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Reviews Comments: Derivative and predictable, and yet... The Name Of The Wind film/book review by phylos

This book is derivative, it actually seems entirely dedicated to playing Heroic Fantasy tropes as straight as possible. Whether the lampshade hangings on them justify the book's genericness is in the eye of the beholder.

For me, it makes the book all too predictable. One has literally seen almost every event in this book somewhere else.

However, however, for all the run-of-the-mill nature of the plot and the mostly boring and/or annoying characters (Bast in particular got on my nerves for being entirely useless to the narrative and needlessly antagonistic, like a fly that won't leave no matter how much you swat at it), its structure itself makes an aspect of it extremely fascinating: the inner mythology, with all its twists and turns and contradictions is mesmerizing.

More than whatever Kvothe and Denna get up to, the thing I care most about when it comes to the end of the series is to find out what really happened in the ancient times. Lanre, Selitos, Iax et al. I want to know what they really did.

It's when the book is dealing with the myth arc that it really caught my attention. It's one of the most interesting experiments in myth building and analysis I've read, even if the plot rarely justifies them or even pays attention to them.

It also merits a mention that, for all of his lack of originality (even the inner mythology mostly consists of stuff from real world mythologies and other works, though still mashed in an interesting way, as I've already said), Rothfuss is definitely a good writer. The book feels far shorter than it really is.

All in all, if you don't care about ground breaking or don't find lack of originality a detriment (I fall in this second camp) and are a fan of fantasy, The Name of The Wind is worthy read.


  • RoyFlowers
  • 10th Jan 16
What fantasy would you consider ground breaking and not lacking any originality?
  • phylos
  • 11th Jan 16
Heh, before answering that question I'd love to know why you asked it.
  • RoyFlowers
  • 13th Jan 16
Because, the way I see it, nearly all fiction is derivative and predictable to a certain degree. Everything is a remix. There are no wholly original concepts that have never been thought of before, they are just thought of in different ways by different artists.
  • phylos
  • 17th Jan 16
And I agree wholeheartedly. There are only seven basic plots after all.

That's why I said this in the review: "if you don't care about ground breaking or don't find lack of originality a detriment (I fall in this second camp)"
  • RoyFlowers
  • 5th Dec 16
You still haven\'t answered my question. What is the groundbreaking fantasy that is like no other?
  • phylos
  • 21st Dec 16
There isn't such a thing. Probably the epic of Gilgamesh or Homer's works, being among the first and all that.
  • maninahat
  • 22nd Dec 16
So the flaw of this book is that it is more derivative than all those other derivative works?
  • phylos
  • 12th Jul 17
I never said it was a flaw. Others might think that, but I don't care for originality, I care to be entertained which I mostly was.

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