My re-read of The Name of the Wind is done. I was planning on splitting these posts into three discussing every 200 pages or so, but I zoomed through the last few hundred pages in a day and a half due to some free time and the fact no one could pry it from my hands. My discussion of the first two hundred pages can be found here.
"Why do you say that?"
"He sounds more sincere than that when he lies."
The Name of the Wind is an immersive reading experience. It's a very personal story and Kvothe's voice is so strong you feel like you're sitting at the Inn listening alongside Bast and The Chronicler. His voice demands your complete rapt attention and draws you into his world deeper and deeper as the telling unfolds.
Magic is not overused. It is certainly present and important in certain sections, but even Kvothe's time at the College is more about him learning to deal with others and setting up events that build him up to the person he becomes and his eventual change to an inn keeper hiding himself away than just trying to be flashy. Plus he is still learning about magic. He's clearly powerful and a fast learner, but there are many mysteries for him to uncover about the nature of magic and the world at large. Woman are a big mystery to him, which makes it easier to like him even if he is blind to the attention from the fairer sex. He has other flaws that will probably only enlarge as he grows older.
There is something to say for a society where a man can cry in public because of a beautiful song and not be thought of as weak because of it. The scene I mention was one of the most vivid in The Name of the Wind for me despite not being high action yet the tension and desire for Kvothe to succeed is where he comes into his own as more than just a know-it-all. I could almost hear the song he played and feel cheated that it doesn't exist is our own world.
Rothfuss certainly tugs at the heart strings creating a deep emotional resonance with Kvothe building him up just to knock him down. Why has he lost his magic, but what led him to this path? Is it all for show? Rothfuss has captured the essence of any character driven story and dressed it in a highly detailed world I lost myself in. It is a world of magic, mystery and legends coming alive. And Bast is a lot more bad-ass that I recall.
The only people who probably would not enjoy The Name of the Wind are those looking for stories that move at breakneck speeds. You won't find that with the methodical The Name of the Wind, but when you look up at the clock you'll be surprised how fast the time flies and how hard it is to pull yourself away from Kvothe's story. The life of a living legend can be the hardest for the legend themselves to accept.
The Name of the Wind can come off as a frustrating yet fulfilling first date with Rothfuss playing the part of a tease and in may ways this novel just feels like an appetizer of the feast that is to hopefully come. So many little things are mentioned about what Kvothe will do no matter how long this book is or the next it will never be enough. I can't wait to meet the Amyr and the Adem and hopefully learn how he earns the name "Kvothe the Kingkiller". Now I'm ready for The Wise Man's Fear. Anyone else with me?
I'm also planning on doing a re-read of A Game of Thrones before the HBO series starts. I've actually been itching to do a re-read of the whole series, but have been waiting for word on A Dance With Dragons as many other readers are. I'd like to see how the book matches up with the series. I expect somethings to change such as character introductions and the combining of some characters, but beyond that I've no clue what will translate to the small screen.
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