Secrets of the Chandrian Uncovered in The Wise Man’s Fear
15 July 2018
Book Category: Fiction
Secrets of the Chandrian Uncovered in The Wise Man’s Fear
Kvothe (Kote), the Bloodless, the Arcane, Taborlin the Great. He has been called many things before, but can he actually hold himself up to his names? Can he actually track down the Chandrian and kill them?
Have you ever read the first and second book of ‘The Kingkiller Chronicle’? I would call Patrick Rothfuss a modern Shakespeare. His words flow like an untamed river on the page. He leads you where he pleases to take you at times with the softest, smoothest ride you’ve ever imagined, and other times rough, wild and exciting. After his first book published in 2007 and the second book in 2011, all of us have been waiting a long time to see if Kvothe is actually worthy of all his names in Book 3.
If you haven’t read ‘The Name of the Wind’ or ‘The Wise Man’s Fear’ yet you’re going to have to before Book 3, ‘The Doors of Stone’, comes out. At least read this extensive review. My review for the first book should interest you too. For those of you who have read both books then both of my reviews here on BookMattic will be a blast for you.
In this review, I’ll lay out the basics and my thoughts of Book 2 then give some of my expectations for Book 3 at the end.
Warning: Don’t read further if you have not read The Name of the Wind or The Wise Man’s Fear yet as there might be details which will spoil the story for you.
I split the book into six sections for this review of ‘The Wise Man’s Fear’. Now let’s get into the juicy stuff about this book and the long anticipation for Book 3. Enjoy!
I almost felt like the whole time at the University was a waste. Kvothe never got any closer to finding out any secrets about the Chandrian. The only thing which comes close is an inconsistency in the records regarding the dissolving of the Amyr. These guys could be the only key to finding and destroying the Chandrian.
Other than the two events which I will mention below I felt like Kvothe’s time at the University was a drag in the story. We had enough time in the University in the first book.
The first good thing about the time at the University was when Kvothe created what, at first he called ‘The Arrowcatch’. Before he got a chance to change the name to a more suitable one he got advised to take almost a year off from the University. Kvothe always seems to find trouble. After being called to court for accidentally using the name of the wind to break Ambrose’s arm after Ambrose had stolen it (which is also an awesome part of the story). The Master Namer, Elodin, ended up giving ‘The Arrowcatch’s’ a more suitable name ‘The Bloodless’.
One of the reasons why this is relevant to the story (especially Book 3) is that we know Kvothe is poor financially. With his creation of ‘The Bloodless’ however, he gets 10% of all the profits anytime the University sells one of his creations.
Ambrose and Denna
As you all know Ambrose is a pompous ass who treats women like shit. You also know Kvothe and Denna have a thing for each other. Denna has attachment issues and Kvothe doesn’t have the balls to confess his love for Denna for fear of losing her. So I’ve got no idea if they’ll ever be together. Denna also loves sleeping around. A lot! And never stays in one place for too long. For some reason, I keep on rooting for both of them to get together even though I know Kvothe could do much better.
Things get complicated.
To make a long story short, for some reason Denna decides to be with Ambrose for a night. Ambrose ends up stealing her ring which is very special to her. Kvothe finds out and secretly sneaks into Ambrose’s rooms to steal the ring back and escapes unseen. Unfortunately, he escapes with no ring in hand. His break-in triggers Ambrose to take maleficent measures to kill the person who broke into his rooms. Kvothe must make a gram which protects against attacks such as these. The problem is that making grams is above his position at the University because it involves using blood.
It takes days for Kvothe to search in the archives for an old schema to make the gram. Now he can devise a plan to break into Ambrose’s rooms again to destroy the mommet (voodoo doll) Ambrose made to do his maleficent attacks. During Kvothe’s break-in, he also ends up finding a receipt for Denna’s ring. Ambrose had hawked it at a pawn shop. Two birds with one stone.
This sequence in the whole scope of the story was definitely exciting but still has some loose ends which haven’t been tied. I’d like to see some answers in Book 3.
After 388 pages it’s finally time to temporarily get out of the University. Not so much on good terms after what happened with the calling of the wind, Ambrose’s broken arm, and a trial but still a chance for Kvothe to actually get ahead in life. As a reader, I’m actually extremely happy to see Kvothe get out of the University. Kvothe’s story really gets a chance to open up here.
As it so happens right at this time in the story his good friend Threpe has been searching for a patron for Kvothe since they first met and finally finds a possible match all the way in Vintas with the extremely wealthy Maer. Even wealthier than the King himself.
The Maer is asking for a studious gentleman with poet’s abilities to help swoon one of the neighboring wealthy family’s daughters, named Meluan Lackless, to marry him as he is getting older, his health is failing, and has not had any children to take his place after he passes.
Kvothe Has Wit
Surprisingly Kvothe arrives with tons of wit. He also discovers a dark plot under the Maer’s own roof. The plot to kill the Maer slowly and untraceable. With Kvothe’s help, the Maer is able to avoid his own death, improve his health, capture the person trying to kill him and get his way with the Lackless lady. The Maer and Kvothe seem to be on fairly good terms but not anywhere close to being buddy buddy.
Seeing no specific use for Kvothe, the Maer sends him off to the middle of The Eld (a largely uncharted forest) to hunt some bandits who have been killing and stealing the Maer’s money from his tax collectors. In return for the capture of killing of the bandits as well as any leftover of the Maer’s money, Kvothe will receive a reward.
The Bandit Hunt and Discovery of Cinder of the Chandrian
With a tracker, a brute, a woman brute, Kvothe with no particular fighting skills, and a seemingly skilled Adem warrior set out to hunt the bandits.
Again, I’m happy to see events like this in the story as a whole. The interactions between the mercenaries are interesting but don’t have much to do with the overall arc of the story except for the Adem, Tempi.
Tempi and Kvothe learn to get along with each other well considering their huge differences. I also enjoyed this part of the book because we get to see Kvothe’s leadership skills really come out. He also shows a lot of interest in trying to get to learn about and respect Tempi and his culture.
It’s Kvothe’s first time interacting with the Adem.
It’s Kvothe’s first time ever meeting an Adem warrior so as he always seeks to gain more knowledge, he starts copying Tempi’s ritual daily routine of the Ketan. It’s an extremely slow fighting practice/warm-up every Adem learns from a young age. The only thing I can compare it to is wushu or taichi. More on Tempi, the Adem, and Kvothe later.
After a month of tracking in The Eld, the tracker, Tempi, and Kvothe finally find a trail which leads them to the bandits’ camp. Kvothe tells the two brutes to stay behind while they follow the trail secretly to find the camp and count how many they’re up against.
What follows is the most epic fight there has ever been in The Kingkiller Chronicle so far. You will be pleasantly pleased with this battle, 25 bandits, the leader is one of the Chandrian named Cinder, against 5 mercenaries Kvothe doing the most damage of all and earning the name Taborlin the Great.
The Fae – The Most Beautiful Faerie Felurian
Defeating the bandits and collecting the Maer’s coffers the triumphant group mercenaries decide to take what they thought was a shortcut through The Eld which leads them through the border of the Fae where they encounter Felurian, the most beautiful faerie of the Fae no mortal man can resist.
They say that when a mortal man lays with Felurian either the man will die from the exhaustion of having sex with Felurian so much or go completely mad by the time Felurian lets her little toys go.
Kvothe the brave ends up going into the Fae saving the rest of his team telling them he’ll meet them in the next town in three days. There are six things about Kvothe’s time in the Fae that I absolutely loved.
The Fae List of Good Things
- Finally, Kvothe is not a virgin anymore. This loosens him up a bit and gives him more of a savvy attitude especially around women.
- Felurian is described as the most beautiful woman (faerie) and definitely comes across as so.
- Kvothe actually unknowingly speaks Felurian’s ‘name’ when you try to escape gaining all control over her even to the point of being able to kill her with just one word. He doesn’t though because a world without Felurian would not be the same.
- Both Felurian and Kvothe travel deep into the Fae to gather shadow to make Kvothe’s shaed which comes in as handy protection back in the mortal world.
- Meeting of the Cthaeh. I believe this to be one of the keys to Book 3. The Cthaeh has the ability to see everything past, present, and future. It gives Kvothe many clues as to how he can find the Chandrian. But according to Bast, anyone who comes in contact with the Cthaeh always has a bad ending. Death.
- Felurian makes Kvothe promise her that he’ll come back to the Fae and compose a true poet’s song for her. It is one of the only reasons why Felurian decides to let Kvothe go.
Kvothe’s time in the Fae was definitely rewarding and interesting for the reader. I believe he learned a lot which can help him in Book 3.
The Adem and the Names of the Chandrian
After leaving the Fae, Kvothe meets up with his band of mercenaries as he promised. Of course, they were completely surprised since no one ever returns sane from meeting Felurian. This creates more reputation behind Kvothe’s name. He not only can call the lightning but also can escape from Felurian.
He ends up sending the tracker, and both of the brutes back to the Maer with word of their victory. Kvothe decides to follow Tempi to Ademre because a group of Adem mercenaries spotted Tempi training Kvothe in the Ketan which is completely against their rules. He must help to clear Tempi’s name from all fault.
In the process of traveling to Ademre Tempi attempts to teach Kvothe about the Adem beliefs and language. Interestingly, the Adem show their emotions with hand motions. It’s one of the reasons why they only speak the bare minimum needed.
After Arriving in Ademre
After arriving in Ademre the eldest of the Adem decides to take Kvothe on as a trainee of the school where he gets trained in all aspects of language, culture, and fighting. The Adem culture is much different from the Commonwealth where Kvothe comes from. The Adem consider anyone other than Adem as barbarians.
Most people do not like or accept Kvothe since he is a barbarian, but he does his best to learn and earn their respect. During training, he makes a few friends and learns how to defend himself. He’s not nearly as talented as even the lowest member of the Adem warriors, but he does gain quite the compliment from the eldest that with even further training he’d be Tempi’s equal in around a years time.
Short Adem Training
His time and training in Ademre is fairly short, but he learns a lot and gains respect. He is able to pass his test by calling the name of the wind which allowed him to flawlessly succeed.
His reward was his rights to learn his deep name, Maedre, and was given a two-thousand-year-old Adem sword to bring with him which was wielded by hundreds of other Adem. He is allowed to say he is trained by the Adem but not allowed to say he’s one of them. He also learns the true deep names of all seven of the Chandrian which will no doubt come in handy in Book 3.
The Journey ‘Home’
Kvothe successfully leaves Ademre with his new training, names, and sword under his belt. He goes to meet with the Maer with much discussion discovering the Maer also has an interest in finding the Amyr. But due to Meluan Lackless, the Maer’s new wife, discovering Kvothe’s Ruh heritage (a troupe (race) of musicians who are usually looked down upon to be low class) the Maer reluctantly sends Kvothe back to the University.
He actually wanted to keep Kvothe there for an indefinite amount of time since he has proved himself to be very useful. The Maer had many tasks in store but because of his new wife, he had to let Kvothe go. Kvothe didn’t leave the Maer’s lands empty handed though. Luckily, along with a writ for the rights to travel, play, and perform anywhere in Vintas under the Maer’s name, and best of all, he got the free will to draw from the Maer’s coffers to pay for any amount his tuition sums up to be for his remaining duration of studying at the University.
This last gift is by far a relief for Kvothe since in the past he has had an extremely hard time paying for his tuition having to take out loans from the dangerous but beautiful Devi. He will have no more trouble from this point on. In fact, he would be earning money from the deal he made with the bursar. Half of anything over ten talents straight into his pocket.
Back at the University
A bunch of little things happen when Kvothe gets back to the University. Funny thing is everyone thought Kvothe was dead and were amazed to see him adding to his reputation. He resumes taking classes, pays his debts off and lives a fairly easygoing life not having to worry about money. He even miraculously runs into Denna when he pays a visit to Tarbean, his old stomping grounds between the time his parents were murdered and the time he entered the University.
Then Kote calls it a night saying that if they go any further into his story that it turns dark again.
Some Clues Leading Into Book 3 ‘The Doors of Stone’
Although I wish there were more clues in Book 2 I enjoyed the book thoroughly. I enjoyed it even more than the first one, and am almost dying to read Book 3. Before closing this extensive review up there are a few clues in Book 2 which get me excited to read the last book in this huge three book prologue.
Clue One – Chandrian Names
Kvothe knows all seven of the Chandrian’s real names. I have a feeling this will play a huge part in Book 3 as this is the whole reason why his troupe, his family got killed because his father knew at least one of the Chandrian’s names and kept on talking about it.
Clue Two – The Chandrian Bandit Leader Named Cinder
Kvothe and his bandit hunting party found and almost killed one of the Chandrian named Cinder who was acting as a leader of the bandits they were hunting. This means that the Chandrian are reachable. Kvothe was lucky to have been in the right place at the right time.
Clue Three – A Box With No Hinges and the Search for the Amyr
I’m not sure if this is a clue but Lackless who is married to the Maer has a box without locks or hinges and shows it to Kvothe to see if he could work his magic to open it with no luck. I believe this is some sort of key to the puzzle. I also think Kote has the box at the very end of the book still not knowing how to open it. It makes me wonder about what’s inside and if it is anything that can help Kvothe.
The Maer has also shown interest in the Amyr but unfortunately sent Kvothe away telling him not to come back. I have a good feeling that in Book 3 the Maer might contact Kvothe secretly to be his errand boy in search for the secret of the Amyr. The Amyr being one of the keys to finding and destroying the Chandrian.
Clue Four – The Cthaeh Gives Clues About the Chandrian
At the point in the book where the Cthaeh is introduced, it gives Kvothe a bunch of clues to follow which he did. The Cthaeh even spoke of the Chandrian. But he didn’t stay long enough to hear what else the Cthaeh had to tell him.
After hearing this part of the story, Bast, Kote’s pupil freaks out and tells Kote and Chronicler that the Cthaeh is an absolute monster. They all will be hunted down and killed by the Sithe of the Fae who guard the Cthaeh if the Sithe ever found out Kvothe had contact with the Cthaeh.
I have a feeling this aspect of the story will play out further in Book 3.
What’s in store for Book 3, ‘The Doors of Stone’, and when is it coming out?
With no announcement at the time of this writing, Patrick Rothfuss has us biting our nails to find out what Kvothe is going to do next. He’s just beginning to get a hang of his naming skills and has learned how to fight in the Adem style yet he’s not nearly as good as the lowest ranked Adem. In fact, even an eight-year-old Adem girl can beat him in a fight.
With the lack of too many meaningful events in Kvothe’s journey to find the Chandrian, the supernatural beings who killed his parents when he was just a boy, I’ve got no idea which way Rothfuss is going to take Book 3. He has made me very excited to find out though.
Kvothe is much stronger with his naming and Adem training but not much closer to finding the Chandrian. And even then, if he were to face all seven of the Chandrian would he be able to defeat them?
These are all questions you might be asking too, but I’m sure not before too long we will know the answers. We’re all in the same boat here being left out here to dry waiting for Book 3, ‘The Doors of Stone’.
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