Hey, despite my mild disappointment with The Name of the Wind, I'm definitely going to pick up The Wise Man's Fear.
...in mass market paperback, mind you. ;-)
I'm really looking forward to this book. I expect it will be at least one of my top 5 for the year. Anything less and I'll be a little disappointed.
Aaaah the wonder of opinions ;) I have to stick my oar in here, to balance the scales as it were. With the greatest respect Pat, there's some stuff in your review that is simply....well, I found it misleading, to be honest. The University section is patently not a tedious retreading of old ground. To suggest that Rothfuss wastes 400 pages telling us the same stuff all over again is disingenuous to say the least. This section is full of tension and adventure, the deepening of Kvothe's knowledge, some truly wonderful moments with Elodin, Auri, Kilvin and Hemme, the pursuit of forbidden knowledge, powerful confrontations...honestly, it sounds like you read a different book to me. It is a wonderful section.
As for Rothfuss 'holding back', not deepening the world? Again, we must've read different books. The scope of WMF is extremely broad - culturally, geographically, he takes us to some incredible places. We gain deep insights into language, power, history, and watch Kvothe grow in power and character.
Anyway, that's just my alternative view, in case people felt the wind (ahem) knocked out them a bit. I had to chime in because I fell deeply in love with NOTW, and was worried that he wouldn't be able meet my expectations with WMF. He surpassed them in every single way.
Dammit I am starting a blog just so I can start getting ARCs of all these amazing books!!
I think Pat's point, again, appears to be valid. If you loved NOTW, you will love WMF. If you didn't, you will view it a bit as more of the same.
I respect Pat. I think he writes great reviews and he seems like a nice dude. But again I have to wonder how much of his review is colored by his taste in fantasy. Go read the Memories of Ice review. I cannot comprehend how that could ever get a 10/10. Erikson's prose isn't in the same universe as Rothfuss and his plot lines are thin and disjointed. Nothing engaging in terms of character development unless Marvel is your cup of tea. I could understand Pat giving A Game of Thrones a 10/10 (not that I would) or Mieville's Perdido Street Station but Erikson? Just seems like quite a bit of personal preference.
All that aside is any review completely critically accurate? Outside of standard literary constructs taste is going to color any perspective. I suspect the true measurement comes when a book is reviewed by a broad range of both authors and publishers. When you get enough reviews naturally you will get a more accurate perspective on how the book is being received. Given the critical acclaim NOTW received and the buzz already surrounding WMF I suspect we are all in for something special.
Just found NoTW very lame, apart from the writing, and everything after Kvoth entering the University felt very, but very uninteresting. Also there was no real ending, it just kinda stopped. And wasn't the biggest fan of the dragoncow. Was not feeling the overall vibe out it, after those really cool first 200 or so pages.
While in MoI, I was entertained during all of the book and involved with the world and characters.(even the clone ones!) Does that mean that MoI(and for that matter the whole of Malazan) doesn't have massive flaws? Not it doesn't. But when Erikson hits his mark he does it wonderfully. Flaws or not. I just didn't get that from NotW. But anyway I'm not Pat and I'm sure he has his own reasons.
While I'm not over enthusiastic with WMF,(Even though I'll buy the hardback version if possible, I'm that kind of an idiot) I do hope Rothfuss manages to bring me into his world as Erikson did with Malazan.
Though hearing that a big chunk of the novel is in the University is not good news. I was guessing that part would be solved pretty quickly at the start of the novel and Kvothe could move on into his crazy adventures, which was what it was being advertised in the back of the novel. Never it said "I spent countless days pondering the financial status of my life.", I hope future editions they put that in. :D
I already have it pre-ordered, along with The Crippled God. Potential for two amazing books on the same day...gotta love it.
Phil, have you written a review for the book? If so linky please:)
That is not to say that it is good or bad. Rothfuss should be writing the story as he envisioned it and should appeal to the hardcore fans rather than trying to find some happy medium between critics and admirers in which he probably would fail to appease either side.
I also agree that WMF seems peaked to deliver on all expectations that fans have built up over the last several years, and considering how lofty those have become, that is no small accomplishment. It does not appear that Rothfuss will fall prey to any sort of 'sophomore slump' and deliver something that all parties find to be disappointing. And I am happy for that, as it will mean a rock star type of feeling when WMF is finally released and the level of excitement in bookstores around the fantasy sections will be escalated. I am a big enough dork to feed off of that and enjoy it, even if the series isn't one of my personal favorites.