Assassin’s Apprentice is my first foray into the fantasy world created by Robin Hobb. I first “picked up” this book a few years ago when it was free on Amazon kindle. The electronic file sat on my kindle bookshelf gathering dust until recently when a friend recommended Robin Hobb’s Liveship Traders series to me. Later, when browsing my kindle to see if I wanted to read anything on there, I found that I had downloaded Assassin’s Apprentice, the first book in the Farseer Trilogy. I decided why not and was almost instantly sucked in. This story is one of the best fantasy books I’ve read in a long time.
The book is narrated by Fitz, the undisputed bastard of Prince Chivalry. He is abandoned to the men at court when he is six and he has no memories of anything before being left in their care. Burrich, Prince Chivalry’s stablemaster, is given charge of the boy. Fitz grows up in the stables, forging almost unnatural friendships among the animals.
As he grows older, Fitz comes into his own. Whatever he tries his hand at, he excels at. When he garners the attention of King Shrewd, Shrewd sends him to be trained by Chade, the Royal Assassin. This first book in the series tells the story of Fitz’s childhood, adolescence, and training as both an assassin as well as his training in the Skill—a magic based in the mind that allows for communication over great distances among many other things. The political intrigue had me clicking through the pages and devouring the story. And the emotional ties of the animals, especially the dogs, had me totally empathetic with Fitz.
And as captivating as this book is, it promises more exciting adventures in the subsequent volumes. I will definitely finish this series with enthusiasm.