SPOILERY BOOK REVIEW: Fool’s Quest by Robin Hobb

“The longer I looked at him, the more I wanted to go and kill, not quickly and quietly, but messily and noisily. I wanted the people who had done this to him to know they were dying and why. I wanted them to have time to regret what they’d done.”

Fool’s Quest, ‘Winterfest Eve at Buckkeep’ –

Welcome, fellow fans of The Realm of the Elderlings and evil people who are reading this even though you haven’t read the books yet and know for a fact you will be spoiled tremendously! We’ve made it to the penultimate installment in the series!

An installment that, apart from a few minor details, I absolutely adored! πŸ₯° I loved how many Fitz and the Fool scenes were in this. I loved how pieces from all five series were slowly starting to come together. I loved getting to see Buckkeep again and being entangled in even more political intrigue. I loved watching Bee fight to survive and protect those she loved. And I loved the arcs of so many other characters, like Shun, FitzVigilant, Perseverance, Spark, and Motley!

Title: Fool’s Quest

Series: Fitz and the Fool, #2 / The Realm of the Elderlings, #15

Author: Robin Hobb

Genre: Fantasy

Page Count: 757

Publication Date: August 11, 2015

Date Read: August 9, 2022 – August 16, 2022

(Greece was distracting, okay? 😁 If I hadn’t been off exploring ruins and beaches and mountains, or confusing locals with my garbled attempts at speaking their language, I probably would have blazed through this much quicker!)

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Anyway, I think you know the drill by now! Before we cover some of my more general thoughts, here are my live reactions to Fool’s Quest!

🦌 A Nighteyes chapter header! 😭😭😭 If there was one way to ensure that this book started off with a punch in the gut, it was by including this!

🦌 Hold up – is this red liquid with a trace of silver in it dragon blood?! πŸ•΅οΈ Is this the blood Sedric took from Relpda? Or were there more dragon attacks recently? How did this vial end up here?

🦌 We’re back at Buckkeep. Fitz and the Fool are sharing a bed again. The Fool is still really badly hurt. Fitz said he loved the Fool, but that his first duty was to protect Bee, not even knowing what happened back at Withywoods. I CAN’T TAKE THIS!!! It is all so emotional and so, so good! 😭πŸ₯°πŸ˜­

🦌 It just gets more and more painful. Now Fitz is happily buying Winterfest presents for Bee 😭

🦌 I think I like Ash! Then again, my first impression of FitzVigilant was pretty favorable as well…

🦌 Why has the Fool’s entire personality suddenly been reduced to vengeance? 😩 I don’t like this!! However, I do like how Fitz is taking care of the Fool. And I’m grinning like anything over that ridiculous outfit Fitz is expected to wear and thinking it’s a huge disappointment that the Fool can’t see it.

🦌 How can neither Fitz nor the Fool make the connection that the boy who touched the Fool at the market and Bee are one and the same? You guys are so dumb! Plus, I wanna know how the whole Whites having a child thing works in more detail. Because evidently, the Fool doesn’t even know or suspect that his “son” is also Fitz’s kid? Do you not need a strong emotional connection to conceive a child this way? Who else would the Fool possibly have that with?

🦌 Fitz and Chade conspiring together is still one of my favorite things ever!

🦌 COMMANDER ELLIK??? 😳 AS IN COMMANDER ELLIK OF CHALCED??? What the heck is he doing with these people?? And how the fuck is he even alive? I thought he was in the palace when the dragons attacked!! How do scumbags like him somehow always make it?

🦌 This fog stuff is thoroughly creeping me out! Also, Bee convincing her captors that Shun is essential just about broke me 😭 Gimme that Shun arc, Robin Hobb, because if anyone has ever needed development, it’s her!

🦌 “Nightly, he urged me to leave, pointing out what I knew: that together you and I had already worked the change that was my mission. Our time together was over, and long past over. Lingering near you would only provoke other changes is the world, changes that might be far less desirable.” – That’s still the stupidest reasoning I ever heard, Fool! πŸ™„ How would you know that leaving Fitz might not be provoking changes, too, huh? Also, no matter what you say, I still think part of why you left is because you thought you were holding Fitz back. Just admit it!

🦌 Fitz and the Fool drinking brandy and talking is everything I ever needed from life. They’re just perfect when they’re together, okay? 😩😭πŸ₯° 

🦌 “I was screaming your name, over and over. And so they knew.” – 😭😭😭😭😭😭 I can’t take any of this this!! The Fool screaming Fitz’s name under torture. The Fool in agony over thinking he betrayed Fitz. Fitz reacting like that betrayal was the most natural thing in the world and blaming the Fool’s “unclear mind” for his anguish.

🦌 Fitz instinctively trying to heal the Fool and not noticing the agony it causes his own body is everything! πŸ₯° As is Nettle and Chade giving him a huge telling-off about it afterwards 😁

🦌 Of course Fitz would tell the Fool he merely cleaned out his wounds and bandaged them, when in reality, he ended up taking the Fool’s wounds onto himself while trying to heal his friend! 😭😭😭

🦌 “Fool, Fool. It’s all right. You are here with me now, and they cannot hurt you any more. You are safe here. Oh, Fool. You are safe. Beloved.” – 😭😭😭😭😭

🦌 Also, the Fool knowing Fitz well enough to realize exactly what Fitz was thinking about his foot and teasing him about it is beyond adorable πŸ₯°

🦌 If Fitz and the Fool changed each other like dragons change their Elderlings, does that I can blame Fitz for how revenge-driven the Fool has suddenly become? πŸ€” And just how dragony are they, exactly? Like, I still don’t understand how the Skill is connected to the Silver or why the Rooster Crown was so important. And what about that Elliania figurine from Other’s Island? How are all of the places in this world connected? I need answers!!

🦌 Kettricken suddenly being interested in Bee, when she never once checked in on her when she thought Bee was an imbecile who wouldn’t survive anyway, is seriously rubbing me the wrong way 😀 Maybe I was wrong to hold on to my belief in Kettricken for so long… She may hide behind her altruistic sacrifice front, but she’s just as manipulative as the rest of the family she married into when it comes to acquiring the sacrifices SHE thinks should be made! Also, why didn’t she ever tell Fitz that she had the Wit, huh?

🦌 I wanna meet this crow!! πŸ€— Although nobody will ever be able to replace Nighteyes. Ever.

🦌 Fitz’s reaction to Riddle telling him Nettle is pregnant is the most wholesome thing ever! πŸ₯° Oh, Fitz!! And can I just say how much I love Elliania right now? I’ve just about had it with Kettricken and her scheming, so Elliania going behind her husband’s back to marry them is perfection πŸ˜‡ As is the fact that Hap was involved and didn’t tell Fitz about any of this.

🦌 “Well, my child will know who her parents are! And she will know who her grandparents were! I will see to that, I will give her that, and no one will ever be able to take it away from her!” – Did I ever mention just how much I adore Nettle? She’s every bit as obstinate as her father, and besides, I love that she’s finally addressing what has been left unsaid for way too long!

🦌 “I both wanted to hold him and feared to. Feared that it would alarm him to be touched and feared even more that it would draw me tighter into his misery and wake my own. But at last I took the three steps that carried me around the table.” – How can anyone read this and think the relationship Fitz had with Molly was even remotely as meaningful as this one? 😭😭😭

🦌 “He did not reply. And after a time I realized he wasn’t going to. I felt unreasonably hurt by this. A dozen scathing comments went unsaid by me. He had no idea what I had given up for him. Then the moment of anger passed and I was grateful I had not spoken. I never wanted him to know what I had sacrificed for him.” – THIS. It’s absolutely perfect, and I just cannot put into words how much I love Fitz and the Fool!!

🦌 Okay, I already love this crow πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

🦌 What is Elliania doing??? πŸ™ˆπŸ™ˆπŸ™ˆ Actually, scratch that – at least there is one person in this family who has their priorities straight and is genuinely happy about their relatives’ good fortune! I still don’t understand why Kettricken and Dutiful wouldn’t let Nettle marry in the first place!

🦌 Oh no, Kettricken. Please don’t do what you think you’re going to do…

🦌 I can’t believe they actually did this BEHIND FITZ’S BACK!!! Don’t you think Fitz should have had a say in suddenly being proclaimed a prince? 😑 I mean, I’m glad Fitz is finally getting the recognition he deserves and that he’s happy, but still!! Note to people reading this: Don’t you ever, ever announce some life-changing secret of mine in front of a huge audience without consulting me first. Unlike Fitz, I haven’t been manipulated my entire life and would never see it as a favor. THIS IS JUST ANOTHER WAY TO ROPE YOU INTO BEING USED BY THE THRONE, FITZ!!

🦌 Who is Jek writing to? πŸ‘€ Who could possibly want all of this information on Kelsingra? I doubt the Fool had the time for detailed correspondence while being tortured, so who is she working for?

🦌 I am now certain that I like Ash. At least one person is taking this whole Prince revelation with humor and still treating Fitz like a normal human being!

🦌 Fitz painting the crow’s wings is the cutest thing ever! 😊 Also, how does the crow know this many words? There’s clearly more to her than meets the eye, and I’m very intrigued!

🦌 “Painting a crow. Prince FitzChivalry amuses himself painting crows on the first day after his acknowledgment by the throne.” – And this, guys, is why I love the Fool πŸ˜‚ His sense of humor is on point, he is knows matters a lot to Fitz and is continuously supportive, but unlike Fitz, he also immediately grasps the reality of what being a Prince entails and that painting crows is probably not part of it.

🦌 I appreciate the gesture of Chade giving Fitz this proclamation of Verity’s now, BUT WHY NOT SOONER?! You’ve known that Fitz was alive for DECADES, and you never thought to inform him of this before??? However, seeing that I don’t think Fitz would have borne power well at all, maybe it’s for the better…

🦌 Of course Fitz would try to heal the Fool again. I said so, didn’t I? πŸ˜‡ Also, while I’m still skeptical about the extent of the Fool’s vengeful nature, I love how he just casually touches Fitz all the time now and Fitz doesn’t think it’s weird. And he named Motley and loves her!! πŸ₯°

🦌 Chade telling Fitz to dress properly for dinner and not wear the crown and Ash and the Fool fussing over Fitz to get him properly attired is beyond wholesome.

🦌 I love how someone rebuked Starling and forced her to include the Fool in the second rendition of her song. My pettiness has never felt so gratified πŸ˜‡πŸ˜‡πŸ˜‡

🦌 Finally!! It’s taken them forever to realize something’s wrong at Withywoods!

🦌 Okay, this mass memory charm might be even creepier than Forging! 😨 Poor Perseverance! Imagine nobody in your life remembering you right after a truly traumatic event in which you lost half of your family… Fitz knowing his name nearly has me bawling!

(And yes, my word choice here was intentional. Whatever Vindeliar did is totally obliviate-reminiscent, just like the butterfly cloak is a weakened Invisibility Cloak. You can’t expect me not to see the Harry Potter parallels! 😜 Though, just to make it clear, I’m all here for them! And I still want the cloak 😁)

🦌 Wait, FitzVigilant is actually alive? πŸ€” I thought maybe something had just got lost in the Skilling, but apparently, the body Bee saw wasn’t a dead one…

🦌 I love how awed Perseverance is by Fitz’s identity πŸ˜„ Still, why isn’t he affected by the Obliviation? And, come to think of it, why wasn’t Shun under the fog-man’s spell with the rest of the servants?

🦌 Sildwell seems a lot smarter than people back at Buckkeep gave him credit for. Just saying 😁

🦌 Ugh, no, why are we switching back to Bee? I am way more invested in Fitz’s storyline right now!! Still, I guess getting to see her bond with Shun isn’t that bad… And Vindeliar throroughly creeps me out! Also, does Bee being sick mean her skin is going to change colors, like the Fool’s did? Although she hasn’t really accomplished much yet, apart from being kidnapped… And who is Bee’s Catalyst? Please don’t tell me it’s going to be Shun πŸ˜… Or actually, what if it’s Paragon?! The boy, obviously, not the ship. Because he was supposed to become important, right? I need those Liveship Trader plotlines to come to fruition eventually!

🦌 Thank Eda for Thick! I was starting to feel seriously depressed just reading this chapter. Now they had better figure out what the fuck is going on here and go after Bee! (But maybe also take the Fool with them? I’m not sure how that’s realistic, but I don’t want him and Fitz to be separated again!! πŸ₯Ί)

🦌 Chade is way too mad about Fitz not protecting Shun for someone just casually interested in what becomes of her. That girl is totally his daughter and Fitz is just not seeing it!

🦌 WE GOT CONFIRMATION!!! I’m feeling so smart right now, I can’t even tell you πŸ˜‡ Also, her name is actually Shine? That’s fitting πŸ˜‚

🦌 WHAAAAAAAAAAAATT????????!!!! Never mind, I am not smart, but supremely dumb. FITZVIGILANT IS CHADE’S SON???????!!!!! 🀯 I’m sorry, but I just can’t wrap my head around this. First of all, I now have a highly disturbing image of Chade having sex with Laurel stuck in my head. And also, does this mean Robin Hobb is now taking a leaf out of the Cassandra Clare department and introducing sibling incest??? Only with the incest actually being for real this time? Okay, then πŸ˜…

🦌 Thick πŸ₯° He’s so much smarter than everybody gives him credit for! Also, FitzVigilant has gone up considerably in my estimation by accepting so calmly that someone had tampered with his mind and volunteering to be the first to take the elfbark tea. Somehow, I doubt letting yourself remember a whole bunch of trauma all at once is going to be super easy, but then again, what do I know? πŸ€·πŸ½β€β™€οΈ **glares at a possibly not completely forgiven Fool’s Fate**

🦌 Ugh, no matter how hard I try, I still cannot picture Chade with Laurel 😳 Isn’t he, like, old enough to be her grandpa? And what do they even have in common?? How the heck did they ever end up in bed together?! Forget Fitz and Molly, this is the relationship that is seriously creeping me out!!

🦌 “I wondered what had passed between him and Shun on the evening they had stayed up so late. I decided I never wanted to know.” – Well, neither do I, Fitz, but this isn’t exactly helping!! I think it’s safe to say that, yes, we’ve got ourselves a Clary & Jace situation here 🀣🀣🀣

🦌 Also, that scene between Perseverance and his mother 😭😭😭

🦌 I can’t believe they STILL haven’t figured out that Bee is the Unexpected Son πŸ™„ How can nobody here put two and two together?

🦌 This got dramatic fast!! Suspending my disbelief over how totally out of shape Fitz and Chade won that fight, seeing their assassin training kick back in feels totally in character. Mentor and apprentice are still in there somewhere, and I’m here for it! 😁 Although, seriously, I can’t believe that Chade STILL isn’t dead. How is he still torturing people with a wound like that??

🦌 Bee turned white!! I was right about her shedding her skin!! Although why wasn’t she completely white in the first place? Does that mean her path has only begun now? πŸ€” Also, I still wanna know how Nighteyes ended up inside her head!

🦌 Nope, I’m definitely not super emotional about Skill-drunk Fitz unwillingly spilling all of his secrets to Nettle and Nettle realizing for the first time how much her father has truly sacrificed for her. Or about Fitz thinking that the Fool and Nighteyes are the only people who really know him, even ahead of Molly. Not at all.

🦌 The stuff in the vial was dragon blood! πŸ€— BUT WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO THE FOOL NOW THAT HE SWALLOWED A WHOLE MOUTHFUL OF THE STUFF??! Will this turn him into an Elderling? Is he going to become all scaly now? Is it just going to heal him, like Selden’s blood healed our dear friend the Chalcedean vampire? Does it do particularly strange things to White Prophets? There had better not be horrible consequences of some sort!!!

🦌 Bring on the applause; they’ve finally caught on! And Fitz’s reaction to the Fool saying Bee is also his daughter is so wonderfully Fitzy, and the Fool’s reaction so wonderfully Fooly! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ This is perfect!!

🦌 Fitz putting Foxglove in charge of his guard is probably one of the best command decisions he has ever made. Seriously, Fitz is way too scatter-brained to keep anything up and running all by himself! I can already see Patience tutting in her grave at how horrible Fitz is doing at maintaining princely dignity 😁

🦌 ASH IS A GIRL?!! Or gender-fluid, I guess? When did I get so bad at guessing plot twists? πŸ™ˆπŸ˜© However, Fool/Amber, you have no right to be so huffy about this! Not when you’ve been doing the same thing your whole life!!

🦌 It’s about time Fitz got some training in! With all the fighting he’s been doing it’s a miracle he’s still alive, considering how little exercise he got in Withywoods!

🦌 The Fool’s vengefulness is seriously creeping me out! Also, is Chade ACTUALLY in danger of dying this time? Who would’ve thought we would ever see that happen? πŸ˜‚

🦌 Trust Ellik to have greedy plans of his own and try to cross Dwalia. Although, somehow, I highly doubt things are going to work out exactly like he imagines…

🦌 Was there really ever any doubt that Fitz would defy Dutiful and go after Bee? 😊 Although I am mad that he left the Fool behind again, AND he had better not bond with Fleeter! Motley, I’d might be fine with, but a horse? Sorry all you horse-lovers out there, but after someone as epic as Nighteyes, I just cannot see Fitz being bonded to one!

🦌 Also, Lant, Perseverance, and Riddle wanting to accompany Fitz and Fitz being super annoyed about it is so wholesome πŸ₯° And now he drugged them! I just can’t!! πŸ˜‚ That is so like you, Fitz!

🦌 There’s no way Bee and Shun are getting away this easily. Something horrible is going to happen. I can just tell.

🦌 What did you do to that poor horse, Fitz? And what the hell did the Chalcedeans and the Whites do to each other?! 🀯

🦌 Vindeliar actually made Ellik’s people forget him completely πŸ˜‚ Oh, revenge is golden. That’s what you get for feeding Selden to the Duke of Chalced, you power-hungry idiot!

🦌 Shit, Fitz. I’m not sure even Hogen deserves this! 😨 I do very much approve of getting to see traces of Fitz’s past every now and then, though. This is how you write assassins, Sarah J. Maas! Take notes!

🦌 Hmmmmm… If the Servants hadn’t been so needlessly cruel to the people of Withywoods, these descriptions of the Fool as a child might actually make me start to doubt him. Like, who says that the path he thinks the world should be on is really the right one? Maybe he has always been misguided? But, nope, after seeing the kind of path the Servants want, my belief in the Fool is unwavering! 😁

🦌 Shun is really starting to grow on me! Also, while I don’t trust Kerf one bit, I can’t help but hope that he’s looking out for Shun and Bee. We need some more nuance to the Chalcedeans! Can’t we at least get one male person from that country who isn’t a rapist or an utter douchebag? 😩

🦌 Yup, not trusting Kerf was the right decision πŸ™„

🦌 Of course Bee would be taken through the stone right when Fitz had almost found her. Although I was also half expecting her to be taken right in front of Fitz’s eyes πŸ˜‚ But this is so much better!! Because now Shun will have to give Fitz the news of what happened! And fight desperately to get Bee back after the freedom Bee just bought for her!

🦌 I love Riddle πŸ₯° Although I do not want to be in his shoes when he comes home to face Nettle…

🦌 The fact that Shun/Shine is so frantic about Bee being taken has cemented her non-awfulness for good in my books! Although someone should probably clue her in that Lant is her brother…

🦌 Oh, shit, Lant told her πŸ˜‚ I mean, someone needed to, but maybe doing it when Shine was already beyond hysterical was not the best idea?

🦌 Also, I love seeing the Rousters slowly begin to live up to what Fitz hopes they can be!

🦌 Fitz going berserk over that stone 😭😭😭

🦌 I’m glad the possibility of a horse-bond seems to be fully off the table, though. I was worried for a moment, there. I mean, I like Fleeter well enough, but not as Fitz’s Wit partner!

🦌 Nettle came! To be honest, I was kind of worried Dutiful might forbid it and try to punish Fitz for defying his orders. Maybe the Farseers are actually starting to make progress and stick together as a family? πŸ€”

🦌 Yeah, there’s no way Bee is dead. Why are all you Farseers so hopelessly pessimistic?? πŸ™„ Fitz was stuck in one of those Skill-pillars for weeks!! Why is your first conclusion that Bee is dead when her arrival is probably just a tad delayed?

🦌 I’m starting to really love Elliania. At least one person here places family above royal intrigue without having to think about it! And also, the fact that Fitz thought he was being summoned for punishment just about breaks my heart 😭😭😭

🦌 No matter what you people say about friendly kisses, I still think the way Kettricken treats Fitz is super weird 😳 You can’t just manipulate him into doing what’s best for you and then start smooching him whenever something bad happens to make up for it! And quit confusing Fitz with your husband!!

🦌 Stop continuously bringing the conversation back to vengeance, Fool! 😑 Your child might be dead! Shouldn’t you be showing more emotion about that, rather than using everything as an excuse for revenge on Clerres? This is not like you!

🦌 Fitz isn’t adequately princely, Chade half senile, and the Fool hysterical with paranoia. Hmm, I wonder what could possibly go wrong? πŸ€”

🦌 Did Fitz just call the Fool “not unattractive”? πŸ‘€

🦌 Fitz and Hap getting drunk together was everything I never knew I needed! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

🦌 Fool, if you say you want to Fitz to slaughter everyone at Clerres one more time… 😑 For fuck’s sake, how hard can it be to go with Fitz to Withywoods?!

🦌 Fitz does not deserve his staff 😭😭 Their loyalty and trust in him breaks my heart!

🦌 Of course the Fool was secretly scheming behind Fitz’s back 😁 Well, Fitz, maybe it’s about time you got the taste of your own medicine!

🦌 Clerres just sounds creepier every time I learn more about it πŸ˜¬ Still, I am dying to learn more about its history! Like, why do they hate the dragons so much that they would go to such lengths to prevent the Fool from achieving his path? And how did they manage to eradicate the dragons in the first place? I need to know more!!

🦌 “Oh, my boy. The best mistake Chivalry ever made was you.” – 😭😭😭 Nope, I’m definitely not getting sniffly and teary-eyed over how much Chade loves Fitz.

🦌 Fitz, haven’t you learnt by now that leaving the Fool behind against his will NEVER goes according to plan? And I highly doubt you’re going to be leaving Lant and Perseverance behind, either. Or Spark, for that matter… She and the Fool are as thick as thieves at this point! There’s no way they’re not planning something! Also, can I just say that I’m maybe just a tad excited Fitz is going to Kelsingra? The storylines are finally coming together!! I might see Sedric and Paragon again!! πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ€—

🦌 Kettricken knew all along how Dutiful was conceived??! That doesn’t make things even more awkward at all… πŸ˜…πŸ˜³

🦌 Seriously, did Fitz never read Bee’s dream journal?? It’s impossible to read these dreams and not realize that Bee is most likely still alive!! πŸ™ˆπŸ™ˆ

🦌 Yup, Lant, Perseverance, and Motley are already here πŸ˜‚ Now we just need to wait for the Fool and Spark. And possibly Shine. After all, why would Robin Hobb have introduced her if she’s not gonna go through even more painful character development? πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ

🦌 Fitz just talked to Verity!!! πŸ€—πŸ‰πŸ€—

🦌 Of course Fitz would’ve missed the Fool and Spark, and of course he’d be super surprised that they showed up in the first place. Really, Fitz, don’t you ever learn? πŸ™ˆ

🦌 Did the Fool just rob Kelsingra’s Silver well? 🀯 I have a bad feeling about this… Tellator-Rapskal is not going to be happy! Also, how can the Fool touch the Silver without dying? What makes White Prophets special in that regard? Also, Fool, don’t think for a moment that I’ve forgiven you for recklessly endangering Spark!

🦌 Yeah, that red dragon that chased the Fool was definitely Heeby! And Tellator-Rapskal sounded pissed. I feel like things are about to get complicated… 😁 But at least Malta knows Amber! Even though Amber maybe shouldn’t mention the part about naming a horse after her.

🦌 This bear is so random and came out of nowhere πŸ˜‚ But hey, if he forces everyone to get to Kelsingra, I’m not complaining! πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ

🦌 Wait… If the Fool was touched by a dragon the other dragons have long believed dead, whose blood did the Fool drink? πŸ€” Or is Arbuc talking about something else? Does he smell the Skill in Fitz’s veins? Is there dragon blood in Fitz? I desperately need to understand this!!

🦌 Stop groveling to Reyn, Fitz. He’s not that amazing.

🦌 Also, I’m just waiting for the moment where someone addresses that Fitz looks just like Paragon πŸ˜‡

🦌 Why is Phron unwell? Hasn’t Tintaglia been taking proper care of him? I expected more from you, Tintaglia!

🦌 “Jek was one of the few names I knew from Chade’s network of spies and information gatherers.” – I’m sorry, what?!! 😑 I mean, sure, I can believe Jek is a spy for Chade and I guess that was who she was writing to earlier, but Fitz has met Jek! That meeting led to possibly the biggest falling-out he and the Fool have ever had, and Robin Hobb expects me to believe Fitz won’t immediately make that connection??! I don’t buy it. Not one little bit!! 😀

🦌 Fitz healed Phron!! Apart from the fact that I love the political ramifications this might have for Kelsingra and the Six Duchies, this has me even more interested in the connection between the dragons and the Skill! Where did the Skill come from? How is it related to the dragons’ magic? PLEASE TELL ME EVERYTHING!!

🦌 Malta hinted at the Paragon thing!! πŸ€— Although why doesn’t Fitz have a clue what this is about?? It’s still like that conversation with Jek never happened, and I hate it! 😑

🦌 Fitz is finally accepting the Fool, with all of his weird identities 😭 I love this whole conversation.

🦌 Even though he’s not completely in the wrong this time, Tellator-Rapskal is so freaking annoying!

🦌 Of course Fente and Sintara would be squabbling over who gets to shape Thymara and Tats’ child rather than helping her. You dragons are so dumb! Although I’m guessing this means Thymara and Tats have completely resolved their sex issues? πŸ™„

🦌 AHHHHHHHH, THE BOND IS BACK!!!! 🀩 I don’t even care if this leads to huge issues over the Fool stealing the Silver. Fitz going crazy healing people and the Fool frantically trying to save him and risking their entire group’s safety to reinitiate the bond is everything I ever wanted!!

🦌 Yup, Bee isn’t dead. Whoever would have thought?  πŸ˜‚

(To avoid any confusion: This was written right after I finished Fool’s Quest, but before I started Assassin’s Fate – you’ll get my thoughts on the whole series soon, don’t worry!)

So yeah, what is my overall opinion on Fool’s Quest? Dumb question, I know 😁 I’ve already told you I loved it, and if you know what I love so much about this series, it’s hardly surprising.

If this book had just been 757 pages of Fitz taking care of the Fool, healing his wounds, and wandering around Buckkeep, I wouldn’t have minded at all, and to my delight, we did get a lot of that! I was overjoyed to have Fitz and the Fool together again and to be back in a familiar environment. I thought it was really interesting to see Fitz navigate it as Prince FitzChivalry, rather than as Chivalry’s bastard, Tom Badgerlock, or Lord Feldspar of Spiretop. That new role came with so much complexity and problematic Farseer relations that I was hooked!

Besides, this is the book where we finally see the worlds of the liveship traders, the dragon keepers, and the Farseers majorly collide! I’ve been waiting for this ever since picking up Ship of Magic, so the fact that Fitz and the Fool are in Kelsingra now, together with Malta, Reyn, and the dragon keepers, makes me so excited! πŸ€— Like, I want to know how Fitz’s Skill is related to the dragon magic! I want to know why the Fool can touch Silver! I want to know why the Servants want to destroy the dragons so badly and how them kidnapping Bee will shape the future! I want to know who Bee’s Catalyst is and what sort of world she is destined to create! I want to know how the events the Fool set in motion as Amber are going to play out!

Fitz and the Fool by Myar Murrpau

That being said, though, I did also have my issues with Fool’s Quest. And most prominently, these concerned the Fool. I mean, sure, I get that he’s been tortured, I get that he’s terrified that Clerres will thwart the future he thinks is the right one, and that he’s furious about the Servants taking Bee. But would he really be consumed by revenge to the extreme extent that he is in this book? It’s like he has barely any personality outside of that vengeance anymore, and not even the Fool taking on some of Fitz’s traits when they merged at the end of Fool’s Fate can convince me that he would lose so much of his compassion, sensitivity, and level-headedness 😒

Plus, did Robin Hobb just forget that Fitz and Jek have met?!?!?! 😑😀😑 Considering that “that Jek woman” was the cause of the biggest fight Fitz and the Fool ever had, a fight so huge that it almost destroyed their friendship irreparably, I just do not see Fitz only recognizing Jek’s name because she’s in Chade’s spy network. Sure, I guess Jek might’ve taken on that role – Although it must’ve been after she met Amber because, otherwise, why did she not know her as the Fool? – but there’s just no way Fitz would have forgotten about her! And Fitz also overheard quite a bit about the Fool carving his face onto Paragon, so would he really be so clueless when Malta alludes to it yet again? I don’t think so. To me, this felt like Robin Hobb had simply forgotten about one of the best, most heart-wrenching scenes she’d ever written, and I hated it! Get your freaking continuity issues fixed!

And finally, is it just me, or were all of the Wit issues resolved way too easily considering how deep-rooted the hatred of that magic was in the Six Duchies? I was really hoping we’d dive back into that a little bit, especially since the whole Piebald plotline ended on a really rushed note in the Tawny Man Trilogy and having Dutiful as a Witted king and Web as Wit Master would surely have had some repercussions. But no. We got a super cool scene where the crown was able to use the Wit to their advantage and track Bee, and we got some Wit-related scenes with Fleeter and Motley, but nothing really substantial. Nothing about how that magic is slowly being accepted by the Six Duchies folk. Which was so disappointing!

Still, when looking at the whole thing, I loved this book! Especially Fitz’s chapters! πŸ₯° And I’m so pumped for the finale!

(Sorry, Bee. Your chapters were better in the last one, but here, you just couldn’t compete! 😜)

Which brings us to the end of this review! As always, if you’re craving more and would like to check out the rest of my Realm of the Elderlings content, you’re welcome to head over to my reviews for the previous fourteen books:

However, I’d really love to hear from YOU! What did you think of Fool’s Quest? Did you think the Fool’s actions felt wholly in character? Did you like Fitz’s or Bee’s chapters more? Were you excited to finally see characters from the different series meet? I would love to know! And stay tuned for my Assassin’s Quest review, which will be coming to you very, very soon!

10 thoughts on “SPOILERY BOOK REVIEW: Fool’s Quest by Robin Hobb

  1. Meena Green says:

    Always love the quotes, really need to find these somewhere soon because I don’t have the guts to ask my library to order them…Sure they’ve seen me everyday for like 2 months now but it’s still too early to be making requests? πŸ˜‚

    Great review! (I’m sure!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Line @First Line Reader says:

    Question: Am I still one of the evil people for coming here even though I don’t actually read the post? 😈 Because I’m also not sure I fit into the “fans of the Realm of the Elderlings” category πŸ˜‚
    In lack of anything to actually comment on, I want to say I hope you had a nice trip with your students this week (I assume it’s done by now) and that you came home without any crazy injuries or without any this-happens-only-to-Naemi type accidents befalling you 😁

    Liked by 1 person

    • abookowlscorner says:

      Well, you did click on this post and read some of it despite the spoiler warning in the title! 😜 But I guess that’s not quite as evil as the people who read these all the way through without even having read a single book in the series, so I suppose I can cut you some slack…

      But yeah, I got home a few hours ago completely uninjured and accident-free πŸ˜‡ Although I don’t think I’ve ever been this sleep-deprived in my life – I just about managed to ride my bike to the nearest grocery store and do the weekend shopping before crashing on my bed and falling asleep πŸ˜… But I did have a great time and got to know many of my students so much better, so I’d say my now thoroughly messed-up sleep schedule and all the work I’ll now have to do this weekend is worth it!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Anjola says:

    Hi! I just went through your blog and I love your content! I even followed you. I came across your blog trying to find other bloggers because I’m new. Anywayss I hope we become friends on this space.

    Liked by 1 person

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