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VWN Product Reviews: Fool's Errand (Tawny Man, Book 1)

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The Tawny Man trilogy sees the return of Fitz and his Wit-companion Nighteyes after fifteen years of living in solitude. Once again the fate of the world hangs in the balance, wrapped up in the fate of the Farseer family.
The Red Ship wars are over, but their legacy still lives on in the troubled Outislands, whilst a newer, internal threat is affecting the Six Duchies - the persecution of the Witted having reared its head once again.
Fitz finds himself pulled from his rural life and once again caught up in the maze of court intrigue and adventure as he in reunited with his old companion, the Fool, in a quest to save first the heir to the throne of the Six Duchies and then the future of mankind itself.

Whilst all this might sound terribly cliched and tired in the fantasy genre, considering quite how often the fate of mankind lies on the shoulders of an individual, Hobb manages it with remarkable skill. Hobb?s characters are emotive and mostly are easy to empathise with, which seems to be a particular aspect of Hobb?s writing, though on occasion there does appear to be the odd nonsensical action, mostly be Fitz.
Readers of the previous series, The Farseer Trilogy, will mostly likely enjoy this novel more than those who haven?t read them due to the number of references to the previous work, but the narrative works perfectly well as a stand-alone series also. Readers of the previous series will also be aware of the somewhat typical assumptions made regarding the personalities of animals made in this novel, but balanced against the excellent story-telling and narrative of this novel, accepting someone else?s idealised view of creature personalities is a small price to pay.
The Tawny Man trilogy is a refreshing change from much of the work that falls into the fantasy genre and is a must-read for those interested in exploring the lands of the Six Duchies and beyond.

 

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