Posts Tagged ‘robin hobb’

Realm of the Elderlings: 4/5

80%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 12Golden Fool by Robin Hobb
Series: The Tawny Man Trilogy #2
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: eBook
Narrator: James Langton
Length: 25 hours and 56 minutes
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Golden Fool 19% complete.

So, onto a new book, Golden Fool.  Once again I must comment on the cover art – isn’t it gorgeous?

Once again, at the beginning of the book there are lots of lovely character moments rather than fast plot progression.  I particularly appreciated Kettricken’s meeting with Fitz to share his grief at the loss of Nighteyes.  I’m so happy that Fitz – and the reader! – were given space to mourn this wonderful character.  

Other notable character moments were Dutiful’s being torn between reaching out to Fitz as a father figure and maintaining his princely decorum.  I also look forward to seeing more of Chade’s servant, Thick.  If memory serves, he has a large role to play in the story.

The seeds were also being set for the political intrigue around the Narcheska and who is really behind the marriage offer.  I look forward to seeing how that is developed.

At this point I really should mention how incredible it is that I have been able to marathon Hobb’s writing to this extent.  Normally I like to change up my reading – I often have several different books on the go at once – but Hobb’s marvellous world and characters have been able to retain my interest effortlessly.  That says a heck of a lot right there.

Realm of the Elderlings: 3/5

60%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 11Fool’s Errand by Robin Hobb
Series: The Tawny Man Trilogy #1
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: James Langton
Length: 24 hours and 47 minutes
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Fool’s Errand 100% complete. Progress: Golden Fool 7% complete

Woohoo, three books down, two to go!  

I have finished Fool’s Errand, the first in the Tawny Man trilogy.  Farewell Nighteyes, fictional wolf of my heart.  I miss him as much as Fitz does.  This last section of the book I finished was far more plot focussed than character driven unlike the earlier sections.  The smelly stuff really starts to hit the fan as Fitz, the Fool and Laurel must extricate Prince Dutiful from the Piebalds and return him to Buckeep to fulfil his royal duties.  Much as I enjoyed the adventure I did actually miss the quieter character moments.

I noticed many little references to other books in the whole Realm of the Elderlings trilogy.  Icefyre, the Narcheska and the Pale Woman will have significance later on the Tawny Man trilogy (if memory serves me right).  There are also references to Bingtown and clearly the beach where Fitz and Dutiful were deposited by the Skill pillar was the Others’ beach of the Liveship Traders.

It was only now that I realised the overarching theme of the entire Realm of the Elderlings was DRAGONS!  I’m not sure why I didn’t spot that before.  In the Farseer trilogy, Verity seeks to wake stone dragons to come to the Six Duchies’ aid.  Aiding the serpents in their struggle to reach their cocooning beaches and become baby dragons is a major motivator for the Liveship Traders trilogy and of course we will have Icefyre and his fate for the Tawny Man.

So, on with Golden Fool tomorrow.

Realm of the Elderlings: 2/5

40%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 10Fool’s Errand by Robin Hobb
Series: The Tawny Man Trilogy #1
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: James Langton
Length: 24 hours and 47 minutes
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Fool’s Errand 83% complete.

Today is a public holiday in most of Canada (except Quebec where I live) which meant it was very quiet.  I was able to listen to my audiobook of Fool’s Errand while waiting on work to come in and so got a large chunk of the book read.  (if my boss is reading this, I was working – honest!)

In this section of the book the adventure really takes off.  Fitz, the Fool in his Lord Golden guise, Nighteyes and Huntswoman Laurel set off to find the missing prince Dutiful. Old Blood politics plays a large part in this section.  Of course when they finally catch up with Dutiful, he isn’t very enthusiastic about being “rescued.”

As a cat lover, I was amused at the difficulties Hobb describes in creating a Wit bond with a feline.  Clearly, cats in the Realm of the Elderlings are equally as independent and strong minded as here!

On a more serious note, there were some interesting points raised about the way Dutiful was manipulated into the bond with the cat – almost like a brainwashing cult.  

Hopefully I should be able to finish the book tomorrow.  

Realm of the Elderlings: 2/5

40%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 9Fool’s Errand by Robin Hobb
Series: The Tawny Man Trilogy #1
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: James Langton
Length: 24 hours and 47 minutes
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Fool’s Errand 45% complete.

Excellent progress on Fool’s Errand – I wasn’t working today so was able to spend quite a bit of time reading or listening to the book. It is the shortest book on my challenge at 672 pages.

My first comment is that it took until about 36% of the way through the book before we were actually presented with the main quest of the book – Prince Dutiful has gone missing. The first part of the book was spent reconnecting with Fitz and the Fool, learning what Fitz had been up to in the intervening years. I do feel this could have been compressed considerably.  On the other hand, I did enjoy watching Fitz and the Fool’s first meeting again.

Much of the setup also focussed on the Wit.  Clearly, this is going to have far more importance than it had in the Farseer trilogy in terms of the Six Duchies society, not just in how it affects Fitz personally.

It’s clear that Nighteyes is not the wolf he once was – it’s definitely preparing us for the book’s ending <sniff>

More tomorrow.

Realm of the Elderlings: 3/5

60%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 8Fool’s Errand by Robin Hobb
Series: The Tawny Man Trilogy #1
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: James Langton
Length: 24 hours and 47 minutes
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Fool’s Errand 18%

So.  Onto Fool’s Errand.  The first thing I’d like to comment on is, isn’t the cover art for the audiobook simply gorgeous?  I don’t normally pay much attention to covers, but that one really drew my eye. The lighting and the mysterious figures are beautiful.  They are much preferable to the paperback or hardback cheesy images.

Secondly, with moving onto a new series I’m moving onto a new narrator for the audiobooks.  While I’d nothing against Paul Boehmer who narrated The Farseer Trilogy and Anne Flosnik of the Liveship Traders, James Langston seemed to me to be of a completely different calibre entirely.  Of course, that could be that he gave Chade a burr in his accent which reminded me of my childhood!

Here’s a sample


http://samples.audible.com/bk/brll/006229/bk_brll_006229_sample.mp3

I am reminded that Hobb’s trilogies are VERY, VERY slow to start.  Fitz’s desire to shut himself off from his old life and those he loves to lead a quiet, sedentary life is beginning to annoy me now!  Let’s just get on with the adventure please.  I’ll need to bear that in mind when I start Fool’s Assassin that I’ll need to be patient while the story gets started.

I’ve just finished reading of Fitz’s first meeting with the Fool after 15 years of absence and once again I’m shipping them soooo hard.  It’s beautifully written how Fitz is unaware of the depth of the Fool’s love for him (at this point at least) and also of his own love for the Fool.

More tomorrow.

five-stars

Realm of the Elderlings: 2/5

40%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 7Ship of Destiny by Robin Hobb
Series: Liveship Traders #3
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Anne Flosnik
Length: 33 hrs and 38 mins
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Ship of Destiny 100% complete.
Progress: Fool’s Errand 4% complete. 

Woohoo, two books down, three to go!  I finished Ship of Destiny today, the second longest of the five books I’m reading for the Realm of the Elderlings reading challenge.  I also started on Fool’s Errand, the first in the Tawny Man Trilogy.  Darn, I miss Whispersync for Voice already :o(

The Liveship Traders series is quite differently structured to the Farseer Trilogy.  It contains multiple story strands and multiple points of view, whereas Farseer is purely from Fitz’ point of view.  The joy of the Farseer trilogy is getting to know Fitz and those he loves in great depth.  With the Liveship Traders, the characters didn’t speak to me nearly as much (Amber excepted) but I loved watching how all the disparate plots came together in a really satisfying ending.  I am looking forward to getting back to Fitz and the Fool though!

Back with more tomorrow!

Realm of the Elderlings: 1/5

20%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlngs Update 6Ship of Destiny by Robin Hobb
Series: Liveship Traders #3
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Anne Flosnik
Length: 33 hrs and 38 mins
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Ship of Destiny 76% complete.

I made good progress today on Ship of Destiny.  In the section I read today, Amber all but stood up waving her arms and shouting “look at me, I’m Fitz’s Fool!”  At one point she says “I’ve been called a Fool and a prophet,” which is pretty clear.  Now, it’s been a while since I read the Realm of the Elderlings for the first time, but I seem to remember not picking up Amber’s true identity at this point.  I can’t remember when I did first pick up on it, but I do remember it coming as a complete shock.

The subject of rape is also dealt with in this section, specifically Kennit’s rape of Althea.  The whole question of the victim’s not being believed, as well as the rapist having been raped himself.  It certainly wasn’t a comfortable passage to read.

More tomorrow!

Realm of the Elderlings: 1/5

20%

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 4Ship of Destiny by Robin Hobb
Series: Liveship Traders #3
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Anne Flosnik
Length: 33 hrs and 38 mins
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Progress: Ship of Destiny 45% complete

I made reasonable progress on my Realm of the Elderlings challenge today.  I’m now 45% of the way through book two.  In today’s reread I entered the section entitled Winter.  This is fitting as it’s the lowest point of most of the storylines in the Liveship Traders series:

Dragon Tintaglia is despairing that she will be able to guide the tangle of sea serpents to the dragon spawning ground so that they can undergo their transformation.  She is doubtful if she will be able to persuade the humans to assist with redirecting the river.  The sea serpents themselves are losing hope of fulfilling their dragon destinies.

Things aren’t going too well for the humans either; Bingtown is on the point of being destroyed either by Chalcedon or internal feuding, take your pick.  Reyn is distraught in his belief that Malta has perished in her flight from Tremaug with the Satrap. In actual fact, she must cater to the Satrap’s every whim in order to receive his protection necessary for her survival.

Those on the Liveships Paragon and Vivacia aren’t doing that great either.  On Paragon Althea is losing hope of recovering her family’s liveship.  Paragon himself is struggling to remain sane; we learn that part of his mental anguish is the pain he took from Kennit when he was younger.  Vivacia has returned to her dragon roots with a new personality leaving Wintrow struggling to find meaning in his life.

All in all, rather a bleak section.  However, I’m hopeful it will turn the corner soon.  Threads are beginning to come together.  

I also added Golden Fool to my Audible library today in preparation for the next part of my reread.  It wasn’t as straightforward as I’d hoped; officially it’s not available on Audible to Canadians – I had to use my company’s US address.  The publisher assured me that it should be available to Canadians, so I’ve taken that up with Audible.  This is the second book in the last couple of weeks I’ve noticed showing as not available to Canadians.  I hope this is not a trend…

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update 2Ship of Destiny by Robin Hobb
Series: Liveship Traders #3
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Anne Flosnik
Length: 33 hrs and 38 mins
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com

Realm of the Elderlings

My Summary Post
Progress: 2/5 (40%)
24 July, 2014 — 16 August, 2014
In Progress

40%

Progress:  Ship of Destiny 17% complete

So, onto book two of my Realm of the Elderlings reading challenge, Ship of Destiny.  Ship of Destiny is the third in the Liveship Traders trilogy. I chose not to include the first two, Ship of Magic and Mad Ship in my reread for two reasons. One was time constraint to meet my deadline, the second is that I had dipped into the trilogy fairly recently (fairly recently being about 18 months ago).  I did a quick Wikipedia lookup to bring myself up to speed.

So, a few thoughts.

Whispersync for Voice, welcome back!  YAY!  I didn’t realise how much I missed it when I didn’t have it for Assassin’s Quest.  Sadly, I see it’s also missing from The Tawny Man.  Ah well.

I miss Fitz and the Fool.  We do get to see the Fool’s alter ego, Amber and my heart just about broke when she mentioned the slave pin that had been given to her by her true love.  I’m not certain at which point we are supposed to realise that Amber is the Fool, but once you know she is, it’s hard to avoid picking up these little hints. I’m shipping Fitz and the Fool so hard right now.  I’ve forgotten how they left things at the end of Fool’s Fate, but I’m hoping they’ll get together in the new trilogy.  That could be a very interesting romantic relationship for Hobb to explore.

Anyway, I digress from the Liveship Traders.  After three books of male protagonists, it was a refreshing change to see strong women characters come to the fore, notably Ronica and Malta.  If I remember Malta from Ship of Dreams this shows some real character development.  I enjoyed that their strength of character was contrasted with that of the Satrap’s Companion, Serilla.  Hobb’s skill as a writer were shown in how well Serilla’s actions and motivations are relatable, even though they are working against one of our protagonists.

The whole Bingtown Trader politics confused me, but that’s probably my own fault for not rereading the first two books first!

The whole prologue with She Who Remembers didn’t do much for me.  However if I remember correctly, it’s one of the pivotal points of the series.  Sigh.

That’s all for today.  I’ll be back tomorrow with more updates.

Reading challenge – Realm of the Elderlings Update1Assassin’s Quest by Robin Hobb
Series: Farseer Trilogy #3
Genres: Epic Fantasy
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Paul Boehmer
Length: 37 hrs and 39 mins
Buy from AmazonKoboiTunesAudibleeBooks.com
five-stars

Realm of the Elderlings

My Summary Post
Progress: 1/5 (20%)
24 July, 2014 — 16 August, 2014
In Progress

20%

Progress:  Assassin’s Quest 100% complete

So this weekend I powered through and finished Assassin’s Quest, the third book in the Farseer Trilogy.  As a side note, this book is not Whispersync for Voice enabled, so switching between the Kindle and audiobook versions was a hassle.

I loved this book.  The two magic systems invented by Hobb – the Skill and the Wit – are tightly drawn and are used in very interesting ways.

Each chapter begins with an excerpt from a history book which indicates the main theme of that particular chapter.  They tie in very nicely together.

Initially the first book of the trilogy – Assassin’s Apprentice – is very slow and boring, but once the trilogy picks up, it moves along at a great pace.

The Fool is one of the most intriguing characters for me in epic fantasy.  I look forward to continuing the character’s story in The Liveship Traders and Tawny Man trilogies.  Of course now there is the prospect of even more Fool to come in the new Fitz and Fool trilogy :o)

That’s all I have for tonight.  Onto Ship of Destiny!