Renegade's Magic (The Soldier Son Trilogy #3)
The stirring conclusion to The Soldier Son Trilogy—the acclaimed epic tale of duty, destiny, and magic by New York Times bestselling master fantasist Robin Hobb
Loyal, privileged, and brave, Nevare Burvelle proudly embraced his preordained role as soldier in the service of the King of Gernia—unaware of the strange turns his life would ultimately take. Exposed to a plague...more
For the first half of this book I was a little bemused as to the direction the story took. Most of the book Nevare is a passenger in his own body as his Speck self (AKA Soldier's Boy) takes charge. Nevare, who has been a very passive sort of character for a lot of the series is now stripped completely of any agency or potential agency ...more
I'm calling it that because I honestly feel like the only people who read Soldier's Son (and frankly, the only who should) are already devout Hobb fans looking for another hit.
It's like when you really love a band, and you go through their backlist and find the crappiest albums. You listen to them with such joy, but really, you're not fooling anyone. You know it's a laughable comparison to what made you fall in love with the band in the ...more
Before starting this last trilogy (still completely bedazzled from all the Elderling trilogies) I kept wondering why on earth this trilogy received such low ratings. But I think I got it now. It’s not that this is a bad series: it’s just not up to Robin-Hobb-standard, and whatever Hobb book isn’t up to that standard will feel like a low point – even if that assessment isn’t deserved in the grand scheme of fantasy literature.
The story has its merits, but I kept thinking th ...more
Note: this review necessarily contains spoilers for the first two books in the series. If you have not yet started the series and are planning on reading it, skip this review.
Someday, I fantasize, Robin Hobb will write a main character who learns from his mistakes. That day has not yet come. But I hope it will someday. Here, we have Nevare Burvelle, a character who has had it drilled into him that the Speck magic which has claimed him finds a way to get it ...more
Did I say in my review of Shaman's Crossing that she had avoided "the glassy-eyed back-to-nature-worship so common amongst fantasies that try to include "native" cultures"? Well too bad, because this book has that in spades. The Specks just mill about "at one" with Nature - whatever that means - and therefore Nature automatically provides them with boundless effortless food. Which Hobb describes endlessly and ...more
In this conclusion to Robin Hobb's Soldier Son trilogy, Nevare faces the enemy within, who goes by the name "Soldier's Boy." As the story opens, Nevare flees from Gettys after magically faking his own death. He heads straight for the Speck forest, where he unleashes his magic on the King's Road to wreak havoc and set back construction. Such a great expenditure burns his reserves of magic, which manifests ...more
The narrative point-of-view is probably the biggest problem here. Again, we have first-person from Nevare's perspective--the problem is, Nevare's alter ego takes over his body, and he spends most of the 700-page book as an observer. At this point, I've had it with Nevare's impotence. I don't require incredibly decisive protagonists (thought he was great in book one, when he was relatable), but whe ...more
I wasn't supposed to like this book. Maybe it's a case of expectations being too low to be met. Maybe I have read worse books than the average reader. Or maybe I am so hooked on Hobb's writing she could make stereo instructions interesting. Maybe it's just my belligerence showing. Whatever the reason I enjoyed this book. My biggest problem with this series has been the similarity to American history. It just sort of took me out of my fantasy zone. In this last one I liked the switch of showin ...more
But, I'm struggling figuring out who to recommend it to.
When I read fantasy, I like action, and sarcasm, and great characters. I like well developed religions and worlds. I like critters, full of magic and danger, the bigger the better. I like magic that has to be learned, and when weilded, can cause serious destruction.
Religions - check. World - check. Magic - check.
This particular book has the most action in it, but it' ...more
This one goes into a lot of details about Nevarre's other self, Soldier's Boy, and what it takes to maintain him as a Great Man. Nevare is tasked with saving the Specks from the encroaching road that his people are building, and s ...more
It's not quite as much the 'idiot plot' as before (where her characters have to be idiots to find themselves in the situations that they're in), and they act in a much more reasonable fashion.
A lot of plot elements that drove previous books get explained, but they take a little too long to be explained.
What rescued this book for me were Hobb's skillful writing style and engaging characters (even if th ...more
It was still readable, but her character(s) were not very endearing. The main protagonist has a split personality and both sides are equally annoying. The question remains for a good part of the book as to whether they should merge as one and the "good" side continues to fight against it. But I found myself thinking oh, god - just do it already and move on already. The secondary characters were also grating, far more ...more
Book 1 was the best of the trilogy and they declined from there. I felt as if the series, especially book 3, could have been condensed considerably. A lot of repetitious wording and a bit of tedious prose describing things that probably didn't need as much detail.
I couldn't help but feel this series was a piece meal of ideas that somehow didn't quite make it into other books and because of that, the central plot and some of the ideas never seemed to really engage me.
If you ...more
For me the crux of the book was the continuing reappearance of Orandula, the god of Balances, who kept demanding Nevare's repayment of his debt in the for of either a life or a death. To me it conveyed the lesson that it's important to make choices, even though you're not sure whether it's the 'right' one. To choose, to take control and live w ...more
Hobbs has a penchant for upending all the usual tropes and devices of fantasy. And she does this all with real characters and an entertaining and stirring plot. We see "sword and sorcery" and we think "knights and mages", usually young, muscular and powerful men who, after some initial confusion, embrace their destiny with fervour to fight the good fight. Yawn.
Hobbs writes sword and sorcery i ...more
Renegade's Magic is a continuation ...more
The main character has been split in two and is trying to reconcile the needs and wants of both his halves to try to make both of his peoples live in peace. Only he seems to be making it worse for both groups, and all his friends and family in the meanwhile.
I could never really predict where the story was going. There was a resolution I longed for since book 2, a ...more
|The Robin Hobb Co...: Renegade's Magic > Part 6: Ch 26-30||9||6||Jun 16, 2014 11:59PM|
|The Robin Hobb Co...: Renegade's Magic > Part 2: Ch 6-10||10||8||Jun 09, 2014 12:52PM|
|The Robin Hobb Co...: Renegade's Magic > Part 1: Ch 1-5||22||11||Jun 09, 2014 01:07AM|
|The Robin Hobb Co...: Renegade's Magic > Part 3: Ch 11-15||18||9||Jun 08, 2014 10:46AM|