Fool’s Quest is the second book in the Fitz and the Fool trilogy, having left Fool’s Assassin with Bee (and Shun) having been kidnapped by the Servants and a group of Chalcedean mercenaries. Here we catch up with Fitz….not hot on their heels, as he’s instead consumed by caring for the Fool, who’s been returned to him a broken man but one intent on having Fitz wreak vengeance upon those who harmed him. The Witmaster is on at Fitz to take a new partner, and to top it all off he’s also been outed at court as Prince FitzChivalry Farseer, soon realising that being a public figure also invites a level of public scrutiny with which he’s uncomfortable.
This is very much a second book, sometimes feeling as though it’s treading water as we wait for Fitz, plagued as ever by self-doubt, to first of all cotton on to what’s happening and then to make the decisions he needs to finally send us on our way to a confrontation. It seems that over the years he’s also failed to learn to trust the help of his friends, continuing to push everyone who cares for him away for their Own Good.
I am enjoying Bee’s chapters, which are a good way of making you understand an odd character, as well as Hobb’s other trilogies are touching Fitz’s story (and what sort of effects the Fool’s remedy for his ills might have), but I do hope that there’s a little more momentum for our final stretch.