Fool's Fate (The Tawny Man #3) - Robin Hobb 9.08   364

'Having the courage to find a better path is having the courage to risk making new mistakes.'

Once assassin to the king, Fitz is now Skillmaster to Prince Dutiful's small coterie, sailing towards a future as uncertain as the waters that separate the Six Duchies from the distant Out Island of Aslevjal. His duty, to help the Prince fulfil the Narcheska Elliania's challenge: bring her the head of the dragon, Icefyre, whom legends tell is buried there deep beneath the ice. Only with the completion of this task will their marriage proceed, and the resulting alliance signal an end to war between the two kingdoms.

It is not a happy ship: the serving boy, Thick, is constantly ill, and his random but powerful Skilling takes on a dark and menacing tone, causing the sailors to regard him as some sort of Jonah. Fitz, his Skill-dreams plagued by female voices and the beating of gigantic wings, is unhappy at leaving his friend the Fool behind but is determined to keep the White Prophet from his fate on the isle of the black dragon; and Chade's fascination with the Skill is growing to the point of obsession.

There are other currents flowing in the Out Islands, for not everyone welcomes the idea of a foreign prince slaying the Aslevjal legend. So why is the Narcheska so intent on the dragon's death?

A much-reduced party finally arrives on the frozen island, to be greeted by a familiar yet changed figure. What role does he have to play in the success or failure of the quest? His intentions are certainly at odds with Chade, who is determined to slay the dragon to secure peace, whatever the cost.

The tale of Fitz and the Fool, begun in Assassin's Apprentice, reaches its spectacular conclusion in Fool's Fate, in which kingdoms must stand or fall on the beat of a dragon's wings, or a Fool's heart. It is nothing less than a triumph, a breathtaking achievement of powerful storytelling that is rich in character and emotion and wonder, and is destined to become one of the all-time classics.

Hobb covers portrayed here are from UK editions, by John Howe.


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Release date October 2003
Details updated August 20, 2022

The Tawny Man :: Series

Series contains 3 primary works and has 3 total works.

The Tawny Man continues the life of FitzChivalry Farseer from The Farseer Trilogy. It commences 15 years after the events in Assassin's Quest.

Main series The Realm of the Elderlings

Fool's Errand (The Tawny Man #1) 8.72   395
The Golden Fool (The Tawny Man #2) 8.88   372
Fool's Fate (The Tawny Man #3) 9.08   364

Community Reviews & Rates

Seregil of Rhiminee
3518 ratings
260 reviews
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October 6, 2007
10 / 10

This final book of The Tawny Man trilogy is an excellent fantasy book. It's a good conclusion to the series. I loved this book. :) It contained many interesting scenes and the especially the dragon scenes were fantastic. By the way, Fool's Fate features some events from The Liveship Traders, so it would be good to read The Liveship Traders before reading this series.

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