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10 thoughts on “Assassin's Apprentice

  1. says:

    I haven t read a lot of fantasy in the last decade, so the fact I ve read 12 of Robin Hobb s books in the last 5 years says a lot about how much I enjoy reading her work The adventures of Fitz through three trilogies account for a big chunk of that reading.Robin Hobb can write a first person story with rare skill She shows you a world though Fitz s eyes and makes it matter, makes it vital Some elements of Hobb s fantasy are fairly old school, but written with a modern style and a literary skill that one almost never used to see in fantasy and is still hard to find in the genre.What Hobb does best, quite possibly better than every other fantasy writer, is build, develop, and breathe life into relationships She writes great characters that you can believe in, but it s in interactions that they truly shine The friendship between Fitz and the Fool is the heart of the two trilogies, and grows at a slow but steady pace through the books.The rigid social structure and its constraints generate a lot of frustration for Fitz and by extension for the readers This drives much of the tension and plot Some readers may find it too frustrating and may long for Fitz to break free of it, to drive his message home etc but for me it was perfectly pitched for maximum effect.I won t address the plot but it s good, and the mysterious attackers are chilling and intriguing In short go read this classic Join my 3 emails a year newsletter prizes


  2. says:

    Reread this AGAIN because I am going to read all of the books up to date that are out Hmmm. guess I should show y all my cool bookshelf of the books and some of my dragon figurines Ah, maybe later Okay, well here it is These were the lessons in my assassin s primer And Sleight of hand and the art of moving stealthily Where to strike a man to render him unconscious Where to strike a man so that he dies without crying out Where to stab a man so that he dies without too much blood welling out I learned it all rapidly and well, thriving under Chade s approval of my quick mind If your looking for a big ole bloody and everything goes book, this is not it This is just a great story about a boy that was born to not knowing the love of a mother or father But he still turned out to be a good person, even if he was an assassin Fitz is a wonderful character even though he went through a lot as a child He was brought to the royal guard at 6 years old by his grandfather telling them he was done with him and it was time for Prince Chivalry to take care of his own son As you can read on the blurb, Fitz wasn t born the proper way.But Fitz was allowed to stay with the stable master, Burrich, whom I loved very much He was so kind to the horses, dogs, and hawks that belonged to the Prince and he was very kind to Fitz Although, there is one part with someone named Nosy that I thought he didn t something bad to and it turns out he didn t so I forgive him Those of you that have read the book know what I mean Fitz has the ability to get inside an animals mind I call it mind melding and they can see through each others eyes and communicate They call this the Will in the book But Fitz also learns how to use the Skill which is a form of telepathy I think that s the word I m looking for Fitz father, Prince Chivalry never once met him He left with his wife to go into exile because of the boy and he stepped down from being next in line to be the King I didn t understand this part too good but that was how I saw it At one point when Fitz is a little older, I think around 10, his other grandfather who was King Shrewd decided to start getting him trained as an assassin Burrich was hoping that he would keep being ignored but that wasn t so Prince Regal who was a jerk beyond jerkdom didn t like this at all Prince Verity didn t seem to mind He was always kind to Fitz Prince Verity is another character that I grew to love because of his kindness to Fitz and their relationship later on in the book I think this was a really good book to start out the trilogy Robin Hobb brings us slowly into a world that she built for us to enjoy along the way Yes, there are some bad people trying to do bad things but isn t there always But that fact that I could read a fantasy book that wasn t all about cut off their head, burn, burn, burn, rape this and rape that was actually pretty nice There are some people that say this book is slow and that is why I said if your looking for some huge action book, this is not it If your looking for a journey with some good people than you will enjoy it Happy Reading Mel MY BLOG Melissa Martin s Reading List


  3. says:

    My journey into The Realm of the Elderlings by Robin Hobb has finally begun and it s off to a great start.You can skip the next paragraph if you want to go straight to the review, this is just a long introduction that I need to make before writing my review It s not an overstatement to say that The Realm of the Elderlings is hands down my biggest gamble of all time in the history of book buying I bought it without using my brain, after all You may call me shallow, my interest in this series sparked due to the reason that the UK paperbacks cover are so damn pretty This reason alone, of course, shouldn t be enough to justify spending tons of money on an author or series that you never tried yet but it does, my friend When Assassin s Apprentice came to my doorstep in the middle of my dilemma on my birthday last year thank you, Haifa , my decision was made Looking at how pretty the book in real life, I immediately bought all the available excluding Assassin s Fate UK paperbacks of the entire series for a whopping price of 200 This is the reason why I always say to both authors and book publishers that book covers do matter a LOT in capturing reader s attention especially on books that readers haven t heard of or try yet.Obviously, I can t be sure yet if my ridiculous gamble will pay off or not until I reach the end However, for now, I can say that this is a wonderful start to one of the biggest fantasy series of our time, and I hope it will remain that way until the end of the journey Assassin s Apprentice is the first book in the Farseer Trilogy, the first series out of five that encompassed Robin Hobb s The Realm of the Elderlings series There are plenty of opinion on how slow this trilogy is and you know what I can t disagree with them Not only because it s a foundational book, it s really a slow burn mostly due to how dense the pages and how scarce the dialogues are readers just have to deal with spending most of their time within Fitz s head I am a huge fan of slow paced books but even with that fact, I still think this is, in fact, the slowest start to a series I ve ever read sometimes even draggy However, this doesn t change my opinion that as a foundational start, the book does its job wonderfully.Picture Assassin s Apprentice by Dagmara MatuszakThe main character, FitzChivalry Farseer is a six years old bastard who s learning to be an Assassin while at the same time living a harsh life of being hated by practically everyone just because of his birthright Hobb s characterizations are simply terrific Although we see things only from Fitz perspective in 1st person POV, all the side character s personality were still well established there are plenty of characters for readers to love and hate Tons of people have said that all of Hobb s books including this one are super depressing and exhausting to read, I can t say for the other books yet but regarding the first book, I ll have to disagree with this notion Yes, Fitz is living a harsh life for sure, but I found his struggle and perseverance in his adolescence here to be something I enjoyed reading This is mostly due to the reason that Fitz has a strong affinity with animals, and the friendship between human and animals especially dogs are something I will never get enough of Men cannot grieve as dogs do But they grieve for many years Great characterizations aside, the two magic systems Skills and Wit are very simple in concept and yet it fits Fitz see what I did there storyline and the world really well I can t wait to read of the usage of these two magic systems in the future installments Hobb s world building is also highly detailed and vibrant Reading the book immersed me deeply if I was really there After all that has been said and done, the main factor of the book that worked exceptionally well for me was Hobb s prose It s simple, beautiful, and was just a pure delight for me to read Hobb has a way of structuring her words and sentences into something profoundly memorable, and this is only the first book of her huge series too All events, no matter how earthshaking or bizarre, are diluted within moments of their occurrence by the continuance of the necessary routines of day to day living Overall, Assassin s Apprentice is a great start to a series The pacing can be better but considering that this is a foundational book to an overall gigantic series, let s just say that I m impressed and will continue immediately to the sequels, at the same time hoping the next books will get even better than this.Picture Assassin s Apprentice by Marc Simonetti You can find this and the rest of my Adult Epic High Fantasy Sci Fi reviews at BookNest


  4. says:

    Most prisons are of our own making A man makes his own freedom, too So this was my first Robin Hobb and I m positively surprised I mean after reading all those raving reviews I already expected that Assassin s Apprentice would be a good book, I definitely wasn t prepared for the train of feels that occasionally hit me though Well, truth be told, that s actually a bold understatement For a book that started out so slowly there certainly were a lot of intense and awesome scenes that had me hooked almost right from the beginning and if you ask me, it s as good as impossible to read them without being swept away Hobb has an undeniable talent for the fine arts of building up an interesting storyline and as far as I could tell she never even hesitated to use it PWhile you read the book you stumble over all those typical fantasy tropes young boy, apprenticeship, relation to the royal family, hard life, etc , yet the author still managed to make something intriguing and unique It s like she used those fantasy tropes as a scaffold in order to build her own world and ideas around it And tell you what It worked XDThis was such a wonderful read and the fact I already borrowed book two from the library should be enough to persuade you to give it a try Since the title of the book is kinda self explanatory Assassin s Apprentice I can t help but wonder what it s going to be about lol I won t talk about the plot and will dive right into the characters section instead The characters WARNING This is the danger zone lol I ll spoil in here and if you hate to be spoiled you better run in the other direction P Can t say I didn t warn you, can you XD FitzChivalry I know he meant well But I did not feel protected by him, but confined He was the warden that ensured my isolation with fanatical fervour Utter loneliness was planted in me then, and set its deep roots down into me Aww Fitz I love this Boy See what I did there XD He s so sweet and funny and I can already see him becoming a sassy and clever protagonist in the future Unfortunately he still has to learn a lot about life and the dangerous world he s living in so I mostly felt really sorry for him while reading this book There were so many moments that broke my heart and there were times I was like CAN YOU PLEASE GIVE THIS POOR BOY A BREAK Plus some of the scenes were so damn amazing that they really stuck with me For instance the Silver Knife Scene Chade and King Shrewd wanted to test Fitz loyalty and they did it in a very cruel way My poor Boy suffered so much but once the problem was resolved he didn t back down No He made his point by stealing a silver knife right in front of his King and driving it into the wood of Chade s shelf LOL THAT WAS SO DAMN AWESOME The sass and defiance Gosh I loved it so much Plus can we acknowledge the wonderful atmosphere of the Poison Scene It easily became one of my all time favourite scenes and the twist was executed so well I could only gasp in disbelieve and awe So cleverly done, Hobb So cleverly done shakes head Chade I ll be teaching you the nasty, furtive, polite ways to kill people You ll either develop a taste for it, or not That isn t something I m in charge of But I ll make sure you know how Haha Chade instantly became one of my favourites of this book I mean he s the Royal Assassin and he s a wise and good man He has principles, he knows his limits and he did his best to tap his full potential It made me very sad he was so painfully aware of the fact that he was raising and educating the next generation and that his use was going to run out as soon as his replacement was ready Yet he still knew that it wasn t Fitz fault and taught him everything he needed in order to do his job I have a very deep respect for Chade and I really hope he ll live through the next two books Sometimes, grumbled Chade, it is better to be defiantly wrong than silent You re a bastard, Fitz We re always a risk and vulnerability We re always expendable Except when we are an absolute necessity to their own security Burrich You failed No, Fitz I fialed I was too soft hearted to beat it out of you at the first sign of it Gosh, I m still so torn when I think of Burrich I mean in some way he s Fitz father figure and it s clear he only meant well, but boy the way he tried to raise him was so damn wrong sometimes sighs I mean every parent makes mistakes we re all human after all, but to punish Fitz so much He and Nosy were everything Fitz had and that stubborn mule named Burrich just didn t realise how much Fitz needed and loved him He was just a little boy that needed a safe place and it should have been Burrich who provided it I mean he didn t even give him a chance to explain He would have been dead without Fitz connection to Smithy, yet he refused to listen to him ARGH It makes me so angry lol I know Anish has a different opinion about him, but I just can t forgive Burrich for what he did sighs deeply How you must have hated me And feared you All those years And you never learned better of me, never thought to yourself, He would not do such a thing Verity I must have dozed, for I woke to his hand on my hair Do they tell you to watch over me so, boy, even when I sleep What do they fear, then Naught that I know, Verity They tell me only to bring you food, and see as best I can that you eat it No than that I absolutely adored and loved Verity He s such an awesome character and he s always true to his name I really liked his relationship with Fitz and I hope he ll feel a lot better in the next book It hurt to see how much the Skill took from him and for a second near the end I really thought he wouldn t make it Gosh that was suspenseful lol I m just glad he s fine now and I m sure Princess Kettricken and him will make a wonderful couple They are both on the practical side of things and even though it s no marriage of love, I m sure Verity will win her heart Maybe she ll win his too XD Regal Ruthlessness creates its own rules So my mother taught me People are intimidated by a man who acts with no apparent regard for consequences Behave as if you cannot be touched and no one will dare to touch you I hate Regal I hate him so much Such an arrogant, snobby, superior feeling little piece of s He s a clever villain I have to give him that but his obvious distaste for Fitz caused me to dislike him from the very start I mean there are villains and then there are villains Regal is one I just can t help but hate XD How he and Galen treated Fitz was so cruel that I wanted to bang their heads together multiple times And don t even get me started about the death of Nosy, if it wouldn t have been for Nosy Fitz would have died at the end Oh my, poor Nosy That last paragraph killed me He saved him, He dragged him out of the water and then he died, trying to give him strength I can t even sobs violently King Shrewd A bastard, Regal, is a unique thing Put a signet ring on his hand and send him forth, and you have created a diplomat no foreign ruler will dare to turn away He may safely be sent where a prince of the blood may not be risked Imagine the uses for one who is and yet is not of the royal bloodline Hostage exchanges Marital alliances Quiet work The diplomacy of the knife I still don t know what to make out of King Shrewd I mean at the moment he s obviously on Fitz s and Verity s side, but I have no idea which side he ll choose when we get a better grasp of the big picture I have no doubt that he s an opportunist and he s certainly shrewd enough to use this to his advantage Plus Regal and Verity are his sons He might care for them both but I m sure he ll support whoever wins their dangerous game in the end So yeah, I m TeamVerity and I really hope Regal won t get a second chance The Fool Because your heart will be hammered against him, and your strength will be tempered in his fire I loved the Fool He s so mysterious and such an intriguing character I really would have liked to find out about him, but Hobb kept us in the dark and I m convinced she had her reasons to do so I m pretty sure the Fool knows about everything that happens at court and I m also than just certain that he s an advisor of King Shrewd I can t shake the feeling that there s to him though and that he might have even disobeyed some of the king s commands in order to help Fitz Hobb, I want of the Fool in the next book XDThe Wit and The Skill The appetite for the Skill is one that devours a man, not one that nourishes him Boy did it take long until we finally got a decent explanation what the Skill is about lol I know Anish was getting impatient and so was I Haha Whilst it s true that the Skill is an intriguing ability, I m still fascinated with the Wit as well I m convinced that those two go hand in hand and could work together and if I m correct it s really remarkable Fitz has an aptitude for both The quote above made me think there might be a connection and since the Skill devours a man and the Wit seems to nourish it, Fitz could be a than just powerful man Just think about all the possibilities PAnd with this thought I m finally ending my rather long review XD Assassin s Apprentice was an amazing and well thought out fantasy tale and I m already curious about the next book Since this was a buddy read with The Sweet Manisha and The Amazing Anish I want to thank them both I m sorry Manisha had to drop out of our buddy read at some point but I m still glad you guys were willing to read this book with me Thank you for experiencing this with me and also thank you for your interesting thoughts and input It definitely made this an even better read


  5. says:

    This book made me realize a number of things 1 I like the idea of killing people for fun and profit2 You can t trust your uncle3 I like men who whine a lot and play with dogs4 I would like to read people s minds, but I do not want them to read mine5 Poison is an interesting topic, and discussing it with strangers online can lead to tragic relationships with gay Nazis who live in other countriesIf you keep these things in mind, you will be able to enjoy this book .


  6. says:

    One of my all time favorite series I love it so much I have first edition hardbacks Lovely, touching, dramatic It has everything.


  7. says:

    I feel so sorry for Fitzchivalry because he had such a rough start to life The boy is despised for the simple fact that he exists He is a royal bastard, and his dishonourable conception means that his father s name is forever sullied that much so that he was forced to abdicate the throne thus, half the royal Farseer court already hates Fitz because he is, supposedly, the reason why the popular Prince had to retire from court life Poor, poor, Fitz, he was hated from the very beginning He was used rather than destroyed I think King Shrewd truly lives up to his name sake because he has such an interesting way of dealing with unwanted potential claimants to his throne Instead of simply murdering Fitz, and ridding himself of a potential threat, he binds the boy to himself with unwavering loyalty He turns Fitz into an assassin he gives him a home and protection in return for one day being the assassin of the Farseer court Nobody else could give the unwanted boy such a deal Shrewd is truly shrewd I think this is a truly brilliant idea naming characters this way because the individuals eventually begin to embody their name s sake it helps to demonstrate what a particular character is about and make them sound rather royal in the process I love it Not all characters are named this way, but for those that are it works really well The character development in this novel alone is phenomenal Fitz is forged into an assassin in just three hundred pages, though this is no easy task His mentor, Chade, is kind and guiding, but he also expects a great deal out of his pupil Fitz is forced into an unsuspecting test of loyalty, and in his childlike innocence he could quite easily have made the wrong decision Most children would have, but he has a slight edge he has Farseer blood And he has also experienced the worse the court has to offer Fitz has learnt to survive, and he has learnt to accept his mentor s advice almost without question Learning is never wrong Even learning how to kill isn t wrong Or right It s just a thing to learn, a thing I can teach you That s all But, that doesn t mean Fitz has to like his work it is something he must do In this, Fitz never loses himself He becomes an assassin, but he doesn t become a murderer It s a thin line, I know However, if the people being assassinated pose a threat to the peace of the Six Duchies, then surely the deed can be considered noble and just To my mind, Fitz is truly heroic because of this He is the perfect protagonist, and he is written wonderfully None of this is easy for him though The killing is hard, but learning his innate magic is even harder His upbringing is a truly arduous time because of this he is not only being trained as an assassin, but also to wield the ancient magic known as the skill Two fantastic magic systems Robin Hobb s magic systems are as dangerous as they are spectacular Fitz trainer in the skill a powerful form of telepathic magic is a tyrannical and sadistic man he is one of those strong haters of the boy, and uses every opportunity to abuse and torture him He is the exact opposite of the kindly Chade he is simply brutal The Skill master s hatred for Fitz is completely unreasonable and undoubtable As the novel progresses the reasoning behind the cruelty becomes less and less obvious, until its odd origins are revealed Fitz truly didn t have much chance picking up the basics of the skill form this so called master of the magic he struggles for many years with it afterwards because of his treatment by the brute Very little worth knowing is taught by fear And if that wasn t enough, for poor little Fitz to shoulder, he also has the Wit magic This is even harder for him to understand because he is not fully aware that he has it It is a rare form of power that allows him to communicate with animals This communication can then form unto a lasting bond, if both user and beast mutually agree They link minds in lasting friendship His surrogate farther, Burrich, views the magic as a perversity and punishes the boy whenever he suspects he uses it thus, Robin Hobb has given Fitz a lot to deal with The result is a very confused boy who has too much of a burden It s a miracle he actually manages to get out of bed in the morning with the amount of things craving his time and attention At this point, I don t think I really need to say I love this book, but I ll do it anyway I love this book This is such a great opening to the series and whilst it is already complicated for Fitz, it s only going to get worse this is merely the beginning of his life and his story He has barely seen the Fool for what he is yet, which is much than a jester I can t wait to read the rest of the series again, and post my reviews This is my favourite modern fantasy series Nobody does this quite like Robin Hobb she weaves such strong emotions into her characters.The Farseer Trilogy1 Assassin s Apprentice An overwhelming five stars2 Royal Assassin A character defining five stars


  8. says:

    first and foremost, i need to praise robin hobb with the literary world constantly fawning over the likes of george r.r martin, brandon sanderson, patrick rothfuss, etc., it is so refreshing to read an epic high fantasy written by a woman you go, girl there is so much to love about this book i will admit, this is a very foundational book its quite slow, as there is a lot of page time dedicated to the development of characters and the building of the world in which they live but this is done with such expertise that the slow pace is hardly a negative, especially during the last 100 or so pages where things get really good i also admired the quality of writing it has a very old school vibe to it, but the story feels modern no idea how thats accomplished, but it totally works the one thing keeping this from being a 5 star read is how tame it is im not sure exactly what this says about me, but i was expecting and even hoping for this to be a bit darker maybe its because the last book i read about assassins was the total bloodbath that is nevernight, so i think my expectations were a bit skewed but for a book revolving around an assassins apprentice, this story has such a light and almost carefree feeling to it and although the tone doesnt necessarily hinder the storytelling, it just would have felt realistic if this was grittier overall, this is a delightfully engaging story and a wonderful escape into a positively stunning world im so glad there are so many books which take place in this universe because i am certainly a fan of ms hobbs work 4 stars


  9. says:

    I find a lot of fantasy authors are in love with the internalized conceptions of their worlds This can lead to great nuanced detail supporting imaginative storytelling but the flipside can be a creation that fails to translate that vision to the actual page, to the audience Assassin s Apprentice illustrates this point fairly well Robin Hobb has clearly lovingly created the world of the Six Duchies, and this love is echoed through the tale s device born a bastard son to the king s heir, Fitz recalls growing up in the intense environment of court and his first mission as the king s assassin It s not the most original premise, but Hobb revels in the details of the world s class divide and trade routes and political alliances However, she forgets to tell us why we should care about any of this.I m sure the whole thing is some epic prequel to Fitz s story of some sort, but I want to hear that story, not the backlog It s not unpleasant but after the fifth exposition dialogue of political machinations in which I was given no stake, I didn t really see a reason to continue reading The main character simply meandered around in a seemingly unending training montage with nary a purpose in sight I don t mind a slow buildup, but the ideas here, while artfully portrayed, were still very much in a generic court fantasy mold giving me no incentive to stick around no payoff to collect Rating 1 star


  10. says:

    This will just be a casual review as I know that the majority of fantasy fans on my friends list will have read at least know of this book.This was an interesting reading experience for me It only took me about 5 years to finish I tried it 3 times and couldn t get further than the 30% point I attempted it in it s paperback and audiobook form but to no avail That being stated, I still knew it wasn t a bad tale, so I put it back on the shelf for another time in 1, 5, 10, or 20 years when I would give it another go.I always found the start a bit dull and it couldn t keep my interest Apart from Fitz and his pup Nosey, nothing about the characters or the world really enticed me to continue Recently, I ve been suffering from insomnia and if I m being truthful I started listening to the Audiobook of this again hoping it would put me to sleep It didn t I d listened to half the whole narrative in one night and it was like I was reading a different book It was a blessing come from hardship as I was really enjoying it At that point, it was a win win Either I could sleep, or I could carry on listening to this great story.A young boy is left at the gates of a castle and a soldier is told that he is the King in Waiting Prince Chivalry s bastard child This happens when he is 5 years old and we spend Assassin s Apprentice following in Fitz s first person footsteps for approximately 10 years After the first 30%, names such as Shrewd, Regal, Verity, Chivalry, Patience and such stop being confusing and I could truly distinguish who was who, their differences, allegiances, motives and it was an awesome feeling Chances are, most of the ensemble have a problem with this Royal Bastard turning up and Fitz doesn t have many allies My favourite characters were father figure Burrich, honourable Prince Verity, the Fool, and the assassin master Chade The best parts, however, are probably Fitz s use of the Wit This is a very rare skill which allows wielders of such talents to communicate with animals The second highlight for me was Fitz lessons and training exercises tasks assigned to him by Chade We don t see too much magic in Assassin s Apprentice but in addition to the Wit there is also the mysterious the Skill, which we find out about as the tale goes on Some of the Skill lessons in the second half of the narrative were pretty harrowing to read.Although it has it s slower, thought provoking sections, and occasionally Fitz has a woe is me the world hates me moments which of course they do some of the action segments, dramatic confrontations, and political what the hell is going on intrigue are top notch.I won t say much apart from that I finished reading this in 2 days and will 100% be carrying on with this series as soon as I can Once again, this is a classic example of that if you don t enjoy a book, put it back on the shelf because an older uglier wiser cleverer you in the future might find it exceptional.


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