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The Willful Princess and the Piebald Prince by Robin Hobb

Felicity is the daughter of Princess Caution’s wetnurse, elevated beyond normal expectations to be a constant companion to Caution, a foil for her temper and a balm for her temperament. For Caution is anything but. She is a wild and willful princess, interested in intent only in the things that bring her pleasure and joy.

Like the witted Stable Master and his piebald stallion.

The Willful Princess and the Piebald Prince is a fascinating account of where things went sour for Witted ones in the history of the Duchies. It is the story of a princesses love for a freed slave and the bastard son she got off him. It is the story of that son and the Wit he inherited from his father and the ability to love instantly and intently he inherited from his mother.

The long novella is told exclusively from Felicity’s point of view, but is by no means dry. We are granted a personal accounting of sometimes beautiful, often tragic events, and Felicity feels a reliable narrator throughout- she does not attempt to sway the reader, or win their sympathy. She is merely recounting what happened so that others may know and hopefully understand.

For fans of the Farseer novels, this is a must read. It sets the scene perfectly for the events of FitzChivalry’s life, and puts a lot of what happens, the attitudes and little abuses, into perspective. 

Available from Subterranean Press