Wednesday, 19 April 2017

The Tower of the Swallow by Andrzej Sapkowski book review

The Tower of the Swallow (The Witcher, #6)The Tower of the Swallow by Andrzej Sapkowski
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

This review can be found on Amaranthine Reads.

The Witcher series by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski continues, with the Child Surprise Ciri travelling around with a bunch of thieves and bandits called the Rats, whilst Geralt, sorcerers and the Emperor send out people to find her.

This series has plummeted to the very depths of tedium. Every book has melded in to one and it's difficult for me to remember this particular one, though I do recall my consternation at the random change of narrative style. Geralt is still not doing any Witchering, there is still monumental bitching between all the female characters and the dialogue is still pitiful.

I complained during a review of an earlier book in this series that we rarely had other points of view during the narration, which seemed to slow down the entire thing. This book rectifies that, but in such a way that it may as well have not happened. We have around five POVs during any given chapter, which confuses things incredibly and don't actually improve the plot or pace of the action. We also, for some reason, begin to get excerpts from Dandelion's little memoirs, which add nothing to the plot except a general feel that perhaps this is something Sapkowski should maybe try out because it's cool, yo.

The plot is also the same as it was in the previous three books. This series, a five book series discounting the first two short story collections, is definitely two books too long and probably four books too long. Everything seems to take around two chapters to tell. A journey that could be told in one sentence ends up taking approximately half the book and we are left wondering why. Nothing particularly exciting happens during these journeys, except meeting new characters that add nothing to the story because the characters we already know are weak and two dimensional. Their interaction is always so false and incredibly immature.

Speaking of the characters, the protagonists known as Geralt and Ciri have become cantankerous and pathetic. They whinge and moan and act like little children not getting their own way. And yet no-one minds because one is a part of a prophecy and the other characters are all in love with the other. It is as if nothing can touch them-which is apparently the case since they elude capture, maiming and death numerous times through no reason other than they must to keep the story going.

There is also far, far, far too many mentions of genitals. I have never read a book that is so obsessed with genitals and sex. I'm sure HBO would love to turn this in to a TV series-and a successful one at that-due to the sheer amount of tits and sex. Someone is either aiming to stab someone else in the penis or a man is wanting to shove his penis in a woman's vagina. This is basically all that happens, with some killing in between.

And there is still endless bitching between the female characters. I'm not sure there is a single woman who have anything nice to say about another woman, except Ciri but she's basically just a child anyway. And all women love all children. It's a fact.

I don't know why I felt the need to finish this series. There is one book to go after this and whilst I found this particular instalment as boring as any book can be, I find I've invested so much I need to know. Belzebub knows I will be disappointed: I can feel it with this book as the plot meanders, the characters flatten out even more and the dialogue improves by a hair's breadth. It is my own fault for wasting my own time.

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  1. I did not like the very first book, but I thought that was just because it was a collection of short stories :/ and I've been meaning to pick up the next few books and find out how his novels are... now I'm not so sure! Great review, thank you for sharing :)

    1. The first two books in the "series" are collection of short stories. It's odd how they've labelled them: what we have is a series of five books, with two collections of short stories, though the short stories come first and are, technically, the first two in the series! But it's complicated and to be honest... I wouldn't bother with these. There are many better books out there, though the short stories aren't actually that bad!

      There are also some video games, which I'm looking to play soon. The idea of the Witcher is in itself interesting, but altogether I don't think Sapkowski is a very good storyteller.

      Thank you for your comment. :)