Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb
(Description nicked from B&N.com.)
“FitzChivalry—royal bastard and former king’s assassin—has left his life of intrigue behind. As far as the rest of the world knows, FitzChivalryFarseer is dead and buried. Masquerading as Tom Badgerlock, Fitz is now married to his childhood sweetheart, Molly, and leading the quiet life of a country squire.
Though Fitz is haunted by the disappearance of the Fool, who did so much to shape Fitz into the man he has become, such private hurts are put aside in the business of daily life, at least until the appearance of menacing, pale-skinned strangers casts a sinister shadow over Fitz’s past . . . and his future.
Now, to protect his new life, the former assassin must once again take up his old one. . . .”
You have no idea how excited I was when I heard that Hobb was continuing the story of Fitz and the Fool, and you have no idea how absolutely squeeful I got when I finally got my hands on a copy. I didn’t realize just how much I had missed these characters until I started reading Fool’s Assassin and got this intense feeling of nostalgia. I’ve been with this series from the beginning, and the people within these pages have come to feel like old friends. Fitz, Molly and Patience jumped off the page and came to life again, and I couldn’t have been more pleased.
Quite aside from my fond memories, Hobb has crafted a wonderful tale that gently eases readers back into the world of the Six Duchies. This is definitely not the book that a newbie reader should start with, but those experienced in Hobb’s world will find numerous references to events from other series to help them remember what’s gone before. And I have to say, I so want to visit Withywoods, Fitz’s home.
For me, this book just flew by. Momentous events are once again on the horizon, and the author slowly builds the tension until everything explodes. Along the way, one thing remains constant: Fitz’s continued love and friendship for the Fool, who may be attempting to contact him. It’s easy to see his love for his family and those who live on his estate, but his relationship with the Fool is still one of the most complex I’ve ever seen in a novel.
There’s a reason that Hobb is doing a nearly-sold-out panel in England with George R. R. Martin—her writing and storytelling rival anybody in the genre, and I think she deserves the kind of attention that the good Mr. Martin gets. There were parts of the novel that made me grin ear to ear, and there were parts that moved me to honest tears. Even though this is Hobb’s fourteenth book set in this world, the magic never grows old.
I’ve tried to write a review that has some critical aspect to it, but I find that all I can do is metaphorically shove it into your hands and order you to put everything else aside to read it. Ms. Hobb, you truly are my favorite author, and I want to thank you for the opportunity to revisit Fitz. And please come to Northern California so that I can thank you in person! Fool’s Assassin does what few other novels do: it paints a world that is as real as the one in front of your eyes right now.
Series: The Fitz and the Fool
Publisher: Del Rey
Page Count: 688
Publication Date: August 12, 2014
Acquired: Provided by the publisher as an e-ARC through NetGalley
Read an excerpt