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Summary

A brand new trilogy from the author of the legendary Witcher series, set during the vibrantly depicted Hussite wars.

Reinmar of Bielau, called Reynevan, flees after being caught in an affair with a knight's wife.

With strange, mystical forces gathering in the shadows and pursued not only by the Stercza brothers bent on vengeance, but also by the Holy Inquisition, Reynevan finds himself in the Narrenturm, the Tower of Fools, a medieval asylum for the mad, or for those who dare to think differently and challenge the prevailing order.

The 'patients' of this institution form an incomparable gallery of colourful types: including, among others, the young Copernicus, proclaiming the truth of the heliocentric solar system.

This is the first in an epic new series from the phenomenon, Andrzej Sapkowski, author of the Witcher books.

©2020 Andrzej Sapkowski (P)2020 Orion Publishing Group

Critic reviews

"Like Mieville and Gaiman, Sapkowski takes the old and makes it new." (Foundation)

"Like a complicated magic spell, a Sapkowski novel is a hodgepodge of fantasy, intellectual discourse and dry humour. Recommended." (Time

What listeners say about The Tower of Fools

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

Excellent historical fantasy

Andrzej Sapkowski and Peter Kenny prove yet again that they form a genious duo!
Outstanding performance by Kenny!
The novel itself is a well written and entertaining one. There are many historical names, dates and events to keep track of, which may not be every listener's cup of tea, but this also adds depth to the novel.

7 people found this helpful

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Great start to a new series.

As this is a concept I've come into blind, I don't know much back story. Unlike the Witcher where I had played the game and had a general sense of the whole idea. However, I think that Andrzej Sapkowski is off to a great start. The characters and story very well fleshed out and it definitely has the combination of brutally honest world views mixed in with amazing dark humour. Add to this the fact that Peter Kenny's narration brings the whole world to life and I for one, can't wait for book two to be released.

5 people found this helpful

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So glad it’s finished ...

This was a book made tedious by being undecided. It was a mix of detailed academic history diluting what might have been a good adventure - it couldn’t seem to make up it’s mind and so both faltered. If I was still able to read a hard copy, I could have whizzed through the endless names and lineage, but whilst listening didn’t want to miss any of the actual story restarting. The hero (!) was sadly unengaging but despite wanting to know what happens with his cohorts, will not bother with the series as it gets released

5 people found this helpful

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Worth listening just for the amazing performance

I nearly quit this after a couple of hours. It is fundamentally a bit silly and the array of strange sounding names, titles and geographical names is bizarre and utterly confusing. On balance I take the blame - it's not the author's fault that I am ignorant of the geography and history of the region and couldn't be bothered to look at a map (at one point he actually recommends the reader does this and in hindsight I would keep recommend keeping one to hand from start to finish, and maybe even jot down a few names).

I decided early on that I wouldn't continue with the sequel but by the end I was hooked and now look forward to it. It is worth listening to just for Peter Kenny. If you know the Culture series you will probably already love his performances but this is beyond anything I have heard.

2 people found this helpful

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Heavy but so atmospheric

It is very rich in elements of the period - names, places, languages and folklore. I would advise against trying to remember every detail since there are just so many of them. It's better to see them as parts of the style. The ones worth remembering are repeated often enough.
It's not a light read, but if it's not a problem then I can't recommend it strongly enough.

2 people found this helpful

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So many names

It took a while to get into the story and the amount of names involved was overwhelming. But by the third chapter I really started to enjoy the book and by the end I loved it. The narrator really is so good.

1 person found this helpful

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A bit conflicted

I didn't enjoy this as book as much as the Witcher series of books.






1 person found this helpful

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It’s just ok

I finished this book but found it hard to get into. It seemed like the same characters were just roaming around in circles meeting the same people, with secrets but never finding out what they were. It was a very long story, with too many names of characters you never found out much about.
I am a fan of the Witcher series but found this book really wanting. I can see the author has a wealth of knowledge that he is bursting to impart but it’s a bit infuriating at times here.

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Only for Christian Historians

I love the wither books and adore all narration done by Peter Kenny. Yet 2 chapters into this book I had to stop. The amount of Christian, historical and biblical referencing was so much it took me out completely. This is probably great for history buffs, but for me it was just pure distraction.

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Glorious Picaresque Fantasy

Fantastic characters, travel from one absurd adventure to another through a cruel and violent world. A Qioxtic main character whose virtue and foolishness, and perhaps the hand of fate, leads him from disaster to disaster learning little bit experiencing much.

Peter Kenny is a joy to listen to and brings it all to life. I hadn't been sure about this book before listening to it but think it is at least as good as the Witcher books whilst being refreshingly different.