Pani Jeziora (Saga o Wiedźminie, #5)
Potwór zaatakował z ciemności, z zasadzki, cicho i wrednie. Zmaterializował się nagle wśród mroku jak wubuchjący płomień. Jak jęzor płomienia. Piąty - i ostatni - tom sagi o wiedźminie Geralcie, pięknej czarodziejce Yennefer i Cirilli - dziecku przeznaczenia.Jaki los czeka wiedźmina? Czy dane mu będzie połączyć się z miłością jego życia? Czy ziści się złowieszcza przepowiednia i czy przetrwa świat ogarnięty morderczą wojną? Świat elfów, ludzi i krasnoludów.

Pani Jeziora (Saga o Wiedźminie, #5) Details

TitlePani Jeziora (Saga o Wiedźminie, #5)
Author
LanguagePolish
ReleaseFeb 6th, 2020
PublishersuperNOWA
ISBN-139788370541293
Rating
GenreFantasy, Fiction, European Literature, Polish Literature

Pani Jeziora (Saga o Wiedźminie, #5) Review

  • Joey Woolfardis
    January 1, 1970
    This review can be found on Amaranthine Reads.We come to the end of the Witcher series, and I say thank Belzebub for that. It is difficult to say why I kept reading to the very (very) bitter end, since the series was getting increasingly worse by every page. I suppose the time I had invested and a small spark of hope that the end may have been worth it all...The Lady of the Lake is the final book and it brings the whole saga to an end, with Ciri finding herself in another world having gone This review can be found on Amaranthine Reads.We come to the end of the Witcher series, and I say thank Belzebub for that. It is difficult to say why I kept reading to the very (very) bitter end, since the series was getting increasingly worse by every page. I suppose the time I had invested and a small spark of hope that the end may have been worth it all...The Lady of the Lake is the final book and it brings the whole saga to an end, with Ciri finding herself in another world having gone through the Tower of Swallows and trying to get back, to find Geralt and somehow end the war that has been ravaging her home.Oh, where to start. If you're wondering whether to read this series, or possible whether to continue reading this series, I will say now that you should not. There have been no improvements since the first few books, and the changes that were made to alleviate those disappointments were far too late and not particularly well done. I'll say now there may be slight spoilers here, but I won't hide the review.We begin with Ciri, who is in "the land of the elves", which is spin-doctoring for our world. Ciri is in our world, being spoken to by Galahad and being forced to make love to Oberon (named Auberon here). This is not as far-fetched as the book gets, though it comes close. To make the plot go here is just insane: where did this come from? There has been no mention of our world, no subtle plot device to prepare us for this event and absolutely no indication that this would even be possible. There was never a mention of "other worlds" and to have Ciri just suddenly be able to do such a thing is terrible storytelling.Ciri is also still the same pathetic, cantankerous, spoilt character she has always been. I see nothing special about her-except this ridiculous ability-and she hasn't changed during the course of this series. The other characters are also just as flat and two-dimensional as they've always been. It seems as if the plot moves along without them: as if even if they weren't there, what was happening would still be happening. They don't seem to influence much at all.There's little else to say. The dialogue has not improved, the characters-as I said-have no improved and their reasonings and thought-processes are as dull as ever. There are still no women who get along with other women, they all wish to sleep with Geralt or kill any other woman who desires the same and the fact that we are supposed to believe that Geralt and Yennifer's "love" is true and wonderful is ridiculous considering that in The Last Wish (spoiler in the title, by the way) Geralt wishes for Yennifer's love. He wishes it in to existence. Their love is based on a pathetic genie wish made during the short story collection that came before this series, and therefore renders their feelings and motives null and void.The ending was also exceeding disappointing and quite frankly pointless. There is also a moment where some characters actually ride off in to the sunset, as if that isn't the most clichéd thing that has ever existed as a plot device. I'm so unhappy with myself for letting me read the entire series, but I suppose I was just hoping and being annoyingly optimistic. And it is quite an easy read, once you get beyond every single man being obsessed with sex and rape. I hope some men who read this are actually offended by that, because if men aren't annoyed that the media think they're obsessed with sex and need tits and legs just to watch or interact with something, then there's no hope at all.
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  • Evgeny
    January 1, 1970
    This is the final book of the series; spoilers aplenty!!! You have been warned and do not let anybody tell otherwise. The book begins with the retelling of the Arthurian legend, in particular the Lady of the Lake part (if you are surprised by this take a look at the title again). The problems are - there are always problems in Geralt's universe - the Lady was not exactly the ruler of Avalon, the coming knight was not Arthur, and nobody offered Excalibur or even an old rusty sword to anybody. The This is the final book of the series; spoilers aplenty!!! You have been warned and do not let anybody tell otherwise. The book begins with the retelling of the Arthurian legend, in particular the Lady of the Lake part (if you are surprised by this take a look at the title again). The problems are - there are always problems in Geralt's universe - the Lady was not exactly the ruler of Avalon, the coming knight was not Arthur, and nobody offered Excalibur or even an old rusty sword to anybody. The character impersonating the Lady was the old familiar though. Whose that read the books of the series starting with the third one - the first one in the format of a novel - know that author likes jumping between POVs and time but somehow manages to make this not confusing. I think congratulations are in order as I finally was utterly confused by the first part here. Following second chapter gets my nomination for one of the most useless (in terms of influence on the plot) chapters of fantasy ever. Yes, I have read Steven Erikson's magnum opus. Yes, I agree that when it comes to useless chapters Malazan is light years ahead of everybody else leaving no hope of competing. Still if we disregard it the second chapter I mentioned would be among the top of contenders. Finally the third chapter gets much better returning to Geralt and his sidekicks (see, I just spoiled you that the guy is alive in the beginning of the last book). His is bored out of his skull despite always doing what Geralt does best. No, I am not talking about monster hunters. People who played Witcher games know exactly what I am talking about. He is so bored he finally recalled he is supposed to hunt monsters and decided to do exactly that. And here ladies and gentlemen comes the biggest Deux Ex Machina of the series: of all the hiding places in the whole world some conspirators decided to hold a meeting in the ruins where Geralt came to do his work. The rest of the book was fine (including probably the best depiction of a grand battle I ever saw in fantasy) except for the fact that the last two chapters felt stretched to the breaking point. The ending was so vague and confusing that I postponed writing my review until I read a short story taking place after the events of the series. This said story clued me in, but not where I expected. I realized that the series would be better off as short story anthologies like the first two books. The short stories have Geralt as a main character as opposed to novels where Ciri becomes one. I will talk about the main characters below.Geralt. The guy is supposed to the a very interesting character and he is when he is not brooding or being in the bad mood - this always happens to him in books 3-7. Heck, Geralt of the Witcher game trilogy is more exciting.Yennefer. Such a promising character was completely ruined in the end for me when I realized she managed to do nothing useful whatsoever in the series - except for getting some good people killed. She was playing a Damsel in Distress in the previous book and turned out completely weak-willed here.Ciri. I could never make myself care about her. The fact that the story focus shifted from Geralt to her lowered my opinion of the series. Triss Merigold. She had her bad moments, but I believe Geralt would be better off with her. Enough said.Dandelion/Jaskier. His short but brilliant POV practically made the previous book. I wish we had more of this. He never failed to bring some humor. Does it mean the series is bad? Not in the least. I wholeheartedly recommend it to all fantasy fans - read at least first two books and see how you like them. Author's writing quality is quite good and visible even in translations. My personal problem is that I really did not like the direction the tale was going. Sorry, I really wanted to like it more.
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  • Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
    January 1, 1970
    This is the final tale in the dark fantasy series The Witcher, and all though it had a decent start the ending will, no doubt, disappoint many readers. The idea that the truths of ancient history and mythology can be unearthed by exploring them in the dreams of a talented sleeper is rather enchanting. It's an interesting idea, one that merges history and fantasy creating an almost dream like feel within the writing, though it never delivers what it promises. The fantasy elements in here are This is the final tale in the dark fantasy series The Witcher, and all though it had a decent start the ending will, no doubt, disappoint many readers. The idea that the truths of ancient history and mythology can be unearthed by exploring them in the dreams of a talented sleeper is rather enchanting. It's an interesting idea, one that merges history and fantasy creating an almost dream like feel within the writing, though it never delivers what it promises. The fantasy elements in here are predominantly dark and twisted. Not a bad thing of course. Just because it's a dream it doesn't mean it's going to be a pleasant one for the characters involved. This isn't a book about glorious forests and magnificent scenery in which good always conquers evil. No. This is a book about opportunists. It's a story about how people will always try to use others if it means they might have a chance for more power. Such is Ciri's strand of the story. She is entrapped by a group of elves who wish to harness the power of her ancient blood, by breeding her to create an offspring they can wield for their own advantage. Not very nice at all, though they have overlooked Ciri's own opportunist nature and her will to survive. She's not a woman to take this in her stride. Indeed, she bides her time and looks for an opportunity to escape. Geralt, on the other hand, is enjoying life for the first part of the book. He has a new romance, though such a thing could only ever be temporary. There's only one woman he will truly love, and finding her again becomes his only purpose. But Ciri is far removed from his life and reuniting with her will lead him on a perilous journey. Fans of the video games will know all too well that his day job is hunting monsters; he puts this aside for a while and embarks on a bigger quest. The two separate strands drove the narrative forward as they grew ever closer. The relationship between the two characters was the strongest aspect of the book. The events may seem far removed from the legend the title of the book references. It begins with a retelling of this element of the Arthurian myth, though Sapkowski gives it his own twist. He blends the history with the fantasy, creating a unique world. However, towards the end it did become a little confusing at points. It all felt vague and extremely fragmented, but I suppose that's what happens with dreams. The story telling was not as precise as the early books in the series, and the structure was a little clunky. It was hard to tell when events were happening in relation to each other, and at times the book felt like a series of connected short stories or novellas rather than the full novel it was trying to be this time round. The ending too will likely disappoint many readers with its sheer lack of punch and open ended nature. I did enjoyed parts of this book, though it did have many problems. I only recommend this to those that have read all the previous books in the series; this is most certainly a conclusion, as weak as it was, rather than a stand-alone novel.-I received an arc of this book from The Bookbag in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Let me start by saying that “Lady of the Lake” is absolutely a bittersweet, yet fantastic finish to “The Witcher” series. I find it very entertaining, yet challenging and deeply rewarding. The major plot points of the series, specifically: Ciri's parentage, destiny, and fate are all addressed and wrapped up rather neatly. I don’t want to expound on the plot further than that, not without giving something away that's best left to the joy of discovery. Just read the book. It’s worth it!Andrzej Let me start by saying that “Lady of the Lake” is absolutely a bittersweet, yet fantastic finish to “The Witcher” series. I find it very entertaining, yet challenging and deeply rewarding. The major plot points of the series, specifically: Ciri's parentage, destiny, and fate are all addressed and wrapped up rather neatly. I don’t want to expound on the plot further than that, not without giving something away that's best left to the joy of discovery. Just read the book. It’s worth it!Andrzej Sapkowski clearly draws from the darker side of Polish and European history, using his fantasy setting to explore various aspects of human behavior in a strikingly sophisticated manner. Though immensely gratifying, “Lady of the Lake” is deeply unnerving. There are moments when it’s touching, romantic, funny, and amusing . At others, it’s unbearably sad and utterly terrifying. It's a deeply political book like its predecessors, and racism plays a central role in the narrative, as does misogyny. Another appealing element of the book, and the series, is the moral ambiguity of its power-holders. Nilfgaard is an oppressive, autocratic and megalomaniacal power; yet the Northern kingdoms-- considered to be good, are monstrously violent and cruel places where non-humans are forced to live in ghettos and suffer a lot mundane indignities. Meanwhile, the Elven Scoia'tael, who resist by force of arms, are straight-up terrorists who seemingly take joy from violence against defenseless civilians. Does this dynamic sound familiar? It sure does to me. The book, however, is not excessively grim. There is goodness in the world, as well as in all, but the very worst actors in this drama. And people surprise you -- just when you think you've got things figured out, someone does something unexpected. It may be an unexpected kindness from a character who has hitherto appeared cold and calculating; or someone Geralt or Ciri came to trust, demonstrating why trust, in this world, should be granted prudently.The overarching theory is that the world isn’t inherently dark and foreboding --rather, it is corrupted by ignorance, jealousy and the pursuit of power; and human nature can be redeemed in the face of naked self-interest -- through personal bonds of friendship, love and loyalty. These are timeless concepts, and by no means original to the series; yet they are striking nonetheless, by virtue of their flawless execution, and the degree to which we come to care about what happens to Geralt, Ciri, Yennefer, and the others.“The Lady of the Lake” is also stylistically daring. As in “The Tower of Swallows”, narratives are often fragmented across several timelines and character perspectives. However, it works better this time. The epic Battle of Brenna shifts between the perspectives of various combatants, and the doctor running a field hospital in its midst. Throughout, Sapkowski intersperses vignettes often centered on peripheral characters, which themselves may link back to events occurring elsewhere. Keeping everything straight can be a challenge, but when the book concludes, the payoff is considerable.The book ends on a curious note but, suffice to say, it raises as many questions as it provides answers. (view spoiler)[ I have my theory and please keep in mind that, amazing as the games may be, I don’t consider them as canon: It's clear to me that Geralt and Yennefer died and retired to the afterlife. The whole series seemed to be building up to their inevitable deaths. Think about what Villentretenmerth said to Geralt in “The Bounds of Reason”:"Only legends permit what nature condemns. Only myths can ignore the limits of what's possible." Or if you think what Yennefer said about elven legends in “A Shard of Ice” -- how she was wondering if humans will have ever such beautiful legends about love -- not knowing that one day she will became one of the main protagonist of such legendary tale about love for the next generations… Ciri symbolically dies. After burying Geralt and Yennefer, she realizes the only two people she loved are gone, hence there is nothing left in her homeworld except danger, obligations and life as a pawn. She rejects and abandons her titles, her magical abilities and prior responsibilities by fleeing to a new world. Her last thought before riding off into the sunset with Galahad is, "I bet this world has jobs for a witcheress". She is finally free and starts a new life, just what she always wanted as a rebellious, wild-child, and adventurous free spirit. However it's up to you to interpret the ending. Although the death interpretation fully resolves all the themes and arcs that ran their course throughout the series, Sapkowski ultimately left it up to the reader to decide -- because the question of whether they are alive or dead is thematically immaterial and unimportant. Geralt, Yennefer, and Ciri transcend life and death, and become myth and legend -- which is what the whole Nimue/Condwiramurs angle was designed to convey. (hide spoiler)] Some people may dislike the ending, but I really love how Sapkowski plays with the ideas and tropes around myths and legends. It evoked profound sadness and child-like joy, and I’ll be haunted by this myth for a very long time -- like Nimue. I could go on and on, but really, it all just boils down to this: "The Witcher" has become one of my classic favorites alongside Tolkien's “The Lord of the Rings” and Rowling's “Harry Potter” series.
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  • Markus
    January 1, 1970
    Lady of the Lake is an unfortunately poor conclusion to one of the finest fantasy series ever written. Sapkowski attempts to mix in too many new things, his transitions between times and places are very poorly executed and quite overused, and everything about the ending itself is either too much of a cliché, or simply ridiculous.I've stayed with this saga for many years now, and it remains one of my favourites. Especially the knowledge that the game series takes the franchise to perfection, is a Lady of the Lake is an unfortunately poor conclusion to one of the finest fantasy series ever written. Sapkowski attempts to mix in too many new things, his transitions between times and places are very poorly executed and quite overused, and everything about the ending itself is either too much of a cliché, or simply ridiculous.I've stayed with this saga for many years now, and it remains one of my favourites. Especially the knowledge that the game series takes the franchise to perfection, is a comfort.
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  • James Lafayette Tivendale
    January 1, 1970
    DNF'd at 55%.A shame that I couldn't get through the final book in the series but the majority of this book was a chore to read. Too much time hopping, world swapping, new and boring characters and not enough time spent with the people I actually cared about. I'm sure I'll come back to this sometime when I have more patience and time but it just wasn't for me at the moment. I just wasn't excited about what I was reading.
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  • Inbetweendimensions
    January 1, 1970
    Prior to reading the first book in this series I was very, very convinced that these books would end up being among the best in the worst genre to pick books from. I finished the first three, and they were perfect. They had everything that a fantasy novel should have, maybe not could ever have, but I always put a lot of expectation on what I would read and the first three titles hit the mark. An interesting world, painted with vivid imagery without clunky paragraphs of overwhelming description, Prior to reading the first book in this series I was very, very convinced that these books would end up being among the best in the worst genre to pick books from. I finished the first three, and they were perfect. They had everything that a fantasy novel should have, maybe not could ever have, but I always put a lot of expectation on what I would read and the first three titles hit the mark. An interesting world, painted with vivid imagery without clunky paragraphs of overwhelming description, realism within fantasy, a lot of philosophy, of humor, of adventure, all presented with mind of the culture and the plotline that serves as a nice, neat framework for all that.While those three were great, I can only say that the last two could be better. The last one, The Lady of the Lake, was disappointing. The problem with this series is that it felt like one ENORMOUS tumour had begun to manifest in it by the end of the second book, and grew to full form at the fifth. That tumour's Ciri, by the way. I truly loved her character from the beginning, but by the end I felt like the author didn't even bother to sugar-coat the fact that she had evolved into a very obnoxious Mary-Sue. The thing is I wouldn't have minded any of that had her Mary-Sueness not manipulated the plot into something mundane, something dull and dulling and just so mundane.Here is why- the plot was wrapped up only with Ciri in mind. I know she is supposed to be the main character from the very beginning, so no problem with that, but was it necessary to kill off anyone else who had no place in her "happy" ending? Was it necessary to reduce wonderful, intelligent, proud and charismatic characters to fools beneath her? Was it necessary to have every conflict in the books resolved or completely thrown away into disregard for her, because of her? That's just so pretentious.It felt like the author wrote her with the intention of making her a legendary figure, but ended up making it look like generic self-insert fanfiction. Fanfiction written with increasingly faltering bouts of creativity, by the way, because you know, it's always great to draw from myth and folklore when writing fiction, but to do so in a way that it seems like copy and pasting, rather than re-telling or bringing new colour to the story, just honestly cheapens it. Or perhaps the mythic elements were cheapened because of the omnipresence of a flamboyant Mary-Sue? With the myth concerning the Elvenking, it felt like that. A legendary, otherworldly creature, so cold and powerful and proud, left to snorting crack and reading porn and (view spoiler)[OD'ing from viagra (hide spoiler)] just to force himself to have sex with Ciri and beget the saviour and destroyer of worlds. (?????... ?????) Absurd, and frustrating... It's disheartening, because I really, really wanted so much more for such a promising character and for such a promising end to a beautifully-written world. I adored and admired almost all the characters, an obvious indicator of skill on the author's behalf you know, but by the end they were made lame, "pathetic", simple and dumb. I fell in love with the world, but then you see at the end that the world actually sucks so bad that you wouldn't even want to live in it. Bad mistake in a fantasy book. So yeah... here I lay my disappointment and my frustration, because I had so much hope, and so much admiration for these books. I do recommend these above the average fantasy novel, but I can only really allow praise to the first three, and indifferent grunts of recognition for the last two.
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  • Jenna Kathleen
    January 1, 1970
    I'm usually a lot more careful when I enter giveaways to enter only the first one or the next one in a series I have read, but somehow it escaped me that Lady of the Lake was not the first in a series. With that in mind, I don't think I can give this book that fair of a review because I just didn't know what the characters did in the previous books or how any of the events unfolded. Instead, I will focus on the things that really worked for me in this book.Even though it is not the first book, I I'm usually a lot more careful when I enter giveaways to enter only the first one or the next one in a series I have read, but somehow it escaped me that Lady of the Lake was not the first in a series. With that in mind, I don't think I can give this book that fair of a review because I just didn't know what the characters did in the previous books or how any of the events unfolded. Instead, I will focus on the things that really worked for me in this book.Even though it is not the first book, I could follow the story and I understood what was happening. I think this is mostly because of the link to Arthurian legends. The inspiration is fairly obvious; you don't even need to open the book - it's plastered on the cover. I love everything about Arthurian England and I think the author used the inspiration excellently while still putting his own twist on it.The writing is the other thing I love about this book. It's translated, but even in translation, his writing style is truly a pleasure to read. He writes a fantastic battle, and all of the descriptions, in general, are well written. That being said, I think I would have enjoyed this more if I had read the previous novels so I might go back and read the first one. I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Originally posted on Netgalley.
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  • Celise
    January 1, 1970
    And so it ends.There’s nothing left to say, nothing that hasn’t been resolved or left me wondering, nothing that I can really put my finger on as being amiss. However, I feel like some untapped potential died with the end of this series, and I’ll carry that disappointment with me for a while.There were so many new threads explored in the final novel of The Witcher saga that I wish had been left out in favour of more time spent with our favourite characters. I think that is mostly what feels And so it ends.There’s nothing left to say, nothing that hasn’t been resolved or left me wondering, nothing that I can really put my finger on as being amiss. However, I feel like some untapped potential died with the end of this series, and I’ll carry that disappointment with me for a while.There were so many new threads explored in the final novel of The Witcher saga that I wish had been left out in favour of more time spent with our favourite characters. I think that is mostly what feels unjust here. That, and I’m not entirely sure what some of these parts even meant. Sapkowski has always masterfully handled multiple time frames and locations, but I found myself for the first time wondering what was going on, where and when we were, and why the things that happened, happened.That said, I don’t feel entirely let down as I think the ending included some of the things that I’ve wished for, albeit not in entirely the manner I’d imagined.So it goes.Reading Order:1.The Last Wish (short story collection)2. The Sword of Destiny (short story collection)0. [Season of Storms]3. The Blood of Elves (novel)4. The Time of Contempt (novel)5. Baptism of Fire (novel)6. The Tower of Swallows (novel)7. The Lady of the Lake (novel)0. [Season of Storms]There are a few options for when to read Season of Storms, but I'll leave it at these two.
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  • Kaya
    January 1, 1970
    2.5 stars.I am so disappointed and angry with how Sapkowski concluded this series. Throughout the whole series, I’ve grown so attached to so many characters and I hate to see them stranded away because they couldn’t fit the author’s weak excuse for a plot. What I hate the most is what happened to Ciri in the end. It’s like slap in the face. This is the final book in the saga and it deals with Ciri finding herself in another dimension, trying to get back to where she belongs. Her focus is to find 2.5 stars.I am so disappointed and angry with how Sapkowski concluded this series. Throughout the whole series, I’ve grown so attached to so many characters and I hate to see them stranded away because they couldn’t fit the author’s weak excuse for a plot. What I hate the most is what happened to Ciri in the end. It’s like slap in the face. This is the final book in the saga and it deals with Ciri finding herself in another dimension, trying to get back to where she belongs. Her focus is to find Geralt and end the war with Nilfgard once and for all. Unfortunately, she is trapped by a group of elves who want to exploit the power of her ancient blood for their own agenda - which definitely won’t end up well for her. The book is a devastating conclusion to one of the most interesting fantasy series I’ve ever read. It has never been the most innovative, but it had unique characters and intelligent humor. Sadly, Sapkowski attempts to bring too many new things on the table. Instead of focusing on the characters like Geralt, Yennefer and Tris who were shamefully neglected in the previous books, Sapkowski introduces new characters who hold no significance to the plot and live 1000 years AFTER the crucial event. His transitions between times and places are so confusing and repetitive, that it seems like ANOTHER unnecessary filler. I feel betrayed, because I have watched the potential die over the series and not only could I do nothing about it, but I’m sure the author was quite aware that he couldn’t deliver decent conclusion to that long-standing build up and high expectations. That ending is an insult of its own with its vagueness and confusion and it’s completely ridiculous. The series would’ve been so much better if it just stayed in short story form. I’ve grown attached to almost all characters, but by the end, most of them seem two-dimensional, passive and plainly dumb. Especially, I hate how the author decided to kill off some of the characters. He payed more attention killing off the villains that to honor the characters who have been actively present in the last few books. Even the main characters made so many out-of-character decisions. For example, Geralt and Yennefer have withstood inexplicable torture and sacrificed so much to protect Ciri and I’m supposed to believe they would just calmly take part in a suicide pact while Ciri gets raped and used? Or how the great emperor Emhyr has murdered countless men, destroyed countries, the world history as he knows it, literally pushed the whole continent into a war to obtain Ciri, just so he would give her up because Yennefer shed a tear? Does the author has to that extent such a low opinion about his reading audience? Does he honestly believe we’re that dumb? Or how Ciri was the child of hope and throughout all books everyone were making great plans for her to conceive a child and she ended up alone with some knight wanting her to become his wife? She deserved so much more. All in all, some plot twists started extremely good and exciting, but ended terribly. Geralt is supposed to be a very interesting character and he is when he is not brooding or being in the bad mood - which he is 90% of the time in books 3-7. He was so passive and ready to give up so many times, which was in complete contrast with everything we’ve seen of him in the previous books.
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  • Samir
    January 1, 1970
    This book is a perfect example of how to end a series in the most boring and underwhelming way possible.I don't think that introducing a bunch of pointless and boring characters in the last book of the series just for the sake of world-building is the way to go. And the ending was really bland. I give myself five stars for resisting the urge to DNF this a couple of times and for not dying of boredom.The book gets 1.5 stars, barely.
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  • Franzi
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 StarsUnfortunately not as great of an ending as I was hoping for. I'm not completely disappointed but there was something missing to make me really like this. The beginning was kind of slow with too much world and time hopping for my taste. But the middle part was great! The ending though... There's nothing that hasn't been resolved but still I feel like there was something missing. I still like the ending itself but the book as a whole was underwhelming.
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  • Mogsy (MMOGC)
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2017/04/13/...Eighteen years after its original publication in Polish, this concluding volume of The Witcher series finally has its official English translation. While fan translations have been around for quite a while now, honestly I thought it was well worth the wait, if nothing else because I got to enjoy the excellent audiobook edition. I started off by reading the books, but then on a whim decided to switch formats once I got to 3.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2017/04/13/...Eighteen years after its original publication in Polish, this concluding volume of The Witcher series finally has its official English translation. While fan translations have been around for quite a while now, honestly I thought it was well worth the wait, if nothing else because I got to enjoy the excellent audiobook edition. I started off by reading the books, but then on a whim decided to switch formats once I got to Baptism of Fire and never looked back.Anyway, the final book of a series is always something special. By this time, the story has taken over your mind and the characters have wormed their way into your heart. While endings can be a delight, oftentimes they are also bittersweet, because you’ve had so much fun on this adventure but now it’s time to say farewell. You start to wonder to yourself what the long awaited finale might be like: will it be everything you ever wanted, or fall short of expectations?Well, in the case of The Lady of the Lake, my thoughts were mixed. The story begins cryptically, with Sir Galahad of Arthurian legend fame stumbling upon Ciri bathing in a pond. After the knight mistakes her for the Lady of the Lake which causes Ciri to correct his error, the two of them start talking and she begins to recount the tale of what she has been up to since the Tower of Swallows. It seemed that the portal she entered there had taken her to a different world, one where the Elves reigned. Seeing that she was trapped and at his mercy, the Elven king had proposed a bargain: Ciri could have her freedom…but only if she would agree to bear his child.Meanwhile, back in her home world, the northern armies and the Nilfgaardian forces are still at war. In the middle of all this, Geralt and his companions are also continuing their search for Ciri, but with the recent abduction and imprisonment of Yennefer, the Witcher now has even more troubles on his hands.It vexes me admit this, but The Lady of the Lake was probably the most confusing of all the books. Not that any of them have shown much linear storytelling, but for this one Sapkowski takes devices like flashbacks, dream sequences, POV switches and time jumps to extremes. This not only made the book feel very disjointed and hard to follow, it also dampened my enthusiasm for the story especially when we went on wild tangents that added zilch to the main plot or followed characters I could not care less about. If it were up to me, I would also have axed much of the ending. In my opinion, too much of the fluff that came after the climax spoiled a lot of the impact.Now that I’ve gotten my complaints out of the way though, here’s what I did like: 1) Pretty much any scene where Ciri or Geralt and any of his companions or key characters appeared was topnotch. These are the characters I’ve come to know throughout the series and I found it hard to stay focused whenever the attention shifted away to anyone else. 2) Despite all the jumping around we do, there was at least a sense that final volume was trying to pull everything together; whether it’s a nod to events in the previous books or tying up loose ends and bringing things full circle, the narrative made an earnest attempt at closure. 3) All the references to fairy tales, myths and legends. This was one of the aspects I fell in love with when I first picked up The Last Wish so long ago, and it just seemed so apt for this last book to bring me back to those memories. 4) The action sequences were amazing. Obviously, it’s great anytime we get to see Geralt or Ciri kicking ass, but there was also this one epic scene depicting a huge battle which I thought was really well done, transporting the reader into the thick of the fighting.Overall the book’s strengths outweighed the weaknesses, ultimately making The Lady of the Lake an enjoyable if flawed read. It wasn’t my favorite book of the series, and as an ending, it definitely wasn’t as good as what I’d hoped for. Still, I don’t regret reading it at all. Taken as a whole, The Witcher is a superb series, and I would certainly not discourage anyone to try these books just because I wasn’t a hundred percent pleased with this concluding volume; after all, you’d be missing out on many more great moments on this epic journey. In spite of everything, it was well worth it to see this saga through to the end.Audiobook Comments: As always, Peter Kenny brings his best. His narration was a big reason why I stuck with the audiobooks for this series, because when he reads he brings the stories and characters to life. The Witcher books are also generally pretty well suited for this format, I find, because of their nonlinear structure, and the stories just seem to flow more smoothly and are less distracting when I’m listening. So if you’re considering tackling this series with the audiobooks, I say go for it; truly I can’t recommend them highly enough.
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  • Yev
    January 1, 1970
    I'm disappointed. It took me a few days to reach that conclusion because I love The Witcher books, I tremendously enjoy Sapkowski's writing and I really did not want to be disappointed.The whole book felt rushed, as if desperately trying to close all the plot lines. The result is some loose ends, some deus ex machinas (one particularly horrible - look below) and some plot lines that started with a bang and ended with a feeble voice.Sapkowski is extremely talented at quickly introducing new I'm disappointed. It took me a few days to reach that conclusion because I love The Witcher books, I tremendously enjoy Sapkowski's writing and I really did not want to be disappointed.The whole book felt rushed, as if desperately trying to close all the plot lines. The result is some loose ends, some deus ex machinas (one particularly horrible - look below) and some plot lines that started with a bang and ended with a feeble voice.Sapkowski is extremely talented at quickly introducing new characters and their stories. You get interested and attached in just a few pages. That is what makes his short stories so great. But here he just overdoes it: It's the longest book in the series with many half-baked resolutions, yet so many pages are dedicated to new side-characters that are irrelevant to the main plot in all ways but adding atmosphere.Now some grunts, beware of SPOILERS:Geralt discovers the info he's been seeking for 3 books because he just happen to monster-hunt in a cave where Skellen and his co-conspirators are having a meeting?! In a remote corner of the world, entirely unrelated to the conflict? Because it is not involved in political affairs so there are no spies in it? Seriously?What's with all the Falka build up from the previous books? nothing, we don't talk about it.How come Emhyr did not initially know the location of Vilgefortz' hideout - he apparently visited it.The battle of Brenna is a complete mess. Why did the north win? Numbers? Training? Brilliant tactics? I don't know, they just won. Menno Coehoorn, supposedly the greatest tactician that ever lived. Emhyr var Emreis, the white flame dancing on the barrows if his enemies, emperor of the greatest human empire to ever exist and a brilliant strategist. Somehow they both find themselves in the mud of the northern kingdoms with no plan. Lots of build up on those characters and poor resolution.What really happened at Soden hill? Specifically to Triss. Again, lots of talk about her apparent resurrection in the previous books and not a word of explanation.
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  • Wayne
    January 1, 1970
    5 starsWell that was surprising and here I was thinking this would hold no surprises for me.The world building was brilliant and while a feature of this series this took it to the next level. It was vivid and really brought you into the world as a whole. Toussaint in particular was exceptional as were some other places especially those frequented by Ciri. Just outstanding.The characters were brilliant especially Ciri. This really was mostly about her which was great. She is by far the most 5 starsWell that was surprising and here I was thinking this would hold no surprises for me.The world building was brilliant and while a feature of this series this took it to the next level. It was vivid and really brought you into the world as a whole. Toussaint in particular was exceptional as were some other places especially those frequented by Ciri. Just outstanding.The characters were brilliant especially Ciri. This really was mostly about her which was great. She is by far the most interesting of then all. Geralt was great though as always as were many other characters. This really is one of the best things about this series as the cast is so captivating and interesting. The plot was complex but not too much so really kept the surrpises coming. Plenty of action, twists, political disccours and commentary and a very good pace. For those who loved the games - if you think you know what is happening in the Witcher world you don't unless you have read the books.Overall a brlliant book and I have enjoyed this series very very much. I'm also very glad i've reached my reading goal this year as I don't think i'll be doing much reading for the next ilittle while. The Witcher game has been calling for a while and it's time to see it with some new insights.I highly recommend this series for all readers of fantasy and medieaval action. There are some adult themes and a lot of gore but no more so than the games.Its captivating, interesting and bound to be talked about more after the Netflix series airs.
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  • Caro the Helmet Lady
    January 1, 1970
    And again, I am at this point, where of course I can make a return, but something is definitely over. And as every time I'm sad because, as Ciri used to say, it's just not fair. It's over. But the war is not over, the evil is not gone and it will never be, but there will be no Witcher to fight it. Because that world didn't deserve that Witcher. Will Ciri come back to save it? I don't think so. The question remains unanswered. For you to guess.While I understand some critics I can't do nothing And again, I am at this point, where of course I can make a return, but something is definitely over. And as every time I'm sad because, as Ciri used to say, it's just not fair. It's over. But the war is not over, the evil is not gone and it will never be, but there will be no Witcher to fight it. Because that world didn't deserve that Witcher. Will Ciri come back to save it? I don't think so. The question remains unanswered. For you to guess.While I understand some critics I can't do nothing else but love the book, even more than before. Love the series, love the characters. Even though I think that it's unfair (again!) that Sapkowski went full g.r.r.martin on some of them... Mind you, before it was cool.Happy to have read it again. Till next time, Witcher! <3
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  • neuromancer
    January 1, 1970
    A rather unsatisfying conclusion to an overall great series.
  • Nikki
    January 1, 1970
    I have so many thoughts after reading this final installment of the Witcher saga. The beginning of this book dragged on forever. Ciri is running around in Avalon, an entire different universe. I could care less about Condwiramurs, a woman who dreams about the legends of the Witcher in the future, and yet we return to her chapter after chapter. This is one of my main complaints throughout the book. There is so much time dedicated to new and minor characters, while the main characters' lives (and I have so many thoughts after reading this final installment of the Witcher saga. The beginning of this book dragged on forever. Ciri is running around in Avalon, an entire different universe. I could care less about Condwiramurs, a woman who dreams about the legends of the Witcher in the future, and yet we return to her chapter after chapter. This is one of my main complaints throughout the book. There is so much time dedicated to new and minor characters, while the main characters' lives (and especially deaths!) are glossed over. Less of Nimue, Pretty Kitty, etc... and more of Milva, Regis, Cahir, and even the sorceress's guild... would have been appreciated. A lot of time is also wasted on philosophical ramblings. While the gray morality theme has been enjoyably present in all of the witcher books, it has not previously been stated outright and over and over again by a slew of minor characters. The theme was just beaten to death in this novel. Point of view switches non-stop. We jump to the past, to the future, to historical texts, and back again in an unconnected way. The story of the witcher has become legend instead of a straightforward story. Did Geralt die of a heart attack in old age? Or a pitchfork in the present? Geralt's time with Fringilla Vigo does not fit his character. That he would waste away his winter in that castle and resume his activities as a witcher, even under enchantment, is slightly unbelievable. The way that he learns of Vilgefortz's location is pretty convenient and just serves to push the plot forward out of the mire. Ciri is more and more unlikable. Her time with the elves is borderline bawdy and unnecessary to the plotline. In the epic battle in Vilgefortz's hideout, many characters act...out of character. For example, Regis does not jump headfirst into anything. Geralt and Yennefer have withstood torture, grievous wounds, and much more in order to protect Ciri, so their easy, calm, and romantic suicide pact while Ciri gets dragged of to be raped by her father is just NOT plausible. Emhyr has murdered countless individuals and literally plunged a continent into war and more in order to obtain Ciri, so the site of tears changing his mind is mind-bogglingly unbelievable. What an odd way to get the characters out of the situation. The mushy and constant declarations of love being traded between Ciri, Geralt, and Yennefer are also completely out of character. And then... the final scene. It is written as to be undecipherable. I read it, reread it, and then closed the book with baffled question marks over my head.Overall, just not the conclusion that I would have hoped for. Over time, the series lost its endearing wit and charm and became overly detailed, bleak, and ridden with political turmoil. This doesn't change the fact that Geralt, as well as many others, are great characters. I just wish the books would have progressed in the same vein that they started.
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  • Ana
    January 1, 1970
    Just finished the book and all I can think of is that I would like to go back in time and meet the past-me who thought she would never be interested in reading this series and hit her on the head with the books. All of them! This could have been a reread prompted by the newly adapted series, dammit! I seem to love almost all of the things people complain about in their reviews. I finally got a series where the author does that thing I’ve always wanted in terms of character arc but never really Just finished the book and all I can think of is that I would like to go back in time and meet the past-me who thought she would never be interested in reading this series and hit her on the head with the books. All of them! This could have been a reread prompted by the newly adapted series, dammit! I seem to love almost all of the things people complain about in their reviews. I finally got a series where the author does that thing™ I’ve always wanted in terms of character arc but never really got it. Can’t explain more without spoiling it. There are so many amazing, memorable moments! I guess it’s only a matter of taste, but it’s an incredibly satisfying ending for me. Make of that what you will.This series is definitely marked for a reread once season 2 is out!
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  • Zuzanna
    January 1, 1970
    For the past months I've been reading almost only fantasy books, starting with George R. R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire, rereading LOTR, 'chilling' with Trudi Canavan. But it's 'cos of Sapkowski I redefined fantasy. The series is wise, intelligent and at the same time it's funny and light (in writing style). It shows that fantasy doesn't have to be pompous. And Sapkowski's writing style is pure genius!!!
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  • Sotiris Karaiskos
    January 1, 1970
    I started reading this series very reluctantly, as I mentioned in my comment about the first short stories that gave rise to it, but slowly as I passed from one book to another my appreciation for what I was reading grew and it came to a point where I could safely say it's one of the best fantasy series I've come across as long as I deal with the genre. The last amazing book came to confirm this impression and lead me to the very rare feeling of being so enchanted by a series that I feel sad I started reading this series very reluctantly, as I mentioned in my comment about the first short stories that gave rise to it, but slowly as I passed from one book to another my appreciation for what I was reading grew and it came to a point where I could safely say it's one of the best fantasy series I've come across as long as I deal with the genre. The last amazing book came to confirm this impression and lead me to the very rare feeling of being so enchanted by a series that I feel sad that this end came, as if reading not just a series of books but a piece of it of my life, as if I had not reached the end of my engagement with some fantastic heroes but as if I had bid farewell to my own people, and this sense of loss is the best proof of the impact these pages had on me.This latest book, then, begins somewhat subconsciously, with the author describing situations that do not seem to lead the plot anywhere as our heroes are trapped by violence, magic or more ... earthly methods, temporarily unable to they do anything. Even so, this is interesting as it gives rise to some tension and a playful journey. However, things are fast evolving, as the war around reaches its climax, with a great and decisive battle, which our author describes in a truly epic way, through many different angles that put us at its heart, making us live every moment of it, all over it, and feeling all the different emotions of those involved. Without any exaggeration one of the best battle descriptions I've read in the genre of high fantasy and beyond. Of course, this is not the end and immediately the author goes into the most personal battle our heroes have to fight to overcome evil, confronting their personal nightmares, an equally exciting and impressive battle that reaches our heroes and offers to the readers moments of action and emotion. The outcome of this battle is quite unexpected and it may seem unsatisfactory the way it ends, but I liked this latest overthrow which greatly violates the rules.The ending is a very big epilogue that is by no means tiring. In it we learn about the end of war and the new order of things that emerge through negotiations and through this narrative our writer talks about political games, their ruthless players, the forces operating in the background, the people who continue to they suffer as no one accounts for them and more generally for the evil that can easily take the form of good intentions. After this explosion of cynicism we return to those of our heroes who have survived and where everything seems to have ended we realize that they have not been unleashed but that the author has a few more surprises until he leads us to a magical finale. is special.This is how this wonderful series comes to an end, without a fairytale ending, despite playing with the fairy tales and legends of Europe, with something truly meaningful, beautiful and profoundly emotional, as was the series throughout. A series that has something that a persistent reader of the genre could look, that is rooted in the past, has many influences from corresponding works of the time it was written and above all has the author's stamp and a completely different look, full of humor and irony , cynicism and sensitivity where needed. A truly masterful work.Ξεκίνησα να διαβάζω αυτή τη σειρά πολύ διστακτικά, όπως ανέφερα στο σχόλιο μου για τα πρώτα διηγήματα που αποτέλεσαν την αφορμή για τη δημιουργία της, σιγά-σιγά, όμως, καθώς περνούσα από το ένα βιβλίο στο άλλο η εκτίμησή μου για αυτά που διάβαζα μεγάλωνε και έφτασε σε σημείο που μπορούσα να πω με ασφάλεια ότι είναι μία από τις καλύτερες σειρές φαντασίας που έχω συναντήσει όσο καιρό ασχολούμαι με το είδος. Το τελευταίο εκπληκτικό βιβλίο ήρθε για να επιβεβαιώσει αυτή την εντύπωση και να με οδηγήσει στο πολύ σπάνιο συναίσθημα να είμαι τόσο μαγεμένος από μία σειρά που να αισθάνομαι λύπη που ήρθε αυτό το τέλος, σαν να μην τελείωσε απλώς η ανάγνωση μιας σειράς βιβλίων αλλά ένα κομμάτι της ζωής μου, σαν να μην έφτασα στο τέλος της ενασχόλησης μου με κάποιους φανταστικούς ήρωες αλλά σαν να αποχαιρέτησα δικούς μου ανθρώπους και αυτή η αίσθηση της απώλειας είναι η καλύτερη απόδειξη για την επίδραση που είχαν αυτές οι σελίδες πάνω μου.Αυτό το τελευταίο βιβλίο, λοιπόν, ξεκινάει κάπως υποτονικά, με το συγγραφέα να μας περιγράφει καταστάσεις που δεν φαίνεται να οδηγούν την πλοκή πουθενά καθώς οι ήρωες μας βρίσκονται παγιδευμένοι με τη βία, την μαγεία ή με πιο... γήινες μεθόδους, ανίκανοι προσωρινά να κάνουν οτιδήποτε. Ακόμα και αυτό, όμως, έχει το ενδιαφέρον του καθώς γίνεται αφορμή για λίγη ξεκούραση από την ένταση και ένα παιχνιδιάρικο ταξίδι. Γρήγορα, όμως, τα πράγματα εξελίσσονται, την ώρα που ο πόλεμος γύρω τους φτάνει στην αποκορύφωση του, με μία μεγάλη και καθοριστική μάχη, την οποία ο συγγραφέας μας την περιγράφει με έναν πραγματικά επικό τρόπο, μέσα από πάρα πολλές διαφορετικές οπτικές γωνίες που μας βάζουν στην καρδιά της, κάνοντας μας να ζήσουμε κάθε στιγμή της, σε όλο της το εύρος και να νιώσουμε όλα τα διαφορετικά συναισθήματα αυτών που συμμετέχουν. Χωρίς καμία υπερβολή μία από τις καλύτερες περιγραφές μαχών που έχω διαβάσει στο είδος της υψηλής φαντασίας και όχι μόνο. Φυσικά αυτό δεν είναι το τέλος και αμέσως ο συγγραφέας περνάει στην πιο προσωπική μάχη που έχουν οι ήρωες μας να δώσουν για να νικήσουν το κακό, αντιμετωπίζοντας τους προσωπικούς τους εφιάλτες, μία μάχη εξίσου συναρπαστική και εντυπωσιακή που φτάνει τους ήρωες μας στα όριά τους και προσφέρει στους αναγνώστες στιγμές δράσης αλλά και συγκίνησης. Το αποτέλεσμα αυτής της μάχης είναι αρκετά αναπάντεχο και ίσως φαίνεται μη ικανοποιητικός ο τρόπος που τελειώνει αλλά εμένα μου άρεσε αυτή η τελευταία ανατροπή που σε μεγάλο βαθμό παραβιάζει τους κανόνες.Το τέλος είναι ένας πολύ μεγάλος επίλογος που δεν είναι σε καμία περίπτωση κουραστικός. Σε αυτόν μαθαίνουμε για το τέλος του πολέμου και την νέα τάξη πραγμάτων που προκύπτει μέσα από διαπραγματεύσεις και μέσα από αυτήν την αφήγηση ο συγγραφέας μας μιλάει για τα πολιτικά παιχνίδια, τους αδίστακτους παίκτες τους, τις δυνάμεις που λειτουργούν στο παρασκήνιο, τους ανθρώπους που συνεχίζουν να υποφέρουν καθώς δεν τους υπολογίζει κανείς και γενικότερα για το κακό που μπορεί εύκολα να πάρει τη μορφή καλών προθέσεων. Μετά από αυτήν την έκρηξη κυνισμού επιστρέφουμε σε όσους από τους ήρωες μας έχουν επιβιώσει και εκεί που φαίνεται όλα να έχουν τελειώσει καταλαβαίνουμε ότι δεν έχουνε ξεμπερδέψει αλλά ότι ο συγγραφέας έχει μερικές ακόμη εκπλήξεις μέχρι να μας οδηγήσει σε ένα μαγικό φινάλε που ίσως δημιουργεί ανάμεικτα συναισθήματα αλλά σίγουρα είναι ξεχωριστό.Κάπως έτσι φτάνει στο τέλος αυτή η υπέροχη σειρά, χωρίς κάποιο παραμυθένιο τέλος, παρά το παιχνίδισμα με τα παραμύθια και τους θρύλους της Ευρώπης, με κάτι πραγματικά ουσιαστικό, όμορφο και βαθιά συναισθηματικό, όπως ήταν η σειρά σε όλο της το μήκος. Μία σειρά που έχει ότι θα μπορούσε να ζητήσει ένας επίμονος αναγνώστης του είδους, που πατάει γερά στο παρελθόν, έχει πολλές επιρροές από αντίστοιχα έργα της εποχής που γράφτηκε και πάνω από όλα έχει τη σφραγίδα του συγγραφέα και μία εντελώς διαφορετική ματιά, γεμάτη χιούμορ και ειρωνεία, κυνισμό αλλά και ευαισθησία όπου χρειάζεται. Ένα πραγματικά αριστοτεχνικά φτιαγμένο έργο.
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  • Alex
    January 1, 1970
    As a lover of (what many would call) high-art literature and also (what many would call) low-brow populist fantasy literature, I don’t generally find that the two worlds collide. Or when they do, they tend to smash into each other like an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object. There are rare exceptions, of course, but those are generally swept under the carpet or treated with disdain or incredulity or are just plain ignored by most readers, because, when all is said and done fantasy As a lover of (what many would call) high-art literature and also (what many would call) low-brow populist fantasy literature, I don’t generally find that the two worlds collide. Or when they do, they tend to smash into each other like an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object. There are rare exceptions, of course, but those are generally swept under the carpet or treated with disdain or incredulity or are just plain ignored by most readers, because, when all is said and done fantasy novels are supposed to be EPIC and FUN. So they say.I picked up the Witcher novels expecting them to be epic and fun, as it is commonly understood, because these are a bunch of books based on a computer game. No – wait - it’s the other way around. Weird. No-one had heard of the Witcher because Polish culture is not somewhere the west usually go for inspiration, but on this occasion there seems to have been some kind of breakthrough, even bigger than when those Russian Night/Day Watch movie/books almost became semi-popular. You seem, I work with a very nice Polish PhD student and she assures me that in Poland these books are a BIG DEAL and she got really excited when I told her that I was reading them. In England, however, they haven’t even all been translated yet, despite that phenomenally stupid success of the videogames. Still, how many people who really claim to like a movie go on to read the actual book it was based upon? (Lord of the Rings, I’m looking at you). Fewer people will probably make the leap to reading a long-ish series of as-yet-untranslated Polish fantasy novels. I’m special though and I do that kind of thing – and I was pleasantly surprised to find that they were not only epic and fun, but a little bit literarily minded too. That is to say, they are quite different in style and construction from other fantasy novels that I’ve read. There’s also a lot of pathos and an attempt at some kind of deeper meaning, though ultimately, even though the former was a huge success I’m still unsure about the latter. Sapkowski knows his fantasy tropes, of course. There’s a brooding loner hero, a comedy sidekick, a mysterious knight and crackshot archer. There are sorceresses, a chosen child, political machinations, racial tensions and war on an epic scale. You name the trope and you’ll probably find it in here faster than you can say “Daenerys Targaryen”. But Sapkowski is only interested in those things in passing and his main plot motivators, the finding of the chosen girl Ciri so that she can be used as a pawn to marry off to a powerful family and cement a dynasty, is only ever of passing interest. Get too caught up in that and you’re likely to be disappointed – because Sapkowski is primarily interested in his protagonists as people and there are far more scenes and exchanges that explore what motivates one character as they interact with one another than there are battles or magical artefacts or plot twists - those things are there, but at times Sapkowski is so interested in colouring in the tale to make those interactions meaningful and interesting, that I wondered why he’s telling it at all instead of attempting a piece of realist fiction.As I polished off the third book (I wrote mini-reviews to this point, I think) and progressed onto the last two seemingly controversial novels in the series, this question of fictional identity started to bother me more and more. The story became less and less about Geralt and more about Ciri, the chosen one and the layers of abuse she has to go through as she tries to run from her destiny and meet up with her friend and protector again. Every scene in the last two novels is beautifully written but for a time it read badly to me and I put the books down, tired of what I began to see as an easy cliché. But ultimately I think that judgement was unfair. I kept asking myself why the last novel is called The Lady of the Lake since Ciri is not the mover of the plot and if anything she’s more of a Holy Grail than a motivator for change. It’s not really until the final pages that there’s a clue to the meaning behind her identity as the Lady of the Lake as, after a little inter-dimensional hopping (less cheesy than it sounds. This is no Stephen King) she eventually walks off with Galahad to visit the Knights of the Round Table, presumably to start a new life. It struck me that the Ciri we see in the novels is not the Lady of the Lake but her journey towards becoming such and ultimately our perception of her as a character shifts from her as pursued object of desire (Holy Grail) to prime motivator of myth and legend.Because, the other interesting thing about these books is Sapkowski’s stylistic shifting that I’ve mentioned elsewhere; but this is possibly at its strongest and most beguiling in the final novel as we move from scenes of relaxed camaraderie/falling in love, to lengthy descriptions and historical discussions on the methods and reasons for victory in war, the above mentioned dimension-hopping, and thrilling scenes of confrontation and death. There’s little narrative progression between them, rather, what Sapkowski does is constantly reset the scene with differing framing devices, often introducing characters from different time periods or locales to comment on the action from a historical or literary perspective, and in the case of Ciri, from a mythological one. These framing devices are, initially irritating, but upon reflection incredibly intriguing as they allow Sapkowski not only to confound the reader by jolting them out of their narrative comfort zone, but also to comment himself on the nature of the story that he is telling. For instance, the (second) tour de force of the book, the long sequence where the events of war are brought to a close, are told in a style that eschews excitement and drama for debate and discussion allows us as readers to both be filled in on events we need to know, but as if we were historians looking back on the tale. The perspective shift is particularly clever because the scene then hops to the final showdown where we learn of the fates of our main characters with the added aforementioned pathos. People die and their deaths rank among the most meaningful and well written in fantasy literature, because again, Sapkowski employs some nice viewpoint shifting where lesser authors would milk the gratuity of the moment.The books are not without their faults and are perhaps not quite as deep and meaningful as the author would have you think. It’s tough to assert the idea that their main character has obtained the status of an Arthurian legendary figure without risking pretention. We’ve only Sapkowski’s word for it that Ciri is that interesting, and the Witcher novels will never rank alongside Mallory in influence, but they do a lot remarkably well and they do so with ambition; and when they got it right I was pushed intellectually and moved to tears emotionally. These are books that proved to be hard to read in one swallowing (pun intended) – as I’d attempted to do - as they are a lot meatier and chewier than you’d initially expect and when they take a sideways jolt into conventionality it’s unexpected and disappointing, and I’m still not sure that Book 4, The Tower of Swallows, will ever be my favourite in the series. And I’m still not sure if I’m not tired already of seeing women overcoming victimhood and finding themselves post- rape and abuse (although this book may have been written towards the beginning of that particular cycle, I’m not sure). But the pros clearly outweigh the cons. It’s not often that an unstoppable force can smash its way through an immoveable object but I think that overall this series of novels does an excellent job of marrying the literary and the popular in a very unique and tasty way. All we need now is a spinoff series about Regis the Vampire, please (to be translated circa 2030).
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  • Irã Helder
    January 1, 1970
    Based on how the books ended, and the two months and a half that took to finish the seven books, i was expecting to feel quite sad after finishing it.I'm not sure if it was because i still have the games for consolation or because the writer but, at the end, my negative expectation where completely vanished.The story didn't slowdown even at the end and although, in my opinion it was more bitter than sweeter, everything was nicely settled and fulfilling.Overhaul it's a great series with involving Based on how the books ended, and the two months and a half that took to finish the seven books, i was expecting to feel quite sad after finishing it.I'm not sure if it was because i still have the games for consolation or because the writer but, at the end, my negative expectation where completely vanished.The story didn't slowdown even at the end and although, in my opinion it was more bitter than sweeter, everything was nicely settled and fulfilling.Overhaul it's a great series with involving characters and setting, with a exquisite and interesting style (specially at the last book) that even fits with one of the main characters abilities.Great books, and hope to re-read the last tree books again with official English translations.
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  • Ilija
    January 1, 1970
    *Minor spoiler alert* I dislike how the author decided to kill off some of the characters, i dont mind them dying , but you cant just kill one of the main characters who has been in at least 3 books , in 2 sentences. You have to have at least some buildup to it. *Spoiler alert* The deaths of Geralts litlle band of followers were so sudden and some just outright idiotic , that i was sure yenfer or ciri would revive them or that ciri would travel several hours in to the past and do it over again, *Minor spoiler alert* I dislike how the author decided to kill off some of the characters, i dont mind them dying , but you cant just kill one of the main characters who has been in at least 3 books , in 2 sentences. You have to have at least some buildup to it. *Spoiler alert* The deaths of Geralts litlle band of followers were so sudden and some just outright idiotic , that i was sure yenfer or ciri would revive them or that ciri would travel several hours in to the past and do it over again, or something. This had somehow ruined the book for me , i liked it , but i didnt like it as much as i wanted to or could have.
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  • Mizuki
    January 1, 1970
    I think I understand what Mr. Sapkowski tried to do in this last book: The Lady of the Lake, but I'm not sure how I feel about the elements of the King Arthur legend, being mixed into the story. However, I'm really pissed by the fact that (view spoiler)[everyone wanted to bed Ciri because of her magical bloodline (hide spoiler)] and the revealing that (view spoiler)[the Emperor who wanted to capture Ciri and bed her turned out to be her own supposedly-long-dead-father---not that I'm against this I think I understand what Mr. Sapkowski tried to do in this last book: The Lady of the Lake, but I'm not sure how I feel about the elements of the King Arthur legend, being mixed into the story. However, I'm really pissed by the fact that (view spoiler)[everyone wanted to bed Ciri because of her magical bloodline (hide spoiler)] and the revealing that (view spoiler)[the Emperor who wanted to capture Ciri and bed her turned out to be her own supposedly-long-dead-father---not that I'm against this twist or against incest in fictions but what pissed me off so much is that after the Emperor had done so much to ensure Ciri's capture but then the moment she was within his grip--------he just let her go, without much of an explanation for his change of heart!???...and many of my favorite supporting characters are dead too.........so upsetting... (hide spoiler)]I enjoy this last book of the Witcher series, the fighting scenes and battle scenes are awesome and the sense of humor is heart-felt, but may I be so bold to suggest there are still plenty of rooms for improvement?
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  • Thomas Stacey
    January 1, 1970
    Edit: I had to round this up to 4 stars - I’m just too invested in the story and its characters to give it any less. I’ve also grown to appreciate the ending a bit more.***************************************3.5 stars. And so ends the Witcher Saga, which I've been steadily reading throughout the last year. Everything is tied up, from the Wars with Nilfgaard and the Scoia'tael to the fates of most of the minor characters. There's a lot of different endings here, many of them bittersweet. Heroes Edit: I had to round this up to 4 stars - I’m just too invested in the story and its characters to give it any less. I’ve also grown to appreciate the ending a bit more.***************************************3.5 stars. And so ends the Witcher Saga, which I've been steadily reading throughout the last year. Everything is tied up, from the Wars with Nilfgaard and the Scoia'tael to the fates of most of the minor characters. There's a lot of different endings here, many of them bittersweet. Heroes die, heroes survive, villains triumph (as far as anyone can even be called a hero or villain in this series anyway). Even though everything is resolved, you get the sense that the world is still a broken place, with future atrocities right around the corner.All of the above is refreshing stuff when you consider most other series in the genre. That being said, this was the weakest of the Witcher books. The timeline jumps all over the place in this one, leaving you not always sure where you are. This has been used to great effect in previous instalments, a useful way to set the scene for big moments. However, this time round Sapkowski goes off on some major tangents, not always leading anywhere and making me wonder what the purpose was. The final scene also baffled me, seemingly coming out of nowhere and leaving me scratching my head even now. Theories anyone? This book still had its share of great moments, particularly the events of Stygga castle, which had me tearing through the pages to see how it would turn out. Any scene with Bonhart was both fascinating and horrifying. What a great villain.Overall, this is still a fantastic series well worth a read to experience the epic journey. And if you don't like the ending... play The Witcher 3 ;)Series rating - 4.5 stars.
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  • Steffi au Penguin
    January 1, 1970
    Well ... I did it, I finally finished the Hexer series!Well, this book had it's up and downs. Some plot twists started extremely good and exciting, but ended ... horribly. Thus, the storxy felt too rushed, it was like the author wanted to end the book as fast as possible (although the German edition has over 600 pages). Some new characters were really irrelevant. With each book we were introduced with new characters and adding to the last new ones - and killing old ones just like that off - did Well ... I did it, I finally finished the Hexer series!Well, this book had it's up and downs. Some plot twists started extremely good and exciting, but ended ... horribly. Thus, the storxy felt too rushed, it was like the author wanted to end the book as fast as possible (although the German edition has over 600 pages). Some new characters were really irrelevant. With each book we were introduced with new characters and adding to the last new ones - and killing old ones just like that off - did no good. Thus, the loose endings from the previous books were not really connected in this last book.Further, there were some things where I just had to shake my head and think "this doesn't make sense at all", especially I thought that at the ending.However, overall I did enjoy this series a lot. The humour is unique and Andrzej included some historical aspects that fitted the story. The bookish version of Geralt's story did not find such a good ending, but we still have the games.3.5 stars for the last book4 stars for the total series
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  • Montzalee Wittmann
    January 1, 1970
    Lady of the Lake (Saga o Wiedźminie #7) by Andrzej Sapkowski is a book of The Witcher but you don't have to have read the series to read this, it can be a stand alone. This book is told in such an unusual way that it makes the book intriguing in that way alone! The story is about Ciri, The Lady of the Lake, but told, well...it is a challenge to explain, easier to read. There is so many fantasy creatures and adventures in this book! Different worlds, so much action and adventure that my muscles Lady of the Lake (Saga o Wiedźminie #7) by Andrzej Sapkowski is a book of The Witcher but you don't have to have read the series to read this, it can be a stand alone. This book is told in such an unusual way that it makes the book intriguing in that way alone! The story is about Ciri, The Lady of the Lake, but told, well...it is a challenge to explain, easier to read. There is so many fantasy creatures and adventures in this book! Different worlds, so much action and adventure that my muscles were so tight from clenching up while reading I thought I would need a muscle relaxant! I stayed up all night to finish this, it was too good to wait. Elves, trolls, unicorns, magic, time travel, and so much sword play. This old lady's arms were sore, lol. No wonder this book has almost 6,000 5 star reviews alone! The characters are so well developed and the plot so twisted, surprise filled, looping, and well planned, incredible. Loved this book. Wow! Thanks NetGalley for another Winner!
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  • Joseph
    January 1, 1970
    I think I finally figured out the thing that's been bugging me about these books ... There's a narrative technique, fairly common in film or TV, where a group of characters is having a discussion (might be a full-on interrogation; might be a group of friends in a bar booth) and somebody says, "So, we were in the village square, asking directions to the inn, and this urchin comes up to us ..." and the scene fades to the flashback events with the actual village & actual urchin. And this is I think I finally figured out the thing that's been bugging me about these books ... There's a narrative technique, fairly common in film or TV, where a group of characters is having a discussion (might be a full-on interrogation; might be a group of friends in a bar booth) and somebody says, "So, we were in the village square, asking directions to the inn, and this urchin comes up to us ..." and the scene fades to the flashback events with the actual village & actual urchin. And this is something that Sapkowski is doing constantly in the Witcher books -- a discussion about past events which then transitions directly into relating those events. Unfortunately, and I'm not sure if it's something to do with the translation or if it's also an issue in the original, it doesn't work as well in prose as it does in an audiovisual medium because you don't have the obvious visual cues to tell you you've actually shifted scenes, so it can get to be a bit jarring and/or a bit difficult to keep track of exactly where you are in the narrative at any given point.Having said that ... So this is the final volume in Geralt's (original) saga. As things begin, he and a group of companions are still hunting for his one-time ward Ciri, whose flight from much less pleasant pursuers has led her to some entirely unexpected places. (Without wanting to give too much away, let's just say that the title's Arthurian allusion isn't entirely poetic license.) But, since this is the final volume, stakes will be raised even higher, there will be reunions, both desired and undesired, and things will reach what I found to be a satisfactory conclusion, albeit one in a bit of a minor key.(Although I do have to admit that my experience of reading the books, this one in particular, was very informed by the fact that I had recently finished playing the third and final game -- for one thing, because the game series takes place after the book series, that puts some of the ending events into an entirely new light; also, many of the characters & events from this book were fresh in my mind because I had just encountered them in the game.)All told, despite any confusion I may have had, a worthwhile journey; and one of these years I'll need to sit down and read the entire series straight through to see if that addresses any of the issues I was having.
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  • Chris Gousopoulos
    January 1, 1970
    And thus ends one of the greatest fantasy series I have ever read. I have invested so much in this world these last few years, that I cannot be subjective. Sapkowski has such a fresh way of writing. He constantly smashes stereotypes. The characters are so well built and alive. He is the kind of author that can make u fully realise a person with just 2-3 lines. I got emotional so many times. I felt like these ppl are real. He also has a firm grasp of politics, war, anthropology etc. There is And thus ends one of the greatest fantasy series I have ever read. I have invested so much in this world these last few years, that I cannot be subjective. Sapkowski has such a fresh way of writing. He constantly smashes stereotypes. The characters are so well built and alive. He is the kind of author that can make u fully realise a person with just 2-3 lines. I got emotional so many times. I felt like these ppl are real. He also has a firm grasp of politics, war, anthropology etc. There is pain, drama, injustice, love, motives, little every day life rewards, lots of good humor and so on. This world feels so vivid. So bittersweet. I just cant wait to start once again the games knowing now every little detail from the lives of those beloved characters."One thing ends, another begins"
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