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Fitz and the Fool #3

Assassin's Fate

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Goodreads Choice Award
Nominee for Best Fantasy (2017)
More than twenty years ago, the first epic fantasy novel featuring FitzChivalry Farseer and his mysterious, often maddening friend the Fool struck like a bolt of brilliant lightning. Now New York Times bestselling author Robin Hobb brings to a momentous close the third trilogy featuring these beloved characters in a novel of unsurpassed artistry that is sure to endure as one of the great masterworks of the genre.

Fitz’s young daughter, Bee, has been kidnapped by the Servants, a secret society whose members not only dream of possible futures but use their prophecies to add to their wealth and influence. Bee plays a crucial part in these dreams—but just what part remains uncertain.

As Bee is dragged by her sadistic captors across half the world, Fitz and the Fool, believing her dead, embark on a mission of revenge that will take them to the distant island where the Servants reside—a place the Fool once called home and later called prison. It was a hell the Fool escaped, maimed and blinded, swearing never to return.

For all his injuries, however, the Fool is not as helpless as he seems. He is a dreamer too, able to shape the future. And though Fitz is no longer the peerless assassin of his youth, he remains a man to be reckoned with—deadly with blades and poison, and adept in Farseer magic. And their goal is simple: to make sure not a single Servant survives their scourge.

847 pages, Hardcover

First published May 4, 2017

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About the author

Robin Hobb

348 books97.7k followers
** I am shocked to find that some people think a 2 star 'I liked it' rating is a bad rating. What? I liked it. I LIKED it! That means I read the whole thing, to the last page, in spite of my life raining comets on me. It's a good book that survives the reading process with me. If a book is so-so, it ends up under the bed somewhere, or maybe under a stinky judo bag in the back of the van. So a 2 star from me means,yes, I liked the book, and I'd loan it to a friend and it went everywhere in my jacket pocket or purse until I finished it. A 3 star means that I've ignored friends to finish it and my sink is full of dirty dishes. A 4 star means I'm probably in trouble with my editor for missing a deadline because I was reading this book. But I want you to know . . . I don't finish books I don't like. There's too many good ones out there waiting to be found.

Robin Hobb is the author of three well-received fantasy trilogies: The Farseer Trilogy (Assassin’s Apprentice, Royal Assassin, and Assassin’s Quest), The Liveship Traders Trilogy (Ship of Magic, Mad Ship and Ship of Destiny) and the Tawny Man Trilogy (Fool’s Errand, Golden Fool, and Fool’s Fate) Her current work in progress is entitled Shaman’s Crossing. Robin Hobb lives and works in Tacoma, Washington, and has been a professional writer for over 30 years.

In addition to writing, her interests include gardening, mushrooming, and beachcombing. She and her husband Fred have three grown children and one teenager, and three grand-children.

She also writes as Megan Lindholm, and works under that name have been finalists for the Hugo award, the Nebula Award, and the Endeavor award. She has twice won an Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Readers’ Award.

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Profile Image for Petrik.
669 reviews43k followers
August 7, 2022
I have a Booktube channel now! Subscribe here: https://www.youtube.com/petrikleo

Here lies the end of my journey in The Realm of the Elderlings. Robin Hobb, if you’re reading this, thank you from the bottom of my heart for writing this series and for saving your best work for the finale.

Assassin’s Fate marks the conclusion of the Fitz and the Fool trilogy, and it’s also the final installment within Robin Hobb’s overarching The Realm of the Elderlings series that’s comprised of sixteen books in total. I started my journey into this series on January 15th, and coincidentally it all ends on April 15th. It took me exactly three months to read all sixteen full-length novels plus one novella and one anthology (4.1 million words within 11473 pages of the UK paperback edition), and by the gods, what an unforgettable journey this has been. It gladdens me to say that Assassin’s Fate ended up becoming my number one favorite Robin Hobb’s work; it was a heartfelt, bittersweet, and satisfying conclusion to a series that has left me in awe of Hobb’s capability as a writer. Now that I’ve finished this book, I can fully understand why people raved about Robin Hobb being the reigning queen of high fantasy. As it turns out, she has become the queen of the fantasy genre for me, and she also has become the first female author to be included on my favorite authors of all-time lists.

“To Fitz and the Fool.
My best friends for over twenty years.” – Robin Hobb

Following the nature of Hobb’s books, despite continuing immediately after the cliffhanger in Fool’s Quest, Assassin’s Fate starts off slowly—this isn’t a negative thing for me—during the first half of the novel. However, please don’t let the slow start fool you into thinking that this would be a boring book; far from it, it’s one of the most engaging stories I’ve ever read. There were so many important scenes happening, and I do believe that you can only fully appreciate every page of this tome if you’ve read all of Hobb’s books—not just the one that features Fitz as the main character. One of the factors that made Assassin’s Fate super amazing was the convergence of all the previous plot-lines and key characters from all of Hobb’s series in this world—The Liveship Traders, in particular, is a definite must-read—into this book.

The first 50% of this book was indeed dominated by Fitz’s travel to Clerres, and this is in a way almost similar to the plot structure in Assassin’s Quest travel sections, but one crucial thing separate this from that: the characters from The Liveship Traders. The convergence of Fitz’s story and The Liveship Traders characters were spectacularly good; these are some of the most well-written characters in the genre, and even seeing the characters just conversing with each other brought me happiness. To be able to finally see Fitz interact with the characters from The Liveship Traders made the first half of the novel immensely enjoyable to read.

“Never do what you can’t undo until you’ve considered well what you can’t do once you’ve done it.”

I can’t emphasize highly enough how magnificent this last installment is. This book is a true culmination of twenty-two years of Hobb’s works, and it successfully exceeded all my expectations. I won’t lie, the entire sixteen books series hasn’t been a thoroughly smooth sailing experience, but the most important thing is that the entirety of this series is truly worth the journey and commitment. What exactly makes Hobb’s books so unforgettable? Well, there’s plenty of reasons, and I’ve talked about them like a broken record already, but let me repeat the most important one of them all one last time: the excellent characterizations.

Almost ALL of Hobb’s characters were extremely well-written, and believe me, these characters will be transformed into real individuals in your head and heart. The genuine relationships—good and bad—formed, and how the passage of time affects us all remained as one of my favorites themes of the series. Fitz’s narrative about his coming of age, friendships, and family was incredibly compelling and evocative due to Hobb’s exceptional prose. Plus, Fitz’s relationships with Nighteyes, The Fool, and Bee are now unquestionably engraved as some of the best experiences I’ve ever had in reading.

Contrary to my belief that Hobb couldn’t write great action scenes, I was proven utterly wrong here. The last half of this book was an emotional rollercoaster brimming with tension-packed actions. I honestly didn’t expect this spectacular quality of actions from Robin Hobb; the final action sequences in this book almost felt like the terrific climax sequences contained in Sanderson’s or Abercrombie’s epic fantasy books. It was intense, full of twists and turn, and somehow also wholesome and beautiful. Hobb meticulously built from the groundwork established in Fool’s Assassin and led the narrative towards this final battle superbly. Every chapter ends with a cliffhanger, and I’m brimming with assurance to vouch that the last half was an unstoppable page-turner that will relentlessly tug on your emotions.

“Vengeance took no account of innocence or right. It was the chain that bound horrific events together, that decreed that one awful act must beget another worse one that would lead to yet a third. It came to me, slowly, that this chain would never end.”

I’ve pondered about how to write this review for days, and this is pretty much all I can say about the book without diving into spoiler territory. As for the series itself, let me first say that Robin Hobb is an evidently fantastic storyteller. Some of her books, in my opinion, did have pacing issues; this was especially true in Assassin’s Quest. I also think that The Rain Wild Chronicles were overall unnecessary to read. Sure, you’ll miss some nuance about Silvers, Dragon Blood, and Kelsingra on this trilogy, but for me, I didn’t find it worthwhile to go through all the pain and frustration I had with reading The Rain Wild Chronicles just to get to this final trilogy. However, these were the very few unsatisfactory books in the saga, and it has been noted by many fans of the series who have the same opinion as I did that the quality of both Assassin’s Quest and The Rain Wild Chronicles improved significantly on rereads. I’m definitely rereading The Realm of the Elderlings in the future; Hobb has delivered me two of the greatest series I’ve ever read—The Liveship Traders and the Fitz and the Fool trilogy—within this saga. Considering that my first read through the entire series, with a few exceptions aside, has allowed me to rate all of Hobb’s books within The Realm of the Elderlings with a 4, 4.5, or 5 stars rating, I’m confident future reread will bestow an even higher rating.

I seriously believe Assassin’s Fate deserves a 6/5 stars rating. I know a lot of people want Hobb to write more books in this world, and I think I wouldn’t mind a standalone story or two, but personally speaking, I’m satisfied with the four million words I’ve read here. The series is massive enough already, and prolonging a satisfyingly finished series comes with a lot of risks. Most of all, though, it’s because Assassin’s Fate is a masterful culmination to The Realm of the Elderlings, Hobb has poured everything from her career into this book, and it would be close to impossible to read a better concluding volume to the series than this.

“This is our last hunt, old wolf. And as we have always done, we go to it together.”

I have loved, I have laughed, I have felt joy, sorrow, fury, despair, gratification, and all kind of emotions; these emotional impacts I attained from reading this series are something that will stay with me until the end of my days. In its entirety, The Realm of the Elderlings is utterly stupendous; Robin Hobb’s achievement for the completion of writing this series is nothing short of outstanding. Readers of this series—past, present, and future—will continue to treasure this sixteen books masterpiece. These characters have been with me for a full scope of three months, and they’ve become real to me now, but the bittersweet time of parting has arrived. It’s time for me to say goodbye and move on to other worlds. Rest assured, though, that this is not the final farewell. One day when I miss the characters dearly, I know I’ll visit the words written on the pages of these books again, and again, and again, and again. The Realm of the Elderlings has become a part of my soul, and there are only three words left that I need to say to describe my feelings for reaching the end of the journeys: I am content.

The Realm of the Elderlings overall review:

Assassin's Apprentice: 4/5 stars
Royal Assassin: 4/5 stars
Assassin's Quest: 2/5 stars

The Farseer Trilogy: 10/15 stars

Ship of Magic: 4.5/5 stars
The Mad Ship: 4/5 stars
Ship of Destiny: 4.5/5 stars

The Liveship Traders: 13/15 stars

Fool's Errand: 5/5 stars
The Golden Fool: 4/5 stars
Fool's Fate: 4/5 stars

The Tawny Man Trilogy: 13/15 stars

Dragon Keeper: 3.5/5 stars
Dragon Haven: 1/5 stars
City of Dragons: 3/5 stars
Blood of Dragons: 2/5 stars

The Rain Wild Chronicles: 9.5/20 stars

Fool's Assassin: 5/5 stars
Fool's Quest: 4.5/5 stars
Assassin's Fate: 5/5 stars

Fitz and the Fool: 14.5/15 stars

The Realm of the Elderlings: 60/80 stars

Picture: My full collection of The Realm of the Elderlings

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Profile Image for Mark Lawrence.
Author 72 books51.1k followers
July 25, 2022
The folks at Voyager know I am a fan of Robin Hobb and were kind enough to send me #4 of 50 in this limited edition of Assassin's Fate.

Why the fuss? Well, this book is the conclusion of a twenty-two year journey (over fifty years in book time) through the world Robin Hobb has created. The protagonist who has led us in that journey is Fitz, the assassin mentioned in the title (and the apprentice mentioned in the title of the first book, Assassin's Apprentice, released in 1995).

Officially the journey runs thusly:

Though Fitz (as far as I know) only appears in the Fitz & Fool series which are the 1st, 3rd and 5th series in the image above.

Now, to the book! First I should note that I haven't read the Liveship or Rain Wild series. This is significant as although those books and their characters don't seem to have any significant impact on the Tawny Man trilogy, they do have a minor impact on Fool's Quest and a major impact on Assassin's Fate.

Because of my not having read those two series I am certain that sizable chunks of Assassin's Fate had far less impact on me that they otherwise would have had. Much of this book is spent travelling on liveships crewed by people who I believe are central to the Liveship trilogy, and passing through ports where yet more characters from that series reside. There are many points in Assassin's Fate where I had the distinct feeling that an event was somehow momentous ... but it passed me by. As a writer I could tell that the story was spending far too long with some "minor" characters and understood that this must because they had in previous books earned their right to page time.

So, although I've given the book 5* there is the chance that had I read those other 7 books I might have been raging that I couldn't give it 6*! Also, the 5* are based on the power, impact and entertainment from those sections where I wasn't missing anything.

To the text in hand! Well, you all know how Robin Hobb writes. Slow, beautiful prose, building character relationships, turning the screw on the protagonists, piling on the hurt, and then to a conclusion. The same thing happens in this book. The writing is rich and satisfying and I consumed the first two thirds of the novel in many small bites. Toward the end when we largely won clear of the characters and plot lines from the books I haven't read I began to move more quickly through the pages. The pace and tension pick up and you really begin to wonder what the end game will consist of. How will Fitz, the Fool and little Bee end up? Will Hobb show any mercy to these characters we've grown to love (over decades for Fitz and the Fool)?

I enjoyed the Bee thread the most, possibly because it was free of the Liveship/Rainwilds entanglements. Also Bee is a fierce and determined little creature that it's impossible not to root for. After having so much abuse heaped upon her it's very satisfying on the occasions that Bee strikes back.

I won't go into the plot. Hobb continues to paint a rich, interesting, and integrated world, she works her usual magic with the story, and it's a great read. Then you get to the last fifty or a hundred pages. The finale that 21 years, 17 books, and the several fictional lives have been building up to.

I thought I was handling it pretty well. Several things happened that I thought might happen and I bit my lip and carried on reading. Then...


I don't know why that scene was so powerful for me where others flowed over me. But it was. And from that point on had I not been such a manly author of GRIMDARK I would probably have been working my way through a box of tissues and pretending to any nearby family that I had hay-fever.

So, the ultimate ending... Bitter sweet as you might expect. Lots of bitter, and a fair bit of sweet too. Capping off such an epic work of fiction / literature was always going to be a monumental ask. To my mind Robin Hobb pulled it off. She managed to close the back cover on story in a way that stayed true to the characters and all that had gone before, and in a way that will likely have a lasting impact on the fantasy landscape. The ending will certainly stay with me, joining my small collection of iconic fantasy moments.

So, get reading. I won't lie, it's going to hurt, but you'll also be glad that you did it.

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Profile Image for Sean Barrs .
1,113 reviews44.4k followers
November 17, 2020
I always rave about Robin Hobb books. For me, she has the strongest voice in the epic fantasy genre at the moment. Her plots are expertly crafted and well-drawn out, as I’ve said before, except this one has been a very long time in the making. The ending I’ve been waiting many years for has finally arrived. To call it emotional would be to evoke a drastic understatement. Ever since Assassin’s Quest I knew it would end this way eventually.

“This is our last hunt, old wolf. And as we have always done, we go to it together.”

All good things come to an end eventually, and this series has been working towards such an end over the course of sixteen books. Robin Hobb has weaved so many strands of story together here. The set-up is ridiculously immense. She has literally drawn on everything. The Farseer Trilogy, The Liveship Traders, The Tawny Man Trilogy and The Rain Wild Chronicles are all brought together into one epic conclusion. Fitz and The Fool seek aid from the dragons of Kelsingra and speed across the sea on the liveship Paragon with the ultimate goal of revenge.

Bee has been taken on the orders of The Four, a group of whites in charge of Clerres. Fitz believes that she is dead. He approaches his destination with nothing but malice in his heart. He wants blood, and he wants lots of it. He doesn’t think he will succeed; he is going into his mission blind and weary, but he intends to kill as many of his enemies as possible before he draws his last breath. The Fool, on the other hand, believes Bee is still alive. He has dreamt of another future, a future he didn’t think was possible. These are uncharted waters for both men.

Why didn’t I give it five stars?

The final few chapters of this book were everything I expected them to be; they were everything they needed to be, but it took a long time to get there. A few chapters were very similar in content. Bee’s journey was repetitive at times, and a good proportion of the text was given over to some of the less interesting characters from The Liveship Traders. They were not given point of views, thankfully, but I don’t think the narrative needed to concern itself too much with their lives. Sure, give them a mention but don’t get bogged down with their stories again.

I don’t wish to give away major spoilers (or any spoilers for that matter) but this is a very strong ending, though the world remains very open for more stories. There are plenty of threads that could be picked up in the future, and I don’t for a moment think that this will be the last time Hobb's readers get to venture into the Six Duchies and the walls of Buckeep castle. This was a strong ending, but I think the book needed to be edited down just a little.


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Profile Image for Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller.
726 reviews1,204 followers
May 5, 2017
What can I say about the conclusion to the series that has dazzled me for years (becoming my all-time favorite) other than: wow.

Assassin’s Fate was beautiful, terrible, and profound. I savored each page, painfully aware it might be the last time I experience this world. I’ve never been as emotionally invested in a story as I was with Hobb’s work, her writing draws you in so completely that you forget yourself for a while, totally at the mercy of her story. Each of her series evoked real emotion – a sense of love and loss that is almost unparalleled by anything else I’ve ever read. Assassin’s Fate was the most gut-wrenching to date, but it was worth every painful, poignant moment. I’ll be reeling from this one for years to come.

I love this series for so many things: its rich histories and epic world building, its endearingly human characters (flaws and all), its immersive writing, but one of my favorite things about it is the subtle weaving of dragons into the story. It’s quite brilliantly done – dragons always seem to be the center of the overall arc of each series, but are often kept on the periphery of the events within each book (with the exception of the Rain Wilds Chronicles). The further you read, the more you start to realize their significant impact on the world and characters. As someone who loves dragons almost obsessively, I ate up every word. Hobb’s representation of them is truly breathtaking. Oddly though, I wouldn’t call these series dragon-centric because, while essential to the plot, they are usually not the focal point.

At the conclusion of Fool’s Fate, (the final book in the Tawny Man Trilogy, a reading experience I’ll never forget), I’d been under the impression Fitz’s tale was at an end. Therefore, when The Fitz and the Fool Trilogy was announced in August 2014, it felt like Christmas had come early. And it was even better than I dared hope! With the introduction of a new POV character, Bee, whom I love just as fiercely as Fitz, this trilogy offered a convergence of every Elderling series before it (Fitz + Liveship + Rain Wilds = Amazing!). It was an unexpected surprise, and I can’t even begin to describe how elated I was. If you haven’t yet experienced the brilliant world of the Elderlings, I suggest reading in the following order (to avoid spoilers):

Farseer Trilogy
Liveship Trilogy
Tawny Man Trilogy
Rain Wilds Chronicles
Fitz and the Fool

Each series brings with it loads of new discoveries, and I cherished every detail. Learning the histories of this world is also one of my favorite elements to the series. Each new detail felt like a revelation, and it got to a point where I was hanging on every word, hoping to find out more. Who knew it would go so far beyond the somewhat narrow framework of a little orphan boy at Buckkeep castle in Assassin’s Apprentice?

All the books Hobb has written in this world are amazing. Each story is a slow burn that takes its time, building momentum as it goes. By the time you reach the end, you’re hurtling so fast you wish you could slow it down to savor every moment. Assassin’s Fate and every book that came before it are officially The Obsessive Bookseller’s top recommends. I loved every beautiful, gut-wrenching moment and will keep these characters close to my heart forever.

*Thank you Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, NetGalley, and Robin Hobb for the chance to read and review an early copy of Assassin’s Fate– you made my year! :D

Via The Obsessive Bookseller at www.nikihawkes.com

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Profile Image for oyshik.
212 reviews665 followers
January 27, 2021
Assassin's Fate (The Fitz and the Fool, #3 Realm of the Elderlings,#16) by Robin Hobb

Now my journey to the Realm of Elderlings has ended. And this series turned out to be one of my favorite fantasy series. It's a heartwrenching story, and I can't even say how great this series was. After finishing this book, I found myself so depressed and was difficult to concentrate on any other works. I love all sixteen books in the Realm of the Elderlings series. Don't skip over any of the other series before you read this one. Because Hobb connected her previous series with this series beautifully.
This is our last hunt, old wolf. And as we have always done, we go to it together.

Goodbye Fitz.

P.S: Chronological order of the Realm of the Elderlings series:

Farseer trilogy
1. Assassin's Apprentice
2. Royal Assassin
3. Assassin's Quest

Liveship traders trilogy
1. Ship of Magic
2. The Mad Ship
3. Ship of Destiny

Tawnyman Trilogy
1. Fool's Errand
2. Golden Fool
3. Fool's Fate

The Rainwild Chronicles
1. The Dragon Keeper
2. Dragon Haven
3. City of Dragons
4. Blood of Dragons

Fitz and the Fool trilogy
1. Fool's Assassin
2. Fool's Quest
3. Assassin's Fate
Profile Image for Matt's Fantasy Book Reviews.
236 reviews3,139 followers
September 5, 2022
Check out my YouTube channel where I show my instant reactions upon finishing reading fantasy books.

A book that sticks the landing in such a perfect way, and ends up being the best of any of the 16 books in the series. This book and series should go down as one of the greatest fantasy series of all time

As I was reading this book, I went through a wide range of feelings about how this book would hold up both on it's own, and as a fitting ending to such a magnificent series. Around 30% in, I worried that while good, this book was not great - and was going to fumble the ball on the goal-line. But as the book crossed the 50% line I realized that in true Robin Hobb fashion, the slow build was done with purpose, and what I received was the most riveting, emotion-filled, tense, and perfect book that was written in this universe.

Not only did the book manage to end things in a truly wonderful way, but it has made me rethink the entire series as a whole. There have been books in this series that felt underwhelming to me and borderline unnecessary - particularly Assassin's Quest and most of the Rain Wild Chronicles books. But upon finishing this book I now realize their importance in this world and it made them absolutely important stories to be told in order to appreciate the grander story. Hobb clearly had things planned out perfectly, and while she is the dictionary definition of a slow burn, it was done with perfect purpose, and I will forever cherish the experience she has allowed me to participate in.

Story: 5/5

Without spoiling anything, the story here is spellbinding. Events have been leading in this direction slowly for an extremely long time, so to see all this buildup finally lead to an epic conclusion was a joy to behold. All storylines that had felt like dead-ends were weaved in perfectly here, and there was a fitting ending to literally all of the character arcs.

I absolutely love the scope of this story, which was more wide ranging than anything in the past by a long shot. All of the key locations from the previous books were integrated into this story, and meeting up with past characters who got mixed up in this story brought a constant smile to my face.

While virtually everyone who reads this book can likely guess the eventual fate of some of these characters, it did not make the story any less impactful for that - and the form that this fate takes is likely different than most would guess (at least it was for me).

World Building: 5/5

The world building here was absolutely wonderful, and the addition of one specific location (that will remain unnamed for spoiler purposes) was something I have long wanted to read about. It was done incredibly, with such vivid descriptions and added in wonderful new characters. The wait to read about this location was worthwhile, and it really made the entire world finally come together in a cohesive fashion with the right mix of explanation and mystery.

I have criticized Hobb's worldbuilding in the past as one of the weaker aspects of her books, but I was wrong. I just didn't understand the whole story yet - and it makes me want to go back and read these books again due to the new appreciation I have for the story at large.

Fantasy Elements: 5/5

This was another aspect to this series I have criticized in the past, and while I still maintain that these fantasy elements were a bit lackluster in previous books, the addition of new magic into this book was the best to date, and weaved into the previous magic systems in a glorious way. It felt fresh, interesting, and fun consistently throughout this book - without feeling overpowered or cheap.

The implementation of dragons, and our understanding of the history and capabilities of the dragons continued to expand in this book in an extremely unexpected way, and I am so glad that Hobb didn't lay out all her cards at the beginning and held some mystery for the very end.

Characters: 5/5

The characters in this book, and this series as a whole, are without a doubt the greatest characters ever written in the history of fantasy. The journey that you get to take with Fitz, following him from a little boy into a grown man - and the cast of characters that surrounds him, is remarkably perfect. The range of emotions that these characters go through feels so incredibly real, and I struggle to imagine how anyone will ever top what Robin Hobb has achieved here. There isn't a single character in this entire series that has been a disappointment - and this includes the cast of new characters that were included in this book.

Writing Style: 5/5

Robin Hobb is a marvelous writer, and her ability to make you sympathize with literally every single character in this book makes this an instant masterpiece. Everything is written in such amazingly vivid detail, and even when things aren't tense (which most things aren't in this book) it is gripping and extremely difficult to put down.

Her prose is incredible, and just oozes with skill that you just wish more authors could replicate.

Enjoyment: 5/5

Very few, if any books have I enjoyed more than this one. It's the perfect sendoff to this series, to these characters, and likely (but hopefully not) this author.

Profile Image for Emma.
2,440 reviews829 followers
April 9, 2019
‘ Are you ready, my brother?’
Thank you Robin Hobb.
I can't lie. There have been tears. What a wonderful gift this series has been and what a wonderful final episode.

All strands were connected and interwoven in such an amazing way. Did Robin know how she wanted the story to end up all those years ago when she wrote the Assassin's Apprentice? It boggles my mind.
I also found it slightly strange as well as delightful to see the worlds of the Elderlings and Kelsingra combine with Fitz's. Have you ever seen Bedknobs and Broomsticks? Well it was a bit like that when the real cinematic world combined with the animation!
I noted so many memorable scenes while reading that I thought to cite in this review, but I'm not going to spoil your fun.

I have (almost) never minded the long and winding way in which Robin tells her stories. Every word, you realise afterwards, had its place and its reason. But in this book I found the story zoomed right along from page 1. No more hints and subtle foreshadowing: all that's been done already in the previous books. THIS is the big reveal, where everything comes together.
The ending was fitting and perfect.

Please don't read this unless you've read the preceding volumes of this work. I'm sure Robin wouldn't thank me for saying this with so much of her writing career still to come, but to me this is her Magnum Opus.

Thanks to Netgalley, Robin Hobb and Random House Publishing group for this ARC. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Em Lost In Books.
874 reviews1,762 followers
April 10, 2019

I am done, now feeling sad and empty.

I still remember my frustrated self after finishing Assassin’s Quest back in January 2016, and how promised myself not to torture myself and read another book in Realm of the Elderlings. But constant praise on my home feed and friends’ rave of the series were tempting but I was not courageous enough to dive into RotE world again. Then last year I finally gave in and started reading Tawny Man and I was shocked to see how much Fitz has matured or perhaps it was me who became more mature and patient. He was still irritating at times but not like the teenager Fitz where all he did was whine. He was the assassin that King Shrewd wanted him to be and his relationship with Fool developed further making the trilogy "golden".

After that I read one of the best fantasy trilogy, Livship Traders. It was bewitching! The world, the characters and how they grew on me, it was fantastic to experience all those emotional conflicts. But as they say all good things comes to an end, after the high of Tawny Man and Livship Traders came Rain Wild Chronicles and I should have avoided them. Hard to believe that Ms. Hobb wrote those books. Somehow plodded on because at the end final trilogy of RotE was waiting for me. The end was so near, hence I put the disappointment of Rain Wild behind me and kept on reading.

My above rambling about how felt for RotE books was necessary here because it's been over three months when I wrapped up this book and I am still unable to get over how Hobb brought everything to a closure. It was sublime, poignant and heart-breaking. Hope she won’t add more books to this because this was perfect for me. Of course I will read if she decides to continue the story (she could construct a solid story trilogy the way she ended things here) but this is it for me. She gave Fitz’s story a conclusion worthy of all the pain and happiness that I experienced through him.

I have nothing to say about Assassin’s Fate because whatever I write here will be a spoiler. Skill, wit, talking ships, and dragons, all came in this story to make it magical and ending things in a grand way.

I am going to miss this world, perhaps will return to it too at sometime.

Highest possible recommendation.
Profile Image for Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘.
842 reviews3,775 followers
April 8, 2017
Rating and thoughts coming closer to release date (yes, this is me buying time. Truthfully, I have no idea how/if I'll review it. Just know that if I were to review it now, I'd probably write,

... that wouldn't be fair to my dear Fitz who changed (saved?) my life 15 years ago. No, I'm not being dramatic. I mean every word.)

And engraved on my tombstone, you'll read :

I'm glad for the fucking ships.

Now that I've freaked you out, I'll stop here. Sorry about that.
Profile Image for Franco  Santos.
484 reviews1,343 followers
January 30, 2018
(Sin spoilers).

(Esto es una reseña general de la saga; el libro no es tan bueno como otros).

Tengo 22 años recién cumplidos. Esta saga tiene 20. No puedo decir que transité toda mi vida junto a Fitz, Nighteyes y the Fool. No puedo decir que crecí con ellos y me formé desde mis primeros años junto a sus aventuras y desgracias. No tengo esa satisfacción literaria, interna y casi personal. Comencé a leer la saga cuando tenía 19 años. Cuando el primer libro salía —Assassin's Aprendice— yo contaba con 2 años de vida. Ni siquiera sabía leer. Los sonidos que salían de mi boca eran balbuceos de palabras incoherentes. Fitz en ese momento ya había comenzado su camino. Yo estaba comenzando el mío.

Empecé a leer a Fitz como por un impulso. Fue al azar, algo que no estaba destinado a ser, tal como Fitz no estaba destinado a vivir. Un día entré a una librería cualquiera con un par de billetes en el bolsillo. Solo había entrado para mirar. Ni tenía pensado comprar nada. Sin embargo, contra todo pronóstico ese día salí con una bolsita blanca con el primer libro de la saga dentro. Y ese mismo día lo comencé. Y ese mismo día empezó esta aventura compartida que me acompañó estos últimos años hasta en momentos que no la estaba leyendo, pensando en sus personajes a altas horas de la madrugada como si fuesen personas del mundo físico, tangible.

Porque con esta saga aprendí lo que un autor puede ser capaz de lograr con sus personajes. Cada uno de los personajes que integraron esta serie no fueron representaciones de cartón, sin vida y resquebrajadas con el tiempo. Se sintieron, como dije más arriba, personas reales. Y con esto me refiero a que yo ya era capaz de saber cómo reaccionaria x personaje ante x hecho, algo logrado enteramente por la complejidad interior de cada uno de ellos, este entrelazamiento transliterario que supera la simple lectura y se deposita como una certeza en la mente del lector. Fitz, the Fool, Nighteyes y demás personajes no eran solo focos de atención, herramientas para que la historia pudiese fluir como la autora lo quisiera. No. Con el paso de las páginas, los protagonistas fueron abandonando su cualidad de personajes para presentarse ante mí no como un medio de entretenimiento, sino como mis amigos.

Fitz y the Fool quizá no hayan estado conmigo 20 años, como muchos lectores pueden decir; pero estuvieron 3 que se sintieron como 20. Fue una relación entre lector y personaje intensa, divertida de a ratos, pero mayormente triste. Porque esta saga no cuenta una historia del tipo «... y vivieron felices por siempre». Este es el camino de un héroe trágico, inmerso en desgracia, infelicidad e injusticia. Un héroe que gana su condición de héroe de rodillas. Aquí no existe la recompensa disneysiana, aquí las segundas oportunidades no existen. Aquí se viene a sufrir, a buscarle compañía al sufrimiento propio. Es un abrazo de alguien que entiende. Un asentimiento de cabeza de un compañero silencioso.

También cabe resaltar que la historia de Fitz no es una historia para cualquiera. No puedo recomendarla así como así. Como ya dije, aquí no hay recompensa, o, para decirlo de otra manera, Hobb no nos va a dar la felicidad que tanto queremos, el festejo alegre de un final satisfactorio. La historia es agridulce desde el inicio hasta su conclusión. Asimismo, si alguien quiere leer esta saga, tiene que tener antes en mente que esta se despliega de forma lenta, con una gran introducción y una casi carencia de acción. Lo realmente esencial de esta aventura de 16 libros son las relaciones interpersonales de los personajes y el caos interior de Fitz, de este bastardo solitario que tanto he llegado a querer.

Assassin's Fate proporciona un buen cierre de todos los hilos narrativos de cada una de las subsagas que la conforman (la de Fitz, Liveship Traders y Rain Wild Chronicles). Todo converge. Todo encuentra su final. Viejos personajes reaparecen y se encuentran con personajes de historias pasadas. Es una maravilla cómo Hobb ha sabido construir ladrillo a ladrillo una historia tan compleja sobre una base simple y sencilla. La primera mitad, como es habitual en sus libros, es lenta y elaborada, sin mucha acción. Las relaciones de los personajes se presentan tan complejas como siempre y el hilo argumental se va formando con firmeza, preparando el terreno para lo que estaba aún por llegar. Una vez pasada la primera mitad, todo comienza a caer. La acción dice presente y las sorpresas abundan. Asimismo, la prosa de la autora acompaña a la perfección el carácter del libro, lento, minuciosamente detallado y de un gran uso de la autoreflexión. En mi primera lectura, una vez pasé la página 400, me resultó imposible no seguir hasta terminarlo

En cuanto al final en sí, fue lo más duro con lo que me encontré en mi vida. Yo creía, so ingenuo, que nada me podría impactar, que todo lo que pudiese pasar me iba a resbalar. Estaba acostumbrado a los finales duros, injustos, de esos que te agarran y no te dejan ir hasta mucho después de haberlos leído. No obstante, eso no importó en lo más mínimo: el golpe fue efectivo. Las últimas cien paginas fueron una puñalada, una burla, un ahorcamiento. Fueron traumatizantes e inolvidables, insuperables. Un asco desgarrador. Lágrimas hechas palabras. La conclusión de esta saga la esperaba y temía por igual. Sé con certeza que esto no la voy a olvidar jamás. Ya pasaron casi dos meses de mi primera lectura y aún no me la puedo sacar de la cabeza, como una cáscara podrida pegada al zapato. Día tras día tengo esta suerte de necesidad patológica de volver a agarrar el libro y releerla una y otra vez para hacerla menos dolorosa por repetición.

Aún no lo logro. Preparen los pañuelos.

Y listo. Basta. Me gustaría decir más. Me gustaría llenar todo el espacio blanco que tengo disponible de alabanzas y palabras sentimentales. Pero no puedo. Ya está. Aquí yo también termino. No tengo más palabras para decir. Y así como les digo gracias a mis amigos, a los personajes de las mil caras, Fitz, Tom, Keppet, Changer, y the Fool, Lord Golden, Amber, Beloved, a vos también te digo gracias, Margaret Ogden, Megan Lindholm, Robin Hobb.
Profile Image for Kitty G Books.
1,551 reviews2,937 followers
August 6, 2017
Okay...I finished it... I REALLY didn't want to finish it, because I just *hope* it's not the end of everything in the Realm of the Elderlings. This has easily surpassed all the other fantasy series I have ever read for my favourite of all time (I'm including all the Realm of the Elderlings books in that) and as such it's so deeply part of my reading that I don't know if I could objectively review just this book. Hobb's world by this point is completely real to me, and every character feels genuinely like a friend, foe or something in-between...they are REAL to me, and that makes it hard to know what to say about this...possibly the last of the books.

Was this book everything I hoped? Yes and No. There's so many things and threads that do come together in this book and a lot of our immediate questions are resolved. However, so many things are once more opened up in this book that I fully believe this world is not over yet and whether Hobb writes more or not, this world lives on past the ending of this book.

Fitz. Fitz's story has been a story that got to me in a way no other character's story yet has. I think it's partly due to just how RAW Hobb is on the page. She really gives these character to us, the reader, shows us their hearts, loves, passions and fears. We fall for them time and time again, and then she'll do something horrible to them and we are right there suffering with them.
I've never encountered an author who can make me cry in almost every book multiple times, but Hobb can, and does. CONSTANTLY. Even when I felt like I was doing ok and processing things that the characters were going through I would get to the next line and something about the words she had written would just draw out tears and make me pause.

This book took me 10 days to read. It's 860ish pages long, and it's the last one (for now). I didn't want it to end, and so I took this slow. Whilst reading this book I went through all sorts of emotions, happy at the love I finally saw for some of the characters, sad at the danger I knew they headed towards...
Whilst I was reading this book I dreamed of soaring with Dragons and conversing with Bees and Wolves. I became immersed entirely in Fitz, Bee and the Fool, but also the others who surrounded them.
We saw some old favourites return in this book, and so many of the plots we've seen before were rounded off and continued and pushed further than I ever anticipated. SO MANY THINGS HAPPENED.

I always tend to read these books with a few friends of mine at the same time and leave messages for them with my thoughts. This time, I couldn't. This one felt too raw. Too personal. Too much.
I left a message that was me talking for half an hour once I finished this book. That was all I could do becuase I just didn't want to voice that things were coming to their close whilst I was still reading...

The world we saw in book #1 of the Farseer trilogy is SO far from the world we see in book #3 of Fitz and the Fool. We have been through so many wonders and horrors with these characters that they feel like part of our soul by this point of the book, and everything that happens to them we take inside ourselves like the memories of Liveships. This was a journey...

Without spoiling things, I loved and hated this all at once. Again I feel conflicted becuase it felt final, and yet there's so much left that we could go to explore. This world is ALIVE for me and just becuase I can't hop on a boat/plane and visit, doesn't mean it's not out there somewhere. I believe Robin Hobb knows it intimately, and we, the reader, are just scratching the surface...but what a story we've already uncovered...

If you've never read a Hobb book, I'd start at the start. There's a lot of pages ahead, but every one tells you something raw, and by the end it's beyond beautiful. 5*s of course, and I will forever have a special place in my heart for all these books and for Hobb in general. Excellent beyond excellent.
Profile Image for Jackie.
Author 94 books371 followers
March 7, 2017
Having followed the story from the beginning, Assassin's Apprentice, to here I was so nervous, waiting for this to come out. Turning the last page of the previous book my heart hit a wall. How could it end there..... well, it didn't.
I produce the UK cover art for Robin's books, and I knew this would be the third in the trilogy, and the cover art would have to be the best I'd done. Robin fed me a short piece of the book when I asked her about the cover and oh it was worse than reading none, because then, of course, I wanted more.
And then she sent me the manuscript.
When you read to produce the cover art you read in a different way, searching the text for a key, an image. The trouble is that Robin writes so well that I get picked up by the story and carried along, forgetting it's work ( please don't hate me). And this book is everything I ever wanted and more. Things I couldn't imagine. It's like being in a boat in a storm at sea at times. You can't breath, you can't read fast enough.
Sketch after sketch I did and it was knocked back by the editor as being a plot spoiler, so I can't show them, and then Robin talked me through the towers. The bee is an obvious motive. I can't say more.
I only read the unedited text. I know the book has been edited and honed and polished since then, so it is with great excitement that I await a proof copy of the book. When I get it I will lock all the door, pretend I have gone away on holiday, admit no one, speak to no one, do no work, until I've read the book, this time for the pure pleasure of the story.
Because that's what it is. A masterpiece that spins a tale woven around the difference between justice and vengeance.
Profile Image for L. Haven.
6 reviews2 followers
June 11, 2017
I have been putting this review off for much too long.

I am disappointed. Deeply, achingly disappointed. Robin Hobb spent decades carefully sculpting an utterly perfect, captivating, compelling, breathtaking narrative featuring living, breathing characters with rich, consistent inner lives in a relationship that read as more real and important than any I have previously encountered in fiction.

So why does the ending ring so false?

'Ware spoilers.

Let's just get this out of the way: no, I am not butthurt because Fitz and Fool didn't end up banging. Sex and romance were never where I envisioned them ending. I LIKE the representation of true love as platonic between them. I feel romance would have added absolutely nothing to their unspeakably gorgeous relationship.

What is bothering me is how stiff, unnatural, and forced their actions are throughout this book, as Robin Hobb abandoned her usual character-driven writing to railroad them to her designated endpoint. This applies to Fitz and Fool's interactions, to Fitz's choices throughout the entire final arc, and even to Bee through much of this last book.

What is also bothering me is the lack of a narratively appropriate conclusion to the story and character arcs as previously presented.

Regarding the first point, in what world does it make sense to finally, climactically resolve the issue of gender and homophobia between Fitz and the Fool--and then immediately go back to those same old fights? What is Hobb's problem, exactly, with allowing the two of them to fall into uninhibited mutual affection and support? The conflicts feel bizzarre at this point. Unnatural. Forced. The same can be said of the series of choices which leads to a worm-riddled Fitz stumbling into the Elderling quarry. An in-depth review of all the ways Hobb has contradicted her own magic system and lampshaded Fitz making un-Fitz-like choices would be painful, so I'll limit myself to one example:
-Fitz and Nighteyes openly acknowledge that Fitz has worms.
-Fitz and Nighteyes discuss remedies, and decide between them that a copper coin would be simple and effective. This is an obvious, commonsense approach in Fitz's mind, learned as a child.
-Fitz kills his tormentors in the Elderling ruins and loots their bodies. Coins are specifically mentioned.
-Fitz then doesn't check for a copper coin, or swallow a copper coin, or ever think about remedies again at all?
Hobb's Designated Perfect Ending relies on handing Fitz the Idiot Ball so many times it becomes ludicrous. This is not the character-driven writing that made the Realm of the Elderlings my favorite series for so many years. This is, frankly, weak.

And what is this ending that is so important that Hobb sacrificed the charm of her characters and the intoxication of her writing to achieve?

It is flat. It is tasteless. It is unsatisfying. It gives not even a nod to the themes of choice and destiny which have been central to the Prophet/Catalyst dynamic. It does not satisfy the narrative promises established by Fitz and Fool's relationship. It produces no emotional catharsis. It demonstrates no character development.

The ending is empty.

In short, Assassin's Fate is unworthy both of Robin Hobb's demonstrated skill and of the glorius construct which is the preceding series. This book ruins the series.

My recommendation to future RotE readers is to stop following Fitz and Fool at the end of Fool's Errand. That is as close as RH came to neatly wrapping up their plotline. That is the closest I have experienced to satisfaction regarding these two fine characters, my favorite in all of literature. I hope that by skipping this last botched arc, your experience will not be as disappointing as mine has been.
Profile Image for Bradley.
Author 6 books3,978 followers
June 1, 2017
What a fantastically satisfying read. I mean, seriously. It only took three doorstopper Fitz trilogies, the Liveship trilogy, the Rainwilds trilogy to make this book shine... but shine it does. Like silver on the fingertips.

Hobb has Skill! No one can doubt that. I feel like I've invested so many of my memories and hopes and fears and anger into these books... it's almost as if something of a monumental world-building is shaking off its rocks and leaping off into the distance to hunt itself some prey.

I'm frankly amazed that Fitz's story took him through all of the tales of the Elderlings and the Dragons and the Liveships all the way to the Servants, held together with the singular intent to save Bee. It's just ... so immense.

Hobb's writing is always pretty much a careful construction and total immersion that builds to a howling wind that then explodes into some of the most memorable scenes in fantasy, but in this trilogy, she ties ALL of these trilogies together and let them ALL explode into something really grand.

Wit, Skill, or a synthesis of the two, it doesn't matter. She's got magic.
Profile Image for Charlotte Kersten.
Author 3 books433 followers
February 6, 2022
"To Fitz and the Fool, my best friends for 20 years."

So What's It About?

Fitz, the Fool and their rag-tag group of companions forge onwards on their desperate quest of vengeance for his daughter's murder, encountering old and new allies and fresh dangers. Unbeknownst to Fitz, Bee still lives and fights against her captors with a fierce determination all her own. They share a terrible destination, and this final quest will demand more from Fitz than any that has come before.

What I Thought

I've followed FitzChivalry Farseer's story through three trilogies. He has grown from a tiny boy sleeping with the puppies to a man reeling with the loss of his beloved wolf, from a lovestruck youngster to a father and grandfather, from an assassin's apprentice to a man who can kill without a second thought. It all comes to a head in Assassin's Fate, and this review is a greater struggle for me than any that I've written so far. I know that I won't be able to sufficiently express what Fitz and his companions have come to mean to me over the thousands of pages I've spent with them, but I still owe it to them and to Robin Hobb to try my best.

As we begin I want to take a second to think about how much has changed for Fitz and the Fool throughout their stories. They have shaken the world several times over as Prophet and Catalyst, and the process of doing so has changed them both irrevocably. The Fool is no longer the acerbic enigma cartwheeling around the room with Ratsy, and Fitz is no longer the stubborn, reckless boy dreaming of Molly in her red skirts. At this point, they have both died and returned, suffered loss and torture and pain of the worst kind, and their suffering has marked them both. As Fitz puts it, they are broken:

"She would be as broken as the Fool and I were. Something inside my chest hurt at the thought. My voice creaked. “Well. Who wouldn’t break? I broke. You broke.”

“And we both emerged stronger.”

“We both emerged,” I said, modifying his words."

Fitz's characterization is, in my opinion, a masterclass in how to write a man who has experienced trauma, loss, ostracization and insecure attachments from a young age. We all know that he can be an infuriating protagonist, but I think that many of the things that make him infuriating also make him a psychologically accurate portrait of a man stuck in deep patterns of self-loathing, self-sabotage and cognitive distortions.

"I was never sure I understood what Regal’s torture had done to me. Part of me had died in that cell, both literally and figuratively. I was alive today. I’d never know if I’d lost more than what I had found. Useless to wonder."

It's there in his reckless fight-or-flight responses and his obsessive chronicling of his past, repeating the stories of what has happened to him as if he can force it to make sense. It's there in his inability to confront information that threatens the security of his worldview - people often say that this makes him stupid, but he's only stupid to the extent that struggling with deep cognitive distortions makes someone stupid. (In my opinion, it doesn't.) It's there in his own sense of worthlessness and incompetence:

“I was dying. And I had never been enough for anything.”

And, perhaps the most heartbreakingly, it's there in the way that he sabotages relationships and holds himself apart from the people that he loves and is loved by in return. As Bee reflects:

"He did not feel he deserved anything from me. Not to touch me or even to say that he loved me, for he had failed so badly at being my father. It stunned me. It was like a second wall beyond his Skill-walls, something that prevented him from believing that anyone could love him."

But the Fitz books are essentially the story of how he tries to shape the lives of those around him for the better in little ways and big ways despite his own deep flaws and damage. He gets back up, and he does good, and he continues to love and fight and fix his mistakes to the extent that he is capable. A commenter in r/Fantasy (who I would mention by name if I could remember it) said something along the lines of this: "Fitz deserved better for every line of every book." He did.

Bee is such a ferocious, peculiar, tenacious little soul. I never would have thought that anyone else's voice would be welcome to me in a Fitz book, but she stands as proof that I was incorrect. I clutched every one of her little victories close and savored her growing resourcefullness and realization of her power as a White Prophet:

"Bee. Nothing happens to you. You happen to everything."

I especially loved her friendship with Thick. I think a lesser author would have created a more positive relationship between her and the Fool and I must admit that I wanted it to happen for both their sakes, but it's a testament to how well-drawn the characters and their relationships are that they clashed the way they did due to Bee's resentment of him.

Ultimately, Assassin's Fate made me realize just how much I have come to care for nearly every character that has been written into the Realm of the Elderlings, because the book touches upon each of their lives for at least a moment or two. Alise and Leftrin are still happy and aboard the Tarman while Althea and Brashen are still happy and aboard Paragon, Carson and Sedric are PARENTS, as are Thymara and Tats, Malta and Reyn, Nettle and Riddle and Dutiful and Elliania. Rapskal is just as annoying as ever! Wintrow finally realizes that it isn't going to happen with Etta! We say goodbye to Kettricken, Chade, and even Verity, and I'd be lying if I said I didn't cry my eyes out at the return of Nighteyes:

"How is the hunting where you are?

It will be better with you."

The book manages to visit these characters from the past without detracting from the story in the present, and the story in the present would mean very little without everything and everyone that has built up to it. The stories of the dragons and the liveships are beautifully resolved, but we are left to wonder about the cycles of violence that we have seen over the course of these stories and whether another cycle of violence has been set in motion with the dragon's and Bee's merciless destruction of the Whites and their servants.

As much as it is a goodbye to the entire world of the Realm of the Elderlings, it is more than anything a goodbye to Fitz and the Fool, beloved friends together in adventure after adventure for decades, and now facing what lies beyond life within the Skill together in an ending that is as bittersweet as it is perfect. Listen, I'm not going to sit here in this shitty hostel kitchen in Stockholm and lie to you now, after everything we've been through together: I cried harder about this book than I've ever cried about anything fictional before. I cried when Chade died and resurfaced in the Skill stream with a resounding "MY BOY!" When Fitz started to tell Bee his story in words that echoed the beginning of Assassin's Apprentice and we finally came full circle, I cried. I cried when Kettricken said goodbye to Nighteyes. I cried as Fitz poured more and more of himself into the stone and became more and more distant to his loved ones. I cried when all that was left was his knowledge that he belonged with the Fool, and you KNOW I sobbed my heart out at those last lines:

'“There’s something stalking us. Off to the side of the road, moving through the forest.” Kettricken smiled.'
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede.
1,938 reviews788 followers
May 12, 2017
Perfect ending! I'm both sad and happy at the same time. This is the best book I've read this year. Hell, it will be hard to read anything after this one. Love it so much, love Fitz and Fool so much! ❤️
Profile Image for Claudia.
956 reviews535 followers
July 26, 2020
“Don’t do what you can’t undo, until you’ve considered what you can’t do once you’ve done it.”

Five sub-series, sixteen main volumes, THE BEST fantasy series ever written and now it’s done.

No story read so far affected me as much as this one did. I loved every word of it. I loved how this last volume connects all the loose ends from all fifteen which precede it. If you only read Fitz' story from Farseer, Tawny Man and The Fitz and the Fool and skipped Liveship Traders and Rain Wild Chronicles, you will not get the full picture of the events in this one. It intertwines both narratives in an epic ending so majestically weaved that I’m in awe. Should I say how much I cried over it? A lot. No book ever made me cry this much. Ever. But I so rejoiced in it that it was all worth it. And I can’t say anything else about it; I’m at a loss for words.

Mrs. Robin Hobb, Chapeau! You are The Queen of words.

LE: Robin Hobb on saying goodbye (or not) to Fitz & Co: http://www.cosmopolitan.com/entertain...

Finally here !!! I barely started it but I'm loving it already :)

Profile Image for Alex W.
96 reviews4 followers
April 8, 2023
Well, here we are. I will definitely be letting my thoughts digest a little bit before writing more, but for now, I will say this:

This book was the absolute perfect conclusion for this trilogy and series overall. Thank you, Robin Hobb, for sharing your story with the world. It will certainly go down as one of my favorite, if not my favorite, fantasy series of all time and while it’s tough saying goodbye for now, I am looking forward to revisiting this world over and over again in the future.
Profile Image for Mark Medina.
82 reviews26 followers
June 10, 2017
The end of the tale

The end of the story of Fitz and the Fool. Five stars all the way. When Hobb is on form, she is peerless.
Profile Image for Jimmy.
142 reviews482 followers
July 17, 2021
I have no words, no limits. Perfection.
Profile Image for Em.
648 reviews132 followers
October 3, 2018
For info, I'm usually a very mild mannered person who wouldn't dream of writing a negative review but after more than a year since reading the final Fitz and the Fool book I'm still hurt, angry and upset at the harsh and ham fisted way the final book was written. One would almost think Hobb had no love at all for Fitz and the Fool and their ending, it was almost like somebody else had written the final books, someone with little knowledge of the previous books, the characters and their struggles. But hey, that's just my opinion and after looking at the reviews I'm in the minority. All I can say is that I still feel deeply hurt at the way the final book dealt with our beloved characters and I've spent years of my life reading about them.

Profile Image for Emily .
730 reviews74 followers
May 11, 2017
I'm tempted to give this 5stars because FitzChivalry is my probably my very favorite book character of all time, and the ending did not disappoint (I've spent the last two hours crying my eyes out) - BUT, in true Robin Hobb style the first 60% of the book was a drag. In fact, my sisters are reading this book and warned me not to spoil it, and I told them that up to that point, I couldn't spoil anything even if I tried - NOTHING had happened. It was reminiscent of the last book of the 1st trilogy where it was just tons of travel time and introspection until the last 25% of the book and then BAM, non stop action and emotion.

I will say that Bee really grew on me in this last book. I really disliked her in books one and two, but she was great in this book. And little Perseverance - he was so adorable. One of my new favorites. So many people in this series overall that I just loved and were so memorable - Verity, Kettricken, Nighteyes, Chade, Burrich - even Motley! Oddly there were others that I feel I should have liked, but just never really did. Dutiful's wife, Nettle, Fool as Amber, Bee when she was young. Molly most of all - I never liked her. Am I the only one that never really "felt" the relationship with her and Fitz?

One of the things I didn't like is I felt like the book took too much time with Rainwild and Liveship stuff. I liked those characters, but those sections went on forever and were totally irrelevant to anyone that didn't read the Liveship or Rainwild books. It felt a little indulgent to me that Hobb seemed to want to write a sequel to their story too, but was foisting it on me in a place I didn't want it (in a Fitz book).

If I could rate the last 35% of the book - this would be 5 stars. The ending was everything you would want, everything is wrapped up nicely. You'll probably feel like me, absolutely wrung out emotionally, sad to say goodbye to old friends (and let's be honest - their story is done - time to let them go), but satisfied with how things turn out.

Despite my nitpicks, this series will always be one of my absolute favorites of all time. The characters are fantastic, Hobb can write so beautifully and emotionally. The magic system is great (skilling, wit, dragons, elderlings), the world is so complete and complex. I feel as I do every time I end a beloved series - bittersweet that it ended, and wondering if I'll ever find another series that will ever be so dear to me!

Profile Image for Deborah Obida.
673 reviews604 followers
April 7, 2022
“To Fitz and the Fool.
My best friends for over twenty.

Assassin’s fate is the last book in the The Realm of the Elderlings. As much as I’m happy to finish a 16 book series, I’m also sad to to say goodbye to this awesome characters.

This book started immediately where the previous book ended but the first 50% of the book was so slow I got bored, the only thing that made me get through the slow first part was the reappearance or crossover of characters from Dragon Wild and Liveship Traders. The second part of the book was fast paced, action packed and fun to read.

I love the magic system in this book, the Skill magic went from mind control and telepathy amongst users to healing, shortening of journeys through skill stones and many others. The fight scenes were not much in this but the few that we here were well written.

““Never do that which you can’t undo, until you’ve perceived what you can’t do once you’ve done it.”

The world building is awesome, it improved greatly. The writing is something I always love in Hobb’s book, no author writes like her, the writing style draws you in and makes you want to finish the book. This book is written in Bee and Fitz’s POV.

“The problem is not that we forget the past. It is that we recall it too well. ”

The characters are awesome, they are what made this series what it is. My favorite character is Bee but for the entire series is Fitz.
Fitz has his faults but given what he has gone through in life he actually did well, I love that he finally knows that his family loves him.

Bee is such a strong child, I don’t think I can survive what happened to her. I love how strong she is.

Beloved is amazing, I love him whatever gender he is, he isn’t just a white prophet to Fitz but he loves him wholeheartedly.

I also like Perseverance, Lant, Shine and all the other characters in this series.

The plot is quite straightforward, Fitz now knows that Bee is alive so the vengeance is now a rescue mission. Getting to Clerres is not as easy as planned given that Beloved is the only one that knows the way.
Profile Image for Marielle.
265 reviews39 followers
August 4, 2017
I'm heartbroken... Cried through the last 30 pages.

It was the perfect ending to the entire story! I loved it like I love the entire story of Fitz. I think he is my favorite chatacter of all time. It feels like I know him...
If you're about to start this book... be prepared it hurts and will leave you broken.
Go... Read it... You'll love it!
Profile Image for Phee.
572 reviews58 followers
August 27, 2017
** Spoiler Free **

I can't even begin to describe what this series means to me.
I started it over two years ago. I DNF'd Assassins Apprentice twice before trying it one last time. Fate decided I needed to find Fitz and the Fool then. I read the Farseer trilogy over several months. Then I fell into a deep depression. I didn't read for almost a year, not one page.
After I healed, this series was waiting for me. I put myself back together, like Fitz had to put himself back together so many times. It's taken me 5 months but I have finished this 16 book series in its entirety. I've never been so passionate, nor so emotional about a book or characters in my life.

Fitz and the Fool represent so much more to me than I can put into words. They are two parts of the same being, one isn't complete without the other. The Catalyst and the White Prophet. Their relationship goes beyond explanation. Throughout the books many characters ask them what they mean to each other. They can never seem to explain it well. Boyhood friend, lover, brother. I have used the word soulmate to describe them in the past and I think that is the best word. They love each other deeply, perhaps one of them loves the other in a more romantic sense, but they both love each other. They complete each other and they live for one another. They can't bare to be parted by death, one can't die and let the remain living. It's not right.

The ending. Well I knew it would end this way from Assassins Quest. Fitz's goal had always been the same. His road was never going to be easy. The hints are there throughout the Fitz and the Fool trilogies. There is so much foreshadowing for this story. From earlier books and in this one itself. I think it's fair to say that all of the little pieces of information that are at the beginning of each chapter are terribly important. Sometimes you don't want to read them because you want to get straight back into the action. But these little pieces tell you the fates of our heroes many times. If you know how listen.

I can't write a review for this book. I can't even begin to make sense of what I feel. All I know is this series is a massive part of me. It will stay with me forever. A memory etched into me like carving stone.
This is the first book that made me cry. Normally when I get emotional whilst reading I get tears in my eyes. I have never properly cried.
This book made me sob, full on ugly cry. I have never been so emotional from reading a book.
This last book was a joy to read and it was painful. Bittersweet. But perfect. Things come full circle, and are finished at last. I'm not going to spoil it but that scene where two (or three depending on how you look at it) become one was beautiful. My heart aches every time I read it again. I'm so happy it ended this way, even if it's not necessarily a happy ending.

And for those that are curious. My top three books out of the entire 16 book series are:

1) Fool's Quest
2) Assassin's Fate
3) Assassin's Quest

"Then it was finished. Something finally complete, as it should have been."
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