The Name of the Wind

Kingkiller Chronicle, Book 1
Narrated by: Nick Podehl
Series: Kingkiller Chronicle, Book 1
Length: 27 hrs and 55 mins
4.7 out of 5 stars (85,706 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Discover #1 New York Times bestselling Patrick Rothfuss’ epic fantasy series, The Kingkiller Chronicle.

“I just love the world of Patrick Rothfuss.” (Lin-Manuel Miranda)

“He’s bloody good, this Rothfuss guy.” (George R. R. Martin)

“Rothfuss has real talent.” (Terry Brooks)

Over 1 Million Copies Sold! 

Day One: The Name of the Wind

My name is Kvothe.

I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep.

You may have heard of me.

So begins a tale unequaled in fantasy literature - the story of a hero told in his own voice. It is a tale of sorrow, a tale of survival, a tale of one man’s search for meaning in his universe, and how that search, and the indomitable will that drove it, gave birth to a legend. 

Praise for The Kingkiller Chronicle: 

“The best epic fantasy I read last year.... He’s bloody good, this Rothfuss guy.” (George R. R. Martin, New York Times bestselling author of A Song of Ice and Fire)

“Rothfuss has real talent, and his tale of Kvothe is deep and intricate and wondrous.” (Terry Brooks, New York Times bestselling author of Shannara)

"It is a rare and great pleasure to find a fantasist writing...with true music in the words." (Ursula K. Le Guin, award-winning author of Earthsea)

"The characters are real and the magic is true.” (Robin Hobb, New York Times bestselling author of Assassin’s Apprentice)

"Masterful.... There is a beauty to Pat's writing that defies description." (Brandon Sanderson, New York Times bestselling author of Mistborn)

©2007 by Patrick Rothfuss. (P)2009 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

Critic Reviews

“The originality of Rothfuss's outstanding debut fantasy, the first of a trilogy, lies less in its unnamed imaginary world than in its precise execution…As absorbing on a second reading as it is on the first, this is the type of assured, rich first novel most writers can only dream of producing. The fantasy world has a new star.” (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

“Fantasy readers-a notoriously discerning group-tend to dole out praise judiciously, which makes the reception of The Name of the Wind, the first volume in Patrick Rothfuss's The Kingkiller Chronicle, that much more remarkable. Critics are already throwing around comparisons to some of the biggest names in fantasy, including George R. R. Martin, Tad Williams, the recently deceased Robert Jordan, and even Tolkien. (Bookmarks Magazine)

“New fantasy authors are usually overhyped, and it's rare to find one who writes with such assurance and narrative skill right from the start. I was reminded of Ursula LeGuin, George R. R. Martin, and J. R. R. Tolkien, but never felt that Rothfuss was imitating anyone. Like the writers he clearly admires, he's an old-fashioned storyteller working with traditional elements, but his voice is his own. I haven't been so gripped by a new fantasy series in years. It's certain to become a classic." (Lisa Tuttle, The Times)

Featured Article: Books Like Game of Thrones—Best Epic Fantasy Books & Series


It's time to branch out and find some new material to fill that dragon-shaped hole in your listening life. If you liked Game of Thrones, these epic fantasy books are your next best listen. Some are standalone novels, some are the start of a new series, and others are the first in a completed series. Oh, and they're all excellent. And as Tyrion Lannister said, "... a mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge."

What listeners say about The Name of the Wind

Average Customer Ratings
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Unfinished forever

Dont start! It's been 10 years since the first book came out and still no conclusion.

231 people found this helpful

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This is why I joined Audible!

I have been reading Science Fiction and Fantasy for 40 years, and this is one of my favorite series. Ever. One caution, though: It has been EIGHT YEARS since book 2 of 3 was published, so you'll be left hanging, wanting to know how things resolve. If you're OK with that, I can't recommend this book more. If not, wait until the author finally/ever finishes the series, before enjoying the book. You are warned . . . . . . but it's one of my favorite books ever!

56 people found this helpful

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Lipstick on a Pig

The story is grindingly slow, staggeringly predictable, and mind-numbingly boring. The prose is serviceable in most places, with the occasional bit of excellence consistently offset by exhibits of clumsiness. The moralizing is repulsively childish, while the worshipful fixation with music, women, and alleged intellectual excellence is absolutely more garbage than I could endure. But yawning wider than any of these holes is the shrieking abyss of a main character, Kvothe. He's the most detestable protagonist I've ever suffered. Astoundingly superior in every fashion and boringly tragic and brooding and snarky and brilliant, Kvothe is the most ridiculous junior high wish fulfillment self-insert ever distilled. On the bright side, the narrator is not awful.

35 people found this helpful

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Top 5 books I've read in my life!

I probably read / listen to 2 books a week on average. While I have read books that are debatably better , I have never been more invested in a protagonist. As you follow Kvothe in his adventures, you cheer for him, You weep for him, and you worry for him. If you want to have an irrationally emotional connection with a fictional character this is the book for you. Some books may have better overall plots, some may have better worlds, or better systems of magic. However you will find little to no books that are executed better then the Name of the Wind, and in my opinion you will never find a character with more character than Kvothe.

35 people found this helpful

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Meh

This is really not good. The poetry is awful, the songs are awful. The story could be good if the author didn't think he was the greatest poet of all time and just got rid of the needless flowery words. Not sure why it is a best seller. I guess people fall for the fluff and think it is cool.

29 people found this helpful

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Why is this book so popular? Bad writing

The purple prose is cringy. The MC is a gifted marysue who can learn anything perfectly on the first try. He is the best looking. He's the most righteous. He's the smartest. He's the most amazing, fantastic, grand MC ever. Even his parents are the most perfect, most in love. Uggh. I found it hard to root for any of the characters. Even when the MCs parents die and he becomes a street kid, I just didn't care. He was too perfect, and even found a way to be a successful, perfect, homeless kid. I didn't feel sympathy, just kinda rolled my eyes at how perfect he was at opening locks on the first two tries. Shallow writing. It feels like the author has no life experience, and badly imaged what traveling, acting, and running a bar was like. No real research, just imagined it. He over explains everything, probably due to lack of actual knowledge. Got bored of hearing about the MCs perfect childhood, so I quit. Nothing was really happening anyway. Just more pointless parables and stories that have nothing to do with the demon-spider they found in the woods in chapter 1. (Which, by the way, was an AWESOME plot point and why can't we go back to that? Your 18 chapter childhood is boring, let's go hunt demons please.) I love fantasy and really wanted to like this. The narrator was great, but when you're working with immature writing, it isn't your fault. I struggle to understand why this has won so many awards. But then again, Taylor Swift exists.

21 people found this helpful

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Amazballs

So I was skeptical of this one, due largely to all the hype I was reading about it and please believe me when I say I’m an reader or listener in this case and the story line kept drawing me further and further in. The magic system is complex and a compilation of other systems of magic I’ve read of before, but in a refreshing way. I couldn’t put it down I listened in the shower while driving it was amazing to say the least. If your on the fence about buying this get over it you’ll love it and the characters.

18 people found this helpful

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Insufferable Know-It-All Protagonist

It amazes me that this story is so highly regarded by so many. The protagonist is annoying, immature and unlikable, and the story isn’t worthwhile.

11 people found this helpful

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Wow!

This isn't the kind of book I would normally pickup or download but a co-worker recommended it to me. Wow! Where to begin? The story itself is beautifully written. The author weaves stories within stories to create a fabric of fiction as warm and familiar as a favorite blanket. I was immediately reminded of Neil Gaiman's writing. I always joke that if I were diagnosed with a terminal illness that I would want Neil Gaiman to come to my house and read to me from one of his books as I cuddled up with my pound puppy in bed. (A little dark but you get my point!) I've added Patrick Rothfuss to the list as well. It's one thing to have a mind that can image, in great detail, an entire world and culture but it is a true treat to find an author that can both create and pull you into that world and make you feel like you are a part of it. I was afraid it would be too "fictiony", too many fairies and dragons. I'm not sure how but Rothfuss manages to incorporate them both without the story becoming too "fake". There is a certain harsh reality within the story that sharpens the sometimes softened edges of fiction. Excellent writting! Nick Podehl's reading is spot on! The character voices are wonderful. Not over the top but obviously performed. It's like having a great actor perform a great play. It's the perfect pairing. I can't wait to start on the second book. Enjoy!

395 people found this helpful

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Not sure why the reviews are so polar opposite.

So it looks like people either love or hate this book. I loved it and actually got the audio book just so I could write a review and listen to it before the next one comes out. Maybe it is because I read the actual book, but this is the first book I have read in a long time that I just could not put down. I read the whole thing in 2 days. It is true that this first of the trilogy is really just character development and setting the stage, there is not a whole lot of action yet, but I swear while reading it I felt like I was sitting there at the table with them and that is due to the incredible writing style. The way this book sucked me into it's world is amazing. I have read all the other greats of this genre and while many of them are wonderful, I never felt as attached to them.

394 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-20-17

Astounding and outstanding!

Simply wonderful reading. I love Podehl alsways as much as I love Rothfuss, Tolkien and my wife and kid!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-05-19

Very good

I could not put it down. Almost 5/5! But it dwells on some less interesting story lines instead of concluding the main ones. I also think the main character was a bit inconsistent.

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  • Reut sharon
  • 11-13-17

Awful! worst hero character ever known.

I am happy that I read it just because it made other books that I like even better and extraordinary. Worst fantasy bbok I ever read. Poor language and shallow characters. Main character is very annoying too.

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  • Kristy L Preston
  • 02-24-17

Fantastic

I've loved this book for such a long time and I felt that the narrator truly gave the characters life. A really great performance, in my opinion, of one of the greatest fantasy novels around!