Baptism of Fire (Witcher #3)
Baptism of Fire is the third installment of the main story of the Witcher. Unfortunately, the story starts out pretty slow. Geralt doesn’t really fight any monsters but he does team up with an interesting crew.
The best part is the traveling troupe, a motley crew of half-elf (Milva), dwarf (Zolton), gnome (Percival), Nilfgaardian (Cahir), poet (Dandelion), and a mysterious fellow (Regis), who turns out to be a vampire. This isn’t much of a spoiler, as there are so many hints at this fact that it becomes comical that the rest of the group takes so long to figure it out.
Their adventures and escapades make up most of the story and is definitely the best part.
The story arc for Ciri is pretty much garbage. She has become an alter-ego, Falka. This new persona is a nasty, terrible person and I began to care much less about her.
There is still a great deal of politics and bizarre names mentioned throughout the book. The sorceresses begin gathering to try and defend magic for magic’s sake. I hope in the next book we see a bit more action from them instead of talking.
Yennefer’s situation was a pretty cool twist and I definitely didn’t see that coming.
The last part of the book took a weird narration turn. It was a bit confusing to know who was telling the story. This new structure didn’t seem to fit with the rest of the main series so it will be interesting to see if it continues or not.
Unfortunately, most of what happens in the story is either forgettable or too full of spoilers. However, Regis really steals the show and makes the book a good read.
Pro Life Message
There is a considerable amount of violence and murder in The Witcher series. However, I feel like there is a definite pro-life message. Yennefer, by becoming a sorceress, gave up her ability to conceive a child. Geralt, by his mutation as a witcher, also is sterile. Both seem to regret this. Ciri has become their proxy child and is the real reason both are trying to protect her.
Then we have Milva. She struggles with her decision of whether to take Regis’s concoction to end her pregnancy. She chooses not to. Her realization, with some help from Geralt, is that pregnancy doesn’t mean she can’t be an amazing archer. She can still be Milva.