Author: Robin Hobb
Last Read: August 2010
Quick Summary: An outcast bastard son of a prince is secretly trained to be an assassin from a young age. The book follows him though his childhood and training, culminating in his first mission. The book is a pretty good fantasy read: interesting characters, internal struggles, and political scheming abound. A book for those who like Arya's character in A Song of Ice and Fire
I did not continue on with the series.
The group of onlookers was growing. A few showed pity in their eyes, but none interfered. Some of what I was feeling passed to Nosy, who dropped over onto his side and showed his belly in supplication while thumping his tail in that ancient canine signal that always means, “I’m only a puppy. I cannot defend myself. Have mercy.” Had they been dogs, they would have sniffed me over and then drawn back. But humans have no such inbred courtesies.
“There is this, boy. And you should remember it in every situation, not just this one. Learning is never wrong. Even learning how to kill isn’t wrong. Or right. It’s just a thing to learn, a thing I can teach you.
“I’m not a real prince. I’m a bastard.” It came oddly from my mouth, that word I heard so often and so seldom said. Burrich sighed softly.
“Be your blood, boy, and ignore what anyone else thinks of you.”
“Sometimes I get tired of doing the hard things.”
“So do I.”
“You don’t know that. You only hear what the gossips say. You aren’t old enough to understand some things. You’ve never seen a wild bird lure predators away from its young by pretending to be injured.”
“I don’t believe that,” I said, but I suddenly felt less confident saying it. “He never did anything to make me think he cared about me.”
Chade turned to look at me and his eyes were older, sunken and red.
“If you had known he’d cared, so would others. When you are a man, maybe you’ll understand just how much that cost him. To not know you in order to keep you safe. To make his enemies ignore you.”
“Well, I’ll “not know’ him to the end of my days, now,” I said sulkily.