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This is part of my argument on his behalf. Fitz has no pattern for how to build trust other than the blind faith owed to Shrewd or Chade, or in another way altogether the dogs Nosy or Smithy. Verity is … busy. Kettricken — introduced in the second book — might have been a solid friend, but it would have been dangerous, for both of them. As for Molly … Fitz knows what he wants. And he decides he and Molly deserve a Happily Ever After, and he tries for it anyway — and when Molly is threatened, and he realizes she could easily be injured, raped, killed as a way to get at him, he has no choice but to back off.

I took, and perhaps he did as well, the warnings he was given to mean that he needed to take every precaution with any food or drink that Regal or one of his minions could possibly have tainted. Even if she had handed him a phial marked with a skull and crossbones or its Six Duchies equivalent, he would have had to be pretty careful in finding a way to avoid taking that drink: He was disarmed by her; he never suspected she had any idea who or what he was, and was in a corner.

She rubbed the root free of dirt, then sliced a bit with her belt knife from the heart of the tuber to allow me to taste its tang. She showed me certain pungent herbs for seasoning meat and insisted I taste a leaf of each of three varieties, for though the plants were very similar, the flavors were very different. In a way, she was like Patience, without her eccentricity. In another way, she was like Molly, but without the callousness that Molly had been forced to develop to survive.

Like Molly, she spoke directly and frankly to me, as if we were equals. I found myself thinking that Verity might find this woman more to his liking than he expected. He is taken by her youth, by her gentleness, by her intelligence; she wins him immediately by talking to him frankly and comfortably as an equal, and he finds himself comparing her favorably to the two most important women in his life two of the only three, really — he even finds that in her that is, not to say better than but softer than Molly.

To beat it into the ground a little: That was all on page of my edition. Two pages later she tells him what Regal has told her: So I cut him a little slack here. He earned it, poor bugger. King Shrewd, however, decides to train him as an assassin from an early age, and so begins young Fitz' journey into adulthood and the intrigues of the royal court. Book I works because Fitz is too young to understand half of what he's doing or to give any serious thought to it. He's learning to play a dangerous chess game against opponents who have far more experience, though usually less sense, than him.

Therefore, we expect his failures to be on par with his victories, probably to surpass them even. Book II suffers from trying to pull the same stunt twice to an older and more experienced Fitz. We tell ourselves Fitz would have learned from the ordeals in Book I, that he would try to forge his own identity, make his own decisions, be his own man for once.

At no time did I feel him grow as a character, rather he was always complaining about how unfair life was to him, about what he wanted to do, never sparing a thought for others except occasionally and briefly. Fitz is always putting his urges, his desires, first, always at the expense of putting other people in danger. An assassin should know better. So, yes, this turns Fitz into a selfish, little brat, but there's still worse to come.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: But this is what happens in Book II. Everyone, and I mean everyone, is dumb beyond the point of credulity, wielding feeble arguments to argue passivity. Of course, this only makes Fitz' character even dumber for going along with it all. Treason is brewing in the royal court and everyone seems to believe inaction is the best remedy.

Some even go so far as claiming it's their only choice, a ludicrous thought. Peasants, soldiers, lords, all are easily duped by a web of conspiracy that can be seen from light years away. Not one character makes a sensible choice throughout the length of Book II and the author has utterly failed to convince me about the reasons why. I suppose what angers me the most is how the author manipulates hope to lure the reader in. Hope that Fitz will become his own man, hope that things will turn out okay, hope that somebody will have the sense to kill Regal once and for all and thus put an end to his far-fetched charade.

With every turn of page, every chapter that gets consumed by the reader, things take a turn for the worse; each successive title forebodes another dark, depressing chapter, and the reader's hopes slowly, but surely, ebb away. It's an incredibly depressing book, not so much for the plot itself, but because of how unbelievably the characters act. The author seems intent on convincing you that two plus two equals five when you know it to be four.

I tried to convince myself Book III would be better. I checked the one-star reviews to prepare for the worst and was not disappointed. Everything I've read points to a long and pointless read that turns productive towards its bittersweet ending that seems more bitter than sweet. There's apparently another trilogy about Fitz' exploits that tries to tie some, if not all, of the plot holes of the Farseer Trilogy, but I presently feel too deceived by this trilogy to entertain the notion of beginning another one, with the same dumb protagonist and written by the same author.

Originally, I gave this a two-star rating out of pity, more than anything else, but then "Rule of Two" came to mind. I gave that one a one-star rating on the basis of its incredible -in the true sense of the word- plot, but I think "Royal Assassin" is the first book I've read that not only has a plot that doesn't hold water, of any kind, but it is also way too depressing going about it. At this point in time, I wish I could erase this book from memory, commit it to some deep, dark corner of my mind and leave it there for all eternity.

Some time in the distant future I may gather the will to read the end of this trilogy. But if there's something Robin Hobb has helped me discover is what kind of fantasy I enjoy and what kind I don't. I've discovered I don't enjoy the kind of fantasy that puts its main character through a constant stream of endless suffering that furthers no plot or character development.

Suffering for the sake of suffering itself is pointless. Worse, it's bad writing or, in any event, it makes for bad reading. To close this rather long rant I leave you with this: Every writer sets him or herself with an endgame. Some, in trying to organise their way through to it, lose perspective of their characters, wondering more about getting character X to do action Y and less about why character X should do action Y in the first place.

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I won't say whether this is right or wrong, but I've always valued the latter over the former. So, my advice, for whatever is worth, is this: Who knows, maybe the game will take you in unforeseeable directions View all 42 comments. I haven't read an abundance of older Fantasy books, but I have discovered from the few I have read that I'm not always a fan of the "Classic" feel.

Even after a 3 star beginning to the Farseer Trilogy, I'm really glad I continued on with the series. Royal Assas Actual Rating: Royal Assassin stepped up to fill in all the places where I wanted more from Assassin's Apprentice. Yes, the pace is still slow. Yes, Fitz is still a poster boy for suffering. But the foundation provided by the first installment created an attachment to Fitz's well-being that makes his suffering meaningful for character growth. Yes, the setting is still largely at Buckkeep. Seeing him forge his relationships while balancing his promises of loyalty, the attacks of the Red Ship Raiders, the Forging of Six Duchies folk, and figuring out how his Wit and Skill will best serve the Realm was quite a treat.

Each scene felt immediately important to the overarching conflict or to developing a critical piece of characterization. I've said it before, but I must say again just how excellent Hobb's writing is. Dialogue, description, action, you name it, she can write it masterfully. If all such scenes were written with this degree of skill I'd probably never find them intrusive as I often do.

I knocked off half a star because I feel like by this point in the story I should be more familiar with the magic systems of The Skill and The Wit. There's plenty of experience with both forms of mental magic through Fitz, but I feel like they remain ill-defined as far as magic systems go. It doesn't feel detrimental to the story largely because of the First Person POV, we experience the magic in the same way Fitz does without much of a clue.

But I still wish I understood the fundamentals a bit better than I do after spending so much time in this world. Altogether a splendid upgrade from the first novel. View all 12 comments. The mental strain, people! View all 4 comments. Fitzchivalry really does feel sorry for himself.

He is very whiney at times, and this is often misinterpreted as self-indulgent uselessness. Resting on his shoulders is a whole host of burdens.

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They would, no doubt, overcome a lesser man. Every decision he makes is hindered by his obligations. Indeed, nothing is easy for Fitz; he is restricted by his position in the world. So Fitzchivalry really does feel sorry for himself. A touch of Romance in the chaos Somehow amongst his vast duties to his King, which include being his personal assassin and a reservoir of magical strength for his son, Fitz manages to find romance.

This is a feat in itself because Fitz is also magically bonded to a wolf, which demands a great deal of his already sought after attention. And to top it off, he is hunting down and killing those that have had their minds destroyed by the mysterious invaders.

The Farseer Trilogy

So, the fact that he has actually managed to find love, in this quagmire of murder and court intrigue, is truly remarkable. Therefore, what will lead him into love will, ultimately, lead him out of it. His honour demands it; the six duchies demand it, and his masters demand it. He has no choice but to give everything he has over to the Farseer reign; he has to because they have no hope of defeating the red ships without him.

I guess he learns a lot through this novel and, as ever, develops into a better person. A king that could should? His honour and integrity are immortalised in this moment; it was at this point in the story that I realised the true nature of the protagonist. He is an assassin, but his personality is more suited to that of a noble knight. He will always have a role to play; he will always be truly loyal to the Farseer throne, but could never take it for himself. Leave the pain behind and let your life be your own again. There is a place where all time is now, and the choices are simple and always your own.

Wolves have no kings. I think this is mainly because Fitz has a much larger role to play. He can change things and has strong political opportunities of his own; he can, essentially, become more than he is, if he so chose. Fitz was too young to alter the fate of the Six Duchies before. Now, in this, he is much older. His voice has more weight and his actions have larger consequences. When the chance comes for justice he almost loses everything; he will most certainly learn from this most reckless error. I love the magic; I love the characters; I love the writing: I simply love it all.

The Farseer Trilogy 1. Assassin's Apprentice - An overwhelming five stars 2. Royal Assassin - A character defining five stars View all 16 comments. Mar 21, Samir rated it it was amazing. Upon his return he is immediately entangled in perilous events taking place inside and outside of the court. The main antagonist, Prince Regal, is plotting his way to the throne while the Red-Ship Raiders are continuing to represent a constant threat to the Six Duchies.

There is an abundance of intricate schemes and plots woven into the story making it a compelling read. Hobb uses a lot of motifs to establish the overall atmosphere and to weave together the thematic complexities of the plot. One motif that prevails and has a great effect on the story and the characters is loyalty. Characters are often torn between what they wish to do and what they need to do and that is a great way to flesh out their emotions and inner thoughts making them more believable. Emotions which manifest from those relationships are setting off the storyline and keep it moving making it a richer experience.

That leads me to the relationship and a character which is, for me, a highlight of this novel; a wolf named Nighteyes. Saved by Fitz from a life in cage when he was just a weak cub and giving him food and shelter, teaching him how to hunt so he could one day live on its own. Even though reluctant at first, Fitz forms a very strong and unbreakable bond with Nighteyes. It's wrong to think of Nighteyes as mere pet or a simple companion, he is way more than that, he is a quintessential part of Fitz's life, he gives him strength, he is loyal to the core and he makes him complete.

They have a strong and mutually dependent bond. They are a pack. Royal Assassin will appeal to readers who enjoy classic fantasy tales but also readers who enjoyed contemporary fantasy novels like The Name of the Wind. So, if you belong in any of those groups, I highly recommend that you give this series a try. View all 17 comments.

Apr 27, Sean Gibson rated it really liked it. On one hand, this feels like a three-star read: Plus, as suggested by the proposed alternate title above…man, poor Fitz just gets constantly pummeled in the gigglebe Proposed alternate title: Plus, as suggested by the proposed alternate title above…man, poor Fitz just gets constantly pummeled in the giggleberries by life.

And then it gives him a wedgie. And points and laughs. And then shoves a brontosaurus up his backside without even doing him the courtesy of lubing it up. I bet no one has ever bothered to figure that out. Inexplicably, I might add. I just hope the epicness ramps up a bit in the concluding volume… View all 14 comments. Well no one freaking mentioned all the angst and feels and the shit that goes down, and that spawn of Satan, Regal that needs to choke on a fish bone and die a most horrible death!!

Okay okay, let me take a breather and try to be coherent.. Obviously I loved this book to pieces I mean I finished the almost pages in 2 days , Robin Hobb ha [4. Obviously I loved this book to pieces I mean I finished the almost pages in 2 days , Robin Hobb has a way of writing plot and characters that despite the slowness it just gets under your skin and you can never stop thinking about it. I love that in a series, if it gets me obsessed then I call it a success. Can we talk about how amazing Patience is? All her scenes are either hilarious or just punches you in the chest.

Burrich was another great surprise, I loved him in the second half of Assassin's Apprentice but in this book, this dude is made of glory. Fitz of course is a no brainer, I'm reserving my overflowing gushing till he grows up a little bit because currently he is still in the emo hormonal teenage phase think Order of the Phoenix although quite understandable considering all the trauma he went through.

I need more of him, we only get a glimpse of his past in this book, and it's just enough of a tease to make us ask more questions about him! The fool by HerrMagermilch on Deviantart Of course there's a bunch more of characters, Kettricken BAMF and quite the inspirational speaker and Verity heart throb and glorious generally speaking.. In conclusion, I'll reserve my heartiest recommendations till I finish the third book, but so far I've been pleasantly surprised by where the trilogy is going so far, I'm enjoying it thoroughly along with the audiobook to help speed things up and I honestly didn't mind the slowness and the repetition because the characters are what made this behemoth a huge win for me!

View all 8 comments. Buddy read with Alexa! Come, hunt with me, the invitation whispers in my heart. Having barely survived his first real mission as a royal assassin, Fitz first vowed to renounce his oath to King Shrewd and abandon the shadow Buddy read with Alexa! We have the same enemy raiding the shores of the Six Duchies, inflicting the same horrors on the same people. We have the same antagonist, leashed but not put down. We have the same protagonist taking his lessons from the same people and essentially doing exactly what he did in the first book.

And except for a character or two, there is little new. For the first seventy percent of this book yes, seventy , nothing happened. The first book was also incredibly slow to get the plot moving, but really not this slow, and in that book it had a purpose: In this one there is no excuse. The book also includes a lot of horrible characters.

That does not mean that the book was completely horrible. And while the first seventy percent were utterly and completely boring, the last thirty were the complete opposite, with intrigue and death and excitement around every corner. Another positive thing was Fitz developing his abilities with the Wit, and even finding a strong companion who was one of the most interesting characters of the book.

Overall though, this was in my eyes a rather typical case of second book syndrome. The first book was great and I hope the third one will live up to it, but Royal Assassin was unfortunately just not good enough. View all 21 comments. Holy crap, that was a good book. I made the mistake of reading until past my bedtime to finish. Not only did I lose some sleep before starting a work week, but I then gave myself a series of messed up dreams as my poor little brain processed the end of this book. Not a lot I can say without spoilers. But Hobb is definitely moving up a few spots on my author list.

Assassin's Apprentice was a very good book. Intriguing characters in a seemingly simple but interesting world with a good story. It made me want to read more of the story of Fitz and the world of the Six Duchies. Where Book 1 was a little slow moving as Hobb set up the characters and the overall plot, this one does not hold back. It's not a roller-coaster ride, not until the last few chapters at least. But it's definitely one that keeps interest all the way through.

Hobb's strength is her characters. Especially in how they relate to one another. She creates emotional bonds between them that are real. When these characters hurt, so does the reader. There's not just disappointment when something bad happens to a beloved character, but the pain of loss. Even the occasional burst of humor. Everything I read a book for. I have no idea how to even begin this review because this book was perfect.


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The plot is one of a kind and the writing is so compelling, its my favourite thing about this series. Robin Hobb writes a classic type fantasy that is very comprehensible and addicting, The world is perfectly depicted. The politics is very well incorporated in the book, and it is a major factor of Fitz's story. I so much love the character development of all the characters especially the newest additi That was incredible! I so much love the character development of all the characters especially the newest addition to the characters, Nighteyes, that wolf is everything.

He blinked his deep eyes. You love too many. My life is much simpler. He loved only me. The only real difficulty I have is knowing that you will never trust that is so. Nighteyes sneezed suddenly, then shook himself all over. If only it was that easy. And that ending damn! Plot Verity left to search for the elderling to aid them in defeating the raiders. Fitz is alone with just Nighteyes for company. The king is sick and Regal will stop at nothing to become king, He still sees Fitz as a threat.

Fitz and Molly dated briefly but she dumped him because of his secrets and loyalty to the Farseer. Kettricken is pregnant and on the run, so Regal won't succeed in his plans of killing her. I went into this second book of The Farseer Trilogy being a little bit sceptical. I'd heard a lot of people claiming that it contains too many pages and a lot of dull passages. I do see where those people are coming from, but even though not every page is action-filled, I still really really enjoyed it.

In this book, I grew even more attached to Fitz as well as the heavy cast of characters that are introduced in this sequel. I felt like Robin Hobb juggled a lot of more balls in this story which I went into this second book of The Farseer Trilogy being a little bit sceptical.

Royal Assassin

I felt like Robin Hobb juggled a lot of more balls in this story which gave the world and the book more depth. I grew so attached to the characters that this is one of those books that I kind of regretted finishing. I wanted to continue reading about them - thank God there's a sequel to this one as well! If you liked the first book in this series, I highly recommend this one as well.

In my opinion, it was even better than the first one, and I'm eager to see where this is going after THAT ending! It took me long enough, but I finally finished this. Robin Hobb has her own unique writing style that makes Fitz and his story a true fantasy classic. Full review to come! Buddy read with Markus!

Royal Assassin by Robin Hobb l Summary & Study Guide

Who unlike me, wrote a coherent and thoughtful review you can read here. This book was pages long. Dune is less than pages. And in both cases, even with the comparable page count they managed to condense a LOT of story between their covers. In this case we had pages of filler. Very little happened, and the Buddy read with Markus!

Very little happened, and the plot almost didn't move. You could have condensed the action in what? Here's a resume of what happens: Fitz bonds with a new animal.

Royal Assassin Summary

There's a "romance" angle that I hated. Verity goes on a quest. Regal is still the bad guy. We still don't know anything about the red ships. There are plot lines here and there that are left unresolved, and the book ends with a very interesting twist. But most of it was insufferably boring and I only finished it because I was buddy reading it with a friend. I will still read the next book, because I really liked the first one and I want to know what happens with the red ships. But I'm not sure I'll read anything else in the Elderlings series.

Very few fantasy series can boast this kind of average rating. Hobb also does a great job of promoting her books by interacting with her readers through social media websites like Reddit. I find her to be friendly and approachable and always happy to recommend books by other authors. Royal Assassin is the second book of the Farseer Trilogy and follows directly without a pause for breath from Assassin's Apprentice. In this book, our hero FitzChivalry finds himself increasingly beleaguered by the evil prince Regal and his henchmen.

None of these help him to avoid having the stuffing beaten out of him, but at least he manages to get in a couple of good jabs. With this kind of plot-heavy adventure tale the less I reveal of the plot the better I believe. Fitz as depicted in the edition of Royal Assassin The storyline of this series is refreshingly original in that it does not follow the standard epic quest story arc even though it does follow the development of the protagonist from childhood to adulthood.

The fantastical elements in this series so far is quite subtle, there is no wizard blasting people with wild magic, turning people into newts etc. Characterization as with the first book is very well done, all the characters are believable. Fitz has a very hard time of it with the odds always stacked against him. As with a lot of fantasy books, the colorful supporting characters tend to be more interesting than the protagonist.

With this series, the most fascinating character is The Fool who is wonderfully enigmatic and eccentric with an idiosyncratic way of speaking. I imagine his dialogue must be quite difficult to write. It is difficult to explain the virtues of this kind of writing, the prose style is not highly literary or lyrical, yet it is graceful and lucid.

There is not a word out of place and the whole thing reads very smoothly, no jarring or clunky dialogue to stumble over. While the book is quite grim and violent in places I would not rank her among the likes of George R. Her plotting, pacing and world building is very skillful and meticulous.

She is also very clever with her cliffhanger and I am now very much looking forward to the concluding volume of this trilogy. After that I will no doubt go on to the second, third etc. That should keep off the street for a while. Sorry, no idea who John Howe is, obviously a very talented artist.

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These new Far Seer Trilogy editions are also specially priced but not in a good way! View all 7 comments. Simply not as good as the first one. The last third was good but the first two-thirds the only good scenes involved Nighteyes or the Fool. While the court just went on and on without any real action. I usually like reading a series straight through but I'd recommend not doing that with this one. Book one and the first two-thirds of book two are just too much of the same. The last third redeemed it for me and I will read the last book since without giving anything away it will have to be differen Simply not as good as the first one.

The last third redeemed it for me and I will read the last book since without giving anything away it will have to be different. I will however take my own advice and do it in a few months. Nov 17, Paul O'Neill rated it it was amazing. Perfect in every way! The best thing I've read all year. For those waiting for Winds of Winter, this is what you should be reading. Fitz, the main character is one of the best in all fantasy. The writing is excellent and Bradbury-esque in places without being over long.

No sentence is wasted. The world is intriguing and speaks of greater things to come and what a bloomin' ending!!! You've earned yourself a lifetime fan with this one. Robin Hobb knows how to surprise. Not the jump-out-of-the-cake-type of surprises, but she plays with your feelings as a reader. You get this dreaded feeling, and you start thinking that surely she is not going to go there…? And yet, she does. She plays with her characters like cats play with mice. I really liked book two of this series.

The only reason it does get the full five stars is because I struggled with believability in a big part of the middle section. The fact that Regal can do whateve Robin Hobb knows how to surprise. The fact that Regal can do whatever he wants, and no-one calls him out. I just can't believe that no-one would step up, that everyone would just do his bidding. With a lot of other books that would have been a killer-issue, but Robin Hobb just writes so damn good, that in the end, I can live with these doubts - and the end was spectacular, so there's that. I did channel Ygritte a lot in the mid-section of this book.

I so often rolled my eyes, sighing "You know nothing! Entry exam will not be required. He is the King-In-Wating. You never quite know for sure with him. Is he kidding, is he serious? One thing is for sure though, he is remarkably loyal. The axe is his weapon. To me, even after having finished the book, I feel that Verity is selfish. Not knowingly and consciously, but selfish none the less. His dealings with Fitz, even if well-intended, were hard for me to take.

I felt that he was living trough Fitz, but he's living that 'merged life' very safely from his tower, while Fitz is in the thick of it. Without any help, or protection. I hated the fact that Verity thinks of Fitz as a Weapon for him to use. As a way for him to get his own few flashes of adrenaline. I hope Verity is going to improve in book 3.

I still don't have a high opinion of him. And I'd love it if Fitz' trust in Verity will actually be deserved. Becoming quite the tactician this one. Changing things, putting things in motion, even when he doesn't want to. Very promising for book three! Then something about the ending: About 10 chapters from the ending, I started to get this bad, bad feeling that Fitz was going to end up in jail, killed, or excommunicated. One chapters later, I started to get an even worse feeling that these were not alternatives, and that they would all three happen, in that order.

To find out you are that right and then I even forgot to think about the option of torture , Robin Hobb surely isn't kind to her characters. Like a cat with her mice indeed. View all 26 comments. This is a slower paced book, focusing on Fitz and Kettricken who i start to admire and love as a character.

The vast majority is a 3. Until one gets to the last third of the book when the world is rocked, the story becomes so intense, the events unfold so quickly that one is left breathe-less for most of the chapters. An incredibly persuasive ending of the book that elevates the book to a 4 star for me! These characters make me feel so much.