The Time in Contempt: Family matters and Traitorous Sorcerers in this High Fantasy World
The Time in Contempt by Andrzej Sapkowski
So there’s a well beloved polish books series that over the last decade has been becoming increasingly popular in the United States over the last five years. Despite the fact the series is twenty years old, many Americans became aware of it just recently with an outstanding video game, the re releases of the translated novels in American market, and a now filming Netflix TV series. Its the WItcher series and here is the review on the fourth book in the series called The Time in Contempt by Andrezej Sapkowski.
So what is it about? It follows Geralt of Rivea. He is a Witcher. A Witcher is an orphan who is put through various trials and mutations to become faster, sharper, and slightly magical monster hunter. Geralt is one of the last, as it has now been outlawed and there is prejudice against them. Geralt in the past book took in a lost princess Ciri, and decided to raise her in secret with his on again off again love Yennifer (who is a sorcerous). They decide against turning her over as Ciri is going to be used as a pawn in a political game and Ciri seems to have some extremely powerful magic inside of her that spectral knights known as the wild hunt are looking for.
The book picks up a little after Geralt and Yennifer break up again. Yennifer is teaching Ciri her magic and tries to enroll her into a magic school where she can develop her skills. Ciri doesn’t like it though. She see it as a prison and runs off (at the risk of being caught by the Wild Hunt) to see Geralt. This act in the long run gets Geralt and Yennifer back together. And they once again try to make their relationship work. They even attend a party together. A high falulin party of sorcerers and the sorcerer council. But it isn’t long before things turns sideways. Somehow, the king of Nilfgard found out who and where Ciri is. A number of sorcerers turn on the council to aid the king. Some stay true to the nearly murdered council. Others decided to run to neutral countries. A war breaks up after the party. Ciri runs away and accidently stumbles through a portal sending her miles away Geralt tries all that he can to save Ciri. He gets badly beaten and knocked out before being rescued. Yennifer is missing. Whether she was kidnapped or ran off is anyone’s guess. And from there on out the story follows Geralt as he searched for Ciri in a war torn land as Ciri tries to survive.
The good? This is a good book in general. It will stick with you unlike the last novel which was so forgettable. I can’t even recall what it’s about. The characters are likable. Their mannerisms, behaviors, and everything about this just so well crafted. I loved Ciri, Geralt, Danelion and for the first time, I kind of like Yennifer. She came off as something more than a snooty ice queen from the earlier books. She seems more human this time. The chemistry between characters is great. I believe they were really in love and that Ciri and them were a family. The details is wonderful and holy wow! The action in fantastic.
The bad? This book begins as high fantasy version of as the world turns for half the book and then bam! A war braks our and everything is high stakes and life and death as a war broke loose. And since the first half is family drama some people may be bored until the action starts. Then at the party Yennifer introduces Geralt to various high ranking sorcerers. This takes a long time and many of them are snooty and bland. This part is boring, so it's easy to skim through. But when the war breaks out, all of those names are extremely important with who’s on whose side and who can be trusted. So you must pay attention during this long excruciating boring scene to understand the future chapters. Also, Yennifer is better in this book but she is still a snob, still tends to run over Geralt from time to time and he still likes her regardless. Also the book cuts off at the end. There’s a no sense that the book is coming to an end like most series. You just turn the page and there’s no more which is a shame.
Overall, the book is great. It’s a wonderful improvement of the third novel, and on par with the first two. The characters are great. The story’s great. The action is fantastic. It’s just doesn’t have any sense of ending which may be a problem for a few. But this is great. I recommend it to everyone.
4 smoothies out of Four
Overall Rating: Family Matters and Traitorous Sorcerers in this High Fantasy World.