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THE N A M E OF THE W I N D The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day One
PATRICK ROTHFUSS My name is Kvothe, pronounced nearly the same as "quothe." Names are important as they tell you a great deal about a person. IVe had more names than anyone has a right to. The Adem call me Maedre. Which, depending on how it's spoken, can mean The Flame, The Thunder, or The Broken Tree. "The Flame" is obvious if you've ever seen me. I have red hair, bright. If I had been born a couple of hundred years ago I would probably have been burned as a demon. I keep it short but it's unruly. When left to its own devices, it sticks up and makes me look as if I have been set afire. "The Thunder" I attribute to a strong baritone and a great deal of stage training at an early age. I've never thought of "The Broken Tree" as very significant. Although in retrospect, I suppose it could be considered at least partially prophetic. My first mentor called me E'lir because I was clever and I knew it. My first real lover called me Dulator because she liked the sound of it. I have been called Shadicar, Lightfinger, and Six'String. I have been called Kvothe the Bloodless, Kvothe the Arcane, and Kvothe Kingkiller. I have earned those names. Bought and paid for them. But I was brought up as Kvothe. My father once told me it meant "to know." I have, of course, been called many other things. Most of them uncouth, although very few were unearned. (continued on back flap)
(continued from front flap) I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep. You may have heard of me. So begins the tale of Kvothe—from his child' hood in a troupe of traveling players, to years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-riddled city, to his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a difficult and dangerous school of magic. In these pages you will come to know Kvothe as a notorious magician, an accom* plished thief, a masterful musician, and an infamous assassin. But THE NAME OF THE WIND is so much more—for the story it tells reveals the truth behind Kvothe's legend.
Patrick Rothfuss currently lives in central Wisconsin where he teaches at the local university. In his free time Pat writes a satirical humor column, practices civil disobedience, and dabbles in alchemy. He loves words, laughs often, and refuses to dance. THE NAME OF THE WIND is his first novel. There will be more. www.nameofthewind.com Jacket painting by Donato Jacket designed by G-Force Design Photo by Jamie Rothfuss
Advance quotes for THE NAME OF THE W f l » : "THE NAME OF THE WIND marks the debut of a writer we would all do well to watch. Patrick Rothfuss has real talent, and his tale of Kvothe is deep and intricate and wondrous." —Terry Brooks, 22-time New York Times bestselling author "THE NAME OF THE WIND has everything fantasy readers like, magic and mysteries and ancient evil, but it's also humorous and terrifying and completely believable. As with all the very best books in our field, it's not the fantasy trappings (wonderful as they are) that make this novel so good, but what the author has to say about true, common things, about ambition and failure, art, love, and loss." —Tad Williams New York Times bestselling author of Shadowmarch, Otherland, and Memory, Sorrow and Thorn "Hail Patrick Rothfuss! A new giant is striding the land. THE NAME OF THE WIND is an astonishing novel that just happens to be the writer's first. The bestsellers' lists and the award ballots are beckoning toward Rothfuss, and readers will be clamoring for more of the riveting life story of Kvothe. Bravo, I say! Bravo!" —Robert J. Sawyer, Hugo Award-winning author of Rollback "Patrick Rothfuss gives us a fabulous debut, standing firmly on the main stage of the fantasy genre and needing no warm-up act. Jordan and Goodkind must be looking nervously over their shoulders!" —Kevin J. Anderson, New York Times bestselling coauthor of Hunters of Dune "THE NAME OF THE WIND is a rare find these days, fit for lovers of fantasy and newcomers to the genre alike. It fires the imagination and stirs the heart. In Pat Rothfuss's sure hands, the reader will experience a journey to the very heights of fantasy. I for one never wanted to come back down." —Sean Williams, New York Times bestselling author of The Blood Debt
ISBN 13: 978-0-7564-0407-9
THE NAME OF THE WIND
THE N A M E OF THE W I N D THE KINGKILLER CHRONICLE: DAY ONE
DAW BOOKS, INC. DONALD A. WOLLHEIM, FOUNDER 375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
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Copyright © 2007 by Patrick Rothfuss All rights reserved. Jacket art by Donato. DAW Books Collectors No. 1396. DAW Books are distributed by Penguin Group (USA) Inc. Book designed by Elizabeth Glover. Maps by Nathan Taylor www.king-sheep.com All characters and events in this book are fictitious. All resemblance to persons living or dead is coincidental. The scanning, uploading and distribution of this book via the Internet or any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal, and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage the electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author's rights is appreciated.
First Hardcover Printing, April 2007. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
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To my mother, who taught me to love books and opened the door to Narnia, Pern, and Middle Earth. And to my father, who taught me that if I was going to do something, I should take my time and do it right.
To . . . . . . all the readers of my early drafts. You are legion, too many to name, but not too many to love. I kept writing because of your encouragement. I kept improving because of your criticism. If not for you, I would not have won . . . ... the Writers of the Future contest. If not for their workshop, I would never have met my wonderful anthology-mates from volume 18 or . . . . . . Kevin J. Anderson. If not for his advice, I would never have ended up with . . . . . . Matt Bialer, the best of agents. If not for his guidance, I would never have sold the book to . . . . . . Betsy Wolheim, beloved editor and president of DAW. If not for her, you would not be holding this book. A similar book, perhaps, but this book would not exist. And, lastly, to Mr. Bohage, my high school history teacher. In 1989 I told him I'd mention him in my first novel. I keep my promises.
v>Vie four Corners of CiviUiArtoti •-
COMMONWEALTH The University ** i m r c Hallowfcll
The Cenîhe Sea
A Silence of Three Parts
T WAS NIGHT AGAIN. The Waystone Inn lay in silence, and it was a silence of three parts. The most obvious part was a hollow, echoing quiet, made by things that were lacking. If there had been a wind it would have sighed through the trees, set the inn's sign creaking on its hooks, and brushed the silence down the road like trailing autumn leaves. If there had been a crowd, even a handful of men inside the inn, they would have filled the silence with conversation and laughter, the clatter and clamor one expects from a drinking house during the dark hours of night. If there had been music . . . but no, of course there was no music. In fact there were none of these things, and so the silence remained. Inside the Waystone a pair of men huddled at one corner of the bar. They drank with quiet determination, avoiding serious discussions of troubling news. In doing this they added a small, sullen silence to the larger, hollow one. It made an alloy of sorts, a counterpoint. The third silence was not an easy thing to notice. If you listened for an hour, you might begin to feel it in the wooden floor underfoot and in the rough, splintering barrels behind the bar. It was in the weight of the black stone hearth that held the heat of a long dead fire. It was in the slow back and forth of a white linen cloth rubbing along the grain of the bar. And it was in the hands of the man who stood there, polishing a stretch of mahogany that already gleamed in the lamplight. The man had true-red hair, red as flame. His eyes were dark and distant, and he moved with the subtle certainty that comes from knowing many things. The Waystone was his, just as the third silence was his. This was appropriate, as it was the greatest silence of the three, wrapping the others inside itself. It was deep and wide as autumn's ending. It was heavy as a great river-smooth stone. It was the patient, cut-flower sound of a man who is waiting to die.
A Place for Demons
T WAS FELLING NIGHT and the usual crowd had gathered at the Waystone Inn. Five wasn't much of a crowd, but five was as many as the Waystone ever saw these days, times being what they were. Old Cob was filling his role as storyteller and advice dispensary. The men at the bar sipped their drinks and listened. In the back room a young innkeeper stood out of sight behind the door, smiling as he listened to the details of a familiar story. "When he awoke, Taborlin the Great found himself locked in a high tower. They had taken his sword and stripped him of his tools: key, coin, and candle were all gone. But that weren't even the worst of it, you see . . . " Cob paused for effect, " . . . cause the lamps on the wall were burning blue!" Graham, Jake, and Shep nodded to themselves. The three friends had grown up together, listening to Cob's stories...