Kvothe is an unreliable narrator, probably. He definitely exaggerated at some parts, but the way he portrays himself is like this: he learns fast and almost perfectly. He’s good at everything, fine I get it. It wasn’t bad to read, even as a student who does struggle. He reminds me of some close friends. Sometimes, some of the things he does can induce some eye-rolling because smart as he is, he at times lacked common sense. One of the most annoying parts were the ones where Denna was present. I cringed a lot, remember that this was a 15 or 16-year-old kid, infatuated for the first time. I’m 18 at the moment and I still cringed because I remember myself two to four years ago at times.
The story itself was structured as a bit like vignettes of the interesting parts of his life. They were more like little stories with some story arcs that stretched chapters. It definitely gave a nice glimpse of his life and his stay in University. It was a very interesting way of telling a story that I liked. The interludes between several chapters were also a welcome diversion from the story Kvothe was telling.
The story itself was very well-written. I liked the prose and the dialogue felt like something actual people would say, and yes, even the cringy parts. Unfortunately, I had to dock a star because I felt like some parts, especially towards the middle and near the end dragged. It was enough to hamper my enjoyment of the story and even consider DNF-ing it. That may also partly be because I felt like I was taking too long to finish the thing and might slide into a slump again. I am glad I stuck on and I will read the sequel at some point, considering that I already have it.
Anyway, I really do appreciate what this book does and its unique premise. An innkeeper who is secretly a famous hero in retirement, telling his life story. Not quite the typical epic fantasy, and that’s something I will credit this one for.
Do I recommend it? Yes. But do not read it during finals season.