Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Name of the Wind

The Name of the Wind is a fantasy novel written by Patrick Rothfuss.

My name is Kvothe, pronounced nearly the same as "quothe."
... I 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.

This is the introduction that Kvothe, the protagonist of the The Name of the Wind, gives to himself as he settles down to narrate the true story behind the legend that he is. This tells you a great deal about him. That he is great hero, that he is a prodigy, not disinclined to breaking the rules, and the last but not least, that he knows how to spin a good tale. (A little vain, maybe?)

THis is the first book in a trilogy, like most fantasy offerings these days, and so doesn't contain all the good stuff, but it's enough to make you want to devour the sequel, and then wait desperately for the third. I stumbled upon this gem when I consulted the top 100 fantasy and sci-fi books flowchart, and it said, "If you like HArry Potter..." or something of the sort. But the truth is, Harry, as lovable as he is, could never hope to pull one-tenth of the brilliant, attention-catching, and hopelessly insane stunts Kvothe pulls while at the University. He is brilliant, determined and cocky, and nearly escapes unscathed from large-scale foolishness. Nearly. He also stumbles around looking for a girl whose name he isn't sure about. Where she lives is also a mystery for him, and he has no idea who she is. But he's sure about one thing, after meeting her all of two times--he's in love with her.

As a character, one thinks that with his striking looks (red hair and green eyes) and prodigious talent for almost anything he puts his mind to, perhaps the author loves him a little too much. But then you wince at the punishments he earns and laugh at his form of revenge over his Malfoy-like rich-boy arch-enemy (a song called 'Jackass, Jackass), and you start loving him too. He also has a sad past, makes several mistakes, and ultimately turns out not ot be a real legend after all.

Read The Name of The Wind because you like Harry Potter, and because you don't. Read it if you prefer heroes over anti-heroes, and if you don't. Read it because it's just another fantasy coming-of-age book that's special.
Both the books written by the author

Contributed by Ruhee D'Cunha