The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss is a super book. It’s pretty long, a little over 1000 pages on my iPad, but very good. I was interested the whole way through, there was no lagging like you sometimes get half way into a long book, so that’s a great complement. Basically it is this orphaned kid (cause who doesn’t love an orphan) who is brilliant and wants to go to the University (yes, just THE UNIVERSITY, very original name, I would assume there aren’t many of these in The Name of the Wind universe). The University teaches stuff like math and chemistry, which seems fairly mundane for a world with magic in it, but that’s cool. They also learn stuff that’s like magic, but they never call it magic, they call it “sympathy”. It makes total sense in the book, cause they sometimes call it magic… but not always, or not usually. It’s kind of cool that all the magical-esqued people are basically academics, but any ways, this kid is also a fabulous musician and is in love with this girl. I think, kind of, but not really totally (yet), but he hasn’t acted on anything, but there is always the next book.
I had a friend recommend this book to me and say it was “like Harry Potter but for adults”. Ok, fine, there is a school for magic-typed learning, but if that’s all it takes to make something equal to Harry Potter there are probably a lot of books that are “like Harry Potter”. Nothing is like Harry Potter; talk to any true fan of the series and Harry Potter is life changing, it influenced children and adults in a way that most other series do not. The Name of the Wind, while a wonderful book, is nothing like Harry Potter; not for the plot and not for the life changing-ness. The author didn’t seem to go for massive “real life” inspiration (not on a Harry Potter like scale).
It’s really a good book though. I liked it, and who doesn’t love a good fantasy novel. I don’t really get why some people scoff at fantasy books, because it’s basically my favourite genre of all time (probably followed up by autobiographies / memoirs oddly enough). The Name of the Wind is curious because so much happened, but there is clearly an underlying “bad guy” that is lurking just in the peripheral of the book, and the tension builds high. I am looking forward to seeing that evil bugger crawl out of the wood work in the next book. The way the book is presented is super cool too; Kote/Kvothe is the main character, and he is recounting his story to a Chronicler (a recorder of stories) and it starts with his childhood and builds to his teen years. I think technically the character ended up being about 17 or so by the end of the book, but Kote speaking from the future is somewhere older then that. Of course, like so many tales, the hero is an orphan, but Kvothe doesn’t seem like an ordinary hero, kind of like he’s ok with doing bad things if he has no other choice, but you still see him as a good person because I do think he is inherently good, he just knows to stand up for himself.
Needless to say, the book is interesting and totally worth reading.