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Assassin's Apprentice (1995)

by Robin Hobb

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Realm of the Elderlings (1), The Farseer Trilogy (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
9,653221525 (4.1)376
Young Fitz is the bastard son of the noble Prince Chivalry, raised in the shadow of the royal court by his father's gruff stableman. He is treated like an outcast by all the royalty except the devious King Shrewd, who has him secretly tutored in the arts of the assassin. For in Fitz's blood runs the magic Skill--and the darker knowledge of a child raised with the stable hounds and rejected by his family. As barbarous raiders ravage the coasts, Fitz is growing to manhood. Soon he will face his first dangerous, soul-shattering mission. And though some regard him as a threat to the throne, he may just be the key to the survival of the kingdom.… (more)
  1. 114
    A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin (Tjarda, Patangel)
  2. 60
    The Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart (LiddyGally)
    LiddyGally: Both "autobiograhical" accounts of the life of a man with powers of a magical kind, told from boyhood to manhood. Compelling writing makes for a great read and memorable story!
  3. 50
    Dragon Prince by Melanie Rawn (Kassilem)
  4. 50
    Flesh and Fire by Laura Anne Gilman (Kaelkivial)
    Kaelkivial: If you enjoy the Master/apprentice relationship and the coming of age, rags to relative riches story lines. Both involve young boys who are capable of things that they do not yet understand and must harness their powers towards a greater end.
  5. 40
    Transformation by Carol Berg (sandstone78)
    sandstone78: For epic fantasy that is rarely makes things easy for its protagonists
  6. 30
    Across the Nightingale Floor by Gillian Rubinstein (soffitta1)
    soffitta1: A coming of age story, a noble boy with an uncertain future.
  7. 30
    A Companion to Wolves by Sarah Monette (Kassilem)
  8. 20
    Devices and Desires by K. J. Parker (NovaStalker)
    NovaStalker: Both books that have no feel good quality about them at all. If you finish them and their respective series and don't hate life, love, everyone and want to kill yourself you're either incredibly well adjusted or a sociopath. That's a recommendation.
  9. 20
    Imager by L. E. Modesitt (Dragget)
    Dragget: Similar coming-of-age themes where the plot follows the main character as he discovers and develops his skills against a background of political intrigue.
  10. 20
    Inda by Sherwood Smith (humouress)
    humouress: Both series share the similarity of a country defending itself from invaders from the sea with whom they in fact share their ancestry.
  11. 10
    Le Vaisseau magique, tome 1 : Les aventuriers de la mer by Robin Hobb (Patangel)
  12. 21
    Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder (joyfulgirl)
  13. 10
    The Book of Unholy Mischief: A Novel by Elle Newmark (mene)
    mene: Both books have a similar setting: Told by a narrator when he is already old and has lived his life, he talks about his childhood. Both main characters lived in the "important building" of the city (though in Assassin's Apprentice it's a fantasy world and in The Book of Unholy Mischief it's Venice in Italy), both boys go to town every now and then to meet his friends (and a girl), and both are apprentices of someone/something they cannot tell anyone else (except for a few people). Both books contain a bit of magic, though of a different kind.… (more)
  14. 00
    L'Assassin royal, tome 07 : Le prophète blanc by Robin Hobb (Patangel)
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» See also 376 mentions

English (208)  Dutch (5)  French (4)  Italian (2)  Finnish (1)  German (1)  All languages (221)
Showing 1-5 of 208 (next | show all)
Not what I was expecting at all. I was expecting more ... killing, I guess. But interesting and very enjoyable, nonetheless. Will be looking into further books. ( )
  expatb | Jun 8, 2020 |
The writing is so clear and inviting that I fell into it with near abandon. I found myself living a bastard's life and smelling the intricacies of family, politics, warring magics, and a world I genuinely cared for. I've never read any of her novels before now, but I am certain to, now.
I couldn't put the first book down. I kept reading avidly and went right through the night. It had its wonderful hooks in me.
The characters all felt like real people who genuinely care about other people. It felt natural. It drew me in and made me feel the same. Being an assassin does not preclude having a heart. It was so easy to throw out the stereotypes and enjoy the ride. ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
I'm pretty lukewarm on this one. There were definitely things that I really liked; there are a few great characters and the absolute best bits in the book are to do with the main character's relationships with the various father figures in his life. But despite being relatively short, it felt very slow and meandering with an occasional lack of focus.

But it's possible that my overall mood (fuck this whole year) might have put a damper on this book. I'm intrigued enough by certain plot points/lore hints and attached enough to the characters that I still intend to continue with the series. ( )
  ShelfImprovement | May 27, 2020 |
Silly and stereotypical, just what I needed. ( )
  breic | May 26, 2020 |
My review is taken from my website at fantasycomesfirst.blogspot.com

What a wonderful book. Robin Hobb is one of the best if not the best character author I have ever read. I really felt for the entire cast of characters. This story is very character driven but that is not to take away from the actual story as it is superb.

To call this a coming of age story is so cliche so I will call it an awakening story. A small boy comes from nothing and is thrust into a life he is not ready for. I don't want to give anything away but I feel so bad for the main character. The story follows our boy Fitz through a royal court where he both loved and hated, feared and pitied. He goes through such a range of emotional tortures it is unreal and you feel it all with him. He is thrust into servitude of a king he doesn't know, forced into a profession he is unwilling to do and told he cannot do the one thing he truly has the “wit” to do.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good story with great characters. Someone who isn't afraid to feel what the character feels for better or worse. This book will make you feel something. I highly applaud Robin Hobb for such a remarkable story and can't wait to read more from her. ( )
  maybe_a_wizard | May 22, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 208 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (11 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hobb, Robinprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Boehmer, PaulNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Howe, JohnCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Santikko, SauliTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Spångberg, YlvaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Whelan, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Series (with order)
Canonical title
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People/Characters
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Important events
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Epigraph
Dedication
For Giles
And for Raphael and Freddy,
the Princes of Assassins.
Bantam 1996 edition:
To Giles
and
to the memories of
Ralph the Orange
and
Freddie Cougar
Princes among Assassins
and
Felines above Reproach
First words
A history of the Six Duchies is of necessity a history of its ruling family, the Farseers.
Quotations
[The Fool] was proffering a leather drawstring bag. "What is it?" I asked, and tried not to let him hear either the flowers or the doll in my voice.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Despite some titles similar to those of the original 6, the French version of the Farseer books splits the 2 trilogies into 13 books. This is 1 of 13 and it is the only book that is exactly the same as the original one. Make sure you combine only with identically split parts of the series.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

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Book description
Young Fitz is the bastard son of the noble Prince Chivalry, raised in the shadow of the royal court by his father's gruff stableman. He is treated like an outcast by all the royalty except the devious King Shrewd, who has him sectetly tutored in the arts of the assassin. For in Fitz's blood runs the magic Skill--and the darker knowledge of a child raised with the stable hounds and rejected by his family. As barbarous raiders ravage the coasts, Fitz is growing to manhood. Soon he will face his first dangerous, soul-shattering mission. And though some regard him as a threat to the throne, he may just be the key to the survival of the kingdom.
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