My book review of the The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss
Each day a name and each name a promise, Auri wanders the Underthing, the forgotten home to the dark and the nowhere, giving birth to longing and wild imaginings. Ethereal, tatter and hidden for the world above Auri repays each day uncovering the mysteries of every stone and the promise of each bone. In seven days he will come and a gift is needed. The right and correct gift, a gift to match the who if him and the being of him. Today is a finding day.
The Slow Regard of Silent Things is a tender tale of childlike imagining seen through he the eyes and voice of a wounded mind finding friends, family and meaning in everyday objects. Under it all is a masked element of unnamed atonement and a desire from Auri to bring balance and nurture to her world.
What Patrick Rothfuss has brought us are soft words spoken with reverence, love and lost of a character little understood. Words alone are unable to describe the investment of you in this short story. There is a commitment of emotions and feelings for each page and paragraph and the texture of the words are just as important as how they were written, leaving you with a gentle feeling of longing and sorrow.
What I loved about this story was its structure and phrasing. Growing up, one of my favourite pieces was Lewis Carroll’s poem Jabberwocky. Its use of nonce words engaged and illustrated to me the power stories and words have over the reader. Truly admirable works like this captivate and instil feelings of love, lost, joy, sadness and fear. Patrick Rothfuss has given us all of these and more in the telling a single girl, her hidden world and the life and names she brings to it.
The story itself is broken up to the days until the visit of Kvothe. While searching for the perfect gift for Kvothe, we are given a brief glimpse into the inner workings of Auri and her splintered self as she brings her need for order to the unseen voices and lives of the items in the Underthing.
Its surprising and wonderful the investment and sense you gain from the interactions Auri has with the objects and places in the Underthing. Patrick Rothfuss masterfully expresses and projects for the reader the voice Auri gives to these objects, so much so you can sometimes forget that they are not individuals or beings with their own personalities.
The Slow Regard of Silent Things is joyous offering of literary excellence and a heartbreaking delving of loss, loneliness and the mysteries that are Auri. 10/10
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