James White's Reviews > The Name of the Wind

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
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really liked it

When I was younger, I had no problem finding new authors to like. I suppose it had something to do with having all the time in the world and that feeling of invincibility that only the young have. I read everything I got my hands on. Historical fiction? Bring it on. Translation from Arabic? Sure. Fifth book in a series I've never heard of by an unknown author? No problem (this happened many more times than you would imagine - especially as I got closer to finishing reading all the novels in our small branch library. Staying up all night reading ever night wasn't a problem - I had the energy of youth and healed fast. I had time to waste.

Now that I'm married with a clan of children, I have to be more careful about my reading. What if the book is a dud but I don't know it until I'm most of the way through? What a waste. This has led to a spiral of avoiding new authors (or in the case of this new trend of furry fiction, avoiding entire genres) outright. It isn't anything intentional - I just find myself waiting for more from the authors I know (which doesn't always work out - I've read some real stinkers lately from some of my known favorites).

So all of that is preamble to my comments on Patrick Rothfuss' The Name of the Wind. I had seen a number of reviews here and there for the book, and the synopsis seemed intriguing but uninformative. When I was younger I probably would have read it right away. In the end, I had several extra audible credits and decided to take a chance.

I won't go into too much detail because I don't want to ruin the experience of meeting Kvothe and learning his world, but I will say that although I started out on an audio book, I eventually got an ebook copy because even listen at 1.5x speed I wasn't getting the story fast enough. That is how much I enjoyed the book. Read it in two sittings (eventually you do have to do things like eat and go to work.

The reviews I have seen have been really polarized (lots of 1 and 5 star ratings), but without much explanation of why they might be leaning one way or the other. Here are some of my reasons: 1) I love the world, including the back story; 2) The main character and his companions are compelling; 3) the mechanism for telling the story is confusing at first but is a creative approach and adds to the story, 4) the story starts out a little slow, but that's ok it clears up quickly, 5) I like the magic system in the world, 5) there is an epic feel to the story without being pretentious.

I have more reasons, but could find a way to list them without giving too much away.

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Reading Progress

February 8, 2014 – Shelved
February 16, 2014 – Started Reading
February 17, 2014 – Finished Reading

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