Assassin's Quest
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Product Description

From an extraordinary new voice in fantasy comes the stunning conclusion to the Farseer trilogy, as FitzChivalry confronts his destiny as the catalyst who holds the fate of the kingdom of the Six Duchies...and the world itself.

King Shrewd is dead at the hands of his son Regal. As is Fitz--or so his enemies and friends believe. But with the help of his allies and his beast magic, he emerges from the grave, deeply scarred in body and soul. The kingdom also teeters toward ruin: Regal has plundered and abandoned the capital, while the rightful heir, Prince Verity, is lost to his mad quest--perhaps to death. Only Verity's return--or the heir his princess carries--can save the Six Duchies.

But Fitz will not wait. Driven by loss and bitter memories, he undertakes a quest: to kill Regal. The journey casts him into deep waters, as he discovers wild currents of magic within him--currents that will either drown him or make him something more than he was....

From the Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews:

  • Angsty and tedious, but page turning
    Quick overview: This trilogy is a fantasy novel set in a medieval world, and focuses around a character named 'fitz'. which is apparently slang for 'bastard' in this world.

    Not so quick overview: As fitz grows up, we learn he is no ordinary boy. I suppose if he was ordinary, we'd have no story. So fitz is the bastard of a now dead prince -who-was-to-be-king. He grows up in the castle and learns to become a stable boy and concurrently, an assassin. There are zombies and telepathy and eeeevil bad guys and dragons and all sorts of cool stuff in the book.

    There is a LOT of angst in Hobb's trilogy. So much angst. I don't think fitz has a happy moment in his life, except when entering the body/mind of his wolf (yup) or doing his hot chick (but only for the first few months of their relationships).

    BUT Hobb had a way of making you NEED to keep turning the page. You can't stop. I lost a lot of sleep because of this book, and promptly downloaded the rest of the trilogy onto my kindle. You'll be lke 'ok I'll go to sleep after this chapter, which is a weary angsty chapter', then BOOM! On the last page it gets all crazy, and you HAVE to keep reading.

    Things go fairly well until the last book. They go in this massive quest (yes, quest) which takes for freakin' ever. Then they get to where they were going..and they freakin' CHISEL ROCKS for about 40 pages. I lost it. I just hit the next button a slew of times until they stopped chipping rocks. You should spare yourself and do the same. Or just ask me how the third book ends when you finish the second.


    The rocks turn into dragons and they win the land back.
    There you go. ...more info
  • This book does not provid a Hollywood ending.
    For this reason nearly 1/3 of the reviews state that the book is disappointing or terrible. I'm curious if these readers feel the same way about the Lord of the Rings? Bilbo and Frodo certainly did not go home, marry their sweethearts and have happy lives. Instead, in a far more realistic way, they paid the price for the trauma and tragedy that they experienced.

    We all want Fitz to be happy in the end. Instead Robin Hobb gives us an incredibly imaginative ending that calls for the ultimate sacrifice from some of the major characters in the book.

    Nonetheless, please read the Tawny Man series - in the end you will be more content....more info
  • Great Book
    Something major happens in this book that i didnt pick up on untill the last book of the series....more info
  • Actually 3 1/2 stars
    In that the hero was neither a king, nor a wizard, nor an elf, Robin Hobb's Farseer Trilogy began on an interesting premise. From the start, we were captivated by a young bastard prince who was thrust into the untenable situation created by his birth. We watched as he grew in stature and knowledge. We acknowledged our own growing attachment to him, and hoped he might prove to show the world that birth is never an issue when it comes to personal worth. But our hopes never materialized.

    Oh, sure, the first book draws you in. In Assassin's Apprentice, the bastard of Prince Chivalry comes to live at the royal court by pure chance. When pure chance brings him to the attention of King Shrewd, Fitz chooses to serve him. In return, the King of the Six Duchies promises to feed, clothe, and educate him. Fitz is taught his letters. He is also taken on by the King's assassin in order to learn how to deal death and become truly useful to his sovereign.

    As Fitz grows older, he learns he has both Wit and Skill. In this world, Wit is animal magic, allowing those so gifted to bond with an animal of their choice. Bonded pairs are inseparable, sharing thoughts and lives for as long as they both live. Yet in the Six Duchies, the Wit is called Beast-Magic. Anyone caught using it is to be hanged and burned. Although Fitz loves his bond-mates like true brothers, this taint on his natural abilities makes his life even more difficult.

    The Skill is a power that only those with royal blood can wield. Using Skill, the royals reach over long distances to read other minds, to send messages to those with Skill, and to control and direct those without. In past centuries, it was much more - an ancient race called the Elderlings used the Skill in daily life, both to fashion cities and to master dragons. But the Elderlings are now just memories, and the dragons fly no more in the skies.

    Fitz is a true rarity in that he has both Wit and Skill. He is taken on with 7 other apprentices to be taught its use by the court's inexperienced SkillMaster, Galen. Unfortunately, because his Skill is so much greater than Galen's, Fitz receives the brunt of that small man's wrath. As a result of a life-and-death battle with Galen which his teacher initiated, Fitz's once extremely-promising Skilling becomes erratic and unruly.

    During Fitz's youth, Red Ships begin raiding the coastline of the Six Duchies. These Red Ships and their Raiders destroy seemingly without reason. They attack random villages on the coast, burn all the buildings, and rape and kill most of the people. Those they capture, they take to their ships and strip of emotion and humanity. Returned to their villages, these 'Forged Ones' can remember no family ties or shared memories. They become like dangerous animals, and those villagers left must either kill them or be killed.

    These terrible raids continue for years. Always, Fitz, the King-in-Waiting Verity, and Verity's father, King Shrewd, try to understand and prevent these attacks. Yet something works which they cannot understand. Treachery rots the royal family from within and without. Just as all seems lost, a new twist in the plot arises, and Fitz emerges dazed from beneath it.

    Called the Catalyst, Fitz is neither chisel nor marble, but the hand that connects the two. Throughout the story of the Six Duchies, he is mercilessly used to cause change. If his King or King-in-Waiting are not exploiting him, he follows orders given by his teacher, the king's assassin. One after another, the major figures in his life use him to their own ends. And at the end of the series, we are left with a broken man, one who had so much potential but was squandered by those seeking their own fulfillment. Much of this comes through Fitz's own pledge to Shrewd. Yet the grateful boy who stood before his king knew not what he gave when he pledged his service in return for food and bed. That Fitz was unknowing when he gave his life away makes the relentless squandering of his youth, talents, wit, and life even harder to bear.

    Alas, there is a marked difference between the Fitz of the first book and that of last. When we first begin, the apprentice assassin is growing in talent and wit. His memory is astonishing, his precocious mind and physical prowess amazing for his youth. He moves about the chessboard of the Six Duchies like the Queen might - with knowledge, decisiveness, and true power over life and death. That he kills for King Shrewd and follows orders does not change the fact that he is both competent and skilled at his tasks.

    This ideal is somewhat tarnished and broken in the second and third books. Fitz goes through life-changing ordeals at the end of the first book, and must relearn how to live in the world again at the beginning of the second. And yet, we still have plenty of faith in him - he survived this far, and just might rise again to continue his path to greatness. Unfortunately, it is not to be. Somewhere in the transition between first book and second, Fitz becomes slow-witted. His loyalty to his King and his people does not waver, yet Fitz makes stupid mistakes. No more is he the skilled killer. Now he becomes a bumbling Fool, saved again and again by chance rather than his own design. He continually underestimates his adversaries, and his revelations of surprise at his own miscalculation (read: stupidity) abound.

    By basing her trilogy on a Catalyst rather than a King, Hobb took the chance that those of us more interested in the Gandalfs and Aragorns of the world wouldn't follow the bastard princes to the conclusion of their bumbling quests. It was an interesting, common-man take on the usual high fantasy world. However, in striving to be pragmatic about her character and his flaws, I found Hobb's treatment a bit too realistic. Fitz's flaws were all too real. Yet as the series grew and continued, rather than growing and finding maturity in the passing years, Fitz degenerates. That much of his degeneration is not of his own doing does not make it any easier to bear. Just as Fitz grows weary of being called a bastard, blamed for things he never did and pursued without mercy or hope of relief, so we wish that for once he could stand on his own two feet and stop being the bloody victim.

    At the end of it all, I did not feel like the time had been wasted. If you want to try something different than the usual tribble that comes out of Dragonlance these days, I'd recommend it. But as for myself, I think that I'd rather just stab out my own eyes than read any more unceasing victimizations of her poor, almost-heroic characters....more info
  • Geez, this thing went on and on and on................
    I was already tiring of this fantasy trilogy by the end of book two. Book two could have been pruned by at least 200 pages, and the entire 'trilogy' actually has a plot that's so slim it could have been edited into just one book of around 700 pages. But noooooo, both Hobb's and her publisher stretched as much out of it as possible, obviously so they could make more money.

    I read Hobbs' 'Liveship' Trilogy and loved it. The story was smart, fast-paced and involved, and set in a world that was full of detail but not overly explained. It was also full of interesting characters. In Assassin's Quest, the 'hero' (if that's what you MUST call him, because he's the biggest idiot ever to appear in fiction) is so incredibly dull and stupid that I just want to do King Regal's job and kill him myself.

    A huge disappointment. I think this will be the last book I read of Hobb's, as her ability to write believable and compelling fiction seems to be waning....more info
  • First Rate Fantasy
    Ever since I first read Lord of the Rings, I was hooked on fantasy. Since that fateful day many years ago I have read many of the conventional fantasy series most notably the Wheel of Time series. This trilogy really breaks all bonds of convention and makes way for innovation, creativity, and a strong dose of realism. The characters in these stories feel so real it will take your breath away. Never have I ever been so emotionally involved in a character as I was with Fitz. I literally could not wait to pick up the book again after putting it down to find out what direction he would be thrust in next, and whether or not he would get out of it.

    At first, I did not think I would enjoy reading the first-person narrative style of Hobb's writing, but now I actually find it quite enjoyable and adds a whole dimension to the story and further connection to the character. Her structure is fantastic. Even when things may seem a bit slow, it is done for a reason, usually because you begin to feel anxious and impatient just as the narrator is.

    These books are definitely page turners that are well worth a read. One of my favorite fantasy series to date. I look forward to reading the rest of the adventures of Fitzchivalry Farseer. ...more info
  • The Little Engine that couldn't
    It just couldn't get up the hill. I loved this series, even though I thought that the wrap up in Book 1 was greatly flawed. It had seemed that she had learned her lesson though in Book 2 Royal Assasin. But not quite because she makes the same mistake here and in far more debilitating fashion. The story is nearly crushed by the wrap up at the end of this book. I was left with a great feeling of dissatisfaction. She drones on and on about tedious things all book long and then wraps up the more interesting elements, which take place over months and years, in mere sentences. It is preposterous. It's like Robin Hobb completely forgets, in this book, what is interesting and compelling about her characters, her world, and this story. She puts the spotlight on all of the wrong things. She does introduce some new and interesting characters in this book, however the character of Regal is rendered so unbelievable. She completely forgets what she has previously wrote about him, his deeds, his maneuvers. I don't get it at all. So many of these fantasy series can't go the distance. This is definitely one of them. It falls apart. I still might read more. I have heard that Liveships and/or Tawny Man are more well crafted. Perhaps that is so. This story had so much potential, but it just fell apart. I don't want to go into great detail about what I felt was incomplete, boring, or hasty within the ending for it would give away too much. I only warn you to not expect a clever ending, but rather the equivalent of a cheesey montage from a movie. I still give the series 4 stars overall. It was very gripping, and this book is interesting as well, though it completely falls apart at the end.
    Chugga Chugga....Out of Steam!...more info
  • Dead stall...
    Warning spoilers...

    In the worst installment of a bad series, Fitzchivalry wont die. Perhaps the most interesting plot point of this whole contrived series is wasted entirely. Fitz, who died, and rose again has his potentially interesting ordeal descrobed in perhaps the most boring way possible. I supposed his dead body was infused with both wolf personality and human for a while (I guess souls mix when they are contained in a tiny brain), and of course the seizures. Seizures trouble Fitz for a while, as long as they are convenient to the plot, and then, of course, they totally vanish. While I found it really interesting that Fitz used to be dead, and the ramifications of that, we find that there are no ramifications whatsoever, except for a brief period of eliminate-the-wolf-behavior rehab. I mean, he was reanimated after a period of time, but that's no big deal I guess.

    Robin Hobb is such a good story teller, but she is horrible at plot. Except in the Liveship traders series, but she must have written that one entirely differently, because you can't tell that this is the same author. What she is good at is writing loveable characters, and slowly feeding you tidbits of knowledge about interesting things as the characters "learn" about them. In other words she can "feed the fire" of the story well to keep interest.

    But that doesn't mean she does it consistently, and this book is a great example of how even Hobb can utterly fail.

    Robin relys solely on you LOVING the characters (which I feel she herself does) and she allows that to distract you from reasonable pacing. This book starts out slow, then begins the ending phase of the master plot, and slowly slowly slowly panders through that and then ends in a rush. Not to mention the fact that she knows nothing about plausibility. This whole series is based on a character that is as loveable as your little brother, yet supposedly kills without compunction. You know, an assassin.

    This series asks people a simple question. How would you describe an assassin? Prior to reading this series you might say ruthless, cold, cruel, at best disaffected and callous. Crafty certainly. After reading this book, you would say, kind, affectionate, and loves dogs? Add to that loyal to himself first, good natured, well liked, and an advisor to royalty? So is Robin Hobb rethinking the role of an assassin? No, you can't do that. An assassin is an assassin. You can't change that FACT. No, she's creating a hero who was trained as an assassin, but who only functions as an assassin very very very few times at all, since that is a nasty business. As kind and good natured as Fitz is, he never once questions the morality of killing someone because he was told in the weighty manner such a question deserves. He never is actually put to any test. So, Robin creates a hero, calls him an assassin, and swings the plot around to have him doing everying imaginable EXCEPT functioning as a cold-hearted killer. He's a spy, a soldier, a telepathy partner, a wolf-buddy, and for some reason everyone just thinks he ought to be the hero. When everything comes together, everyone just says Fitz, be the hero. For no good reason at all (because you have telepathy does that make you the guy to go to?). [...]
    Perhaps Robin thought the weirdness of the ending scenes would add a sort of tension, and of course, they were being persued, and so I guess that added drama. But of course, the main threat, the "forged ones" were not really a threat anymore, but of course, you still have to resolve that issue, and was neatly done in the end. But I felt the whole story, the drama of the "forged ones" really wasn't so dramatic, and I just don't get what caused them to behave just like they did. On a fantasy scale, it was new, but not very interesting. Robin does much better with dragons in the Liveship traders, and these dragons are just stupid. And Verity-as-dragon is perhaps the dumbest of all. Over all a slow build up for an overall letdown.

    If I began Robin Hobb with this series, I would have never read her again. I am forcing myself to finish the Tawny man series now, because I WANT to like her stuff. But I don't know if I will EVER find enough time to finish that sleeper series.

    Overall, try Ship of Magic, unless you are already invested in this, and have to have closure....more info
  • Slow, boring and painful
    Wow. This was the slowest book I've ever read. Like many of the other reviewers, I thought that this book was about 500 pages too long. To make it worse, many of the truly interesting elements that were focused on in the book were wrapped up in about 5 pages at the end. Instead of those interesting elements we, once again, got to focus on Fitz's misery--over and over and over again. It just seems that the author lost her steam on this book and even part of the second book. It's too bad because there was a lot of potential to make this more expansive and focus on the issues of the kingdom. It just felt like a waste of time. Don't bother....more info
  • Once you finally get there...
    This third and final installment to the Farseer Trilogy is a good book, but a long read. I do not think the entire story was slow, and I do enjoy the "quest" type story, but this book did drag in parts.

    The book dragged a bit in the beginning, but the second half was excellent. There were parts where I kept thinking 'Get to it already', but once you get there, it is well worth it. There were quite a few parts where I was thinking "This book is amazing!". So it is worth the read, especially if you want to finish out Fitz's story.

    Most of the loose ends are tied up, and it wasn't the ending I was expecting, and I won't say more than that. I thought the trilogy was a good story, and my favorite character was Nighteyes. I do believe I will continue to read Robin Hobb and pick up her other trilogy's....more info
  • Pitiful ending to a promising series
    The Farseer trilogy was great through the first two books. This last book however was not worth the cost of the paper it was printed on. A shame so many trees were Sacrifice for this dribble. I will not muddle along as Hobb does for 750+ pages. I will leave with a stern warning. DO NOT give in to your curiousity. Leave well enough alone. Go buy anything by Michele West, Jacqueline Carey or George Martin. That would be money better spent....more info
  • Not Free SF Reader
    Dragon quest.

    The rightful and competent ruler of Buckkeep is off on a quest to try and work out how to win a war against basically implacable zombie berserkers.

    His nasty brother is left in charge, leaving the safer option for Fitz and company to travel off to see what they can do to help Verity when he calls them telepathically.

    What they find is quite surprising.

    Again, Hobb keeps the quality of the series the same even while introducing a fantasy quest of this nature. A fine achievement....more info
  • Good reading, good book but not perfect!
    This I think was the expected ending to the series - not sure if I've just read too many fantasy novels now but I could see what was going to happen pages before it did! That's not to knock the book - it was good, and hard to put down (a sure sign of a winner) but maybe it was a bit too drawn out. There was a point at which the words seemed to be just to fill a quota rather than tell a story.

    There is an especially nagging tendency for Hobb to repeat/summarise events at the start of each section of these novels using 1, 2 or even 3 paragraphs - though it is nice enough as a refresher I found it got very tedious by the second novel! Still a great trilogy and this was a good if a bit melancholy ending! 4 stars!...more info
  • a fitting conclusion to an excellent trilogy
    "Assassin's Quest" is the third and final book of Robin Hobb's Farseer Trilogy. When this series began, we met a young boy without a name. This boy was taken in by the royal house of Buck. See, this boy was the illegitimate child of one of the princes. He was given the name FitzChivalry and was trained as an assassin for the king. Through treachery, the king was slain and the prince that has Fitz's loyalty, Verity, was away on a quest to find they mythical Elderlings to enlist their help against the Red Ship Raiders that have been terrorizing the kingdom. With Verity gone and King Shrewd now dead, Prince Regal is free to act against, Fitz, whom he has always hated. At the end of book 2, "Royal Assassin", Fitz was presumed dead by Regal and buried. But like it is said in "The Princess Bride", Fitz was only mostly dead (he took a poison that would simulate death, much like Juliet did in "Romeo and Juliet"). The story picks up several months later and Fitz is in the care of Burrich, the man who has raised him all these years. Fitz acts like an animal, for that is what he believes he truly is (for the poison to work, Fitz had to use the "Wit" magic that has bonded him with a wolf). Burrich is working to restore Fitz's mind and reflexes to that of a human.

    Fitz has to recover, or else there will not be much of a story. When he does, he decides to seek his revenge on Regal and Regal's coterie of Skill users who helped to kill Shrewd and sabotage Buck against the Red Ship Raiders. The title of "Assassin's Quest" is especially apt for this book. Fitz is the titled Assassin, and this novel truly has a quest feel to it, especially as the story progresses. Every since Verity first started out to find the Elderlings, I have wondered what will become of this quest, and Fitz also seeks to answer this question as well.

    The Farseer Trilogy is excellent fantasy. Being told in the first person point of view, it is a change from the typical fantasy novel, and Hobb does not hold anything back. We know what Fitz can know, so this cannot be a broad sweeping saga. And yet, this series is not lacking for any depth of storytelling. Hobb also does not protect her protagonist any. Horrible, horrible things happen to Fitz throughout the series and that is a part of the raw power here. The series may be slower moving at times, but that is not for any lack of quality writing on Hobb's part. Quite the opposite. The story moves slowly by necessity, but it never fails to be interesting. "Assassin's Quest" only serves to make me want more Hobb, and to move on to the "Liveship Traders" and then onto "The Tawny Man" series.

    -Joe Sherry...more info

  • Finished the series reasonably well
    I've developed a habit of late that when I finish a book, I immediately read the reader reviews on both the UK and US incarnations of Amazon. Usually, I go to the 1 and 2 star reviews and see how many people disliked it. Rarely do I agree with all of them, and this book is no exception. Some of the criticisms are valid, but others seem merely spiteful.

    The world of the Elderlings is one of the more original worlds I have encounted. In fact, I think the only series more original in my mind is the Axis Trilogy by Sara Douglass.

    The most frequent criticism I read about this book is the speed at which it wrapped up. Some call it a Deus Ex Machina, others say Hobb merely ran out of words. I tend to disagree on both counts. I feel that the story, for Fitz at least, ended when the dragons fought of the Skill coteries. The Cleansing of the Six Duchies was not witnessed by Fizt directly (he was still in the mountains), so from a first person perspective it doesn't make sense for him to give an overly detailed account. And that's how it came across to me - his conclusion was the summary of the details Fitz picked up in the six years of his travels back to Buck. So for me, the style of the ending made perfect sense.

    What holds this book back from a better rating for me is the treatment of Fitz. For crying out loud, the poor guy has literally given his life, love and soul for his king and queen. And yet people seem to feel nothing but anger, disappointment and disdain when he wants to take a time out and live his (second?) life for himself. In most people's eyes he is a failure. How many other characters can be said to have given as much as Fitz throughout the entire trilogy, except maybe Verity? Not even the Fool sacrifices as much. This for me was a real down note. If he'd maybe given all his memories of Molly to Verity-as-Dragon, he could have lived something akin to a happy life with Starling. But he held on to Molly's memory, and thus was further denied happiness. Fitz is truly one of the most tragic figures I have ever encountered in the ~300 books that I own. Except maybe Faraday from the Axis trilogy. I think she dies more times than Fitz, and far more gruesomly too......more info
  • When fantasy turns into a nightmare...
    Good concept, bad execution. I've never read a fantasy where the gender of the author comes through so strongly as this. The hero, Fitz, spends so much time in ponderous thought about his feelings, friendships, love, etc. that I find his character unplausible and very annoying. This might as well be a cheeky romance novel. The character of Regal is an evil man clich¨¦ and is completely predictable. The introduction to each chapter in each book is so repetitive, it insults the intelligence. I really don't see why entries in Fitz' journal keep repeating themselves throughout the trilogy. The character that most redeems the story is Nighteyes, the wolf, with his simple yet profound philosophy on life and brotherhood. ...more info
  • Deus ex Machina
    The subject sums it all up. I think that Robin Hobb was written into a corner and had no way out but this ridiculous ending. The first two books in this series were great, and most of the third, but I just can't forgive the end. It reminds me of Neal Stephenson's abrupt finish at the end of Cryptonomicon or The Diamond Age, but without any of the subtlety or polish that take his sudden endings and turn them into gems. A disappointing conclusion to a fantastic trilogy....more info
  • Very Satisfying story
    This trilogy is one of the best I've read in the fantasy field. Most fantasy stories I've read have a lot of action and very little character development, but this trilogy has a lot of character development and a good amount of action. I feel like this series is more philosophical than anything else. I especially liked how the storyline finally left Buckkeep castle because it helps the reader understand Fitz's world more, not just the daily routine of his home. Fitz's journey to find Verity in the ancient mountain civilization was especially wonderful, I've never came across such a captivating kingdom before (a city built by skill magic, where dragons are common visitors and teleportation is possible). The best part about the ancient ruins of the mountain kingdom is that it is so mysterious, Hobb's never explained why it is in ruins (which is left up to the reader's imagination or the author is planning another book for it).

    Book one was very good in that it introduces all the lovable characters, book two is basically life in the castle and Regal's goals are revealed. To me, book two was the weakest of the three. It was too drawn out, too much everyday life and it got boring after a while. The whole thing with Molly got really annoying (he's a king's man and molly just wants him for herself, bla bla blah). The action finally picks up again in Book three.

    Book three revealed a lot of the questions, such as why the red ships are attacking, how people get forged, Who are the elderlings, How insane is Regal, and so on. My favorite part about book three is Fitz' journey to verity. It touches all parts of the geography, from coast, to desert, to mountain, it introduces the economy of the inland duchies. It also talk more about the wit-power and shows that there are more witted people than Fitz realize. I think book three is a fun read (I couldn't put it down).

    I liked how the general storyline isn't about Fitz but about Verity the king trying to save his kingdom and Fitz is basically in the background doing all the dirty work. I've rarely came across a fantasy novel where the main character doesn't become "famous" at the end.

    A warning to new readers is that this series has a very melancholy tone and is more "slice-of-life" than an epic adventure. Well, I hope everyone that reads it enjoy the characters as much as I did. Have fun!...more info
  • interesting... very interesting.
    Book two, Royal Assassin, was probably my favorite in the series, but this one is only a slight notch below. Assassin's Quest starts out with intrigue, and ends with greater intrigue. Robin Hobb, again, writes a masterful work of fantasy literature.

    Fitz, after his torture, does not know if he wants to be human or animal. The urge is to be an animal and run free in the wild, but his thirst for revenge on Regal overrides every other feeling and forces him to be human. His first attempt on Regal's life fails, but rather than try again he is skilled by Verity to come to his aide. Even with his strength in the Skill and the Wit, Fitz is still scared of the coterie run by Regal, which is led by Will, who hates Fitz.

    Verity is deep in the mountains, without food or water, and all by himself. He is trying to waken the Elderlings, but needs Fitz to help him.

    I was both happy with the ending and sad that it had to end. Robin Hobb is an excellent writer, proven by this series. I can't wait to read her next two series....more info
  • Superb
    As an aspiring writer, I find it easy to be overly critical of other writers. Although I found myself getting annoyed at Ms. Hobb's commitment of various writing 'sins' when I started the first in the trilogy, the vastness of the story and the richness and depth of the characters made me quickly forget about quibbling over such mundane details and just enjoy the books.

    Assassin's Quest brought me to tears and laughter more times than any novel ever had. I was intimately and thoroughly living this tale, and deeply moved by it. To a writer, this is the ultimate compliment. Thank you, Robin Hobb....more info
  • Get on with it already
    The first two books were great, with one exception. It appears that a major theme of the story is Fitz growing up. But he doesn't. He nearly dies in one stupid decision only to "learn better." Then, having survived that calamity, he moves directly to make some new dumb move. He's not really learning anything. He doesn't get smarter.

    Also, the trip to Verity is annoying. Go to find Verity. Get betrayed and captured. Escape. Go to find Verity. Get betrayed and captured. Escape. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. It makes for tedious reading.

    With all that said, Robin Hobb is a great writer. I hope the next books don't fall into similar patterning because I really enjoyed the first two in this set....more info
  • Too pat, dragging middle, unsatisfying ending (spoilers)
    I'll put aside my complaint that our protagonist is mistreated by his author throughout the book and most especially at the ending. As others have pointed out, the fact we feel Fitz is so poorly treated means that Hobb is telling a tragic, gripping story. If we're still angry or hurt by it, it at least means there's substance there, that we've been made to feel so strongly for him and his situation (I'm still angry at Molly).

    Unfortunately, it's the other stuff that makes this book a let down.

    1. First, the journey theme is just too overused to be very interesting. Hobb might as well have called it the Fellowship of the Fitz and be done with it. Easily 100-200 pages too long (I find it amusing and tiring that most of us were captivated by Assassin's Apprentice at about 320 pages...when will they learn we don't need or want 600 to tell the same story?).

    2. Um, Red Ship Raiders, anyone? Aside from the corrupt younger prince theme taking over in book 2, this is what kicked it all off, right? What started as the prime threat is relegated to nothing of interest by book 3 and is neatly wrapped up in what might as well have been an Epilogue. At page 350 or so, I already knew we wouldn't get to resolving what I felt was one of the two main thrusts of the trilogy (the other being Regal's betrayal).

    3. Dragons, Elderlings, magical cities...boy these came from left field. The dragons especially made little to no sense and were pretty disappointing in what had heretofore been a "low" fantasy setting (I use the term with all respect: latent psionics, dream visions, herbal shame in this kind of fantasy, but don't drop dragons on us from out of the blue).

    The first two books are winners, this one's unfortunately lacking focus and for the love of Fitz, fairness. Hopefully Hobb and her editors will take some of the criticism to heart, chop down the 600 page novels, and return to the character- and world-building that created her fan base originally.

    ...more info
  • Assassin's quest was a bit of a let down
    I know a lot of people tend to get defensive when their favorite author, actor, etc. is critiqued so no doubt some will be offended by this review but oh well.

    First off like many have stated before the book easily is 100-200 pages to long. The search for Verity really dragged along for longer than it should have. But despite the length of this final book it was'nt completely bad. My biggest complaint was the way the story was wrapped up. The outcome of Regal, Verity, the mystery of the Red ships and a few other areas were really poorly done in my opinion. In fact in regards to the ending the only thing that wrapped the way that it should have been is Fitz and Molly's relationship. Outside of that the ending appeared to rushed with not a lot of thought put into it. I almost gagged on those last couple of chapters.

    However I still would recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed the first 2 books (which were remarkable). Since Hobb is still essentially a new writer its understandable how perhaps the conclusion of her first series could be a bit awkward. I just hope George RR Martin does'nt follow the same path when eventually concludes his series....more info

  • ohhh that burns!!!!
    Now that you have read the first 2 books of the series you have no other choice than to read the third. No doubt the earlier books have grabbed your attention and will not leave you thinking of poor Fitz the (...) in such a way. My advice, don't read the book if you like predictable endings, if you have a girlfriend you left in a friends care, or if you have a thing for traveling minstrels. Other than that dig in. Oh yeah, if it starts to get boring start skimming it picks up after a page or so....more info
  • Those stupid readers...
    oh please... if u really really want a nice... happy... fluffy surgar coated ending then read something the bloody else... im absolutely certain that the people saying it was a silly ending didnt think enough... ponder for a second, what fitz's role in the book was... your not gonna be given everything to u spoon fed... tis thru his persepctive... i really didnt find this novel too winded, as the charecters where engaging, emotional ((and thats teh important thing cuz it gives tehm depth... read soemthing by sara dougless if u want predicatability)) and overall it had great depth... u really knew everything about this charecter... and towards the end, looking at ketricken through his eyes should make u cry ((i can i admit i was sobbing)) cuz that was what teh ending was about... not to tie loose ends... he was a tool remember...being used?? he wasnt privy to every little thing that went on around him... so those silly people who say it was stupid, pointless and not worth the time... read somtthing more mainstream and sugar coated and fairy puffed... your eyes dont deserve to go over anyhitng by robin hobb... ((these people obviously didnt know about the tawny man series either... this series and that series should be read after each other... then they will get all teh loose ends fixed up that they like))...more info
  • Read it to wrap up the series, but don't expect to surpass the first two.
    I loved the previous two in this series, but there are basically two problems with this book. The quest is described in far too much detail for such an abrupt ending, and the ending itself leaves you... empty. i like the gritty realism of this series, but it ends on a sour note. Still, the previous book left so much unfinished that you almost have to read this conclusion to the series. But don't expect to feel good or to like the characters at the end. This you can say for sure: Ms. Hobbs has not written a predictable cookie-cutter fantasy....more info
  • So painfully realistic it'll tear you up - great book
    Blegh, it's been 10 minutes since I finished the Farseer Trilogy with this novel's conclusion. Boy, what a ride it's been. It's the feeling you get after a long journey returning home.. but you're changed: like Frodo from Lord of the Rings. I feel this numbing hole now that it's over. But this book has faults nonetheless. Other reviewers have pointedly complained about the pacing/length of this novel as well as its ending. I agree with them.

    This novel is by no means 'boring' it just feels very sluggish in the middle during the journey part of reaching Verity. And it departs from the 1st two books a lot: gone are so many characters we loved, gone are the focus of court intrigue in the face of the Red Ship Raider's Forging. Instead we are left with torturing poor Fitz even more so that by the end of it I could not help wiping stubborn tears (and I rarely cry lol so you can tell this stuff is bleak).

    My gripe with the ending as a whole is that it is too realistic. This not hollywood by any means. All that pain and suffering should mean there's a nice reward in exchange...... right? Also, the Red Ship Raiders and Elderlings story line is swiftly concluded within a chapter almost. The whole book was the about the process not the result.

    It's been 2 weeks to the day since I was searching here on Amazon reading reviews for a good fantasy series while I waited for George RR Martin.. Farseer Trilogy has been amazing. I've lost several hours of sleep reading late into the night hoping against hope for witnessing Fitz get his due. *SPOILER*------------ Sitting in a cottage in Buck with Nighteyes and his bastard son; scribing diligently in front of a warm fire away from court plotting and judgemental people is 95% of the life he always wanted minus the love of his life who left him for his closest friend instead....more info
  • And then there was completion
    Oftentimes series end leaving you not quite happy, not quite feeling the completion that an ending should have. Hobb does a great job in achieving the meaningful and completed ending. Not only is the book written well with a great plot and storyline, but it doesn't fall prey to the normal endings that are so often fallen into. Without going into detail, this ends with a more real note to it than the typical fantasy book endings (all in smiles and happy endings). And yet it works wonderfully.

    I would certainly recommend this series to anyone who is looking for a fantasy author to read. I would rank Hobb right up there with Bakker, Martin, and Williams....more info
  • Finally, a series worthly to rival "The Lord of the Rings"
    Robin Hobb is a master of story weaving. I am not especially fond of fantasy, but a friend turned me on to this series, as well as the Liveship and Tawny Man series. To maximize the effect of these interwoven novels, read them in that order (ie., The Farseer Trilogy, the Liveship Traders Series, and the Tawny Man Series.) The depth of the stories, as well as the richness and development of the characters easily rivals my all-time favorite series, The Lord of the Rings. Robin's work is truly a mastery of story telling. In fact, the only complaint I could conceive with her books is that they are too detailed (much in the same fashion of The Lord of the Rings.)...more info
  • Robin Hobb Does it Again
    She succeeds in yet again producing another quality fantasy novel with so much trash already in the genre. This book concludes the tale of Fitzchivalry, alive and well, bent on getting his life together and revenge on those who should pay. It was like always, beautifully written with real characters and situations.

    I've said it before that Hobb can be somewhat of a slow read. She gives highly descriptive accounts and makes what could have been cut down a third of a book into an entire experience by having an answer for everything in this foreign world. Given that, it takes time to get used to her writing, and while it is not the most artful, it is very well done and with great skill. Hobb has a very simple, yet rolling, way to her diologue and descriptions.

    None of her characters are perfect, not everyone has happy endings. ****POSSIBLE SPOILER**** Part of the reason I was so bent on finishing the books is because all I wanted to read about was Fitz being celebrated for all his eforts and having the happily ever after he wanted. I could have almost cried. But you have to remember that some of the best books around are those where people learn to grow even when they've experienced the worst of life. It's a very moving tale and one that may take me a while to reread, because I don't know if I want to experience the myriad of emotions I went through reading it anytime soon. Wonderful book. ...more info