Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss - REVIEW


Hey. Hi. Hello. It's me again, up at it again with them fantasy book reviews. hehe πŸ˜…

Since you are curious: yes, sci-fi/fantasy are the only genres I read - sue me. Sometimes I find myself dabbling - but this is my home. And I'm keeping it nice and tidy bishhh. 😀

There are two magnificent authors whose series are infamous for being in WIP hell. πŸ‘Ώ Those would be our boy George R. R. Martin and Mr. Patrick Rothfuss. George at least got 5 books out, and several tie-ins/world books etc. etc. Patrick has had a rougher time with it, seeing as how he's at two novels and one novella - 15 years after his first release. πŸ˜¬πŸ˜…

That's an oof if I've ever seen one. πŸ˜„

And yet, this book has captured the minds of so many people, even with its unfinished status it has still amassed a large cult following. I talked about these delays up-front because I will not mention them henceforth. This book is in a league of its own, and deserves its proper credit.

πŸ€“ So, where are my report cards, hmm? Ah. Here they are. Of course...

Obligatory πŸ“’ SPOILER FREE πŸ“’. As always, it's written with the longtime reader in mind. πŸ˜‰ There's enough fantasy pie to go around people! πŸ•°

Note: All quotations in this article are excerpts from Patrick Rothfuss's "Name of the Wind", 2007.

PS: It's also one of the rare books I actually have a physical copy of, so I get to show off one of my books for once! Everybody wins! πŸ˜‚ psst, I'm the guy on the left πŸ˜‰


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β€œIt's like everyone tells a story about themselves inside their own head. Always. All the time. That story makes you what you are. We build ourselves out of that story.”

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If there's one thing these books are famous for, it's the prose. Patrick Rothfuss has such a fluid way with words that you can't help but become mesmerized by them. 😍

He accomplished this through extensive rewrites that Patrick himself said rival those of Rowling's first Harry Potter book. "My mom always said, if you do something do it right the first time." I"m paraphrasing here - but that's one of Patrick's famous sayings over the years.

Rothfuss has a youtube and twitch channel where he candidly interacts with his fans. So a lot of the information we'd be foggy about with other authors is clear with Rothfuss. His channels are great if you wanna learn how a creative mind functions. 🀠 And how it can fall in certain traps. I recommend you check it out if you want to become an author. HERE <-


He has stated that throughout the years of writing this novel, his writing skill has sharpened to a fine edge. He uses techniques used in poetry for his prose, which grants the text this whimsical feeling. πŸ˜‡

β€œWords are pale shadows of forgotten names. As names have power, words have power. Words can light fires in the minds of men. Words can wring tears from the hardest hearts.”

The Rule of 3 is super prevalent in his writing. As is - for lack of a better word - the Rule of 7. The number '7' is also important in the story. So important in fact that Patrick draws notice to it several times through his narrative. So this blending of narrative with style is something that gives the novel this otherworldly quality to it. πŸ‘½

You really do feel like you're being told this story by a wise musician. Which is the point. Which is amazing. The framing device this story uses to tell its plot is πŸ‘Œ

Speaking of which.

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β€œWhen we are children we seldom think of the future. This innocence leaves us free to enjoy ourselves as few adults can. The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind.”

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We follow Kvothe. A once-hero who has fallen on hard times. This figure of myth retells his languid and tortured past to us and we are transfixed by his trials. 😭 He serves as an unreliable narrator, which adds an element to the story that is wholly in line with its themes of loss and triumph over the hardest circumstances.

First of all, Kvothe is an awesome name - don't care what nobody says. 😁 Second, his character is the driving force behind the story, his character is the story in more ways than one (super cool 😎). This has led many people to wrongly call him a Marry Sue. This annoys me to no end.


I've talked about author intent, and Kvothe is handled with such care that I don't see how his character could negatively impact the story. It's true, if you dislike Kvothe, you'll dislike this book πŸ˜…. And calling him a Marry Sue states nothing as it's obvious that was the author's intent. It's Kvotthe's story after all, of course he would embellish his legend. And even if his Marry Sueness wasn't intentional, I don't see that as a determent to his character. It's type of trope that is masterfully executed and should be taken note. So, when someone uses the term Marry Sue as a way to criticise the Kingkiller Chronicles, know that that person's critique is lazy to say the least. πŸ˜„

β€œYou have to be a bit of a liar to tell a story the right way.”

The rest of the cast pulls their weight well enough. Patrick devotes enough time and characterization to make most likeable and empathetic. Most of the cast are tortured souls like our precious red boy Kvothe. πŸ”΄

My favorites have to be Devi and Auri. πŸ‘

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β€œI have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep. You may have heard of me.”

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Man, this world just rocks. 😁

There are few fantasy worlds that enthral you in such a way. I love that Patric uses both a hard and magic system. 😍 I really think this is the way to go if you want your fantasy world to feel authentic. How can a fantastical place feel authentic? That's the point - you have to try real hard.

It all works in beautiful harmony. The writing style, the magic system, the characters, the plot's framing device. Every element strengthens every other to form this piece of art.


The world itself is also brimming with a variety of cultures, races, and religions. We are never bogged down with the minutiae of their machinations, just given enough to understand their agenda and loyalties. 😐

β€œUsing words to talk of words is like using a pencil to draw a picture of itself, on itself. Impossible. Confusing. Frustrating ... but there are other ways to understanding.”

This work deserves an adaptation, but I fear it's impossible to capture the magic within these pages. The Lin Manuel Miranda spin-off show could have captured the essence of this world - but it got cancelled. 😭 I don't think we will see this IP on the screen for a while still.

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β€œThe boy grows upward, but the girl grows up.”

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The framing device in these books is ingenious. I'm sure I will steal it eventually. 😁 It's such a natural way to give out narrative that I'm surprised there aren't more works with its framework.

Since Kvothe is a storyteller, a performer, the flow of the story follows suit. It's like you're sitting in a campfire listening to a tale of a hero long passed. Masterfully told.

Many people have criticized the plot as being to loose, too free-flowing, with little or no structure to speak off. This again, is done intentionally to invoke that classic storyteller feeling I just talked about. It might seem meandering at times (most of the time actually 😁). But that is by design. And I can't be mad at well-designed things. 😊

If you find that you only enjoy stories with the 3-act structure, then that's on you! 😱 It's ok to not like things, more than ok. But when you start quantifying what's good and what's bad then you better know what you're talking about. πŸ’― And as a student of the craft, I personally do not thing this book's pacing is an inherent issue with the work. It's just different.

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β€œYou see, women are like fires, like flames. Some women are like candles, bright and friendly. Some are like single sparks, or embers, like fireflies for chasing on summer nights. Some are like campfires, all light and heat for a night and willing to be left after. Some women are like hearthfires, not much to look at but underneath they are all warm red coal that burns a long, long while.”

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This book rules, plain and simple. 😀

As time passes, I find myself loving it more and more. It's so hard to accomplish what Patrick Rothfuss did in this book. Evident by the fact that the third entry is still unreleased (I said I wasn't gonna talk about it but it's the end of the article - give me a break. πŸ˜…) A piece of art such as this requires careful consideration, and an itch for perfection that borderlines madness. I commend Patrick for trying to pull it off, but the landing seems to be giving him more trouble than he bargained for. 😒


Separated from all of that, Name of the Wind stands on its own. You can read it, be satisfied, and ignore the other works. Few have. Usually you get sucked in and eventually mad at the author for not finishing the series. But hey, at least there's an option to leave. πŸ˜‹

And if you are a contemporary reader, then this is a great introduction to fantasy. The writing style lends itself to book enjoyers. Melting away their preconceptions about the genre.

And if this review wasn't clear enough, then I wholeheartedly recommend this to anyone and everyone.

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That was a pretty fun review to write. 😁 And you know what? For all my earlier claims that I only read fantasy, I think my next review will be from a contemporary n novel (well... conteporaryish). πŸ˜…

Thanks for reading guys and gals!

πŸ‘Š If you enjoyed this review please consider following my HIVE blog πŸ‘Š

Obligatory Shout-out to the πŸ•PIZZAπŸ• gang, πŸ€™ gang. πŸ€™

Image sources.

Stay safe and look after one another! πŸ™Œ


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