Book Review: The Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss

- Rothfuss' writing has an almost musical quality to it. Some sentences are so beautiful you can meditate on them for days.

- The way the story is told deviates from the norm when it comes to fantasy fiction. This is a recount of events past, as told by a man who has become something of a legend. Here he is setting the record straight, for the first time telling his story from start to finish. In a stroke of pure genius, there is a scene at the end where local villagers are recounting stories they have heard of Kvothe, so similar and yet so wrong to the actual events. It was the perfect way to cap off the story.

- Rothfuss has managed to be deliciously ambiguous with so many things, and I keep turning turns of phrase over and over in my mind to figure out what he means. This story truly is a puzzle that I am struggling to solve. For this I am grateful for that rarely happens for me in books anymore.

- There is the most stunning character, a waif-like girl called Auri, in this book that is a quiet treasure. I cannot wait to read The Slow Regard of Silent Things to know more.

- My goal in reading this book was to learn a lot about story telling. I have done that, and feel I have learned from a master craftsman. For that I owe my thanks to Patrick Rothfuss.

- The first half of the book had me hooked. The second half dragged so much I broke my "read a chapter a day" rule and read the last hundred pages or so in one sitting just so I was done. The scenes I found incredibly boring were the scenes with the love interest, Denna. She herself didn't annoy me, but entire chapters were dedicated to Kvothe mooning over her, searching for her, his love unrequited. It stagnated the story and, where previously I had struggled to put the book down, here I struggled to pick it up.

- This is a long read, and yet the story really is only beginning. It's quite a commitment to undertake. Personally, that's what I liked about the story, but I can see how that might be a deal breaker for some, especially since the series is incomplete.

Considering my pros far outweighed my cons, I can unhesitatingly recommend The Name of the Wind as a must-read book of a lifetime.

Notable Quotes:

"It was deadly as a sharp stone beneath swift water."

"'So you went looking for a myth and found a man,' he said without inflection, without looking up."

"'It's safe to say I'll need more time than that. And you'll get none of it tonight. A real story takes time to prepare.'"

"'He's eighty years old, and done two hundred years' worth of living. Five hundred , if you count the lies.'"

"If not for him I would never have become the man I am today. Please do not hold it against him. He meant well."

"He raised an eyebrow. I had kept him busy of the last several months, and he hadn't had the leisure to accidentally burn them off."

"The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind."

"It would be wrong to say that I was disappointed with sympathy. But honestly, I *was* disappointed."

"He then proceeded to yell at Alpha and Beta, a sign that he was in a genuine good mood. They took it as calmly as ever, in spite of the fact that he accused them of things I'm sure no donkey has ever willingly done, especially not Beta, who possessed impeccable moral character."

"Ben's training has given me a memory so clean and sharp I have to be careful not to cut myself sometimes."

"You have to be a bit of a liar to tell a story the right way. Too much truth confuses the facts. Too much honesty makes you sound insincere."

"Besides, anger can keep you warm at night, and wounded pride can spur a man to wondrous things."

"There are three things all wise men fear: the sea in storm, a night with no moon, and the anger of a gentle man."


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