This is a Spoiler-Free Review.
I decided to take a (very brief) break from reading Sanderson. But I still wanted to read Epic Fantasy (. I like short stories, and I had heard that The Witcher series started off with short stories. And what with the show coming out recently, I decided, “why not?” It was a short read anyway. If I didn’t like it, it’d be over quick. I didn’t go in with low expectations, but I didn’t go in with high expectations either.
But, that book was one of the best fantasy books I’ve read.
The Last Wish is the first book in The Witcher canon. It is a collection of short stories that give an introduction to the protagonist of the series, Geralt of Rivia. Geralt is a Witcher. But what is a Witcher? A Witcher is a mutated human who uses magic to hunt monsters for coin. They travel across the Continent looking for work so that they can make money. Witcher’s live by a strict code for monster hunting that Geralt does his best to follow. The short stories are great page turner’s and there aren’t needless dumps of information (something that can tend to happen in high fantasy books. Not that I don’t enjoy the dumps, but they do drag out the reading a bit). They tell the stories in concise ways giving us small details into the world.
Now, there is a timeline piece that can be a bit confusing at first, but once you get further into the book it will make more and more sense. It is a little bit off-putting at first, so that is something to keep in mind. Push through, and you’ll be fine.
I personally enjoyed the book immensely. It was fun to have a different way of reading high fantasy (fantasy that takes place in a completely different world). I enjoy short stories like Sherlock Holmes. It was entertaining to see my favorite genre mix with one of my favorite styles of storytelling. The characters were also compelling and different from what I’m used to seeing in fantasy. The magic system was a soft magic system that I felt left room for development of other things, such as the monsters. Every monster Geralt came across was unique and it felt like we hadn’t seen them before.
All in all, I enjoyed this book immensely and I would recommend it to those who are fans of the fantasy genre. Someone who doesn’t enjoy the genre may not enjoy this book as much as I did.
If you’ve read The Last Wish, what were your (spoiler-free for the series, I’m still working on finishing the series!) thoughts?
Thanks for reading! If you want to get updates on when new blog posts come out, subscribe to my newsletter, “The Raven,” and be the first to get updates and exclusive updates on my writings! If you want to contribute to the conversation, please comment below! I will try to respond to all comments!