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Fool's Assassin  By  cover art

Fool's Assassin

By: Robin Hobb
Narrated by: Lee Maxwell-Simpson,Avita Jay
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Publisher's Summary

Tom Badgerlock has been living peaceably in the manor house at Withywoods with his beloved wife, Molly, these many years, the estate a reward to his family for loyal service to the crown.

But behind the facade of respectable middle age lies a turbulent and violent past. For Tom Badgerlock is actually FitzChivalry Farseer, bastard scion of the Farseer line, convicted user of Beast-magic, and assassin. A man who has risked much for his king and lost more....

On a shelf in his den sits a triptych carved in memory stone of a man, a wolf and a fool. Once, these three were inseparable friends: Fitz, Nighteyes and the Fool. But one is long dead and one long-missing. Then one Winterfest night, a messenger arrives to seek out Fitz but mysteriously disappears, leaving nothing but a blood trail. What was the message? Who was the sender? And what has happened to the messenger? Suddenly Fitz's violent old life erupts into the peace of his new world, and nothing and no one is safe.

©2015 Robin Hobb (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"In today's crowded fantasy market Robin Hobb's books are like diamonds in a sea of zircons." (George R. R. Martin)
"Hobb is superb, spinning wonderful characters and plots from pure imagination." (Conn Iggulden)
"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)
"Robin Hobb is without question among the two or three finest writers of fantasy working today." ( SFX)
"Fantasy writers don't come much bigger than Robin Hobb." ( Independent)
"Fantasy as it ought to be written." (George R. R. Martin)

What listeners say about Fool's Assassin

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Robin Hobbs work is let down by her Narrators

maybe I was spoiled by Nicolas Taylor's work in the Tawny man trilogy but I was let down by the vocal performances in this book. Lee Maxwell-Simpson seems to have one cadence that gets used in every line irregardless of the context and Avita Jay's voice for Bee's character doesn't change at all as the story progresses despite it being a large part of her Arc.

The story is slow burn but like the first book of all Hobbs trilogy is sets the stakes and has plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing.

I'll probably choose to read the text for the rest of this trilogy but that's not a reflection on Hobbs work, just my preference. I can't un-hear Nicolas Taylor's voice for Fitz's character

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Great book, but a bad voice actor

The male voice actor Lee Maxwell-Simpson was the wrong choice for this series compared to the previous books. Bland, boring voice, no acting in my opinion. Avita Jay’s part was done well and she saved the voice acting in this book. The story is great and if you loved the previous books then this is for you! Loved it!

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Absolutely trash voice acting.

Ruined the book for me. The actors changed the entire feel of all the characters I had come to know & cherish, all of which portraying temperaments contrary to their characters as depicted in both the farmer trilogy and the tawny man trilogies.

That and in all honesty this is by far my most un-enjoyed book by Robin Hobb. Perhaps it’s a slow start because I’ve only gotten through about half but the story is incredibly boring and all the hinted at sub plots so far are painfully transparent whilst purporting to carry mystery.

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Utterly brilliant

What a delight to be back with Fitz and the Fool! I have sorely missed them. Robin Hobb has crafted another masterpiece! Can't wait to read the next one!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-24-16

Awful Narration of a Frustrating Story

The narrator, Lee Maxwell-Simpson is truely the worst I've ever heard. He somehow manages to put the incorrect inflection on everything, and reads each word without context, as if it isn't part of a sentence, or like he has no idea what he is reading. I had to speed him up to a silly degree just to get it over with.

Unfortunately the story isn't up to much either, very little happens, and somehow since we last joined Fitz he has lost the ability to reason or make good decisions, becoming frustratingly short sighted.

I sped through this in the hope that the sequel would be better, but I didn't enjoy it.

9 people found this helpful

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  • kdsshrub
  • 02-23-16

Pity about lee and avita

Good book to set the seen, but narrators lacking in Quality, past narrators have made these books amazing - everyone sounds the same in these :(

7 people found this helpful

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  • Adrian
  • 06-28-17

good but a bit harder going with new narrators

I enjoyed the previous books and got used to the narrator and characters so this change made the book a bit of a drag to start but great story all the same

6 people found this helpful

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  • Steve W
  • 08-04-16

Nit the best

Lots of repetition, very slow to get started, narrators sucks hairy Goats balls. Nit the best book . Shame it was a return to Robin Hobb after the assassins apprentice trilogy, which were excellent. Bring back the old narrator.,

6 people found this helpful

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  • Kaz
  • 08-01-19

Mis pronounced words all over they place

Brilliant book fantastically written.
The problem is that the actors reading the book were awful. I am not sure if they had a badly written transcript to read. The actor incorrectly pronounced Gray as Gary. Another actor incorrectly pronounced Challaced as callaced. Chade is pronounced by the actor like the girls name instead of Shade. Liveship should be pronounced live like ' live animal 'not live as in 'where we live'. The actor should have researched this or been told this. Also the actors voice work is terrible. They also don't seem to understand the text and get the tone of sentences wrong, it's like like they don't understand grammar. The bad actors didn't ruin the book for me , their performance was just annoying and rediculous at times.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Ben
  • 03-19-16

Not as engaging as the previous books

This felt like one long intro to the new series. The narration could have been better, the narration of fitz seemed young and lacked depth for me and the female narrators little girl voice could be grating at times.
I don't regret buying, as I think the story will hot up in the next book and Hobb is always good, but I had very high expectations that weren't quite met.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Alun Williams
  • 04-16-16

terrible

This is the worst narrator ever he has succeeded in making an excellent book awful

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-05-19

This trilogy contains the storyline of one book

I'm a great fan of Robin Hobb and listened to most of her books. But was utterly disappointed by this trilogy. I wish I could "unread" this. The story arch would have held for one book but reads like it was stretched across three books for commercial reasons. It changes/ blemishes some of my favorite characters and don't feel true to the world previously created. It left me bored and annoyed.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Mark
  • 01-31-18

Slow and plodding until the final 10%

Never before have I read or listened to a book and felt I had to finish it out of a sense of duty rather than because I was enthralled by it. Alas this has now happened. I was curious as to where this book would lead, given that many unanswered questions in the Farseer trilogy were explained in the Tawny Man trilogy. It feels like this book was created with the idea of continuing a story that had already, satisfyingly, ended with Fitz and the Fool. The majority of this book is slow and clunky and doesn't provide the excitement and intrigue that the previous books involving Fitz and the Fool did, instead there are hints of the story finally taking off, before it's then followed by a dull plodding until the final 10% when the story becomes gripping. After this final 10% I'm confident the next two books will be as exiciting as their predecessors, it's just unfortunate you need to swim through treacle to get there.

2 people found this helpful

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  • B.Watson
  • 12-05-16

Spoiled by narrator

The narrator isn't bad but is unfortunately handicapped by not being the same narrator as the previous series. No matter how good they are they are not the same as the previous books so it is jarring, unfortunate as the performance is actually pretty good they are just set up to fail by being compared to previous narrators. Characters have different voices and it is hard to get used to.

The book is just as good as you would expect in all other aspects, the narrator isnt a deal breaker in this instance and its well worth buying.

2 people found this helpful

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  • V
  • 08-01-17

more Fitz and fool

loved this ...as with all Robyn Hobbs...but not the narrators, very sorry but not at all well read😐

7 people found this helpful

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  • Jo
  • 02-10-17

Highly recommended!

Fantastic book, would recommended to anyone. however, even though it's book 1, felt as though you're reading the story from the middle. That being said, easy to follow and the narrators where lively, well spoken.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Daniel Graham
  • 08-01-17

Great story. Mediocre reading

Story was fantastic but the readers really emphasised some sentences incorrectly which detracted from the reading. Would still listen again simply for the story.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-13-21

Worst narrator

While I love robin hobb, I can’t enjoy this with such sub par narrating. Really disappointing considering the previous books I’ve listened too have been told amazingly

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-21-19

research before reading

all his voices sound the same. he pronounces chalced as calsed but burich as bur itch

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-14-17

Total waste of money and time

I can not see any redeeming features of this book. Remarkably boring, apart from some pointless “magic” it’s just an old man prattling on about his far to many feelings. And the narration sound like it’s done by a primary school teacher reading a children’s story, who constantly misreads the emotion conveyed in whatever sentence he’s reading. it’s as if he just gambles on happy, angry or sad

1 person found this helpful

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  • Chareth
  • 11-01-22

Narrator has no idea of rhythm

Terrible performance by the narrator. Very much seemed like he was reading the text for the first time and so had no idea of what inflections to use. Also did no accents or different voices so in periods of heavy dialogue it was hard to know what was being said by whom.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-06-22

Narrator ruined the story

story is much slower than other books of Robin Hobb. Narrator exacerbates this with a poor performance. His style doesn't match the book and difficult to differentiate between characters. Very disappointing

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  • Mr Snuffy Wuffles
  • 07-02-22

Lee Maxwell-Simpson must stick to bedtime stories

The story is fantastic. Avita Jay does a good job carrying it to the end, she reads and voice acts well. Lee Maxwell-Simpson on the other hand... absolutely ruined this story for me. I microslept every time he narrated. I am lucky to be alive.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-29-21

Outstanding again!

Outstanding again! Well done Robin Hobb and Harper Audio. It was NEARLY perfect. My one small loving complaint is that Lee Maxwell-Simpson did not dramatise and distinguish the voices as much as the narrators in previous series. In particular, I wish the Fool had received a voice more distinct from that of Fitz... But it was all still excellent, so thank you again!