Times of Contempt (official English translation, literal translation: The Time of Disdain, early title was annouced as Times of Anger, original Polish: Czas pogardy), written by Andrzej Sapkowski, first published in Poland in 1995 by SUPERNOWA, is the fourth book in the Witcher series and the second novel in the Witcher saga.
It directly continues on from Blood of Elves, which begins the saga of Ciri and Geralt. The English version novel is currently being translated by Danusia Stok and was expected to be published in the fall of 2010. This release date was missed however and has seen numerous edits since.
The Time Of Contempt will now be released in the UK on June 27th 2013 by Gollancz. The Kindle edition will be released simultaneously.
In North America The Time Of Contempt was released by Orbit books on August 27th, 2013 .
The story in Times of Contempt begins where Blood of Elves left off, essentially with Ciri and Yennefer having just left the Temple in Ellander, on their way to Gors Velen, and ultimately Thanedd Island. It is Yennefer's intention that Ciri be enrolled at Aretuza and that she continue her instruction in the use and mastery of magic.
Once they arrive in Gors Velen, Yennefer goes to see her old friend Giancardi Molnar, a dwarven banker. The latter informs the sorceress that her financial movements are being tracked, something Yennefer already suspected, but he arranges an essentially unlimited line of credit for her and makes several financial transfers to cover expenses for Ciri's education. He and Yennefer also agree to allow Ciri to see the sights, escorted by one of Molnar's faithful employees, Fabio Sachs.
While on their excursion, things get quickly out of hand and Ciri is mistaken for one of about a dozen students who have recently "escaped" from Aretuza in the kerfuffle leading up to the mages' conference being held there. She is apprehended by no less than the former and current headmistresses of the academy, Tissaia de Vries and Margarita (Rita) Laux-Antille after she uses a magical amulet given to her by Yennefer in case of emergency.
At first, the sorceresses do not believe Ciri's story, but ultimately, the girl and Fabio manage to convince the headmistresses to check out their story at the bank and things are quickly confirmed by Yennefer and Giancardi. The three sorceresses then decide to discuss events over at the Silver Heron, taking Ciri with them and leaving poor Fabio to deal with his employer.
At the inn, Tissaia and Rita have rented the entire cellar which is actually a bath house and the four "ladies" retire there to relax and chat. It seems that both Rita and Tissaia, but especially Rita have every intention of getting good and drunk and Ciri is dispatched to refill their caraff of wine not very long after it arrives.
While getting the refreshments, Ciri notices a mercenary (Rayla) who orders the innkeeper to open a back door for her — a door which leads directly to the outer walls of the city, bypassing the usual gates and guards. On her second trip to refill the caraff, Ciri uses her new found knowledge and runs away to see Geralt whom she has been told is at Hirundum, not far from Gors Velen. Yennefer, luckily is not far behind. Ciri's flight does, however, provide Geralt and Yennefer with an opportunity to meet up again and to patch things in their relationship before the three set off for Thanedd Island together.
On the island, things are in a tizzy. The girls have been temporarily moved from their usual accommodation within Aretuza to Loxia, the lowest level of the complex as the school itself is being used to accommodate the visiting sorcerers and sorceresses. That evening, Yennefer takes Geralt as her date to the reception, leaving Ciri in her room and ensuring that there is no second flight with magic.
At the reception, Geralt meets quite a few interesting individuals, but in particular he meets Vilgefortz for the first time. The mage is considered very young (which of course is anything less than 100 years to mages, but he looks more like 35), he is also considered to be particularly talented, but as Geralt finds out, his road to becoming a mage was not exactly the usual route. The wizard was abandoned as a baby and taken in and raised by druids. It was only as an adult that he became a mage. A point he underlines with some emphasis to the witcher. He even goes so far as to try to encourage Geralt to become a mage himself, but the witcher refuses.
Dijkstra also tries to recruit the witcher to no avail.
After the reception, Yennefer and Geralt retire to their room and re-connect on a more intimate level. After a very fruitful reunion and a bit of sleep, the witcher is awakened by an urge to urinate, but in deference to his hosts, decides against relieving himself in the flower pots outside the window and decides to find the courtyard. This is when he stumbles upon the coup, already taking place.
In the ensuing confusion we find out that Yennefer had brought Ciri before the Council and that the girl had begun to prophesize. The exact course of events is still unclear.
Links to publishers Edit
- Amazon books (Gollancz)
- Amazon books (Orbit) & Orbit's confirmation of the release date.
- Amazon books (kindle)
Book covers Edit
|The Witcher series by Andrzej Sapkowski|
|Short story collections|
|Wiedźmin (obsolete) | The Last Wish | Miecz przeznaczenia (The Sword of Destiny) | Coś się kończy, coś się zaczyna (Something Ends, Something Begins)|
|Blood of Elves | Times of Contempt | Chrzest Ognia (Baptism by Fire) | Wieża Jaskółki (The Tower of the Swallow) | Pani Jeziora (The Lady of the Lake)|
|Wiedźmin (graphic novels) | The Hexer (movie & TV series) | Wiedźmin: Gra Wyobraźni (PnP RPG) | The Witcher] (video game) | The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings (video game) | The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (video game)|