Book Reviews · Fantasy

The Time of Contempt

If you’ve been following The Unapologetic Bookworm for a while now, you’ve probably noticed a couple of things about me as a reader…

1. I have a tendency to hop from one genre to another. While some of this is because of my participation in multiple reading challenges, I do also choose books according to my mood.

2. My favorite genres include fantasy, science fiction, mystery, and non-fiction.

3. I am a massive fan of “high fantasy” novels, such as: J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy, George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, and Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Witcher Saga. When I’m feeling the need to escape into a book for a while, a high fantasy story is typically what I will choose…which is probably why I ended up reading The Hobbit three times in 2020.

Over the past few months, I’ve been continuing to read the books in Sapkowski’s The Witcher Saga (for the very first time), and I have completely fallen in love with them. Immediately after finishing Blood of Elves, which I reviewed toward the end of last month, I decided to continue my reading of the series with The Time of Contempt.

While The Time of Contempt is technically the second book in the main series of novels from The Witcher Saga, it’s actually the fifth book in terms of the saga’s chronology.

In this book, Yennefer and Ciri travel to the city of Gors Velen, on their way to a conclave of wizards on Thanedd Island. In addition to attending the conclave, Yennefer intends to enroll Ciri as a student at Aretuza, a magical school for young women where she will be able to study magic in safety.

Unable to bear the thought of going to Aretuza without seeing Geralt one last time, Ciri runs away. Her actions lead Geralt and Yennefer to reunite, and the Witcher ends up agreeing to attend a banquet as Yennefer’s escort.

On the night of the banquet, however, an attempted coup takes place, led by a powerful wizard who has allied himself with the Scoia’tael and Nilfgaardians. During the course of the ensuing struggle, Ciri goes missing. As war breaks out between Nilfgaard and the northern kingdoms, both the Witcher and the Nilfgaardians desperately begin seeking information about the princess’s whereabouts. The question is, who will find her first?

I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Time of Contempt! It was a very fast-paced, character-driven novel with a lot of exciting moments, drama, and political intrigue. Just like Andrzej Sapkowski’s previous books, I found The Time of Contempt very difficult to put down, and I was ready to dive into the next book in the series the moment I finished this one.

I do think it is important to mention that this installment of the series does include some content which might cause emotional distress for readers, including: references to rape, unwanted sexual attention, and suicide.

Whether you are already a fan of The Witcher Saga, or enjoy great fantasy novels, I highly recommend reading The Time of Contempt for yourself. It’s a great continuation of Sapkowski’s series!

If you are interested in reading this book for yourself, however, you’ll definitely want to read the following books first…

If you have the opportunity to read The Time of Contempt for yourself, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Happy reading!

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