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Royal Assassin

The Farseer Trilogy, Book 2
Narrated by: Paul Boehmer
Series: Realms of the Elderlings, Book 2, Farseer Trilogy, Book 2
Length: 29 hrs and 16 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (511 ratings)

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Publisher's 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

Average Customer Ratings

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

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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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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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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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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  • Sharon
  • Brisbane, Australia
  • 09-16-18

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
  • Northam, Australia
  • 03-08-15

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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    5 out of 5 stars
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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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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.

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  • Tai Jorgensen
  • 01-06-17

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...

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Bundoodragon
  • 07-21-16

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 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Mustafa
  • 05-29-19

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 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Samantha
  • 03-08-17

Great story but readers voice changes

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

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Andrew Cochrane
  • 08-28-18

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 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anders Munk-Nielsen
  • 03-24-17

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 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Ozzymandias
  • 12-29-15

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 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Matthew
  • 01-12-17

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 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • SteveyMac
  • 10-23-19

I really wanted to enjoy this book...

And thankfully I did. The pace picks up from where it leaves off in The Assassin’s apprentice - no more slow character develop enemy and world building, this second book in the series goes straight into a tangled web of political fantasy and court intrigue with deep layers of conniving, conspiracy, plots and scheming! Still can be slow burning at times and if you are looking for a fast paced action fantasy novel, this isn’t the book for you. However saying that, palace court fantasies are not normally my fantasy genre of choice but the Farseer Trilogy has me hooked and I can’t wait to start the last book. Paul Boehmer is one of the best narrators I’ve come across since I started to listen to audible books and brings all of the characters to life, each in their own individual way. I think the only reason the story gets 4 stars and not 5 is for the few times I lost concentration due to the odd slow stages out chapter but I found the narrator soon pulling me back in before the story gripped me once again.

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  • JPA
  • 10-18-19

Fantastic sequel. Very much drew me in.

This tale has taken and held me within its world; believable setting, historic feeling and very real characters. Intrigue, twists, turns and shocks abound in a timeless fantasy. Recommended.

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  • Christopher
  • 06-22-17

Disappointing

This is a frustrating book. Fitz is so incredibly dumb that almost the whole book you'll be shaking your head wondering wtf the author was thinking. His friends aren't much brighter.

A big step down from book 1.

Performance was good.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Ben
  • 03-13-18

great story, average performance

fitz sporadically sounds american which is distracting and cook is irish when it pleases the performer. these inconsistencies take you out of this perfect world Robin Hobb has built. i wouldnt let these criticisms stop you.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Brie
  • 08-19-19

amazing book couldn't stop listening

more addicted than ever to this author now. can't wait to listen to the next one!

highly recommended

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-28-19

Transports You to Another World

I would typically listen to this at the gym, and it turned monotonous exercise into an engaging story time. Made you a little disappointed when the workout stopped and you had to pause the audio book. Great performance of a great story.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Alex
  • 06-12-19

Not quite as compelling as the first installment

Whilst the story didn't grab me like the first installment in the series, the performance was still terrific and easy to listen to.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-19-19

farseer trilogy

awesome story loved the books so far ! and now on to the third book cannot wait !! xD

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 02-12-19

Narrator holds it back

Great book, terrible narration. Still worth listening to, but seriously he changes accents for the characters mid sentence.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-05-19

gripping and hard to turn off.

I found myself listening at every free moment I had. loitering in the carpark before work so I could find out what was about to happen. great book.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-24-19

caught up in the story

By the end of book 2 I am hooked. Happy to listen to this all day long.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jean Franklin
  • 01-06-19

review.

loved listening to this book, I look forward to the next in the series very much.