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on 26 February 2016
In this prequel to the Farseer trilogies, Robin Hobb reveals a part of the History of the Six Duchies, telling us how the Wit became a shameful and forbidden magic, through the legend of the Piebald Prince.

The story is narrated by Felicity, childhood friend-cum-maid to Princess Caution, daughter of King Virile. The first part recounts how the Princess fell in love with a stablemaster named Lostler and gave birth to a Witted bastard with spotted skin, Charger.

The second part tells Charger’s story, growing up alongside Felicity’s own son Redbird. When the Piebald Prince falls in love with the same woman as his cousin and rival to the throne, Canny Farseer, an inexorable succession of macabre events will lead to the persecution and banishment of all the Witted ones.

True to herself, Robin Hobb once again provides us with an very gritty but decidedly compelling story. This new piece of lore is must-read for all fans of her Realm of the Elderlings universe.
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on 15 December 2014
Good book, but it doesn't work on my mobile. However, it does work on the PC kindle service.

This made me regain faith in Robin Hobb again; I read the Fool's Assassin before this and found it way slower than the other books. This one is shorter, but much more entertaining than Fool's Assassin. However, it does do what it says on the cover, show the story of the Wilful Princess and Piebald Prince. It could have been a little longer, but it fulfilled every major promise it spun; entertainment, the truth about the Piebald Prince and a glance to the Farseer origins.

However, it should primarily be bought for a reader who enjoys Robin Hobb, as it fills into a tapestry of history that it assumes you are vaguely familiar with.
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on 6 February 2018
Disappointed that it was not possible to read this on kindle. It's not compatible. Unfortunately I didn't read the other reviews and only found out having purchased it. Very poor of Amazon to sell an item for Kindle when you can read it. Is this fraudulent under the trade description act?
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on 20 November 2013
Enjoyed this very much - nice to have the background to the story filed in ... But I must admit, I was expecting a bigger book - entirely my fault for not reading the info properly. I would still have bought it, but been less dismayed when I first opened the package it arrived in! It works well as a short story, but it's a shame it wasn't expanded into a full length book as it would easily have done so: this feels more like a detailed synopsis at times, rather than allowing us to fully engage with the characters.
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on 18 October 2014
Tragic. Simply tragic. What I expected before I read the book? I thought the W.princess and the the P. prince were lovers! (For most books, I don't read synopses).
Never in a million years would I have thought it would be a story about mother and son.

I am giving this novella 5 stars, because I gobbled it up the minute I started it.

The events in this story took place long before Fitz and the Fool ever existed. It happened so long ago that at the time the Magic called the Wit, what we came to know from both the Farseer & Tawny Man trilogies as despised and undesirable, was respected and a gift.

By Felicity's own admission "Lostler was a man with what some folk thought a gift in those days. He could whisper in the tongues of beasts, and so bend nearly any animal to his will. Some call this magic the Wit..."

It's a devastating story to say the least, but an essential part of history for the six Duchies, and the ruling family.
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on 31 December 2013
If you have read the Farseer trilogy and loved it, then definitely buy this. Rather different from most of Robin Hobb's works and also much shorter. None the less I still found this a gripping story and hard to put down once I started. It is also nicely decorated with page borders and several full colour illustrations. The quality of the hardback is also very good for the price.
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on 24 August 2015
Delivered a couple of days early , very good. A book that I had on my " must have" list for some considerable time, written by my favourite author, well worth the wait . Fabulous story, well-written, as expected, clarifying some aspects of the whole series, mystifying others, which is , of course, why we keep going back to her books. Fabulous.
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on 13 December 2013
This was a fascinating tale and I didn't put it down from beginning to end. Most definitely one of Robin Hobbs better writings! I would highly recommend any Farseer fan to read it (just buy the paper back)

That said, the kindle edition is grossly over priced for a short story that I read in less than 2 hours and the format leaves a lot to be desired. It can only be read in landscape in what I can only assume is a format used for comics. It is non zoomable and not only gave me eye strain but wrist ache!

Oh and as has already been mentioned is not available on the older style kindles, only the fire onwards. Please, please, please can this be made available in the good "old fashioned" kindle book format. While I appreciated the handful of illustrations through out the book, they weren't necessary to appreciate the story.
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on 16 January 2014
I loved reading the end of this again, I was so sad to be at the end so for good measure I started the whole series again since Assassins Apprentice was last read in 1995, I am very glad that I re read the 3 books and the 3 Ships series again, I had forgotten so much and I appreciated them even more the second time around.

Robin has the knack to add humor, sadness and happiness right through the story, she presses the right buttons each time.
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on 21 November 2014
This review is based on reading this book on Kindle Fire HD.

I enjoyed this book and the background to the wit and farseers. However ... it took me weeks to read simply because the font was far too small and I could find no way of enlarging it to a comfortable size for me.
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