Wednesday, February 24, 2010

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

Title: The Name of the Wind
Author: Patrick Rothfuss
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 5 out of 5 old bartenders

In Patrick Rothfuss's The Name of the Wind, the reader meets an old innkeeper who tells his life story to a record keeper tasked with recording the lives of interesting people of the land. We soon find out that this innocent barkeep is not what he seems. He is the legendary Kvothe, the Kingkiller. From the man's own lips:

"My name is Kvothe. I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during the day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep. You may have heard of me."

I have been putting this review off for quite a while now, for no other reason than that I am afraid I will give it too good of a review. To be honest, The Name of the Wind is as close to a perfect fantasy novel as I can imagine.

As you may have gathered from the above quote, Kvothe's life is rich and full, and he is one of the most enchanting characters that I have ever read about. We get an inside look of the man behind the myths, and we learn that sometimes fame does not paint the whole picture.

The Name of the Wind is wonderfully written, and the 722 page volume (the first of three) reads as if it is no more than 100 pages.

There is too much that is great about this book for me to relate all of it, and I can think of nothing I would change. If you are a fan of fantasy, or just great literature in general, you have to read this book.

5 out of 5 old bartenders!


  1. Thanks for the review. I'll have to check this book out.

  2. I enjoyed this book when I read it... over a year ago I think. Sadly, it is taking forever for the next to come out and by then I will have to re-read this book so I may just wait til all three are out before reading any of the others.

  3. Glad to see such a good review for this book. I've had it on my shelf for quite awhile now and do plan on reading it at some point this year.

  4. I know what you mean, I thought it was absolute perfection! I can't wait to read the next one (and apparently none of his other readers can either from what I've seen on his blog). This is truly fantasy at its greatest.

  5. Wow. I just stumbled upon your blog. LOVE IT!!! Definitely following.

    On a relevant note, I agree with what you have said here. After reading this book, I could find nothing wrong with it, at all. And, I am really picky. It was seamless. You can tell he put many years into perfecting it. I liked it so much, I felt bad referring it to people because I felt like I was missing something. This book is definitely at the top of my favorite books ever read.

    It's employment of a creative non-fiction narrative line combined with fantasy in a very magical realism way makes reading this much more than a trip through the imagination, but an interactive journey of self-comparison. I love how his character is admittedly flawed. Somewhat of a hero villain, much like Darth Vader. All in all, it seems that this is a traditional tragedy, where the main character seems to single handedly decide his own negative fate. Still, his journey towards fate was inspired by the Chandrian, which this book beautifully dances around, like the earth around the sun.

    Loved the review. What are your thoughts on the sequel?

  6. I'm glad that you like the review and my blog Hillary - and even more glad that you enjoyed the book as well! Your description of Qvothe/Kote is spot on, and I couldn't have said it better myself. I was looking forward to Wise Man's Fear for years... and I'm still not sure what I think about it. I read through about half and then had to stop because I just wasn't "feeling it" It seemed very slow and the relationships between characters weren't as colorful to me this time around.

    I'm still not sure if this is because I was idolizing the first novel in my brain, which is definitely a possibility. With everything said, I do plan on finishing the book and posting a review when I am done.

  7. I agree about that. The second book was hard for me to get through compared to the first. It took more effort, where as the other was like dreaming. I enjoyed his progressive interweaving of reinvented fairy tales, but Kvothe became more and more a self insert for the author, I felt, which in the end began to rub me the wrong way.

    The second book had less time and more success for creation. It changed the text. Still, the series is worth reading in my opinion. Good luck!