The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss
When David and I first read In the Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss we fell in love with the story and his style of writing. The second book,The Wise Man’s Fears, just continued our love of this world that he had created. Now we are anxiously awaiting the third installment and while we are waiting for that he released a novella about one of the more mysterious characters in the books named Auri.
She is a quiet thing who seems to house wisdom beyond her years in the main books, so to have a novella about her is just fascinating. It is great to get into the mind a little bit of this character from her own perspective instead of just from Kvothe. It definitely has some stylistic similarities to the main novel, but the very way the story is told just fits with Auri’s personality.
When we first meet Auri in the book she does not actually have a name and it is Kvothe who gives her her name. We do not know much about her except she seems to live not where everyone else lives, specifically underneath where everyone else lives. She seems to know things and have a very different understanding of how the world works. Most would just ignore her or write her off, but Kvothe wants to get to know her better because he can see that she might know more than meets the eye.
The Naming of Things
An important part of the magic in the world that Auri lives in is that there is power in a name, but it is not just any name that has power. Every thing has a true name whether living or not. One of the hardest things is to learn something’s true name because it takes an understanding beyond oneself. It is never fully explained, but it seems that Auri actually understands the naming of things. It is not just about understanding the name, but understanding their weight. It is not just about giving something a name, but about slowing chipping away at the space or item to figure out its essence. There is a balance to the world and that balance needs to be maintained.
The Will of the World
There is an amazing thought, thinking of the items on our shelves as having a will of their own. The very idea that a space and item are working in harmony and want to exist in a certain way. It is not about us putting our will on our space, but sensing the essence of the thing or space itself. There is something so calm reading about meticulously moving things and that everything has a place and a purpose. It does not always reveal itself at first, it can take days potentially for the pieces to finally all fall into place. It is not something that can be forced, but something that flows around us.
This is a very different story than many you have read before or will again. The Slow Regard of Silent Things is a moment in a larger story, of a character that at times you wonder if she is crazy or if she might be the most powerful being you may ever know. She understands the power of the balance of the universe and only takes what she needs or what is given to her. The story does not make much sense if you have not read the original books, which I highly recommend, but it is a great addition to the world that Patrick Rothfuss has created.