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The Time of Contempt

(Saga o Wiedźminie #2)

4.28  ·  Rating details ·  37,181 ratings  ·  1,163 reviews
The New York Times bestselling series that inspired the international hit video game: The Witcher
Geralt is a witcher: guardian of the innocent; protector of those in need; a defender, in dark times, against some of the most frightening creatures of myth and legend. His task, now, is to protect Ciri. A child of prophecy, she will have the power to change the world for go
Paperback, 331 pages
Published August 27th 2013 by Orbit (first published 1995)
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Sean McGrath You should start with The Last Wish, which introduces the character. The 'short story' description is misleading, as it consists of a frame-story…moreYou should start with The Last Wish, which introduces the character. The 'short story' description is misleading, as it consists of a frame-story interspersed with flashbacks to formative past events. Sword of Destiny is out as an ebook and only comes out in paperback in December, unfortunately (in the US). If you just wanted to read the main saga, you would start with Blood of Elves, but I really recommend starting with The Last Wish.(less)

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4.28  · 
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 ·  37,181 ratings  ·  1,163 reviews

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✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
Actual rating: 1.5 stars. I may or may not be a teensy little bit pissed off right now. Perhaps.

The ranting is strong in this one. Consider your little selves warned.
Yes, I know, I read this book wrong.
You're welcome.

I wasn't going to write this review today but there's a slight chance my exoskeleton is going to implode if I don't get this out of my system now, so here goes.

This series started out with one of my mostest favoritest awesomest amazingest Fantasy book ever, aka The Last Wish. But
Oct 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
The person everybody was searching for in the previous book was still at large with Geralt being one of the two people who could guess the whereabouts.
Dead or Alive
This means everybody was still conducting the search, but this time it became clear that the aim was to make sure the person in question is really dead just like the rumors started by Geralt stated. As we all know sometimes little people can get in the way of movers and the shakers of the world and make them very much inconvenienced by just being
James Tivendale
Nov 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
"I mistook stars reflected in a pond at night for those in the sky."

The narrative commences at what seems like a time of contempt indeed. The Kings aren't conversing with the Mages as they have previously, the Nilfgaardian army is still planning for war, and the Scoia'tael (Squirrels) are attacking humans in forests and villages. Many parties are all still looking for the elusive Lion Cub, the child of Destiny, Cirilla.

After an interesting and quite tragic point of view chapter following a Kin
Oct 31, 2016 rated it liked it
If A Game of Thrones books were penned by Andrzej Sapkowski, he would've written a whole installment on Red Wedding.
Joey Woolfardis
I am odds with this series. The Last Wish is a million miles away from what these have become, which is just generic fantasy that is badly written (or translated). In The Last Wish we have good battles with monsters, re-tellings of our own fairytales and interesting characters. In this series, which is made up of what are supposed to be full-length books, we have absolutely none of that and it's very disappointing.

The dialogue is the worst thing of all. There is an abysmal attempt at humour, and
Natasha Polis
May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Ummmm. These books are maybe not worth your time. I'm reading them to get ready for the show coming to Netflix. It's giving me great insight into the character, but since I've never played the game, I feel a piece is missing.

This one was more enjoyable than the first. I wish they weren't so chopping and spaced out as I feel the first three should have been condensed into one long story. I will keep chugging along but my DNF the next book.
May 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: witcherverse
This is my favorite book in the series so far. Ciri and Geralt really go through some difficult changes which makes this novel all the more interesting. So whereas “Blood of Elves” sets up the idea of Ciri being at the center of courtly intrigue and politics, with Geralt and Yennefer trying to protect her -- “Time of Contempt” goes deep into that same intrigue and politics with an absolute cluster of a battle in the middle of the story. Though the focus is split halfway between Ciri and Geralt, ...more
Mogsy (MMOGC)
4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

For the first time ever, the English translations of the novels in Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Witcher Saga series are being made into audiobooks, and I have been enjoying them immensely. Thus far, four Witcher books have been published in this format, including the short story collection The Last Wish. Today I’ll be reviewing The Time of Contempt, the second full-length novel in the sequence.

The story beings where Blood of El
Aug 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: own-the-book
Finally, sorry but this was nottttttttt my type of plot. I mean...Ciri her storyline is great but the rest ( and it was mostly the rest ) was so boring. Soooo political, too many names and I just dont know who is screwing who. So sadly I got detached from the plot.

Putting this series on a break till I get back from vacation. I still feel a connection with the main plot, I looove the witcher concept and all the wizards. But I need less politics...
May 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I feel like doing a super informal review for this one, just because this writer makes me feel so many feelings and The Witcher is on the fast-track to becoming my favourite series so quickly that I don't know how to put my thoughts into presentable order. So here's a bunch of words for you, and a few run-on sentences most likely. It's not gushy, I promise, just ineloquent. My review of The Blood of Elves is probably a better recommendation of the series.

Ciri, Geralt, and Yennefer are some of my
Aug 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Apparently these books are rather big in Poland. I know this because a Polish woman told me so. Apparently there are some rather successful videogames that have been based on these books. I know this because I've played one of them. It was good.

Clearly these books have never been that big in the West, they haven't even all been translated yet and they were written in the early 90s, and it makes you doubt what's going on in the fantasy book publishing world. It makes you wonder if there's a profo
Marianna Neal
Aug 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
3.5 out of 5 stars

So, here's the issue I'm having: I need more Geralt.
Don't get me wrong, I love reading about Ciri, and Yennefer, and the random people they encounter, and the politics... But I read these books for Geralt, and when he shows up the whole thing is just on a whole different level. Basically, what I'm saying is that I'm still really enjoying the series, but I'm really hoping we get more of the, you know, main character? That would be nice.
Ana Tijanić
Jan 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Taking into account only the books of this saga that I have read so far,I can say that this is one of the rare (few) series where the sequels are better than the first book.
I can't wait to read the next novel in the series and I hope that I won't be disappointed at the end.
Feb 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is explosive and I can't wait to read the next one!
Mar 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First thoughts after finished reading:I don't want to judge too quickly, so I'll only rate this book after I finish reading its prequel (which is waiting for me in the library).

Still, I need to rant about a certain character: Ciri. I know, she is only a 14 years old girl in this book and teenagers aren't supposed to be mature and considerate and I know her parents and grandmother were killed when she was just a kid and she still has nightmares over the whole traumatic experiences and all, BUT sh
This was amazing.
After almost nothing really happened in Blood of Elves, there is a lot happening in this one. Yennefer and Geralt reunite, Ciri is still in danger but isn't that aware in the beginning, there are new great characters and all of this is told in wonderful little occurrences that made me happy, even though near the ending the book got really intense.
I always love Sapkowski's style of writing characters and dialogs and how he has a partly poetic suffisticated writing style but doesn
Aug 25, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'm so bummed. This series really isn't capturing my imagination and soul like I anticipated it would. I think I expected more monsters. More Geralt. More of a linear story. This is all world-domination and switching POVs and political conniving.

I'm going to do it, guys. I'm going to finish this series! The awesome game franchise is owed that much on my behalf. But I'm just super bummed on this one. Dare I say, I may actually...enjoy the games more? *le gasp!*

I think this is were I say goodbye to this series. There wasn't enough witcher-ing for me, too much "romance", and oh all the terrible women. I've had it with the bitching and the backstabbing, and the obsessing over looks. They just all feel very clichéd and interchangeable to me *shrugs*
Oct 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Sometime in the 1990s, fantasy's center of gravity shifted. Simple heroism (and anti-heroism) were out, along with magical trinkets, gallant knights, noble savages, evil gods, prophesied chosen ones, elves, dwarves, dragons and most other mainstays of both the neo-Tolkeinic and sword & sorcery questing traditions. Moral ambiguity, violence, greed, vice, corruption and, above all, politics reigned in their stead.

The gritty revolution was, and remains, a reaction to all the ridiculous tropes a
Mark Halse
Feb 18, 2016 rated it liked it
I wasn't crazy about this installment. The cleverness and charm of the short stories is all but dead in this second novel.

The first half of the book was awesome. Action packed with Geralt leading the story. Then Geralt is severely injured and exiles himself to Brokilon.

From here we receive another muddled up middle where Dandelion t finds Geralt and tells him what's going on in the outside world. We experience Dandelion's story through quickly changing POVs instead of having a dialogue explaini
Feb 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The political intrigue turns up a notch in this second full-length Witcher novel. Geralt is only in a small portion of the book, but the other characters—particular Ciri—are strong enough to carry the tale. It is an entertaining and fast moving book. Sapkowski is highly skilled at writing dialogue and crafting and refining his characters with their words.

The only bump in the road was an interminable meeting of a group of sorcerers and sorceresses, which was essentially a few dozen pages of loud
Jul 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
**** 4.5/5 ****

Bloody. Beautiful. Brutal. A new favourite.
May 30, 2017 rated it it was ok

2.5 stars

I'm kind of let down by this book and that is a shame because I feel like I've been talking so much about these characters and this premise, all for it to lead to this disappointing spot.

A list of complaints:

- The first two books were great for what they presented: Geralt, the morally ambiguous, fighting all kinds of monsters and also coming across all kinds of monstrous people. This is straying very, very far away from that, to the point where there is nary a monster in sight.

- Not e
May 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, fantasy
I liked this a lot, and I think part of it is because this volume had a different (and better) translator. But also, this is where the political machinations really come to the fore, and although it's a little hard to follow I do like politics. Also, Ciri's the main character here (Geralt hardly appears!) and, well, I ♥ Ciri.

The one thing that's kind of irritating, though, is that it doesn't really feel like a story with beginning, middle, and end - it's just a hunk taken out of a longer story,
Leo Reich
Apr 30, 2016 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 03, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle

What I like about the Witcher/Sapkowski books - particularly Last Wish - is the moral ambiguity of it all. Geralt hunts monsters but he doesn't do it thoughtlessly and he will admit that the monsters are in fact endangered species that he is helping along the path to extinction. Geralt, the mutant, is the exception, the noble savage giving contrast to the rest of rude humanity who are terrible, ignorant racists toward the elves, dwarves etc, who, in turn, don't help their case by
Mmm... I'm unhappy with certain turns of events in this volume that are highly problematic, and I'm starting to notice a sharper decline in storytelling and more scattering of plotlines, character arcs, and a leaking structure that are making me more convinced that this series would've worked better as short stories or novellas. The quality remains high in certain parts and the vignettes style of telling the story helps with this, but it also makes other plots look worse and superfluous.

Ohhh...Wow! This is the second one that I read after The Last Wish book.

I didn`t expected but a story from the Last Wish has a connection here but it isn`t really such a big deal...

Anyway I must warn you that you will need to read the next book in row because this one doesn`t finish the story...

The main thing here is a total war between a lot of kingdoms and you could be a little bored with a lot of names but we have a second story, too, and this will make up for the initial avalanche of details
Nov 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
4 stars

Another entry in the Witcher saga and while not up to the standard of the others I still enjoyed it. I still think the short story angle works better but it's still full of things we expect from the Witcher.

Geralt is there again but once again Yennefer and Ciri have a large role to play and get a lot of time in the story. This is great and it's so intriguing to see young Ciri develop into the young Witcher we see in the games. Geralt too has a strong presence and I like how he's portrayed
Aly Locatelli
As far as the Witcher books go, The Time of Contempt isn't in my top three favourites. I much preferred Blood of Elves and The Sword of Destiny, but overall, it was a great continuation to the story.

Much like the previous three books, the first half is very political: there is war, there are monsters (both human and supernatural) and there's the rumour that Ciri, daughter of the Lion of Cintra, is dead. A rumour started and smartly spread by Geralt himself, in order to protect Ciri, the "chosen
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Andrzej Sapkowski, born June 21, 1948 in Łódź, is a Polish fantasy writer. Sapkowski studied economics, and before turning to writing, he had worked as a senior sales representative for a foreign trade company. His first short story, The Witcher (Wiedźmin), was published in Fantastyka, Poland's leading fantasy literary magazine, in 1986 and was enormously successful both with readers and critics. ...more

Other books in the series

Saga o Wiedźminie (6 books)
  • Blood of Elves (Witcher, #1)
  • Chrzest ognia (Saga o Wiedźminie, #3)
  • Wieża Jaskółki (Saga o Wiedźminie, #4)
  • Pani Jeziora (Saga o Wiedźminie, #5)
  • Untitled
“Why didn't you become a sorcerer, Geralt? Weren't you ever attracted by the Art? Be honest.'
'I will. I was.'
'Why, then, didn't you follow the voice of that attraction?'
'I decided it would be wiser to follow the voice of good sense.'
'Years of practice in the witcher's trade have taught me not to bite off more than I can chew. Do you know, Vilgefortz, I once knew a dwarf, who, as a child, dreamed of being an elf. What do you think; would he have become one had he followed the voice of attraction?”
“Hmm…’ Ciri bit her lower lip, then leaned over and put her eye closer to the hole. ‘Madam Yennefer is standing by a willow… She’s plucking leaves and playing with her star. She isn’t saying anything and isn’t even looking at Geralt… And Geralt’s standing beside her. He’s looking down and he’s saying something. No, he isn’t. Oh, he’s pulling a face… What a strange expression…’ ‘Childishly simple,’ said Dandelion, finding an apple in the grass, wiping it on his trousers and examining it critically. ‘He’s asking her to forgive him for his various foolish words and deeds. He’s apologising to her for his impatience, for his lack of faith and hope, for his obstinacy, doggedness. For his sulking and posing; which are unworthy of a man. He’s apologising to her for things he didn’t understand and for things he hadn’t wanted to understand—’ ‘That’s the falsest lie!’ said Ciri, straightening up and tossing the fringe away from her forehead with a sudden movement. ‘You’re making it all up!’ ‘He’s apologising for things he’s only now understood,’ said Dandelion, staring at the sky, and he began to speak with the rhythm of a balladeer. ‘For what he’d like to understand, but is afraid he won’t have time for… And for what he will never understand. He’s apologising and asking for forgiveness… Hmm, hmm… Meaning, conscience, destiny? Everything’s so bloody banal…’ ‘That’s not true!’ Ciri stamped. ‘Geralt isn’t saying anything like that! He’s not even speaking. I saw for myself. He’s standing with her and saying nothing…’ ‘That’s the role of poetry, Ciri. To say what others cannot utter.’ ‘It’s a stupid role. And you’re making everything up!’ ‘That is also the role of poetry. Hey, I hear some raised voices coming from the pond. Have a quick look, and see what’s happening there.’ ‘Geralt,’ said Ciri, putting her eye once more to the hole in the wall, ‘is standing with his head bowed. And Yennefer’s yelling at him. She’s screaming and waving her arms. Oh dear… What can it mean?’ ‘It’s childishly simple.’ Dandelion stared at the clouds scudding across the sky. ‘Now she’s saying sorry to him.” 37 likes
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