s story. I honestly can say that I’m not sure I would have been able to keep up with the story if I had not listened to the audio, only because there are so many details that something would have gotten skipped over or rushed through by accident. So, if my review convinces you to buy this book, please-please-please spend the extra money to get the audio version as well. It’s so worth it, especially if you’re like me and have to run after a toddler all day.
I’m an idiot for not doing this review before starting the second book, but I got caught up and lost in the magical world Rothfuss created. I couldn’t stop myself! So, now I’ll try to go back and remember the major points I wanted to write about.
The opening chapters entertained me as I was driving out of town at 2 in the morning. I began to get a little confused when the story shifted from the present day story to Kvothe telling his past tale, and I’m still waiting to be caught up on a few present things that I didn’t feel were concluded in the first book. Kvothe’s story, however, of how he progressed from practically an orphan to such a great wizard is so well thought out, detailed, and planned–though some thought it “meandered” on aimlessly. I write this with the second book in mind–halfway finished reading it. I’m guessing those who didn’t like the way this book was written did not go on to read the second, or they would see how the pieces fit together. Sometimes you have to trust the author, stick with the story, and continue on the journey even if you don’t understand where it is going until you get there. I’m no longer confused when Kvothe switches back and forth between the past and present.
(Possible, tiny spoilers…maybe. I’ll try to be gentle.)
I’m anxious to see if Kvothe’s apprentice, Bast, succeeds in his training and his attempt to rekindle Kvothe’s magic; if Kvothe’s “love life” makes any major progression later in the present story, if not in the past telling; if Kvothe ever fulfills his main goal to find the Chandrian and avenge his family; and what will become of Kvothe in the present, as well as his story that is being handwritten by Chronicler.
Overall, I’ve fallen head-over-heels for this series. I’ve passed on my obsession to my husband, who is now sucked into the magical tale as well. He listens to it every day on his drive to work and as soon as he gets home. I’m telling you–the audio version is the way to go. Don’t make me beg you to go at least download the sample of the kindle book from Amazon. A friend of mine, a woman ten times as intelligent as me, recommended this book to me and I immediately went out and bought it, trusting it would be beyond amazing. I wasn’t disappointed. Patrick Rothfuss, take all my money. I’m coming for the 3rd book soon!
I knew this review wouldn’t do the book justice. I can’t put enough words down to describe how wonderfully exciting this tale is. Excuse me while I finish my thoughts for the day and get back to the second book!
The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
My Rating: 5/5 stars
Short Summary: Kvothe leaves the University, continuing on his quest to learn more about the Chandrian in an attempt to uncover the truth behind the deaths of his parents.
My Short Review: If I’m being completely honest, I did not enjoy this story nearly as much as the first. While I completely understand the need for some of the build up, a lot of this felt slowly dragged out (which is what most of Rothfuss’ readers complain of), but I’m a pretty patient person.
I didn’t talk a lot about any of the other characters in the last review, but I wanted to mention Denna. She’s driving me nuts, and I don’t care one way or the other if she and Kvothe “get it on” at some point or another. She’s so flighty, it’s frustrating. To add, she’s an ungrateful brat half the time she is with Kvothe. This guy is doing the best he can be to stay in the “friend zone,” while still treating her like a complete princess, and he still gets chastised for giving her a gift–spoiler: not even a real gift, but her own jewelry, but it’s okay for her to give him a gift? I won’t even go into the so-called fight they have because Kvothe is an idiot during this scene, and Denna is clueless. The whole relationship is shitty, and I’m over it. I am looking forward to seeing what happened to Denna that made Kvothe so regretful in the beginning of book one, which I did go back and read as second time for shits and giggles.
I don’t even want to comment on how long the 3rd book is going to take to come out. I’m sure it will be just as worth it as these books were, but I’m still not happy about it.
I like to keep the reviews of following books short because if you didn’t like the first one, nothing I will say will keep you interested in this one. Just know, that like most of my reviews on Hugh Howey’s books, I believe these books are worth the money! Again, I bought the audio version on Amazon.