Category: "The Farseer"

Royal Assassin - Robin Hobb

July 2nd, 2009

Royal Assassin - Robin HobbFitz has survived his first hazardous mission as king's assassin, but is left little more than a cripple. Battered and bitter, he vows to abandon his oath to King Shrewd, remaining in the distant mountains. But love and events of terrible urgency draw him back to the court at Buckkeep, and into the deadly intrigues of the royal family.

Renewing their vicious attacks on the coast, the Red-Ship Raiders leave burned-out villages and demented victims in their wake. The kingdom is also under assault from within, as treachery threatens the throne of the ailing king. in this time of great danger, the fate of the kingdom may rest in Fitz's hands -- and his role in its salvation may require the ultimate sacrifice....

Fitz is in a weakened condition after someone tried to kill him and now he must make choose between going back to Buckkeep to live under the same roof as the man who wants him dead or striking out on his own and abandoning the oath he made to his king. When duty prevails, arguably over good sense, Fitz makes the treacherous journey home. Rest was in short supply then as he needed to be ready for any possible danger that may befall him back in the castle while he grew into a man and more of a weapon for his king.

Royal Assassin is book 2 of Robin Hobb's The Farseer trilogy. What was maybe only hinted to be a complex story in the first book blossomed in the second. The first book only scratches the surface. The second book plunges readers into the story head first. Fitz continues his training to kill from the shadows as a secret assassin for the king, he learns to fight in hand-to-hand combat when Prince Verity sees what he can do on the battlefield, he sails with his people to confront the Red Ship Raiders learning to row a ship and fight onboard, he receives permission to court a young woman, he makes new friends, and he maybe loses another. Love, hate, betrayal, loyalty, pain.

This book was wonderfully written and had elements of every genre I can name. The characters’ emotions ran wild across the pages and I was the string wrapped around the author’s finger, unable to put the book down until I knew what happened next. Can you recall the book that cemented the fact that you would read every book that Robin Hobb wrote? I can – Royal Assassin.

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Assassin's Apprentice - Robin Hobb

December 17th, 2008

Assassin's Apprentice - Robin HobbYoung Fitz is the bastard son of the noble Prince Chivalry, raised in the shadow of the royal court by his father's gruff stableman. He is treated as an outcast by all the royalty except the devious King Shrewd, who has him secretly tutored in the arts of the assassin. For in Fitz's blood runs the magic Skill -- and the darker knowledge of a child raised with the stable hounds and rejected by his family.

As barbarous raiders ravage the coasts, Fitz is growing to manhood. Soon he will face his first dangerous, soul-shattering mission. And though some regard him as a threat to the throne, he may just be the key to the survival of the kingdom.

A young boy is abandoned and left in the charge of the prince's men; the boy, they've said, is the prince's bastard. It is more than irony that descends upon the royal family when news that Prince Chivalry, at least in one act, has not lived up to his name. Upon some assemblance of acceptance, the young boy begins his education -- bastard or not, the son of a prince should be educated in books and battle. He also secretly begins his other training -- as an assassin for the king.

While Robin Hobb's work was basically recommended to me as a whole, this particular series, The Farseer, was said to be her best. I love the idea of a boy from a very young age being trained to do the king's most secret bidding. And just like that I am engrossed in these books.

I am pleased with the recommendation so far. Much of the action in the first book happens elsewhere and is then retold, rather than our young protagonist being there to experience everything first-hand. And there was a lot of setup in the first book, but that is fine because there was a lot to set up. By the end of the book, things are really set in motion and there is a great momentum that will carry me forward. I just hope that the momentum continues when I delve into book 2.

After one book I love that this is a three-book series. I am currently in the middle of a few series that seem neverending. My opinion may change as I get deeper into the trilogy, but for now I am excited for my next dose of Robin Hobb.

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