≡ Menu

Book Review: The Name of The Wind

the name of the windIf you are here simply because you want to know what I think of Patrick Rothfuss’ book The Name of The Wind, here’s the short version: as soon as I get done writing this post I am going to go add it to the list of best fantasy books that I started a couple of weeks ago.

The longer version is still going to be short, because I don’t want to spoil anything. I came to this book in the nicest possible way: I had never heard of it, someone recommended it to me, and I didn’t even know what genre it was when I opened it. I avoided reading the dust jacket or any reviews, and let the pages speak for themselves.

There are lots of those pages, nearly 700, and the book flew by in about 36 hours. If I had to write a summary of The Name of The Wind, I would say that it’s the first in a trilogy called The Kingkiller Chronicles. It is about a hero named Kvothe, who is obviously headed for a fall.

He starts as a roving member of a gypsy-type clan of performers. Things go very wrong and soon he is alone. He manages to survive on the streets for years and by the end of the book, he has risen through the ranks of The University, a very adult version of Hogwarts from the Harry Potter books.

The more his reputation grows, the more he enjoys being seen as a hero. And with every new act he performs it becomes more clear that when the heroism goes astray, it will do so on a grand scale. And of course, there’s a woman, who may or may not be at the heart of everything that happens to him (wink).

The book begins and ends with Kvothe telling his story to a man called The Chronicler, who has finally found him and has come to record the story.

I’m not willing to say more than that. It’s very very good, whether you like fantasy or not. And if you prefer fantasy you’re in for a treat.

Part 2 just came out. I’m on my way to get it today.


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Emily March 10, 2011, 11:09 am

    I just read this too! It was stellar. I’m so glad I timed it so well and read it right before the sequel came out, because I am hooked.

    • Josh Hanagarne March 10, 2011, 8:24 pm

      Yeah, I was very happy to see that the followup was out. I had no idea.

  • Gustavo March 10, 2011, 11:13 pm


    I guess I’ll have to read it.

  • Paul Anderson March 11, 2011, 9:47 pm

    My son and I went to Patrick’s bookreading at the St Paul library just after The Name of the Wind came out. Only 10 people were present – I guarantee his next reading will be quite crowded. 2 magical hours of discussion of the art and craft of writing. HIs blog is very good also. Our only fault is the length of time between the books!!

  • Blaine Moore March 13, 2011, 12:30 pm

    I just got this book recommended to me a couple of weeks ago and went into it with little more information than what you had…I was told, “It’s a character story that happens to take place in a fantasy world.” Sounded intriguing enough so I bought it on my kindle, read it within a few days, and then wasted a few more days I’ll never get back reading the sequel.

    At least I’ve got a few years before the 3rd book comes out…since I will probably reread the first two when it’s getting ready to be released, that’ll be another week down the tubes, heheh.

    Very well written, I enjoyed it quite a bit.