Mike (the Paladin)'s Reviews > The Wise Man's Fear

The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
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it was ok
bookshelves: fantasy

I finished this last night....finally. While there are moments in this book of brilliant writing they are (for me) interspersed with LLLLOOONNNGGG stretches of yawningly boring prose. Had the book been maybe two thirds it's length I think it could have been better.

Without spoilers I found that the story of Kvothe wanders along getting almost nowhere...yes I know we established some more of it here, but not a lot and we're about where we were in a lot of ways. The story in the book's "present" is just as annoying and bogged down...and then we've got the "Denna story line". The thing keeps putting me in mind of Great Expectations with her "come here, come here, come here, get away, get away, get away" relationship with "our young hero" and his "please let me be around even if you need to walk on me" attitude. We even get one (seeming) coincidence that's worthy of Dickens.

By the time I finished this last night (and I sat up late, I'd made up my mind to get through it) I was slightly torn as there are interesting elements to the story but I was heartily sick of trudging through all the excess verbiage to get to the story. Will I follow it up and continue the series?

Maybe.

If it takes another three to six years for the next book to come out, the memory of the frustration will probably have faded a bit. If the library gets it, I probably will, but I don't plan to buy it.

But I live in hope. Who knows I may love the next volume.

I noted that here and on Amazon this book gets a lot of 5 ratings and a lot of 1 ratings. It seems to be loved and hated both (by different people of course, we'll hope). I go with two...not just to be different, but because I was constantly getting interested just to be then driven to distraction by it each time. I think the problem for me may be that I'm just not caught up in the Kvothe character. I don't actually "like" him, I'm not caring about the people. So...for me 2 stars. if you love these books, great I am happy for you. I hope I like the next one better.

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Reading Progress

April 14, 2011 – Started Reading
April 14, 2011 – Shelved
April 17, 2011 – Shelved as: fantasy
April 17, 2011 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-28 of 28 (28 new)

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message 1: by unknown (new)

unknown "So much of that had little or nothing to do with the plot, the characters or the story line in any way..."

for me, that pretty much describes more than half of these books. there's barely a story at all.

i haven't read this one because it sounds like more of the same and i thought the first one decidedly dull toward the end, once i realized it wasn't going to make any effort to construct a plot.


Mike (the Paladin) There seems to be a "sort of overall" plot building underneath the story of Kvothe's life, though I agree about the pace. It occurred to me during the reading that if these are the King Killer Chronicles it could be possible that the King died of boredom...


message 3: by unknown (new)

unknown i like that! certainly might be true of the reader if i tried getting through another 1,000 pages of kvothe's meandering life story.


message 4: by Mel (new) - rated it 1 star

Mel I find the number of five star reviews highly suspicious. I think a lot of the reviews on Goodreads are being posted by professional reviewers. Seems as though most of the new releases are given five stars immediately with long plot summations and far too much gushing praise. Disappointing but not unexpected - Amazon fell victim to this years ago. Anyhoo, I liked your review.


message 5: by unknown (last edited Apr 22, 2011 07:45AM) (new)

unknown Mel wrote: "I find the number of five star reviews highly suspicious. I think a lot of the reviews on Goodreads are being posted by professional reviewers."

i dunno. in my 18 years on the internet (ahh! terrifying!), the majority of criticism has consistently been diametrically opposed: haters vs. fanboys. something is either the best ever or the worst ever.

only in the last few years has this begun to change, thanks to sites like this one and the invention of the word "meh." but all bets are still off when it comes to cult properties like twilight and, apparently, rothfuss.


Mike (the Paladin) I tend to (try) to get to know a few reviewers, hopefully among my friends. Then if I know that I generally either agree or disagree with their taste it gives me a base line for a given review.

On the other hand, if none of my friends or anyone I'm familiar with have reviewed the book than I'm forced back to reading over several. Or simply picking up the book (LOL). I find the reviews interesting and I have so many books waiting to be read if I'm looking at "buying" a book I usually look some of the reviews over.... They don't always help, but sometimes... :)


message 7: by Mel (new) - rated it 1 star

Mel "the majority of criticism has consistently been diametrically opposed: haters vs. fanboys. something is either the best ever or the worst ever."

Yes! I remember reading a review on imdb where the film "Moonraker" was described as "the worst movie I have ever seen". My first thought was that if that statement was true then I really envied that person. Lol.

Seriously though, I agree with Mike's comment - I try to find other reviewers who seem to share my taste - and having said that, I am off to look at Mike and Joel's book lists. Cheers!


Kara Mike gives great helpful reviews! =)


Mike (the Paladin) I just found 2 typos... both were places where either I hadn't hit "k" hard enough or missed it completely. Oh well.


message 10: by Kara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kara Better than me, I still haven't written a review for this one. I loved the first too much... this one not as good. And I used to be ok with Denna, now I'm just not sure. I had hoped there was more mystery surrounding her actions, but at this point in time, there just doesn't seem to be. She's just, well, wishy washy and acting


message 11: by Kara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kara Better than me, I still haven't written a review for this one. I loved the first too much... this one not as good. And I used to be ok with Denna, now I'm just not sure. I had hoped there was more mystery surrounding her actions, but at this point in time, there just doesn't seem to be. She's just, well, wishy washy and acting


message 12: by Kara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kara Better than me, I still haven't written a review for this one. I loved the first too much... this one not as good. And I used to be ok with Denna, now I'm just not sure. I had hoped there was more mystery surrounding her actions, but at this point in time, there just doesn't seem to be. She's just, well, wishy washy and acting


message 13: by Kara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kara Computer blitzed. ...and acting a bit pathetic. I thought she had more spine and background of interest, and maybe she does, but... book 3, please don't let me down here.


message 14: by JK (new) - rated it 4 stars

JK Did it not surprise you that the Mayer's lady love was Kvothe's aunt? >_>


Mike (the Paladin) I just looked back at this one....and OH! THE TYPOS! Sorry.


message 16: by Denis (new) - rated it 1 star

Denis Pedersen I really liked the first one and actually looked forward to this one... What a major let-down, which you have described just fine, except I would rate it 1 star and not 2... Waste of time IMO


Noelia I was thinking of doing my own review on this book (I just finished it 5 minutes ago, I'm exhausted, thank you), but then I decided I'd read a few of the reviews already writen, just to see if I was the only one with this disappointment burning inside of me. When I read your review, I thought that there was no point in writing my own, because you said exactly what I think. Even the Denna story, which I find particularly annoying... so, thank you, I'm glad there's at least one person in the whole world that thnks like me on this looooong loooooong book. 2,5 stars for me. If it were only a 700 page book, maybe I would have given it 3,5 stars...


Mike (the Paladin) :). Now I'm blushing. But I don't think I'll follow the series any further. LOL


message 19: by Allan (new)

Allan Fisher Felt underwhelmed by the first book and gave up... Alas.


Ravenna It had no pacing. The book runs like my dog; at times sprinting forward chasing something half-glimpsed half-imagined, at times lagging behind to mull over its own leavings, but rarely at any speed resembling comfortable and to a purpose.


Fayley I didn't like it much on the first read, but I just re-read it and really enjoyed it this time (changed my rating from 3 to 4 stars). Perhaps because I knew it wasn't going anywhere I could just enjoy the walk. His relationship with Denna didn't make any sense - he viewed his parents loving, trusting and real relationship up close, so he should know what love looked like.


message 22: by Scott (last edited Dec 04, 2014 06:51PM) (new)

Scott Marlowe I just finished the first book and I think your review pretty much sums up my thoughts on that one. I'm undecided on reading book 2... I really don't want more of the same. If more happened, or if secondary characters were given more substance, or if the whole Kvothe/Denna thing went somewhere I'd lean more towards reading it, but I think your review affirms that none of these things happen.


message 23: by Jessica (new)

Jessica Kc I definitely did think the plot just wandered about aimlessly, and it would have been better if it was shorter. I really did not even want to finish it because of how predictable it became. The characters do not really even excite me. I could relate to them but I did not feel a stronger emotional connection. By emotional, I mean not even hatred- not even sympathy. I wanted something on a deeper level.

As many people have said, the plot had potential and Patrick is a great writer but he could have done better with pacing and significant moments and intensifying the bond between reader and characters.


Devin I am frustrated with this second book. We didn't get answers to anything (how Kvothe gets expelled, what's behind the doors in the library, where the Chandrian are, why it's called the Kingkiller Chronicle). It just seemed like 1,000 pages of filler


Mike (the Paladin) No, not exactly a fast moving story...


message 26: by Doppelgang3r (new)

Doppelgang3r Wait, really, why is it called Kingkiller Chronicles?


Mike (the Paladin) When it opens up apparently the king is dead and the book is told in flashback...as I recall. It's been a while and I haven't continued to follow the series. I think I got that right, LOL.


message 28: by Igor (new)

Igor Ljubuncic I very agreesomely concur.
Igor


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