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Robin Hobb book order — where should you start?
You might have heard about “Assassin’s Apprentice” or The Realm of the Elderlings, but what exactly are these?
In short, The Realm of the Elderlings is a mouth-dropping fantasy series subdivided into four trilogies, a quartet, a novella, and a few short stories.
But with so many trilogies and stories, it might be quite a challenge to pick the right book.
And you definitely don’t want to spoil the pleasure of discovering this new fantasy world by choosing the wrong book.
We’ve got you covered and made a list of the recommended reading order of Robin Hobb books.
Realm of The Elderlings Reading Order
The beginning of the Hobbmania journey is the Farseer Trilogy set in the Realm of the Elderlings.
So if you want to get sucked into the Elderlings universe, you should start at the beginning. And that would be Hobb’s debut, “Assassin’s Apprentice.”
The Farseer Trilogy
The story begins with a six-year-old Fitz, Prince Chivalry’s illegitimate son. His father’s stern stableman raised him.
The royal house members despise him and avoid him like the plague.
King Shrewd takes an interest in Fitz for wicked reasons, for Fitz possesses the magic Skill. This gift makes him perceived as a menace to the crown. But much to the surprise of his kinsmen, Fitz is more than a bastard son.
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This book tells the story of when Fitz is left injured and battered after his first life-threatening mission as the king’s assassin. He made an oath to never return to Buckkeep or his King. But fate and love couldn’t let him stay away.
He returns to the royal court and is quickly swallowed by the events of court — deadly intrigues and plots. He gets reunited with Molly, who loves him in return. But he has to hide his love for Molly, especially since he was to be pledged to the daughter of a Duke.
Fitz’s enemies are mightier and are more in number, and he is too wounded to fight. If you would like to read this one — check the price here.
After tortures in Regal’s dungeon, Fitz dies. Helped by Burrich and Chade, he is raised from the dead with Wit magic.
Arisen Fitz is deeply tormented, in soul and body.
The kingdom is close to ruin, and King Shrewd is dead. Prince Verity is on a mad quest, and the realm’s survival depends on his return. Fitz seeks vengeance: he is out for Regal’s blood.
At the same time, Burrich (oblivious of Fitz’s survival after an attack) cares for Molly.
The Willful Princess and the Piebald Prince
Long before the time of Fitz Chivalry, there existed a princess — Princess Caution Farseer. This strong-willed princess falls madly in love where she ought not to.
She bears a child, the Piebald Prince, who has questionable bloodlines. A battle of the throne ensued as the dukes of the Six Duchies backed Canny Farseer.
This short story is of love and power, which may end in murder and bloodshed.
Here is the link to the book’s page on Amazon
Words Like Coins
This short story takes place in Tilth. The main character is Mirrifen, who has been struggling to live a secure life after a failed attempt to become a witch’s apprentice.
One day, a drought and a pregnant pecksie change his life dramatically. Set during “Assassin’s Apprentice” and “Royal Assassin.”
Check the price for this story on Amazon.
Keen on reading to learn how to keep reading other Robin Hobb books.
The Liveship Traders Trilogy — Books In Order
Ship Of Magic
This story is set in Bingtown, far south of The Six Duchess: a townhome for a group of trading families known for their liveships. These liveships are extraordinary watercraft built from the mystical logs, Wizardwood.
The liveships have a magical ability to awaken the consciousness of three generations of onboard ship owners.
The fortune of the Vestrit family rests on the liveship Vivacia. Vivacia is Althea Vestrit’s legacy and her young nephew’s prison.
But the fortune of all in the story may eventually be in the hands of the cruel Captain Kennit, who has devious intentions.
The Mad Ship
Things do not go Althea’s way. Vivacia is in the hands of Kennit. Wintrow Vestrit and Kennits contend for Vivacia’s affection.
Althea and Brashen are far away, plotting a rescue. Back at home, in Bingtown, the Vestrit family’s riches are dwindling, making Malta dig more into the Rain Wild Traders’ secrets.
Ship of Destiny
Bingtown is not thriving and is sliding towards destruction. The Vestrit family dame, Ronica, tries to unite the people against the new threat.
Meanwhile, Althea has not succeeded and is still on the quest to rescue Vivacia. Her plot might become futile because unexpected perils will confront Vivacia, leading to the revelations of the liveships secrets.
Would you like to read this series? Here is the link to buy it on Amazon.
Set in a time before Althea Vestrit, it is a short story with Bingetown at its center.
Her kins desert its main character Cerise after the death of her grandma. She later learns of an inheritance from a grandmother: a wizardwood pendant, which changes her life.
The story is independent and can be read on its own.
The Next Robin Hobb Book Series — The Tawny Man Trilogy
It’s been fifteen years since the Red Ship War ended. Fitz, who initially roamed the world with Nighteyes, his wolf, finally settles in a small cottage far from the politics of Buckkeep and the Farseer name.
He adopts a son, Hap, and raises him as he is able. But the world is not at peace, and Fitz is found. He is asked to rescue Prince Dutiful, who got captured before his wedding to an Outislander princess.
Fitz’s assignment feels like a fool’s errand, and the hazards he would face might just tilt the Farseer dynasty towards its ruin.
If you’d like to start reading The Tawny Man trilogy, here is the link to the first book on Amazon.
Fitz has rescued Prince Dutiful, heir to the throne. But the cost of protecting the Farseer name is high — Nighteyes is dead.
Gutted by his loss, Fitz would prefer to leave again, but he had to dwell a while in Buckkeep and assume the role of Skillmaster to teach Dutiful the Skill.
Fitz tries to guide the kingdom as it is closer to an internal war every day. But things aren’t as easy as they should be, and Fitz finds survival to be his greatest challenge.
Fitz, Prince Dutiful, and his small band are sailing towards Aslevjal.
They must fulfill the Narcheska’s challenge to her intended and deliver Icefyre skull to her: the dragon bones which are said to lie underneath the ice according to the legends.
Their ship is not happy, but they must fulfill their quest. Only when they do will the wedding ceremony continue. The marriage that will turn two enemies’ kingdoms into allies.
Robin Hobb Book Order for The Rain Wild Chronicles
The book opens as a group of sea serpents make their way upriver to encase themselves that they might hatch into dragons. They succeed but are deformed and damaged.
A few people are interested in dragons, one of whom is self-taught dragon scholar Alise Kincannon. Alise enters a marriage of convenience with a trader in exchange for funds to pursue her interests.
The Traders Council drives out the dragons, and they seek sanctuary in Kelsingra. Alise and Thymara, a teenage mutant volunteer, accompany the dragons to find a home.
The dragons haven’t found a home yet. As they and their keepers find their way through the unexplored waters of the Rain Wild River, they are helped by Captain Leftrin, his liveship Tarman and Alise Finbok.
Some challenges are faced, and intentions are in doubt. Certain group members view the dragons as tickets to a lifetime’s fortune and would rather have them dead than alive.
But their biggest problem may be the Rain Wilds and not greedy contemporaries.
City of Dragons
The dragons are still learning to fly as they are settled near the ancient city of Kelsingra. Kelsingra was home to the dragons, Elderlings, and a race of humans transformed into dragon champions. Kelsingra now lies dormant, awakening the dragons.
Meanwhile, the party deals with interpersonal dramas. Some desire to exploit the dragons and the ancient city; some wish otherwise. While the party does not make much progress, they face challenges that may ruin their long and difficult odyssey.
Link to “City of Dragons” on Amazon
Blood of Dragons
The dragons have at last learned to fly and have found Kelsingra. But their survival hangs on the balance as they can not find the silver wells meant to keep them healthy and alive. They not only must find the silver for themselves but the legendary dragon Tintaglia.
After an encounter with dragons hunters, Tintaglia is gravely wounded and dying. If she does, so will her age-old memories, which the dragons at Kelsingra need to survive.
The party gradually transforms into Elderlings, on a mission to find the Elderling magi. Time is not on their side, and they might lose more than they think.
The Fitz And The Fool Trilogy
After years of heroic sacrifices, Fitz has finally found a quiet life but his family and closest friends believe he is dead. Under the name Tom Badgerlock, he has lived with Molly for many years.
Molly bears a child, Bee, who gains no recognition as a Farseer due to her fragility. Her parents fear she may die, but she survives her childhood.
Fitz’s world comes crashing down once more when he receives a message that his beloved friend got captured. Once again, Fitz, his family, and the Fool are not safe.
Would you like to read this trilogy? Here is the link to the first book on Amazon.
Fitz has rescued the Fool, but he is injured and near death. The Fool tells Fitz of his captors and their intentions. Fitz’s daughter gets captured.
By some transaction with Prince Dutiful, Fitz gets crowned as Prince. Yet, that doesn’t bring calm to his world, which is by now torn apart.
Bee’s captors are the Servants: a cult. Its members plan to rule the world. Bee struggles with her captors and eventually discovers her ability with the Skill.
Her captors bring her to the Clerres Castle, and she pretends to be a frail little girl. Meanwhile, Fitz and his company are on their way to rescue Bee or avenge her, whatever the case may become.
Bee learns about her ability some more. Her encounter with Symphe, who she kills, exposes her to sea serpent essence that helps her ability.
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The Realm of the Elderlings is a world of magic, dragons, wolves, and liveships. Each trilogy set in the Elderlings universe can stand on its own.
While there are the occasional crossovers with the stories, each series is mostly separate and can be read on its own.
Robin Hobb book order doesn’t stop here — below you will find one more amazing trilogy to read.
Reading Order of Other Robin Hobb Books
The Soldier Son Trilogy
Nevare is born as the second son. Before birth, his role is predetermined: he is a soldier son.
He gets drilled into the mounted cavalla (Cavalry) techniques, survival tactics, riding, and more as an officer in the king’s army.
He encounters Specks’ magic as a teenager and trains to be an officer later. He suffers the consequences of being the son of a New Noble when there is a struggle between the Old and New Nobles.
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Nevare now wields Specks’ magic, and his body is no longer the same. All, including his family, reject him, but he is resilient. He continues to pursue his military career and saves the Specks’ ancestors’ forest.
This story is the final book, and it details Nevare’s journey with the Specks in their forest.
His cousin and her husband Spink continue to deal with events in Gettys. Nevare’s purpose with magic becomes clear, but the experience is not with sacrifice.
Questions about Robin Hobb Books
In What Order Should I Read Robin Hobb’s Book?
While all these books are great, we highly recommend you start with the Realm of Elderlings series before reading The Soldier Son Trilogy.
Is Robin Hobb Still Writing?
Yes, Robin Hobb is still writing! The writer explained that she is working on a new book on her website. While she is navigating an online presence and successfully writing, we fans will be patient.
What Is The Best Robin Hobb Trilogy?
Tastes differ and we honestly believe it’s for you to decide. But here is an interesting Reddit discussion on this topic.
Are All Robin Hobb’s Books Related?
Many of her books are related. The Farseer Trilogy, The Tawny Man Trilogy, and The Fitz and The Fool Trilogy are all about Fitz.
Liveship Traders Trilogy and the Rain Wild Chronicles are related. While The Soldier Son Trilogy is unrelated to any other trilogy, the story is set in worlds different from The Realm of the Elderlings.
Robin Hobb is a fantastic writer who we love and respect. While all the books are great (maybe some more than others), we highly recommend you start with The Realm of the Elderlings series. Using our Robin Hobb book order, have fun reading!
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I love when a book can make me laugh and cry in equivalent measure.
This one definitely did both. The Summer I Turned Pretty Book Series: A Journey of Self-Discovery
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