Title: Assassin’s Quest
Author: Robin Hobb
Goodreads Rating: 4.19
“For time is the great enslaver of us all. Time that ages us, time that limits us.”
In Assassin’s Quest, Hobb wraps up The Farseer Trilogy with a book that left me disappointed. We pick up Fitz’s story when our two gravediggers, Burrich and Chade, unceremoniously haul Fitz’s body from its resting place and force his soul back into his cold, dead body. From there, Fitz involuntarily continues along his tragic adventure full of heartbreak, loneliness, and unfulfilled desires. Let’s just get into it.
In the last book of the trilogy, we finally get to truly dive into the two magic systems. We are introduced to new characters who have a deeper understanding of the Wit and I wish we had more time with them in the story. As for the Skill, Fitz’s understanding and abilities grow which allow us to truly experience the depth of what’s possible with this double-edged power.
The surprise factor
The second half of the book contained some unexpected moments. It’s nice that Hobb could still surprise me with occasional discoveries, character development, and magic abilities.
I have a multitude of problems with this particular resurrection. 1st… without any explanation as to how, Fitz’s soul transfers to Nighteyes. 2nd… Nighteyes is forced to return Fitz’s soul to his body, again with no explanation as to how. 3rd… he’s dead and buried for days so his internal organs would be decomposing. And yet… we’re supposed to be completely chill with this resurrection? Cool. Cool, cool, cool…
Could someone just sit down with Fitz and clearly answer his bloody questions?! Verity and Kettle are some of the worst offenders of miscommunication or complete lack of communication. Fitz would ask a question and would either get a vague answer or a condescending remark. It just showed a complete lack of respect towards Fitz and it added pages of unnecessary conflict and confusion. Hasn’t he been through enough to deserve a straightforward answer?
This book should have been half the length. In almost every situation, Hobb adds completely unnecessary pages of unwanted details. The pacing of this story closely resembles the speed of a snail until the last chapter when it suddenly shifts to the speed of a cheetah. Right when we get to some of the most interesting details of the story, the author just zooms right by it with a summary paragraph.
Secondary character resolutions
I saw this story playing out in a completely different way than how Hobb took it. I am sad to say that Patience has extremely limited appearances in this book. And while Chade and Burrich appear more often than others, their storylines with Fitz are left unresolved.
After all of Fitz’s sacrifices, this ending had me fuming. I’m trying to not give away any spoilers… so I’m limited in what I can say. But if you’re hoping for a happy ending for Fitz, think again.
I don’t know if I can recommend this trilogy. The first two books were decent and the final book was mediocre at its best moments. While I thank Hobb for introducing me to one of my favorite characters, the end of the trilogy was unexpected and tough to swallow. If you’re interested in the long haul that is the Realm of the Elderlings, then just prepare yourself for a slow start.