This series probably defines my foray into blogging. I was hoping to work my way through all the books in HK where the libraries had copies but I was not forward thinking enough to reserve all together. With the third wave closures, I am left with one book remaining!
I read these two as separate books but since I read them back to back they blurred enough for me to treat it as a single entry on Goodreads and on the blog. I liked the first more than the second although the latter did lay out some extremely interesting groundwork for the last installment.
When I first met Fitz again, now Holder Tom Baderlock living the life of a family man, I did not know what I was getting myself into. Finally, with this book, I got the manic frenzy my friends feel when they meet Fitz and Fool. It begins innocuously enough with a regular humdrum existence with fear lurking in the corners. When the borders close in, there is not much of a defence provided. I wept so much with the first and sent screenshots to the group I have for this very purpose. This review might seem all over the place, but that is precisely the point, I am finding it hard to put enough of my emotions down so as to pique your interest but not give anything away to those diligently working their way through the journey.
I will try to begin with the first book, Fitz does not want to go back to his old life. Chade continues to lean on him whenever the situation demanded it. The unexpected happens, and Fitz has more than one new life to be responsible for. This dilemma is brought to a height when old secrets come rushing in, and he misjudges his actions. It sends him running back to Buckkeep and leaving his home unprotected. This is not even half of the first tome, and I was already weeping for so many scenes. We are soon told that everything we understood at the culmination of the Tawny man series was probably a misunderstanding (or almost everything). This should have annoyed me because it seemed like an excuse or an overly simplistic way to extend a series but given the skill with which even this simple move was made, I never once felt remotely cheated. It turns out that there were some questions about the sequence of events that I never thought to question previously but am now drowning in curiosity. The second half shows the unravelling of all the lives of the key players. We have moved two decades ahead in time since the last book focused on this ‘country’. The second book was less emotional but more dramatic. There is a lot of bloodshed and scheming and a lot more changes in the hierarchy of the Kingdom. It is almost a filler to connect the events on the first with the conclusion but to my joy, reading the rain wilders worked out because there is a meeting of the two worlds at the end. Since I was already familiar with the situation in Kelsingra, I was more than happy to see how far they had come since I last saw them ( A lot more time has passed in their world than in mine). The new characters introduced are enigmas in some ways, and I am yet to make up my mind about how I feel at their existence, but I might have stronger emotions once I saw what they get up to in the finale.
If I was rating them separately, I would have said 5 stars and 4 respectively. But since I combined the lot, I am giving an even 5.
I would not recommend starting with this trilogy. One HAS to begin at the beginning and work their way here.