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Royal Assassin

The Farseer Trilogy, Book 2
Narrated by: Paul Boehmer
Series: Farseer Trilogy, Book 2, Realms of the Elderlings, Book 2
Length: 29 hrs and 16 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (1,380 ratings)

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Summary

The second volume in Robin Hobb’s internationally best-selling Farseer series.

We are here Fitz, you and I, to change the future and the world…

Fitz dreams of Red-Ship Raiders sacking a coastal village, leaving not a single man, woman, or child alive. Tortured by this terrible vision, he returns to the Six Duchies court where all is far from well.

King Shrewd has been struck down by a mysterious illness and King-in-waiting, Verity, spends all his time attempting to conjure storms to confuse and destroy the Red-Ship Raiders. And when he leaves on an insane mission to seek out the mystical Elderings, Fitz is left alone and friendless but for the wolf Nighteyes and the King’s Fool with his cryptic prophesies.

©2012 Robin Hobb (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic reviews

“Hobb is one of the great modern fantasy writers … what makes her novels as addictive as morphine is not just their imaginative brilliance but the way her characters are compromised and manipulated by politics.” ( The Times)
“In today’s crowded fantasy market Robin Hobb’s books are like diamonds in a sea of zircons” (George R. R. Martin)

What members say

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Dont know what it is...

I love parts of the book, when I get involved with strong feelings towards the charcters and events of the story. I just dont think that happens quite enough.
Not quite enough is what I think about much of this and the other Farseer books. I dont quite see it, dont quite feel it, dont quite love it.

And yet I want to read on.
I dont know what it is...

4 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

I loved reading the first book in the trilogy, and still think Robin Hobb a good author. While the story here is inventive and I was looking forward to listening to this one, it was spoiled by the narration. Is this meant to be an English accent? Incompetent voice coach if it is. I would have given no stars if possible. I shall get the third book from the library and read it, far more satisfying to give the characters voices n my own head.

6 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Too much hype?

A story about people sitting on their hands while they get betrayed over and over again. The fans want you to believe it is because the story is told from Fitz perspective alas there is so much that is done to just make Fitz and their world miserable. A story about 5 characters in a whole world where everyone else is incapable. A story about a boy who lives in a kingdom that never heard of the idea of soldiers even though they get raided constantly. A story meant to try to make you hopeless just like Soldier's Son. This isn't a series about an assassin, it's a series about Fitz and his life issues. Extremely slow at parts with more of a "slice of life". I'm extremely disappointed in this series and I don't think I could go onto the third book.

It might be an ok series but the praise to the skies about this series is probably mostly by older people who read this while they were younger. Not to mention that anyone who dislikes this book get votes "as not helpful" even though it is clearly more helpful than lying reviews about "action packed!!!" and the likes. This book is drawn out more than it had to be.

If you have little patience for idiotic main characters then this is not for you. If you have little patience for forced plot this isn't for you.

5 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great story but readers voice changes

accents forgotten and wrong voices used for the wrong characters it can be a little confusing

2 people found this helpful

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narrated is inconsistent but story good

the narrate is just as frustrating as ever with his terrible fake accent, although it's less jarring 2 books in. I don't see why he changed his voice for Burridge compared to the first, nor why he changed it for Fitz from boy to man mid way through a chapter

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good ending, too slow start

Where does Royal Assassin rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It is about on par with book 1

What other book might you compare Royal Assassin to, and why?

It's a bit like the name of the wind but not quite up there. The start is too slow, although that leaves room for more development.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A mediocre second book to the trilogy

The Book

I really liked the first book in this series but the second book as been rather mediocre. The book starts well with lots of interesting events and intrigue but then becomes rather treacle-like in terms of story pace where very little happens and you feel as if there is rather too much in terms of filler. Throughout the book there is lots of repetition of past events which becomes tired.

Certain decisions are taken by characters that are obviously going to lead to disasters given what they already know but they take those decisions anyway. The hero of the piece becomes quite frustrating because he should be able to have much better guesses to the answers of the riddles from the king's fool. The tension created in this story also felt contrived and artificial so it became annoying.

I think another problem with this book is that it feels unnecessarily long for its content. This book may suffer from a perennial problem with trilogies where the middle book is unsatisfying both in the way that not much occurs and it's ending is not satisfying as a self contained book.

The third book is nearly 38 hours, I might give this series a bit of a break before deciding whether to go back and finish it.

2 people found this helpful

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Great sequel, performance distracting at times.

Narrator had a frustrating habit of pronouncing 'o' as 'aw'. Some dodgy accents, but not too bad overall. Did female voices well for a male. Took some getting used to, but by the end didn't mind too much.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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excellent story and world-building but...

the performance is shocking at times, with a glaringly fake English accent. hire someone who's actually English if you want that kind of sound, it's passable at times but it's immersion shattering in some moments. he's obviously American

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    3 out of 5 stars
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more of the same but less

A fine example of less is more, a pretty good story but it did not need a trilogy, the protagonist is guilty of far too much stupidity, if it was a horror story he would be the one going down into the cellar without turning on the light. It is frustrating and i found the plot far too transparent, excellent performance

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  • Lesley
  • 19-04-20

Some EXTRAORDINARY pronunciations

When a narrator can jolt a listener out of a world created by the author it is woeful. It's so hard to pick up the thread and move on when the irritation lasts a while. This narrator seemed incapable of sounding o as in hot, cot, dot etc. He insisted on adding an r... so hot became hort, cot- cort etc. I'm pretty sure it was an affectation (probably trying for received British accent) because every so often he forgot ... er I mean forgort haha and pronounced that sound as most people would... When he did slip up it was when he was moving faster through the text at moments of tension. He put in an OK effort in tone, pitch, speed etc, but there were a few 'blinders' in pronunication appart frorm the o sound.
If the story had been weaker I would have given up long before the end. Do editors ever listen to the product part way through a recording??? If they did, they could catch these irritants and deliver a much better product... er... prorduct.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 28-10-19

Stunning

This book is quite simply stunning and an amazing follow up to 'Assassin's Apprentice'. The audiobook is beautifully told, too, and thus you must add it to your library!

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  • Raul
  • 30-07-19

Excellent book and performance!

Paul Boehmer acts so incredibly the characters in the book and Robin Hobb has written a truly wonderful story. It was thoroughly enjoyable experience!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Katarina
  • 19-01-19

Even more awesome than part 1

I really enjoyed part 1 of this trilogy, Assassin's Apprentice, and hoped that this even longer sequel would be as good. Well, as it turned out I found it even better! Hobb's style of writing, especially when combined with Boehmer's narration, evokes something like a combination of a Grimm fairytale atmosphere, with hints of mythology and ancient lore. I could even detect some Star Wars, with a grand romance, great evil, lots of action and something resembling Jedi force use!

This is fantasy as it should be done. Can't get enough of it.

I cannot wait to start listening to part 3, and then on to the other six (!) Realms of the Elderings books (two more trilogies, yea!)

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  • Florence S. Tavor
  • 24-11-18

The Best of the Best

There is no one like Robin Hobb, I loved all of her books and now listening to the narration has been an amazing re-journeying back into the Farseers lives.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Sharon
  • 16-09-18

Great listen

In spite of other reviewers I thought the narrator did a good job. The story was good and involving.

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  • ratna
  • 08-03-15

Getting used to the narrator!

Not cringing so much and despite upper class accent he is doing a fine job. The story is brilliant and worth the agony of narration.

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  • Torbjørn S Seiffert
  • 10-08-14

Absolutely stunning performance by Paul Boehmer

The Farseer trilogy is quickly becoming one of my favorite works of fiction. The author carefully builds a gallery of complex and believable characters that both fulfill and transcend their given archetypes. The setting is deep and engaging and the story that takes place there is an absolutely masterful tour of themes like loyalty, friendship, love, duty, hatred and sacrifice. Robin Hobb constructs a living, breathing world around the characters with the immersive writer's voice that she maintains throughout the work. This is in turn rendered magnificently by Paul Boehner, who reads it as if it were an autobiographical work from another life. I will recommend it to my friends, and I recommend it to you.

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  • Emma
  • 21-06-14

Could not stop listening

Any additional comments?

An excellent follow up to Assassin's Apprentice, this book is full of action and adventure. Several times I found myself sitting in my car for several minutes at the end of my commute, waiting for a good place to pause the story, but they are hard to find! Once again, Paul Boehmer reads excellently, and does the story a great justice in the telling.