The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I have read a lot of mixed reviews on this book. I love the first book, as so many others did. The Name of the Wind is on my all-time-favorites list. And though I liked book two slightly less than book one, it is only slightly less. Many of the people who loved book one and were not satisfied with book two, went into this book with a lot of expectations. They hoped to have all their questions answered. But you have to keep in mind that this is epic fantasy; epic. You will not find all the answers in book two of a trilogy. There is a reason Luke did not defeat Vader in The Empire Strikes Back. Frodo did not destroy the ring in Two Towers. Instead, we are left with more questions than answers. That's what keeps us hanging on for the third installment.
I thought The Wise Man's Fear was an excellent follow-up to The Name of the Wind. I felt very satisfied at the end, but I cannot wait to read book three and would not be the least bit sad if this trilogy turned into a much longer series. It was a bit longer than it needed to be, but I didn't mind that very much. Rothfuss' writing has such a natural flow that the pages fly by without my noticing. My only disappointment in that regard is that my life didn't allow me to lock myself away and do nothing but read. However, I did manage to neglect some important things so I could have time to read.
It was funny. Rothfuss has such a great sense of humor. His blog has me cracking up pretty frequently, and this book was no different. But it was also tragic. Kvothe has quite a knack for destroying his own happiness. It was almost painful to watch his mistakes.
The frame story aspect continues to delight me. The inner story unfolds with dramatic ups and downs. The outer story tantalizes. I may be more anxious to find out what will happen in Kvothe's immediate future than I am to discover the truth about his past.
My one gripe with this story: a lot of sex. This series is partly a coming of age story. So book one was fairly clean because Kvothe was just a young kid. But he's grown up a bit now, so OBVIOUSLY he has to be an unrestrained, hormone driven, sex-fiend, right? I knew going into it that there was going to be a lot of sex, but I will say this- it wasn't as bad as I anticipated. A large portion of the sex scenes were dream-like. Some of the ideas about sex that are brought up are just ridiculous. Others I simply don't agree with. I didn't think the sex scenes were terribly graphic, but they were frequent enough to detract from my over all enjoyment of the story.
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