Book Review: ‘Assassin’s Quest’ by Robin Hobb

Posted: 25 July 2016 in Book reviews
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Synopsis

In the final volume of The Farseer Trilogy, Fitz has returned from the grave, but is now more animal than human. He is torn between the ease of being a wolf and the desire for revenge for what was done to him by Regal. Burrich and Chade try to help him, but he doesn’t make it easy for them. He ends up pushing them away to follow his own path: to kill Regal.

The way to achieving his goal is not as easy as he hoped. He is not the clever assassin he once perceived himself to be. When he finally makes it to Tradeford, he is nearly captured in a failed assassination attempt. The only thing that saves him is a powerful skill from Verity that imprints in Fitz a plea to find him. So he halts his plan to kill Regal and attempts to find the true King.

Due to his foolish attempt to kill Regal, he is now being hunted. And because he is heading deep into the Mountain Kingdom, this only gives Regal more of a reason to wage war against Kettricken’s people. Now the clock is ticking to find Verity and bring him back to reclaim the throne. If he can’t, then both kingdoms are doomed. To make the task more difficult, all Fitz has to go on is the imprinted call and an old map.

Together with Kettricken, the Fool, the mysterious Kettle, the minstrel Starling, and his wolf Nighteyes, Fitz ventures into unknown lands to discover powers he never knew possible and a fate he can’t escape. Will he be strong enough to save all he loves, or will Regal finally succeed in destroying the Bastard and all that stands in his way?

My Thoughts

I was very excited to find the final book of this series here. Didn’t expect to for some reason. It is only available at the Queen’s Library (for those in NYC who care). I had to travel far to get it, but I’m glad I did.

I enjoyed the story, with the exception of one thing: the beginning. Not that I disliked the beginning, just that it started out really slow. So slow that it concerned me. The beginning of the other two books weren’t this slow. Thankfully, it picked up and kept building pace until the end. I also personally felt that the beginning dragged on for too long. It took 155 pages to overcome his soul transfer and then travel from Buck to Tradeford. Other than the slow beginning, I otherwise really enjoyed it. It is filled with adventure, magic, heartache, danger, love, and friendship. I can’t even pinpoint a specific favourite moment as there are so many great moments. And most of them are at the end and I don’t want to spoil anything!

There are only a couple new characters here: Starling and Kettle. Kettle is quite mysterious. She is really good at keeping secrets. No one knows who she is, where she comes from, and she is really good at keeping it that way. When she finally relents, it is only because she has to. I love her attitude. She is very solid and strong. And feisty. Starling is basically her opposite. She is very open about who she is and what she does. She can’t keep secrets and she is very emotional. Despite this, her actions are based on what she feels is right. She is honourable. There is a tiny bit character that I really liked. It was a ferret. It is a sad character, but I liked him. I also found it interesting that more of the Fool is revealed. Such as the debate about his gender and his sexuality. He doesn’t seemed bothered one way or the other about either as is content to let people think as they will.

There isn’t much to say about the writing. It was good like always. There was just the right amount of description, it was paced really well (except for the beginning which I discussed earlier), and had great energy. I loved how the characters were realistic and how the book wasn’t overdone. It had a level of realism that I liked.

So in short, the book starts slow, but ends with a bang. A great conclusion to a great series. I will give it a 4/5. Enjoy 😉

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