Fool’s Assassin by Robin Hobb (Fitz and the Fool, Book 1)

After bringing dragons back to the world in the thrilling conclusion of the Tawny Man trilogy, past-haunted bastard Catalyst Fitz has now retired to a quiet life under an assumed name, but when his post-menopausal wife claims she is pregnant, and a pale messenger with an ominous message dies in his holdfast, Fitz wonders if the wheel of history is bringing his beloved Fool back into his life–for better or for worse.

Count me among those who had a major freakout upon realizing that Robin Hobb was bringing Fitz out of retirement and back into a new planned trilogy. And Fool’s Assassin doesn’t disappoint in the slightest. I had a lump in my throat and a pang in my heart from the very first pages, and almost couldn’t handle how well Hobb set up this new story.

What I love best about Hobb is her characterization. She never shies away from putting relationships in jeopardy. Here, she uses alternating POV chapters (both in first person) and deftly shows how different people interpret the same events. The second POV character is a new one, and an uncanny game-changer of epic proportions. The story also promises true tragedy and horror and I’m a little scared and nervous but in a way that reminds me why I love to read fiction.

For those of you who love the previous books, I’ll give you just one snippet:
“What did you call him?”
*cue tears

Many thanks to Del Rey for the review copy. The quote I gave his from memory and not checked against the final edition.

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