[Audio]Book Review: The Last Wish (The Witcher Book 0.5) by Andrzej Sapkowski

 
 
Geralt is a witcher; he travels from town to town killing monsters for a living and protecting humanity, sometimes with his best friend, the bard Dandelion, in tow. These are some of his tales.

Book Cover - The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski
Title: The Last Wish
Publisher:
Series:
Book Number: Book 0.5
Pages: 353
My Rating: 4 Stars
More Info: Goodreads, Amazon, Publisher
 

Review:

The Witcher! It’s a game! It’s a Netflix show! It’s also a book series! And I’m reading it. I’ve seen online that this book is the best place to start the series, so this is where I started. Even though I haven’t watched the show (hopefully I will get to eventually), I’ve heard and seen so much about it that it was hard to not have a lot of expectations going into the book, but I tried my best to set those aside and not let them influence my experience.

Geralt was a lot more good-natured and sassy than I thought he would be. I imagined him as this gruff, misanthropic, “I’m too tough and miserable for friendship or jokes” monster killer, but I was delighted to be incorrect. He didn’t put up with BS, but he had friends (or at least one friend, whom he cared about deeply) and seemed to enjoy companionship. He also had a lot of wisdom, patience, level-headedness, and, when called for, compassion.

Speaking of his friend, I loved his friendship with Dandelion and how much he cared about him. There were a couple moments that really made me say awwwww. However, I didn’t like Dandelion himself so much. I really wanted to like him, he was a fun character, but he was also kind of a womanizing jerk. Literally one of the wishes he made when he found a djinn who could grant him anything was to have a girl who kept rejecting him finally succumb to his advances. He just rubbed me the wrong way. He did seem to care about Geralt though, at least.

This book in particular was more a collection of stories than a single coherent story. Because I knew this going in, I didn’t mind and just enjoyed the stories for their entertainment value and for the background they gave. I found most of the stories surprisingly chill with small bursts of action in the fight scenes, and even the fighting was relatively low stakes since it was mostly Geralt’s life at stake, and I knew he’d be fine.

The narrator for the audiobook was great. He did lots of accents, and he always managed to make people sound different. I was surprised by Geralt’s Scottish-sounding accent, but it wasn’t a bad thing. I didn’t love the voice he chose for Dandelion, but that’s really subjective.

The jumping around between stories and also not giving any explanation of time confused me, and that’s my only real complaint for the book. I still don’t really know what order these stories happened in.

Overall though, I really enjoyed this! I liked Geralt’s character, I enjoyed the stories, and I’m looking forward to more.

 
 
Book Blurb

Now a Netflix original series!

Geralt the Witcher — revered and hated — holds the line against the monsters plaguing humanity in this collection of adventures in the NYT bestselling series that inspired the blockbuster video games.

Geralt is a Witcher, a man whose magic powers, enhanced by long training and a mysterious elixir, have made him a brilliant fighter and a merciless assassin. Yet he is no ordinary murderer: his targets are the multifarious monsters and vile fiends that ravage the land and attack the innocent.

But not everything monstrous-looking is evil and not everything fair is good…and in every fairy tale there is a grain of truth.

Andrzej Sapkowski, winner of the World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement award, started an international phenomenon with his Witcher series. The Last Wish short story collection is the perfect introduction to this one of a kind fantasy world.

Translated from original Polish by Danusia Stok

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  1. Greg

    The Witcher IS everywhere! I’m curious about the Netflix show and watched the first few minutes of it but got sidetracked- I’ll probably get back to it at some point. Bummer about Dandelion though, I mean that’s a cool name for a bard, too bad he has to be a jerk…

    1. Kristen Burns

      I’ve heard the show is great! Yeah, the Dandelion thing was disappointing because his character seems so lovable from what I’ve seen and heard of the show. Maybe he’ll redeem himself in the next book lol.

  2. Brittany

    Glad you liked this one!! I’m reading Blood of Elves and loving the series so fat! I also started with The Last Wish :D And I totally agree with you about Geralt not being the stiff gruff guy that he is made out to be and I love it! I hope you like the rest of the books if you read them! Great review!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! I’m glad you’re enjoying it too and that you get what I mean about Geralt :-P I would’ve continued on right away, but my library only has a few of the audiobooks D-: I’m hoping they’ll get the rest soon.

  3. Olivia Roach

    I did see a lot of readers being surprised it was short stories rather than a singular narrative. Yours is the first review I have seen for someone who hasn’t watched the series first. I haven’t watched it either, but is definitely taking the watching world by storm. I am glad you could be pleasantly surprised by Geralt’s character and enjoy these stories so much!