Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Review: The Name of the Wind

Simply put, The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss is the story of a hero, in the tradition of a great, heroic, high fantasy, told in the hero's own words. This is the first in a trilogy, so it is just the beginning of the story, but, as the narrator says, it takes more than one day to tell the story of this kind of life.

Patrick Rothfuss was clearly influenced by the Lord of the Rings trilogy and also, I think, by Ursula LeGuin's Earthsea books. The plot can be pretty conventional - orphan boy has special powers, goes to a wizarding school, overcomes adversity, etc - but Rothfuss's writing and the book's structure brings a real freshness to the story and prevents the book from feeling derivative.

Despite its length, I read The Name of the Wind pretty quickly. It is quite well written and engaging. It's definitely part of a story, though, rather than a complete story and the ending is a pause rather than the end of a complete thought. Truth be told, I found this to be annoying but I am still eager to read next installment. I highly recommend this book, not just to fantasy readers but to anyone who wants to read a good story.

Buy The Name of the Wind (Kingkiller Chronicles, Day 1) on Amazon or visit Patrick Rothfuss at his website.

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