Monday, July 20, 2009

Royal Assassin

Over the weekend, I finished Robin Hobb's second book in the Farseer Trilogy. Robin maintains the first person narrative and the story takes place immediately after the events of the first book. Fitz, having barely survived Regal's plots seeks only to regain his strength and get on with his life. His ability at the Skill was diminished during his training, but he manages to see the girl of his youth possibly getting killed during a "Forging" (this is when the Red Sail Raiders turn the populace into zombies). He spends the bulk of the book finding his love, Molly, and courting her once he does.

In the meantime, he is unable to stop himself rescuing a wolf pup who draws him via the Wit. Once rescued, he is unable to drive the wolf away and despite his best efforts, bonds to the wolf. This bonding gives him extra physical ability, especially when fighting off the Red Sail Raiders. Unfortunately, this draws a lot of attention to him.

King Shrewd begins to waste away and Regal begins to plot to have the throne once again. It's not until Verity, King-in-waiting, decides for an all of nothing gamble to bring back the "Elderlings" (I'm not sure what they are yet, some sort of winged munchkin able to solve all the worlds problems), that Regal puts his plan into motion. Similar to the previous book, the last part of the book is a bit rushed and Regal's plans come to fruition quickly, much to the dismay of Fitz. Again, I don't want to give everything away, but Robin Hobb certainly understands intrigue. The outcome of the story isn't pretty for Fitz and one can't help but wonder if he will ever truly find happiness. If nothing else, this sets the story up well for the final chapter in the trilogy. I did discover that the trilogy isn't the end of the Fitz storyline. However, that doesn't dissuade me at all for reading the final of the trilogy.

My recommendation: 3 stars.