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The Last Wish (The Witcher) [Kindle Edition]

Andrzej Sapkowski
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (246 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $8.00
Kindle Price: $6.99
You Save: $1.01 (13%)
Sold by: Hachette Book Group

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Book Description

Geralt of Rivia is a witcher. A cunning sorcerer. A merciless assassin.

And a cold-blooded killer.

His sole purpose: to destroy the monsters that plague the world.

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

The international hit that inspired the video game: The Witcher.


Editorial Reviews

Review

"It's refreshing to see another take on familiar elements. There's a fairy-tale quality to much of THE LAST WISH." -- Jonathan Wright SFX "It is [his] world-weariness, combined with his battle-boned powers that make Geralt such an interesting character. Here's hoping THE LAST WISH is merely the opening chapter in his English language adventures." EDGE magazine "Sapkowski's 'The Last Wish' is a great collection of short stories centred around a witcher, Geralt - a rare sorcerous breed who hunts down the monstrous but is feared by the innocent. With a wonderous mix of Eastern European folklore and myth, beautiful princesses, mischievious demons and where all is not as it seems, 'The Last Wish' is a great read - perfect for dipping into or just reading cover to cover, as I did." WATERSTONES.COM "I really, really enjoyed this book. Despite the original language being Polish, the translation is quite good and captures much of Sapkowski's prose. None of the characters in Sapkowski's world are black or white; they are all shades of grey, including Geralt and the monsters. In fact, other humans tend to be greater monsters than the ones Geralt is sworn to track down and destroy." THE DECKLED EDGE "The Last Wish is an accomplished retelling of some well-known fairy tales, each transformed almost beyond recognition and given the darkest tinges of horror. This takes the book outside the norms of traditional fantasy writing, while still being anchored in (the more original edges of) sword and sorcery." DREAMWATCH "Sapkowski is very good at creating interesting, imaginative characters with unusual levels of depth to them, not least Geralt, whom people are consistently underestimating. The Last Wish is an enjoyable book full of stories both melancholy and comic." THE WERTZONE "This beautifully written character-based story from Polish author Adrezej Sapkowski is a refreshing champion in a genre that's starting to get a little homogenic. While there is the occasional nod to traditional European fairy tales (Snow White, among others), much of the application of supertext and tropes are from a new point of view." THE SPECUSPHERE "Sapkowski's series has the potential to develop a new audience and appreciation of fantasy and like Mieville and Gaiman, take the old and make it new. This reviewer is certainly looking forward to the next installment of this fresh take on genre fantasy." FOUNDATION

About the Author

Andrzej Sapkowski was born in 1948 in Poland. He studied economy and business, but the success of his fantasy cycle about the sorcerer Geralt of Riv turned him into a bestselling writer. He is now one of Poland's most famous and successful authors.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1085 KB
  • Print Length: 388 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0316029181
  • Publisher: Orbit (December 14, 2008)
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0010SIPT4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,754 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
130 of 133 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The famous Polish author comes stateside May 26, 2008
Format:Mass Market Paperback
First off, the Product Description does this book a great disservice when it says:
"Geralt de Rivia is a witcher. A cunning sorcerer. A merciless assassin.
And a cold-blooded killer."

Well...he's not a sorcerer...at least not in the sense they mean in the book. He's not an assassin - they actually go through great lengths in the book describing how witchers are not hired killers. And he is by no means a cold-blooded killer. I don't think it's too much a spoiler if I say I can count the number of things Geralt kills in the book on one hand. A witcher, as described in the book, is supposed to save lives rather than take them.

I don't know why the publishers chose this description, but I guess the description "A philosophically-minded warrior confronted with moral ambiguities" would not sell many copies.

Now the review:
This book chronicles the adventures of Geralt of Rivia in a series of loosely tied adventures. A convoluted way to describe his job would be to say he slay monsters, but a better way would be to say he helps people with monster troubles, resorting to violence as a last resort.

The book is written in short story form with a overarching mini-story which acts as a segway between each story.

The book itself, honestly, falls flat for about the first half of the book. I felt quite a bit was either lost in translation or the author was trying too hard to define his character.

The book becomes much, much better once Geralt's foil, named Dandilion, is introduced. I would also say that the very last of the six short stories, named "The Last Wish," is superb and more than enough to warrant a purchase of this book.
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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read! June 17, 2008
By J. Gill
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Wow. I got this book for my hubby for Father's Day, since he enjoys the PC game based on this book. I was literally in the middle of quite a large fictional novel when I picked up his book, this book, and read a few pages. I was hooked on the main character, Geralt, immediately. I took a wonderful liason from my current book, and the streets of NYC, and went directly into a medieval, magickal world full of monsters and sorcerers. The author is great with his adjectives and after a few sentences you really can imagine for yourself what the author is describing. Also, Sapkowski gives us humor and that humor doesn't encroach into the seriousness of the tone in the entire story. I absolutely LOVE that the author mixed in some of the older faerie tales, old wives tales and even some general well-known stories into the story. This is a quick and amusing read with some ancient 'history' intertwined. I loved this book! I want more! You will too!
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86 of 100 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Grim(m) Fairy Tales July 22, 2008
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I came by The Last Wish via The Witcher video game, and I am quite satisfied with both. As a European, Sapkowski seems not to have been tainted by the triteness and commercialism that has afflicted so much speculative fiction in the U.S. His writing is gritty and dark, like the original fairy tales on which it seems to be based. The protagonist, Geralt of Rivia, is a classic anti-hero--a warrior who has made himself into a monster in order to combat still greater monsters. His task is necessary yet thankless, and he approaches it with the attitude of a hardened mercenary--as just another job. I cannot express how refreshing that is in an era of Tolkien-clones and shallow D&D novelizations, in which every character has some Grand Destiny(TM) and good and evil regularly clash in Titanic Battles for the Fate of the World(TM).
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fun twist on many fairy tales May 29, 2008
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
You probably know by now that Geralt is a Witcher, a monster slayer, and is a typical fantasy fiction hero. If you like fantasy fiction or the PC game The Witcher, the odds are good that you will enjoy this book.

What surprised me upon reading "The Last Wish" were the references to classic fairy tales and their somewhat twisted incorporation into Geralt's world. Stories about Snow White, Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, Rumplestiltiskin, and others are woven into the tales in a dark and untraditional way. I found this added to the fun and elevated this book above your typical hack and slash fanatasy novel.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very enjoyable read January 25, 2009
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book has more emotional depth, and maturity than most in this genre. It ties in a lot of children's stories, Snow White, etc, and provides an adult perspective on them. Stimulating and engrossing. Like Lord of the Rings, it has a dark edge, set in a time where the old world is fast disappearing. One of the best books I have read in a long time.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark and Complex Fantasy World May 26, 2008
Format:Mass Market Paperback
In short, a great read and a welcome break from cookie-cutter fantasy.

I feared that the stories may fall flat in translation, but this is not the case. These short stories compiled into novel form leave no doubt about why this world was adapted into one of the most popular role playing games in recent memory. The world portrayed in the book is deep and layered with blood and shades of gray. There are rarely any real heroes or villains. Everyone has secondary motives. Even the "monsters" have sympathetic qualities, and a recurring theme is that people are far more dangerous than anything mystical.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
Not bad. Not great. I think something is lost in translation from the original language. The author is not very descriptive.
Published 5 days ago by R. Lambert
5.0 out of 5 stars It's just like game of thrones with more politics characters and death...
Watched a playthrough of the game so I decided to buy the books and I have to say the witchers world is very thrilling... And the story telling its grade A... Read more
Published 7 days ago by Rawad ElDahouk
5.0 out of 5 stars exceptional fantasy story
I very much like the story telling style, as well as the development of the main character. This book delightfully ties in common fairy tale elements to make, what might be... Read more
Published 9 days ago by C. Vigen
4.0 out of 5 stars The first story is the worst, and the last arguably the best
The first story is the worst, and the last arguably the best, and in between you can follow Sapkowski's progression as a writer getting more and more confident in his skills. Read more
Published 10 days ago by Eddie
5.0 out of 5 stars Well Told Fantasy
I absolutely love the witcher books and can't wait for the next one to be translated. I got into this after buying The Witcher video game for my PC. Read more
Published 11 days ago by Eric J. McAnallen
5.0 out of 5 stars great read!
Great read and I don't usually go for anything fantasy. He had a slight over-reliance on adverbs, but I had a great time.
Published 14 days ago by EVILGRIN
3.0 out of 5 stars Recommended reading for Witcher fans
I'm a huge fan of Witcher games and wanted to see if the book would offer deeper insight of Geralt. It certainly did that, but the story snippets have weird discontinuity points,... Read more
Published 20 days ago by Multis
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Writing, Superb Story, Distinctive Voice --- SPOILER FREE REVIEW
SPOILER FREE REVIEW**** This is a great fantasy book. Incredible character and worldbuilding and I like the way he leverages our familiar community knowledge on monsters and... Read more
Published 21 days ago by amnightus
3.0 out of 5 stars So-So book but has Interesting characters and back story.
I read this after hearing so much about the video games and their stories. Always a sucker for a good story I decided to try this before getting into the video game. Read more
Published 26 days ago by Wayne Douglass
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book. That's all I can say about it
A great book. That's all I can say about it. I cant even describe the way the story flows beautifully, the way the characters seem so life-like and real with their own thoughts,... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Avid
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Andrzej Sapkowski's Other Books
Check out abebooks(dot)com. I just ordered the UK edition of 'Blood of Elves' from a member store and had it withing a week.
Jan 25, 2009 by none |  See all 2 posts
Cool price
As long as the translation is good and reflects the somewhat light-hearted and folksy approach that Sapkowski took to the Polish original, this should be a fine book.
Dec 29, 2007 by R. Kocz |  See all 3 posts
Geralt's Wish *Spoilers*
Geralt's first wish was described in his exorcism of the Djinn. "Get out of here and go ..... yourself!" as translated from Mr. Krepp.
Aug 5, 2011 by Paul M. Mullenix |  See all 2 posts
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