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Fool's Fate (Tawny Man) [Hardcover]

Robin Hobb
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (137 customer reviews)

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Book Description

20 Oct 2003 Tawny Man (Book 3)

The triumphant conclusion to our three thrilling fantasy series, from the author of the bestselling Farseer and Liveship traders trilogies.

The only hopes for an end to war and insurrection in the Six Duchies rests in the hands of the small party that are embarked on a desperate quest to the frozen island of Aslevjal.

Here, so legend says, lies the sleeping form of the legendary great black dragon, Icefyre. The beast is of holy significance to the people of the OutIslands, a powerful talisman, but it is this dragon that their Narcheska has challenged Prince Dutiful to kill. All he has to help him in this in the company of his small coterie: the mercurial old assassin, Chade, the gifted but slow-witted servant boy, Thick, and their Skillmaster, Fitz. The other member of the group has been left behind in Buckkeep, but the Fool will do everything in his power to be with them on the island – he has seen that this is his final destiny.

When the ship finally reaches the desolate island it seems out of the question that anything could exist on this wasteland, yet the discoveries that Dutiful and his friends make will not only put the quest and their lives in jeopardy, it will also shape the future of the whole world.

The Tawny Man Book 3 (provisional title: FOOL’S END) brings not only this trilogy but also the Farseer trilogy begun with ASSASSIN’S APPRENTICE in 1996 to a spectacular conclusion. Filled with breathtaking drama and powerful character-led story-telling, Robin Hobb’s writing is in a class of its own.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 816 pages
  • Publisher: Voyager; First Edition, First Impression edition (20 Oct 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0002247283
  • ISBN-13: 978-0002247283
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16.8 x 6.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (137 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 532,414 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robin Hobb is a New York Times best-selling fantasy author. She is published in English in the US, UK and Australia, and her works have been widely translated. Her short stories have been finalists for both the Hugo and the Nebula awards, as well as winning the Asimov's Readers Award. Her best known series is The Farseer Trilogy (Assassin's Apprentice, Royal Assassin, and Assassin's Quest.)

Robin Hobb was born in Oakland California, but grew up in Fairbanks, Alaska. She has spent her life mostly in the Pacific Nortwest region of the US, and currently resides in Tacoma, Washington State, with her husband Fred. They have four grown offspring, and six grandchildren.

Robin Hobb is a pen name for Margaret Ogden. She has also written under the name Megan Lindholm.

She published her first short story for children when she was 18,and for some years wrote as a journalist and children's writer. Her stories for children were published in magazines such as Humpty Dumpty's Magazine for Little Children, Jack & Jill and Highlights for Children. She also created educational reading material for children for a programmed reading series by SRA (Science Research Associates.) She received a grant award from the Alaska State Council on the arts for her short story "The Poaching", published in Finding Our Boundaries in 1980.

Fantasy and Science Fiction had always been her two favorite genres, and in the late 70's she began to write in them. Her initial works were published in small press 'fanzines' such as Space and Time (editor Gordon Linzner). Her first professionally published story was "Bones for Dulath" that appeared in the Ace anthology AMAZONS!, edited by Jessica Amanda Salmonson in 1979. A short time later, a second Ki and Vandien story entitled The Small One was published in FANTASTIC in 1980.

During that time period, she and her family had moved from Alaska to Hawaii, and subsequently to Washington State, where they settled. She had various money making occupations (waitress, salesperson, etc.) while striving with her writing. Her husband Fred continued to fish Alaskan waters and was home only about 3 months out of every year. The family lived on a small farm in rural Roy where they raised lots of vegetables, chickens, ducks, geese and other small livestock.

In 1983, her first novel, Harpy's Flight, was published by Ace under the pen name Megan Lindholm. Her later titles under that name included Wizard of the Pigeons, Alien Earth, Luck of the Wheels, and Cloven Hooves.

In 1995, she launched her best selling series of books set in the Realm of the Elderlings. At that time, she began writing as Robin Hobb. Her first trilogy of books were about her popular characters, FitzChivalry Farseer and the Fool. The Farseer Trilogy is comprised of Assassin's Apprentice, Royal Assassin and Assassin's Quest. These books were followed by The Liveship Traders trilogy, set in the same world. The Tawny Man trilogy returned to the tale of Fitz and the Fool. Most recently, the four volumes of the Rain Wilds Chronicles were published: Dragon Keeper, Dragon Haven, City of Dragons and Blood of Dragons.

In 2013, it was announced that she would return to her best-loved characters with a new trilogy, The Fitz and the Fool trilogy. The first volume, Fool's Assassin, will be published in August of 2014.

Other works as Robin Hobb include The Soldier Son trilogy and short stories published in various anthologies. A collection of her shorter works as both Lindholm and Hobb is available in The Inheritance.

She continues to reside in Tacoma, Washington, with frequent visits to the pocket farm in Roy.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Fool's Fate concludes Robin Hobb's fantasy trilogy "The Tawny Man"--in which Fitz, narrator-hero of the "Farseer" trio beginning with Assassin's Apprentice, plunges into new complexities of politics and magic 15 years later.

The goal is formal peace between Fitz's Six Duchies and the Outislander Raiders, ending a cycle of war fought with weapons that kill the soul, whose horror dominated that first trilogy. A royal marriage is arranged, with the puzzling condition that the Duchies' heir must bring a bride-price of the head of the last male dragon--who's alive but entombed in a glacier. Why?

Fitz's old friend the Fool, a once-albino who believes himself the White Prophet of this age but has mysteriously darkened into the Tawny Man, opposes this dragon-killing. It seems necessary to deceive and betray the Fool for his own good, if only to prevent his self-prophesied death.

Another betrayal: a halfwit master of the psychic "Skill" is needed for this mad quest, and must be lured by Fitz on to ship after ship despite his horror of the sea. Old deceptions return to haunt Fitz, such as the Skilled girl who doesn't know she's his daughter, and others long kept in the dark for what seemed excellent reasons.

Grim surprises, confrontations, a hidden enemy and the old horror of soul-draining ("Forging") all await on the island of the glacier and the dragon. Fitz has more than once been traumatically hauled back from death: now the risks are worse than ever, with an impasse that surely can't be resolved.

Do Fitz and his closest friends win through? That would be telling, but whatever happens, there are high prices to be paid. It's a measure of Robin Hobb's skill with characters and relationships that the final compromises and realistic settlements are so satisfying. Smoothly readable despite great length, laden with charm and terror, Fool's Fate is a fine ending to what is a family as well as a fantasy saga. --David Langford


Praise for Robin Hobb:
The Golden Fool
‘Complexity and complex world-building are effortlessly dashed off’

Fool’s Errand
‘In today’s crowded fantasy market Robin Hobb’s books are like diamonds in a sea of zircons’

Assassin’s Apprentice:
‘A wonderful book, written by a writer at the height of her abilities’

Assassin’s Quest:
‘An enthralling conclusion to this superb trilogy, displaying an exceptional combination of originality, magic, adventure, character, and drama’

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The end of an era 16 Oct 2003
By Rosslock VINE VOICE
Fools Fate is the conclusion of the latest trilogy in the Farseer saga, and also the end of this particular Fantasy series. And I regret this very much.
Having read all 9 books in this series over the past 6 or 7 years it really feels a chapter has come to a close. What has struck me about this series is the incredible characters Ms Robin Hobb has created, with all of their feeling and emotions. This is not an all-action, blood and guts, swords and battles series (although all of these things feature at some point) but a very strong character based story about people.Fitz must be one of the most memorable characters ever created in the fantasy genre.
This book, as mentioned, takes the whole story to its conclusion. Although maybe not the best one out of all nine books it still pulls you back into the six Duchies (or the Outislands as that’s where most of this part is set) and it is very hard to let go. And my 5 star rating is as much for the whole series as it is for this book.
I am not going to draw any comparisons to other fantasy series but will just conclude with the fact that this series rates with me as a top fantasy series that I will whole heartily recommend to anyone interested in the genre.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
By russell clarke TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Really great art has the ability to leave you bereft. For instance when the Jam split up I was distraught. I was even more distraught when I heard the Style Council but the absence of that band( The Jam) from my life meant the future looked suddenly bleak. Of course I got over it, yet I still feel the same when certain things slip out of my life and I know I will never get that anticipation of re-joining them for new adventures. "Blackadder Goes Forth" got me like that and here's the rub, so did "Fools Fate".

I have followed the adventures, trials, tribulations and travels of royal assassin Fitz from the very first book "Assassins Apprentice" and though it sounds rather trite and shallow Fitz has become like a mate. I realise he's only a fictional character , that he doesn't in actual fact exist , but all the same I really , really care what happens to him. Fitz isn't perfect..he worries too much , he procrastinates and frets .In truth he needs to lighten up a bit but to me and no doubt countless other readers he is so beautifully drawn a character, as indeed are most the characters in Robin Hobbs books , that he could be real . We suffer with him, understand his frustrations and fears and revel in his rare moments of freedom and joy. In short we empathise.

Which is why , despite being completely bereft at reaching the conclusion of that last of the six books featuring Fitz Chivalry I was oddly moved and almost surreptitiously happy that he achieves some measure of peace and contentment at the end of his eventful journey throughout the "Six Duchies".
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinarily excellent! 9 Mar 2006
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I sit on my bed in silent contentment and wonder. The last line passes through my mind over and over. Then the tears of joy stream. This book is officially the best book I have ever read. I have read Lord of the Rings but the emotional involvment in this book is unbeatable. I would read this book 100 times just to read the ending. It leaves a possibility of more books on the Fool but I think that Fitz's story is finished.... but what a finish. I would recommend this to anyone with any interest in fantasy. This book... this whole series beats Feist, Gemmell, Tolkien, and anyone else you care to name. They are all great authors but in my opinion this series and in particular this book, they all are unbeatable. 10/5 stars.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most amazing trip of my life 17 Jan 2005
How do you describe a series of books that have you laughing, crying and staying up until all hours of the night not wanting to let go for a moment? The last book in the Tawny Man series was superb and the last chapter I could hardly read through my tears. Truely truely the best writing I have read for along time. Her descriptions and observations are spot on.
When is the next trilogy out? Robin, thank you for 9 extraordinary books, a real pleasure, you stir the emotions.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Officially the best book I've ever read. 27 Mar 2004
Presumably if you're reading this review then you've already read the first 5 Fitz books (and if you haven't, then you should do). This is definitely the best, an absolutely wonderful end to the two trilogies. There is one point where you will think that Robin Hobb is such a terrible, horrible person, how could she do these things to the people you love so much? The ending! Oh the ending, you have to read it just for the ending, and there's so much to keep you entertained and on tenterhooks all the way up to the ending. I loved it. As you can see. It's very very exciting and emotionally involving. There are so many bits to keep you wondering, to keep you wanting to read on and on past your bedtime and past time to get up for work the next day. You're probably best buying the paperback version to avoid strain on your wrists from the weight of the thing. I can't tell you much about the book itself really, I mean the plot, because I don't want to give a single thing away. A truly wonderful book. Brilliant.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great trilogy
Published 2 days ago by lynda howarth
5.0 out of 5 stars There be dragons !
In the last of this beautifully written trilogy, the threads from the previous eight books converge and you finally see the purpose, perspective and impact of what has gone... Read more
Published 14 days ago by TonyD
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing.
I discovered Robin Hobb a few months ago (and by discover I meant I finally picked up one of her books after regularly seeing them in the fantasy section) and everything else in my... Read more
Published 16 days ago by Jacob Lawler
5.0 out of 5 stars A good start
Enjoyed this next step in the story and although some of the same information was gone over I suppose it was necessary if someone hadn't read the earlier books.
Published 1 month ago by Mrs L Santi
5.0 out of 5 stars Some cheesy headline about how much you should read this.
My other reviews have always been quite short but this series deserves a bit more than that. This is now the 9th book I have read from this world and it still managed to surprise... Read more
Published 1 month ago by massive fan
5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING! AMAZING! AMAZING!
I have never cried so much reading a book, and now I'm finished i'm dazed and bereft. It is testement to Robin Hobbs incredible imagination and talent that readers can be left... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Scarletine
5.0 out of 5 stars Fools ending
What a brilliant trilogy. Have been engrossed from beginning to end. Couldn't put the kindle down until the story was complete. Robin Hobb is a "skill" writer beyond words. Read more
Published 1 month ago by gingertopsy
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read
Read it on the way to work over a couple of weeks. Time flies by. Amazon should let us type fewer words for reviews.
Published 1 month ago by Danny Zwaagstra
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best
I read a lot of fantasy and historical fiction amongst other things. The Fitz and the fool books are almost without doubt the best series of books I have read, totally absorbing. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Jamie Lawson
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic!
A great end to the trilogy. Thoroughly enjoyed every minute of reading it. I would highly recommend reading the books.
Published 2 months ago by Gill Bancroft
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