What unexpected, and much needed, joy this book brought me! I know this is a fantasy favorite among so many people I trust, but I never expected it to be as perfect as it was! Fitz and his journey was an absolute joy to read about, and I cannot wait to continue on with this world. Like, I need the next book now.
This story is a slow burn, that’s for sure, but learning about the main protagonist, Fitz, and his back story made the slow pace still really enjoyable. Fitz is a bastard of the king in waiting, Chivalry. When he is only six-years old, his grandfather on his mother’s side takes him to his father. Obviously he is a blemish on the royal Farseer family’s appearance, but his Uncle Verity orders that he be given to the King’s stableman, Burrich*, instead. Fitz’s father, however, felt so much shame with having a bastard; he goes into exile, giving up his right to the throne
*Also, besides Fitz, Burrich was the MVP of this story. I love that man. His cameos kept warming my heart to no end.
Yeah, Fitz’s Uncle Verity is awesome. Unfortunately, his other uncle, Regal, is a major ass and likes to make Fitz’s life extremely hard. See, Fitz has something that the book refers to as “the Wit”, which basically means that Fitz is able to speak telepathically to animals. Also, for as much as people rave about this series, I was so surprised with Fitz’s gift with animals! I had never heard anyone talk about it before, so it was such an amazing surprise and truly made this reading experience even better.
Fitz’s connection to animals really meant a lot to me. I’m a huge animal lover, and I’ve read a lot of fantasy in my days, and this was such a unique and meaningful concept, I was in awe with how perfectly Robin Hobb executed this element.
Using Wit isn’t the only magic in this book; we are also introduced to Skilling, which the royal family seems to do with ease. Like using Wit, Skilling is also done telepathically, but instead of animals it is between humans, but we soon learn that using this ability in mass quantities taxes a person very much.
Anyways, once Fitz is a little older, his grandpa on his father’s side, you know, the King, gets Fitz to become a “King’s Man”, which is basically an assassin. He is then given to a man named Chade to become *wait for it* an assassin’s apprentice!
Oh, and all the Six Duchies are being attacked by Red-Ship Raiders, who steal people and bring them back with no memory and as shells of their former selves. So, that’s a pretty big problem that I’m sure will be addressed even more in the continuation of this series.
I really don’t have much to complain about, except that this story is a little slow. Yet, with that slow build, I felt so much empathy for Fitz and the poor hand he got dealt in life. This story truly was on the sadder side of stories, and I want nothing more than for Fitz to get a happy ending, filled with all the cute puppers in the world.
This is for sure a story about love and loyalty, and where people should put their trust. Is the importance on blood truly so great? Does blood really connect us in an explained way that makes it more important than other qualities? How much trust can we put into people just because of their blood, while ignoring everything else that person holds inside of them?