Baptism of Fire by Andrzej Spakowski
The Witcher books are great. What were once hidden gems have been shoved into the mainstream by video games and a very popular Netflix show. I have only made it four books in. And when I decided to read the next book, I saw that the prices were skyrocketing because of the show. But for some reason book five was still at its typical price. So I instinctively got it before it was marked up as well. The book is review today is on Baptism of Fire by Andrej Sapkowski.
So what is the Witcher about? It follows a Witcher. A Witcher is an orphan who has been experimented on and mutated to be a monster hunter. And the book follows his life as a monster hunter in a high fantasy setting, including the adoption of an orphan princess and his on and off again girlfriend Yennifer. This book picks up after where the last novel left off. Geralt is badly injured. His adoptive daughter Ciri has been kidnapped. Yennifer is missing. As soon as he is well enough to walk, he travels with an archer name Milva to save Ciri from being a pawn between the kingdoms at war. The book follows their obstacles as they journey to find Ciri.
The good? The characters are so darn likable. There are large portions where the lead characters are set walking through the woods and the chemistry between them is so good, it remains entertaining. The whole cast is just so well developed and interesting I would enjoy reading about them fumbling through a phone book. Also there is the return of monsters in this novel. I know this is weird to say, but a series about a monster hunter, there has been a lack of monsters in the last couple of novels. So its nice to see it be both about monsters and a raging war.
The bad? Well like the other novels, the author takes his slice of life approach. These novels never had a three act structure. They begin to follow characters for a matter of weeks and it just seems to randomly end. Sure, the book is fun, but they never have a cliff hanger or ever feel like they are building up to anything. It’s a kind of story telling I feel that not everyone is into. Also this book is good. I really like it. But it is not an epic. It has been always been more of a personal story for Geralt. I know with the hype for The Witcher right now, many may think he’s trying to save the world. But he’s not and this is not a big story. He’s just a guy with a couple mild magic tricks trying to get his get his daughter back.
Overall, this is a great read. It’s a fun continuation of the Witcher series. It’s not ground breaking. I personally feel the first two books are the best in the series. But this is still pretty good. If you like the series so far, you will enjoy this one as well.
4 smoothies out Five
Overall Rating: A Fine Continuation of the Witcher Series.