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The Tower of Fools cover art

The Tower of Fools

Written by: Andrzej Sapkowski,David French - Translator
Narrated by: Peter Kenny
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Publisher's Summary

"A fantastic novel that any fan of The Witcher will instantly appreciate." (The Gamer)

Andrzej Sapkowski's Witcher series has become a fantasy phenomenon, finding millions of fans worldwide and inspiring the hit Netflix show and video games. Now the best-selling author introduces listeners to a new hero on an epic journey in The Tower of Fools, the first book of the Hussite Trilogy.

Reinmar of Bielawa, sometimes known as Reynevan, is a healer, a magician, and according to some, a charlatan. When a thoughtless indiscretion forces him to flee his home, he finds himself pursued not only by brothers bent on vengeance but by the Holy Inquisition.

In a time when tensions between Hussite and Catholic countries are threatening to turn into war and mystical forces are gathering in the shadows, Reynevan's journey will lead him to the Narrenturm — the Tower of Fools.

The Tower is an asylum for the mad...or for those who dare to think differently and challenge the prevailing order. And escaping it, avoiding the conflict around him, and keeping his own sanity will prove more difficult than he ever imagined

"A ripping yarn delivered with world-weary wit, bursting at the seams with sex, death, magic and madness." (Joe Abercrombie)

"This is historical fantasy done right." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

"A highly enjoyable historical fantasy." (Booklist)

The Tower of Fools is an historical novel set during the Hussite Wars in Bohemia during the 1400s, a period of religious conflict and persecution. Characters in the novel may express views that some listeners might find offensive.

Also by Andrzej Sapkowski:

Witcher collections

The Last Wish

Sword of Destiny

Witcher novels

Blood of Elves

The Time of Contempt

Baptism of Fire

The Tower of Swallows

Lady of the Lake

Season of Storms

The Malady and Other Stories: An Andrzej Sapkowski Sampler (e-only)

Translated by David French

©2020 Andrzej Sapkowski (P)2020 Orbit

What the critics say

"Sapkowski's energetic and satirical prose as well as the unconventional setting makes this a highly enjoyable historical fantasy. Recommended for Sapkowksi's many existing fans." (Booklist)

"Sapkowski's love for the period is clear as he touches on notorious historical events and figures.... The carefully painted landscapes and intricate politics effortlessly draw readers into Reinmar's life and times. This is historical fantasy done right." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

What listeners say about The Tower of Fools

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Symbolic and meandering

Andrzej Sapkowski is famous for his Witcher stories with their potent blend of folklore, fantasy, and worldbuilding. Unfortunately the formula for The Tower of Fools doesn't seem to attain the same strength. Set in the largely historical backdrop of the early Bohemian Reformation, the protagonist Reynevan is a callow young noble who bumbles from misadventure to misadventure. He's caught by his enemies, rescued by friends, caught by his enemies, rescued by friends, caught by his enemies, rescued by friends... and so on and so on, as he wanders from location to location in Silesia. The plot seems to serve mainly as a vehicle for philosophical and semiotic banter between our hero and various sidekicks as they navigate the cynical religious, secular and criminal forces striving for control of the countryside. However, Reynevan's exploits seem monotonous and arbitrary, and it was hard to care what happened to him by the end of the book. David French's eloquent translation and Peter Kenny's skillful reading (and singing, and chanting!), which added so much to the Witcher books, aren't enough to rescue this one.

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Entertaining!!!

A novel of a young man who just cannot stay out of trouble. It is a fast moving novel which switches directions and storylines frequently but keeps you guessing in a delightful way. Peter Kenny is great as a narrator. I am a fan of Andrzel Sepkiwski’s novels.

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Hilarious story and amazing narration!

Loved the Witcher books and thought I'd check this out. The story is entertaining and the characters are quite colorful. The narration is absolutely spot on!

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