Sunday, October 6, 2013

Review: The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

The Name of the Wind--Patrick Rothfuss
March 2007 by DAW Hardcover
662 pages--Goodreads

Told in Kvothe's own voice, this is the tale of the magically gifted young man who grows to be the most notorious wizard his world has ever seen. The intimate narrative of his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, his years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, and his life as a fugitive after the murder of a king form a gripping coming-of-age story unrivaled in recent literature. A high-action story written with a poet's hand, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that will transport readers into the body and mind of a wizard.

The Name of the Wind was fine, but not amazing.  It has a nontraditional premise, and I congratulate Rothfuss for pulling it off.  I mean, how many authors could write a trilogy where the main character sits in an in and tells the story of his life for three days straight.  And that's it.  And the publishers buy it and readers give it some of the highest ratings I've ever seen on Goodreads.  

One of my biggest problems with the novel is Kvothe's obsession with Denna.  She's just dull.  If she wasn't such a big part of the book I could ignore her, but Kvothe keeps mooning over her and it gets very boring.  Seriously, Kvothe; stop moping about your crush and go learn magic.  Denna did show some more depth near the end of the novel, so maybe there's hope for book two.  I don't need her to be a great or even a good person, but I need her to be a real person with goals and motivations.  For now she's just a pretty face.  

It's a very slow burning novel.  Not boring, but not terribly exciting either.  I liked Kvothe's time in the forest and the city.  And I want to see more of the female loanshark.  She's a much more interesting character than Denna.  Why can't we spend more time with her?

So, it's good, but not the best book I've ever read.  I will get around to reading book two eventually, but I don't feel a driving need to finish the series now.  Especially since book three isn't out.

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