Stars: 5 out of 5.
I had read this series back when I was a teenager and remember loving it. Then I played all of The Witcher games and watched the Netflix series. The series was a huge disappointment, especially season 3, but Henry Cavil is 100% Geralt of Rivia. You can see that he loves the source material as much as I do.
Anyway, while I will not be continuing with the TV series, I decided to reread the books. And I started at the book that introduced me to this series the first time as well. I remember being fascinated by the way the author wove original Slavic monsters and folk tales into this rich and complex world. And I absolutely LOVE Geralt of Rivia.
This book is a collection of short stories that weave into a cohesive narrative that serves to introduce us to Geralt and the most important characters in future books, like Yennifer, Jaskier, the elves, etc. And while Ciri isn’t in this book, she is mentioned and we get to read the story about how Geralt got to be linked to her by destiny.
I liked that not all of the short stories involve Geralt slaying soulless monsters. In fact, in a lot of them humans are worst monsters than the actual monsters. And some of those stories are actually rather heartbreaking. Like the whole horrible affair in Blaviken. Was Renfri born a monster like the sorcerer claimed, or did humans make her that way by driving her to become cruel and callus just to survive? Or what’s the point of all your arrogance and pride if your entire race is dying off because of that pride?
I plan on rereading the entire series this year and I am looking forward to immersing myself in the complex and bloody world of witchers, monsters, and political intrigue.