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2016 - ARCHIVED > Royal Assassin - Chapters 6-10

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message 1: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (httpswwwgoodreadscomnovelsandnon) | 189 comments Mod
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Lilkadykitty :) | 5 comments I am picking up in chapter ten wish me luck


message 3: by Abner (last edited Jun 03, 2016 10:38AM) (new)

Abner | 90 comments Fitz has a new wolf that he rescued from a seller, hope he doesn't die like Smithy and Nosy.

So basically Kettricken is bored AF in the keep and she feels useless, normal considering the culture in the mountains of royal family being the servers of their people. Regal it's starting to notice she can be dangerous and tries to keep her close, but at the same time kill her (he went on a "hunt" at full speed and left her behind knowing she doesn't know how to ride well), she was attacked by Forged but now we know she can fight and defend herself, I see Hobb doesn't like to write about weak ass women. She organizes a Forged hunting party,she feels it's something that she can do for her people and they start to like her more letting them know that she is Queen material and Chade it's ecstatic about this because he thinks this will fill their people with motivation and pride. Well no one got more full of pride than Verity when he smacked Regal like a lil bitch in the face lol, enjoyed that scene very much.

Fitz finally confesses his love for Molly and she seems ok with it for now and happy. I know it won't last long, Hobb is not that generous of a writer!

Vixen has died and Fitz discover that Burrich was bonded to her, when Fitz explained that the first time he saw Regal she growled at him, he realized that Burrich was there too, I like that Hobb hides this little easter eggs, they are fun to discover!!

Kettricken has the Wit, Fitz says is not that strong, which makes me think she wasn't trained at all. This makes me convinced that Fitz mother may be of mountain people blood.


Lilkadykitty :) | 5 comments This is going to be an interesting bunch. I believe you Abne... Hobby ain't going to allow the love interest last.


message 5: by Katherine (new)

Katherine | 2 comments The book is about a third over now and it seems like Hobb is still primarily setting up action for later in the story.

Kettricken is definitely keeping things interesting at the Keep. I do wonder why she is so friendly with Regal when she knows he is responsible for her brother's death. I can only hope she has an ulterior motive of some sort that results in Regal getting a major smackdown. We'll see. Interesting to find out that Kettricken has the Wit. I wonder who else is hiding it.

I had assumed the talk of the Wit making people go crazy was just a scare tactic to keep people from using the power, but it does seem like Fitz is starting to confuse his thoughts with the wolf cub's pretty frequently now and is losing his sense of self. I am concerned he is going to get caught by someone soon. I really don't want the wolf cub to die but I'd say it isn't looking good.

I also worry that Regal is going to put the moves on Molly to piss off Fitz. My stomach is churning already!

I want more Patience!


message 6: by Anita Reads (new)

Anita Reads | 22 comments So I caught up with this section today as well. Yay.

This book is going so much faster than Assassin's Apprentice I think.

Anyway - thoughts on chapters 6-10

At first when I saw how Verity responded to Kettricken when she got lost because of Regal, I was a little miffed, but I liked how he started seeing her later in these chapters. Also liked that he rewarded Fitz a gift for stepping in to help Ketticken when she was in need.

Also the Molly and Fitz moment was so cute! Although I really do hope that Regal isn't putting the move on Molly for real. That would be the worst!

I guess it was Regal who tried to poison Chade/Lady Thyme.

Kettricken seemed to become a little reckless. Although I do like her character a little more with each chapter she's in.

I also like getting to know how Fitz is using the Witt to bond with the wolf. I wonder if he will be able to resist the Witt in the coming chapters?

THE FOOL - Haha, I thoroughly enjoyed when he sung for Fitz, I really had a LOL moment there. He really is like the best character in this series so far!


message 7: by William (new)

William Holden (bookenthusiast3) | 19 comments wish kettricken would of ventured out a little and that fitz girlfriend would give him a little trust/faith in him


message 8: by John (last edited Jun 07, 2016 06:51AM) (new)

John | 219 comments The Wit could potentially, for all practical purposes, become a more powerful system of magic than the Skill if more people got over their prejudices about bonding with animals.

It has a lower threshold to achieving competence( Fitz is basically self-taught) than the Skill, which has a more strict training protocol.

The potential among common people to have at least some latent natural Wit ability is very high, while the Skill potential is very limited as only a few royals seem to have raw ability worth developing.

The Wit frankly has demonstrated less of a downside to its practice. Burrich has never in the ten years he has known Fitz ever made a convincing case about supposed Wit dangers that don't come off as superstitious rumors and gossip; by the time Fitz is sixteen he has already figured out through his own experience that most of what is said against the Wit is without merit.

By contrast, the Skill can be highly dangerous to use in practice. The development of Skill power goes hand-in-hand with the practice of acquiring a greater tolerance to be open and vulnerable; however this also makes practitioners susceptible to counterattack and sabotage, and can be deadly.

If the Wit ever became widely practiced among the common folk in general, it could change the balance of power in the six duchies and completely remake the governing structure between commoners relative to the royal classes, much like the invention of the printing press in Europe helped increase literacy and the dissemination of knowledge among the general population, and made them less beholden to power elites.

For this reason, the promulgation of anti-Wit taboos and superstitions may have emerged to discourage common people like Burrich from practicing or improving their natural gifts in the Wit, so as not to upset the status quo.


message 9: by Abner (last edited Jun 06, 2016 04:47PM) (new)

Abner | 90 comments John wrote: "The Wit could potentially, for all practical purposes become a more powerful system of magic than the Skill if more people got over their prejudices about bonding with animals. It has a lower thres..."

This is the perfect way to look at it, but I think that what Burrich said about the Wit has merit, we just haven't seen it since Fitz hasn't bonded completely 100% with an animal. However the Skill also has downsides, but since Farseers are prominent in it it's not looked down upon. The Wit basically has the effects of PCP, cocaine, Flaka (they turn you savage and hyperactive) and the Skill the effects of morphine (turns you in a useless corpse). We know the Skill is addictive per Verity's account and how Fitz has seen him using it in Winter when there's no Red-Ships.


message 10: by Alicia (new)

Alicia | 26 comments Everyone's pretty much said all that I could think of! Lol

I did really enjoy Verity giving Regal a little of what's coming to him, but he's still scheming on!


message 11: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  | 6 comments I really enjoyed this section. Flew through it in a couple of days. I loved how strong Kettricken is in comparison to some of the lead female characters of other fantasy (cough Patrick Rothfuss) and I really adore hearing from the wolf. I am going to be heart broken if he is killed.


message 12: by Emily (new)

Emily (midwinternightingale) | 23 comments John wrote: "The potential among common people to have at least some latent natural Wit ability is very high, while the Skill potential is very limited as only a few royals seem to have raw ability worth developing"

Really interesting discussion of this John - I have come to think more and more during this second book that maybe the Wit and the Skill are two aspects of the same thing (certainly the sharing of consciousness' seems to be experienced in a very similar way for Fitz). Do the common people really have no skill potential, or are they just unable to pursue it because of the elite keeping the knowledge of how to enhance it to themselves? On a side note, it seems very silly to me that they only have one skillmaster in each generation - I get that they don't want too many people to be able to use/misuse the power, but surely for something so important you are not going to risk losing all that knowledge on the coin toss of one human being's fragile mortality??



message 13: by John (last edited Jun 09, 2016 07:49PM) (new)

John | 219 comments Emily wrote: "John wrote: "The potential among common people to have at least some latent natural Wit ability is very high, while the Skill potential is very limited as only a few royals seem to have raw ability..."
Thank you Emily!
At the head of chapter 4, Fitz as future narrator reckons that Skill potential is probably possessed in varying degrees among common people, but it is also pointed out in the first book that Skilling emerged from people from the six duchies who also had Outislander blood ( from the time of King Taken and beyond), and this became the basis of the royal Farseer line, which may have the talent for Skilling in larger proportion than in either people of the Six Duchies without Outislander blood, or Outislanders by themselves.


message 14: by Emily (new)

Emily (midwinternightingale) | 23 comments John wrote: "It is also pointed out in the first book that Skilling emerged from people from the six duchies who also had Outislander blood ( from the time of King Taken and beyond), and this became the basis of the royal Farseer line"

Good point (thanks for refreshing my memory, it is several months since I read the first book.) I'm not always convinced that Fitz is a reliable narrator when it comes to his own magical abilities - some things that he attributes to wit (like being able to repel people/animals) seem identical to aspects of the skill (like Verity forcing the red ships to change course). Equally Fitz is forever downplaying his own abilities or mistaking them for something else (like dreams). I think he has a lot to work out about what those two parts actually are and how they interplay. Maybe (view spoiler) (spoilering that out because I can't remember exactly which chapters it was in!


message 15: by A.R. (new)

A.R. Hellbender (unicornhunterbooks) | 3 comments Regal just becomes more and more of a douche as the book goes on, I swear.
And I love Kettricken. She's a really awesome character, and also demonstrates the differences (both big and small) between the cultures of the book's different kingdoms. Robin Hobb seems to be really great at that.

I'm not sure how I feel about Molly, though. One minute, she's ok with everything, and then she's mad at Fitz again out of nowhere, etc, etc. I like that she's a strong person who bounces back from all kinds of setbacks and continues to make her way in the world, but I don't like her wishy-washy attitude.
She actually reminds me a bit of Denna from The Name of the Wind. They both have their good points but at the same time I sometimes wonder what their purpose in the story is.


message 16: by John (new)

John | 219 comments Kettricken was sorely needed in this series because there wasn't any strong female political presence to contend with the male dominated royal house of Shrewd, Verity or Regal; nor the kind of dynamic woman warrior as Buckkeep had seen in its storied past; she combines all this in one package.

Molly has something of a mercurial temperament, and Fitz may have too much going on in his life( killing the forged, contending with Regal, hiding his Wit lifestyle) to provide a stabilizing force in her life.


message 17: by Emily (new)

Emily (midwinternightingale) | 23 comments John wrote: "Kettricken was sorely needed in this series because there wasn't any strong female political presence to contend with the male dominated royal house of Shrewd, Verity or Regal; nor the kind of dyna..."

I find it really interesting how women are portrayed in this society - there is a strange dichotomy between the lower ranks, where women can play an equal role in the military and are accepted without question as business owners, and the higher ranks where they seem to have much more conservative roles and be relegated to the largely domestic sphere. Why can Verity put full trust in a female arms-master, but he can't see his own (very capable) wife as anything other than an embroiderer/gardener and bearer of his children? Such a double standard!


message 18: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (httpswwwgoodreadscomnovelsandnon) | 189 comments Mod
Abner wrote: "Fitz has a new wolf that he rescued from a seller, hope he doesn't die like Smithy and Nosy.

So basically Kettricken is bored AF in the keep and she feels useless, normal considering the culture i..."


"Kettricken is bored AF" Pretty much LOL

I'm intrigued to see what everyone thinks of Molly and Kettricken as the story of Fitz progresses....I have a love/hate relationship with them.


message 19: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (httpswwwgoodreadscomnovelsandnon) | 189 comments Mod
Finally catching up with everyone! Finished chapter 10 today and already remembering how much I love this books (it's my favorite in the trilogy)

You guys are all having some great discussion in here! I'm trying not to get too involved as I'm afraid of spoiling you all! But suffice it to say a lot of the thing you all are discussing really get delved into in more depth in Hobb's Later books (particularly Tawny Man).

Also can I just say I love the Fool so damn much!! ??


message 20: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (httpswwwgoodreadscomnovelsandnon) | 189 comments Mod
Emily wrote: "John wrote: "Kettricken was sorely needed in this series because there wasn't any strong female political presence to contend with the male dominated royal house of Shrewd, Verity or Regal; nor the..."

It is an interesting dichotomy but I think it's true to our own history in many ways. One of my favorite type of non-fiction to read is history on the middle ages. In particular the lives of the everyday people (See Every Day Life in Middle Europe, the Time Travelers Guide to Medieval England etc)
A lot of woman in this time period (of the lower classes) were expected to work hard labor, some few became apprentices in towns and even (depending upon the country) it wasn't unheard of for some to own shops etc.
But largely throughout medieval history, A Noble woman's place has been seen as heading the household and engaging in 'delicate work.'

I liked that Hobb incorporated this into her work and examined the hypocrisy of these social norms in her own world.


message 21: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (httpswwwgoodreadscomnovelsandnon) | 189 comments Mod
A.R. wrote: "Regal just becomes more and more of a douche as the book goes on, I swear.
And I love Kettricken. She's a really awesome character, and also demonstrates the differences (both big and small) betwe..."


YES! I either loved Molly or she drove me nuts! Same with Kettriken at times....so you are not alone!


message 22: by John (last edited Jun 13, 2016 08:45AM) (new)

John | 219 comments Samantha wrote: "Emily wrote: "John wrote: "Kettricken was sorely needed in this series because there wasn't any strong female political presence to contend with the male dominated royal house of Shrewd, Verity or ..."


This is a really good comment you make in message 21, Sam, to draw parallels between Hobb's fictional universe and real world historical contexts. This is exactly what I was most interested in when I joined the Hobb-a-Long group!

Plus, the good thing about incorporating history into the discussions is that you can't spoil anything!;)


message 23: by Emily (new)

Emily (midwinternightingale) | 23 comments Samantha wrote: "I liked that Hobb incorporated this into her work and examined the hypocrisy of these social norms in her own world. "

I absolutely agree - I'm not sure that was coming through that strongly at this stage of the book though - later events (which I won't go into in this comments section!) definitely met my expectations more in terms of looking at that hypocrisy. I think when I read fantasy with a 'medieval' setting I enjoy a more playful/subverted approach to the gendered context they are borrowing from rather than straight portrayal (which I could get from historical fiction). Hobb definitely does that more later on.

"But largely throughout medieval history, A Noble woman's place has been seen as heading the household and engaging in 'delicate work.'"

Having said that though - there are loads of examples in the medieval and early modern period of female monarchs who took an active role in statecraft and warfare (maybe not literally swinging a broadsword but definitely leading an army), even though, as in Hobb's world, it often had to be at least superficially in the name of a male relative or protector and assuming a sort of male persona (i.e. "I know I have the body of a weak and feeble woman but I have the heart and soul of a king, and a king of England too") Eleanor of Aquitaine, Isabella of Castille, Elizabeth I spring to mind (but I'm sure there are loads of others, and less west-European-centric examples, that's just more my area of knowledge). I think a lot of our picture of the meek, domestic, virtuous queen-consort is more based in medieval art (and later victorianised reimaginings) than in reality.

Slightly off topic Sam, if you like medieval non-fiction, have you read any Helen Castor? I really want to read her book She-Wolves (which would be very relevant here!) but I loved Blood and Roses, which is based on the Paston Letters (a miraculously intact collection of correspondence from one English family written during the Wars of the Roses). Reads like a novel but it is non-fiction. You might enjoy!


message 24: by Emily (new)

Emily (midwinternightingale) | 23 comments John wrote: "Samantha wrote: "Emily wrote: "John wrote: "Kettricken was sorely needed in this series because there wasn't any strong female political presence to contend with the male dominated royal house of S..."

Yesssss, definitely more of the historical chat please! (I did (mostly medieval) history at uni so this is definitely my jam :)


message 25: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 52 comments I am kind of torn about this book right kbow. While I do lile the general direction the story is going right now I am not really a fan of the different storylines. I also feel loke the characters do something awesome one moment only to start whining the next. This especially applies to Fitz and the queen.
The character I dislike the most so far is Molly. I really liked her in the first book but in this book the only thing she has done so far is annoy me.


message 26: by John (new)

John | 219 comments Sarah wrote: "I am kind of torn about this book right kbow. While I do lile the general direction the story is going right now I am not really a fan of the different storylines. I also feel loke the characters d..."


The book is playing out right now sort of like Dr. Zhivago; the maelstrom of political events is ruining the chances of these characters for love and happiness and personal fulfillment.

Fitz is under undue pressure to adhere to the king's directives while trying to wage a clandestine counterespionage campaign against Regal, while also seeking out the forged in the countryside; maintain his Wit relationship with Nighteyes; help Verity with his skilling; and try to rekindle a romance with Molly. No wonder he is so angsty and neurotic!

The Queen has established her military prowess but is still just an eighteen year old unwise yet in courtly ways and newly installed in a foreign land with a husband she barely knows. Tears may be sure to follow while awaiting maturity.

Molly comes from difficult circumstances and not unreasonably fears falling in love to an unreliable person like Fitz could wind up leading her to ruin and degradation, as she experienced with her father.

The abnormality of circumstances involving the red ship raiders and the intrigues of Regal invite strained nerves and raw emotions.


message 27: by Sarah (new)

Sarah  | 6 comments Sarah wrote: "I am kind of torn about this book right kbow. While I do lile the general direction the story is going right now I am not really a fan of the different storylines. I also feel loke the characters d..."
You are so right! For every amazing thing a character does we have to listen to 1-2 chapters of complaining!


message 28: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (httpswwwgoodreadscomnovelsandnon) | 189 comments Mod
John wrote: "Samantha wrote: "Emily wrote: "John wrote: "Kettricken was sorely needed in this series because there wasn't any strong female political presence to contend with the male dominated royal house of S..."

YES! It makes for interesting discussions.....I think there will be even more to talk about in the next trilogy ;)


message 29: by Samantha (new)

Samantha (httpswwwgoodreadscomnovelsandnon) | 189 comments Mod
Emily wrote: "Samantha wrote: "I liked that Hobb incorporated this into her work and examined the hypocrisy of these social norms in her own world. "

I absolutely agree - I'm not sure that was coming through th..."


Oh Hobb goes even more into gender roles and and other social issues in the Liveship series....I think it's one of the things I love the most about that trilogy.

And Yay for history discussion! We should definitely have more of them in here...

I have no heard of the book before but I will definitely be looking into it now! :)


message 30: by Noah (new)

Noah | 13 comments Regal is driving me nuts! He almost kills Slink, almost succeeds in killing Kettricken (who has befriended him), and is possibly poisoning the king! Wallace is obviously there for a reason, not some random servant that came in after Shrewd's other one died from a cough. And how the Fool addresses him is hilarious but interesting. I'm finding that everything the Fool says is either nonsensical, cryptic, or both. When he speaks of not the Wall's Ass but the Wall's Ears, I feel that this means that Wallace is a spy for Regal. And the fact that the Fool knew that Regal would attempt to poison Lady Thyme (Chade) is obviously from his seer abilities. I love that after his ballad, he announces the death of Lady Thyme, so now all may believe that "she" is dead and Regal thinks that he has gained in power against Fitz. I hope that Chade comes out sometime in the later books and surprises Regal like, "Hey, yeah, not dead. Ha!". The Fool's ballad seems confusing to the small audience but I feel like it's almost a prophecy for Fitz. Maybe it will be revealed later…


message 31: by Key (new)

Key (leoithne27) | 9 comments I was really thrown off about Kettricken hanging out with Regal... I don't really understand why she would risk herself like that. And with the whole ordeal with him running after the fox... I really feel like Regal has connections to the Raiders and is keeping track or helping to force the Forged near Buckkeep. (Theory would be the King dies, then Verity, and then when he gets the throne he becomes the ''saviour'' and pushes the Forged and the Red-Ship Raiders out. I'm probably way off mark though :'D)
I do not trust Wallace in the least. He has to be keeping the King sick just enough to make sure he just passes from ''old age''...
I started off really liking the wolf cub, and to an extent I still do, but I worry about the influence he has on Fitz.
I'm really liking Kettricken even if sometimes I'm shaking my head at her. I'm not surprised in the least that she has the Wit.
Now Molly... I don't feel like she's characterised enough? Definitely still not getting into Fitz x Molly (I've heard enough about her in his dreams, too). If they do end up not being together, I hope what happens is well-written. I wouldn't be surprised if she dies but perhaps Hobb will surprise me.
And finally I really, really wish Fitz would listen to the Fool more closely and think about what he says more. That's a reason I really want to shake Fitz sometimes!
Overall, it's been super fun reading, I'm flying by no problem, and I'm excited to be trying to piece things together and to see how other things will turn out along with any other little surprises.


message 32: by John (new)

John | 219 comments Kaylan wrote: "I was really thrown off about Kettricken hanging out with Regal... I don't really understand why she would risk herself like that. And with the whole ordeal with him running after the fox... I real..."

Something to consider about Kettricken spending time with Regal here, is that she also spent time with Fitz in the Mountain Kingdom, happily chatting with him in a friendly manner - right before she poisoned him! And she does badly wants revenge for her brother Rurisk. Unfortunately, Regal would not scruple to do away with her either, so this may not be the smartest tactic on her part.

You know, I don't believe the Fool is meant to be taken seriously by Fitz here. I think the author is using the Fool to give the reader some clues about how the story will unfold, while Fitz always gets lost trying to unravel the labyrinthine riddles the Fool poses(Remember it is the older Fitz himself who narrates, so he knows now in hindsight what was so important in what the Fool says; and what he was too obtuse to figure out then).

So maybe the wisdom the Fool knows will always be out of reach for Fitz.


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