A Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss

I’m not sure what the point of this book was.

The entire book follows Auri as she wanders around the Underthings, a forgotten web of tunnels, passageways and rooms underneath the University, thinking and doing strange things like finding objects and finding places to put them. It’s a lot like she has severe OCD.

What’s really strange is that the author tells us not to read this book because it is not a continuation of Kvothe’s story but in order to understand this book, he recommends we read The Name of the Wind and A Wise Man’s Fear first. I thought we would learn more about Auri who we had met a handful of times in the previous books. She is this strange girl who Kvothe met while playing his lute on the roof above an abandoned courtyard of the University. It took a while for her to approach him and when she did, she had all these strange quirks like she gives odd gifts, usually three at a time, and tells him they’re full of sunshine or moonbeams or something fantastical like that. He can’t ask her anything about her personally or she runs off.

We learned all that in the previous books but not in this book. He figures she is one of the many University students who have gone crazy from the intense mental strain and the nature of the studies. It happens so often that there is an insane asylum near the University just for this very thing. I thought she might be fae but this book seems to suggest that she has some training in magic or sympathy as they call it so she must have just cracked under the pressure.

I skipped pages and pages of Auri running from place to place setting objects on shelves, tables and mantels. This is what she did throughout the entire book of seven days as she waited for someone, who I assume is Kvothe, to visit on the seventh day.

What a waste of my time!

A Wise Man’s Fear – The Kingkiller Chronicles #2 – Patrick Rothfuss

This book was one thousand pages long and Kvothe, the main character, had a lot of adventures.

The story is being told by an older Kvothe to a story writer called Chronicler and to Bast, Kvothe’s apprentice. Kvothe owns an inn in a small town and he goes by Kote. I’m assuming he is in hiding or just wants to live a simple life now. His older self seems to be at odds with his younger self who worked hard at building up a reputation for himself of being someone who accomplished great feats similar to the storybook legend of Taborlin the Great, a magician who could break out of doorless and windowless prisons because he knew the names of everything like wind and stone and could command them to do his bidding. The mature Kvothe seems to be subdued and may even regret some of his past.

This book starts out with Kvothe at the University, learning magic or what they call sympathy. He struggles to find money to pay his tuition each term which has been made harder by a fellow student named Ambrose, a rich noble who hates Kvothe.

Kvothe is an amazing musician who plays the lute but he can’t find a patron because Ambrose has threatened or bribed everyone within a hundred miles not to take him on as a client. Ambrose is always causing trouble for Kvothe but Kvothe gives as good as he gets. Rvery term, each student has to go in front of the Masters who ask a few questions and set tuition based on those answers. The day of Kvothe’s interview, a woman came to the inn where Kvothe was staying. She asked if he knew Ambrose, brought him a drink and sat down with him. “To Ambrose Jakis,” she said with sudden fierceness. “May he fall into a well and die.” He smelled nutmeg and plum and then she started sobbing and left the inn.

She had drugged Kvothe but he didn’t realize it until a few people told him he was acting strange and being rude. The drug brings out the worst in people or takes away their inhibitions. It takes days to leave the system so the person can act fairly normal but could take weeks or even months to wear off. Luckily, Fela switched admission days with him so he didn’t totally ruin his chances at the University.

Ambrose also had him charged with malfeasance which brought heat on the University which made the Masters nervous which would have made his tuition for the next term too high to afford. Again, luck intervened. A noble found a possible patron for Kvothe in another country. His friend said Alveron Maer was just as important and almost as powerful as the king and he had written to him and told him he was in need of an educated person who was good with words and who could travel as soon as possible. Kvothe boarded a ship to Vintas.

From there, Kvothe goes on one long adventure.

I know there is one more book coming out but it has been six years since this one was published so who knows how long it will be until the next book is published.

The Name of the Wind – The Kingkiller Chronicles #1 – Patrick Rothfuss

My son introduced me to this series and I’m glad he did. It’s not what I’m used to reading,
although I have read some fantasy.
I don’t even know where to begin. There were so many parts to this story that it is hard to  explain. I’ll do my best.
The story is told by Kvothe who started out life as a traveling trouper along with his parents. He  meets a man who teaches him how to be an arcanist, someone who can manipulate the laws of  science and nature to do magic which they call sympathy.
Kvothe learns faster than others so he learned everything within a few months. His teacher, Abenthy, told him he should go to the University when he gets older and that’s what Kvothe dreamed of until tragedy struck and his life heads in another direction.
We know Kvothe makes it out alive because he’s the one telling the story. He is an innkeeper going by the name of Kote and he seems to be hiding from someone or something but his  personality seems to have done a one-eighty. He seems calm and under control which could have just been attributed to growing up but it seems like more than that. I think that was the worse run-on sentence ever.
This book is long and, at times, it lags for me, especially when the magical or scientific process is explained in excruciating detail. I’m good with “Abra Kadabra Boom” but others may need more.
My son says the second book was even better so I’m off to go read it.

Vampire Academy – Vampire Academy #1 – Richelle Mead

When you read paranormal romance series, you inevitably run out of good material to read. I, of course, knew about this series but avoided it because I avoid stereotypical high school drama like I avoid herpes but I was in a desperate spot. I have been having a hell of a time finding a new paranormal romance series…a good paranormal romance series that includes humor and avoids the cliché alpha hero and perfect boring female lead who always wants to do the right thing.
I knew going into this book that it would be packed full of high school drama and decided to grin and bear it. I was right, it was high school with a vampire twist. It had the popular rich kids called royals who gossip and rule the school, the kids who follow the popular kids, wanting to be just like them and the outsiders.
It’s a fairly simple plot with typical teenage characters. I could see where it was headed from the beginning.
I can see the appeal of this for young adults but it’s just not for me.

Raziel – The Fallen #1 – Kristina Douglas

This book was awful! I couldn’t stand either one of the leading characters. She was vain and selfish while he was supposed to be powerful and broody but came off as obstinate and boorish.
I get so annoyed with authors who try to do the “I lust after her but I don’t want to get hurt again” thing. It’s overused and tedious to read.
I skipped page after page of Allegra and Raziel arguing.
And the vampiric angel thing has also been overdone.
The only thing that kept me reading besides the fact that I’m desperate for a new series, was that Allie had some humorous thoughts on her situation like how she thought of the wives of the fallen blood sucking angels as the Stepford Wives.
I’d say don’t bother reading this. It bites. Pun intended.

The Crimson Crown – Seven Realms #4 – Cinda Williams Chima

The Crimson Crown

By Cinda Williams Chima

Seven Realms #4

 

I was hooked the minute I started this series. I couldn’t put it down and this book.

Raisa has been crowned queen but danger is all around her. Her mother had been a weak queen who let her advisers and nobility get away with too much. They aren’t liking her changes.

The general of her army has more mercenaries from the country of Arden that native born soldiers which means the army is loyal to him and not to Raisa and the Fells. She can’t have that since the king of Arden would jump at the chance to invade Fells and she needs her army loyal to her.

The majority of her queendom is comprised of three groups of people; the clans who live in the mountains, the valefolk who live in and around the city and wizards. Nobody likes each other. Hatred runs deep but Raisa wants to heal the divide. She needs everyone to work together if her nation is to survive the imminent war with Arden.

Han Alister has to protect the queen and he has a plan. First, he needs to become the High Wizard, an impossible feat considering he was a street lord before he was fostered by the clans. The current High Wizard would rather see him dead. Han is working many different angles and playing dangerous games with dangerous people and now someone is trying to frame him for the recent wizard murders in the slums.

I was sad to see this series end and now I’m desperately searching for a new series to read. Any suggestions?