Assassin's Fate: Book III of the Fitz and the Fool trilogy Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
The stunning conclusion to Robin Hobb's Fitz and the Fool trilogy, which began with Fool's Assassin and Fool's Quest.
More than 20 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 best-selling 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.
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|Listening Length||39 hours and 16 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||May 09, 2017|
|Publisher||Random House Audio|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #8,326 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#120 in Coming of Age Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
#476 in Coming of Age Fantasy
#558 in Epic Fantasy (Audible Books & Originals)
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Top reviews from the United States
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I myself didn't realize this until just a few years ago and although I had heard that these other "stories" touched on the Farseer world, I didn't really take that seriously. Then I finally read the Live Ship Traders and I fell in love again with a story that gave texture and value to the Fool, Tintaglia and all that is to come. It's a bit like eating apple pie without the ice cream. Is the apple pie still good, yes of course but the ice cream makes it great.
In anticipation of this book I decided not only to read through the books again but to read the Rain Wild Chronicles which I had not previously done. I resisted based on the idea that although I loved Science Fantasy, I didn't really love stories that centered on dragons. I'm ashamed to have put off reading these books. They give a solid foundation where before there was only sand. There were so many "ah-ha!" moments that it gave me a renewed sense of excitement for this book.
In order to fully appreciate this book, it's necessary to have at least read the other 8 books. This book is like the final movement of a Beethoven masterpiece. You cannot have one without the other. No matter how it makes you feel, it must be played out. This book does give you a few answers to things such as why Icefyre buried himself in ice all those years ago and a better understanding of what actually happened to the elderlings. You finally get to experience Clarres in an up close and frightening way. In the past books it was only briefly touched up and I was always wanting more. I got my wish in this book.
From the first page we are tumbled right back to where Robin Hobb left us in Fool's Quest. For me this is the culmination of a 12 year journey and I can only hope the end isn't really the end. I can't say much more otherwise I risk dropping spoilers. It was worth every single tear.
Anyway, that's not the point : Assassin's fate is an awesome book, when I read these stories Robin Hobb makes I feel so immersed in the world I'm not entirely present in our world, and it takes me like 2 weeks to get out of it. I never cried for a book like I cried for this one. The previous time I did was with Fool's assassin, the first tome in the serie. I basically sobbed while reading for at least half of this book. I never felt anything like it for any piece of media.
If this is 5 out of 5 stars, then I don't know if I can ever give 5 stars to anything ever again, because I know I never feel for any book like I feel for this one.
Other reviewers have said that the ending was perfect and that there could have been no other, and in retrospect, I have to agree, but also I have to admit that I never saw it coming. Usually there's some trick, or secret, or action that will decide the outcome, but good authors mention it enough before the denouement that the reader doesn't feel cheated by some off the wall Deus ex machina. Great authors hide the mention far enough in advance that readers forget all about it and don't recognize the hints and warnings until it's too late.
I was gobsmacked.
Assassin's Fate is the sixteenth (but hopefully not the last) book in the Elderling's series; the ninth of those which deal directly with Fitz and the Fool. Fitz has to be my all-time favorite literary character; the one who resonates within me and Nighteyes is the character whose death made the director of the school for which I then worked rush into my darkened classroom to ask me what was wrong, because I was sitting there in front of my laptop bawling like a baby. No other author has ever been able to play my emotions like Robin Hobb. I don't know if she is able to play everyone's equally, or just those of us who struggle with feeling lonely and rejected.
I can't write a standard book review; other people will check all the boxes of story synopsis and character introduction, but I just had to say something to Robin that would let her know just how deeply her Fitz books have affected me, how deeply this book did so. I just can't find the words; I don't know how she does it, but I can't do it justice.
Top reviews from other countries
I have no idea if this particular book would make sense to anyone who hadn't read the previous books (why start on the last book of a 16 part series?) but assuming you have read at least some of the previous story, be assured that in this book the journey covers the entirety of the world Ms Hobb has created - from the Six (seven!) Duchies, Kelsingra, Bingtown, the Rainwilds, even a wee sojourn in the Pirate Isles and mentions of Jamalia and the Outer Isles. It is stuffed with references back to earlier books and there is a sense that all the loose ends are being pulled together. Old secrets are revealed and mysteries explained. The conclusion is absolutely right. It couldn't really have ended otherwise and gave the distraught reader the closure they needed, even if it did leave this particular reader in a puddle of tears. A fitting finale to an epic series.
Can we Hope for more? Bee interesting to see. (Sorry!) But Fitz and the Fool.... It's been a pleasure.
‘Assassin’s Fate’ makes for a hard book to review, because like ‘Fool’s Fate’ and particularly ‘Assassin’s Quest’ before it, as the final installment in an addictive trilogy defined by its much loved and yes beloved characters, so much of its heart and meaning and purpose lies in its final chapters. But with determination not to spoil even a portion of how the story is concluded, I’ll attempt a general review.
I found there to be lots of similarities between this title and ‘Assassin’s Quest’ with its gradual and meticulous build-up to a heart-stopping finale. Many different settings are explored on the journey of the protagonists to the southern lands of their foes. Throughout these travels there are numerous enjoyable events that touch upon earlier Robin Hobb novels, specifically those in the ‘Liveship Traders’ trilogy and any fan of that series will be thrilled by the continuation of the stories of those characters.
What is yet again proven with this final part of this latest trilogy from Robin Hobb that continues to feel so satisfying is that of the many new plot points and character developments brought to life, all can be traced back to the earlier stories. The most drastic and dramatic of these (and probably the most integral development in this trilogy), is one that at first I balked at, feeling it was too incredible to be true; until of course the author gradually laid out the reasoning and rightness of this development, referencing earlier stories and echoing hints previously dropped that only now she allows their full fruition.
Like the previous story, ‘Fool’s Quest’, there is yet another chapter entitled ‘Surprises’ (chapter thirty six) and again it made me laugh because there is so much that happens throughout this story that is unexpected, not least the events involving the foretold emergence of the Unexpected Son.
The author has previously stated that she never intended to write so many books in this world, but also that her characters do go on living after the books close. So whether the author knew nothing when she began of how her characters lives would change and conclude here, had only the smallest inkling, or knew nothing at all, she had me absolutely believing this was always to be their fate. It’s the hallmark of a gifted and hard-working writer, and makes for a very fulfilling reading experience.
And as the story concludes, the final five chapters / fifty odd pages are both absolutely wonderful and excruciating to read. If you’re anything like me you won’t be able to see the pages for tears. There’s so much I would like to say, but even if I wished to spoil it for future readers, however far into the future that may be, as I’m still reeling from the events in those final pages, I’m not sure I even could.
It’s heartbreakingly, wonderfully sad. Yet still, there is Hope.
I started with Assassins Apprentice 3 months ago, and have been on journeys and quests through this realm, in every spare minute of my life, through all the books, until this conclusion.
A fitting end? Perhaps. Not the one we'd like maybe, but probably where it was always going.
Having lived this world for these months, I now feel bereft and grieving. But happy I found these books and the pleasure they have given. I don't remember ever feeling this much emotion from any books.
I will miss the characters and the world it's set in, and whilst I love the idea of it carrying on, I don't think it would be the same without our Fitz, Fool & Nighteyes to come back to.