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A Feast for Crows Written by George R.R. Martin

To Download You copy please click here It seems too good to be true. After centuries of bitter strife and fatal treachery, the seven powers dividing the land have decimated one another into an uneasy truce. Or so it appears. . . . With the death of the monstrous King Joffrey, Cersei is ruling as regent in King’s Landing. Robb Stark’s demise has broken the back of the Northern rebels, and his siblings are scattered throughout the kingdom like seeds on barren soil. Few legitimate claims to the once desperately sought Iron Throne still exist—or they are held in hands too weak or too distant to wield them effectively. The war, which raged out of control for so long, has burned itself out. But as in the aftermath of any climactic struggle, it is not long before the survivors, outlaws, renegades, and carrion eaters start to gather, picking over the bones of the dead and fighting for the spoils of the soon-to-be dead. Now in the Seven Kingdoms, as the human crows assemble over a banquet of ashes, daring new plots and dangerous new alliances are formed, while surprising faces—some familiar, others only just appearing—are seen emerging from an ominous twilight of past struggles and chaos to take up the challenges ahead. It is a time when the wise and the ambitious, the deceitful and the strong will acquire the skills, the power, and the magic to survive the stark and terrible times that lie before them. It is a time for nobles and commoners, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and sages to come together and stake their fortunes . . . and their lives. For at a feast for crows, many are the guests—but only a few are the survivors. Few books have captivated the imagination and won the devotion and praise of readers and critics everywhere as has George R. R. Martin’s monumental epic cycle of high fantasy that began with A Game of Thrones. Now, in A Feast for Crows, Martin delivers the long-awaited fourth book of his landmark series, as a kingdom torn asunder finds itself at last on the brink of peace . . . only to be launched on an even more terrifying course of destruction.

------------------------------------------------------ I was warned, as no doubt most A Song of Ice and Fire fans were as well, that A Feast For Crows was an unworthy follow up to the darling of the series thus far, A Storm of Swords. Stories of the publication issues, the extreme length of the original manuscript, and the expansion of the series as a whole, with Martin choosing not to skip over the five or so years that was originally planned after the events of A Storm of Swords, were rife. Even the very people that recommended the series to me in the first place were quick to warn me not to get too amped up for Feast, as it was an inevitable disappointment. Three years and as many re-reads later, and I still have no idea what they're talking about. While it remains true that Danaerys and Tyrion are missing from the book entirely and Jon Snow is only seen in short glimpses, their absence is more of a subjective loss than an objective one. The core strengths of the series are still in ample supply; Martin's flair for detail and character are as strong as ever, and the mysteries that are hinted at throughout the book are as engrossing as any other. As the title implies, A Feast For Crows is a story that is, at its heart, about the aftermath of great events; in a word, loss. Murders of very real crows pick through the slain of the War of Five Kings, and the center of so many of the plots and counter plots of the previous books are

either slain, indisposed, or crippled (the crippling being emotional or metaphorical as well as physical), leaving a power vacuum that the clever but short-sighted schemer Cersei Lannister is eager to fill. Make no mistake, A Feast For Crows is largely Cersei's book. Fans who find her irritating to the point of distraction will not enjoy her chapters, as they are generally filled with Cersei celebrating her intelligence after committing some folly. Subjective opinions of Cersei aside, her chapters are subtly handled; it's easy to cast her aside as a madwoman or an idiot, but Martin implies throughout it all that the core of Cersei's motivation is fear. She fears for her only son and daughter, she fears for her own safety and the safety of her house, and her throne. The pillars of her world have been pulled from under her: the rock that was Tywin Lannister lies rotting on a bier, and her brother/lover Jaime has changed, in her mind, for the worse. In her inability to cope with events, she mistakes folly for genius, and her actions ultimately seed her own doom. There is a bit of a fourth-quarter effect in some of her chapters, however. The prophecy of the valonqar seems to fit, but there was no mention of it in previous volumes. While this can plausibly be simply because Cersei never had a POV before, it still seems like it was tacked on. Without it, she still has reason to fear Tyrion, and even that simple motivation when seen through the lens of a scared mother who doesn't allow herself to grieve is enough to qualify her actions. The volunqar storyline, however, neatly parallels her character arc in Feast; it is strongly implied that in her fear, she partly fulfilled Maggy the Frog's prophecy by killing the only other person who was present when it was foretold. In that way, even if the volunqar story was thought up the weekend before publication, it still has a significant and worthy impact on the plot. The other reason people seem to mislike Feast is Brienne of Tarth. In terms of the number of chapters and page time given, Brienne comes in a close second only to Cersei. So, again, the subjective dislike of Cersei and Brienne have a very significant impact on the opinions of Feast at-large. However, Brienne's story, despite being full of what Jaime calls "bleating," contains the larger portion of action in the entire book. Jaime is forced to fight his battles with wits and words instead of steel, and aside from the Ironmen, the rest of the realm is winding down from the war and fighting grows less frequent. Mileage may vary, but for my money Brienne's quest was a fascinating look at the deplorable state of the seven kingdoms, and there is a brutal grimness to her chapters that suggests that Westeros will get worse before it gets better. Jaime is at his best in Feast, hands down. His chapters are more interesting, if less actionfocused, than his chapters in A Storm of Swords. It is in Feast where Jaime truly begins to change. Tyrion's mocking words at the end of Storm haunt him to the extent of rebuffing his sister, and as her attitude abruptly changes toward him, his own changes toward her as well. His struggle is largely personal, as he has to contend with the demons of his past while at the same time relying on them to keep him alive; the very reputation that he loathes is, right now, the only thing staying the blades of so many people who would see him dead, and House Lannister cast down. Feast also features Littlefinger at his best, divulging more of his plans than in any other book, and Sansa's growth from a dreaming woman-child to an intelligent, capable young adult is astonishingly well handled. Samwell Tarly advances the master-plot of the Prince that was Promised and gives a quick look at the developing understanding of events to come, and the focus on the Ironmen, as well as a much-needed look at Dorne rounds out A Feast for Crows as one of the more comprehensive entries in the series, despite the exclusion of Jon, Tyrion and Dany. There are some complaints that Feast is a sideshow, that is doesn't advance the main storyline in any meaningful way, but I find that a little hard to grasp. Though there could be more focus on the chapters outside of King's Landing (I don't think three Ironmen POVs are

necessary; having just Victarion or Just Aeron or just Asha would have sufficed - same goes for Dorne: are Arys' AND Areo's AND Arianne's chapters necessary?), their impact on the events to come are HUGELY important. Doran Martell's plotting against House Lannister is revealed, suggesting that Dorne will be a huge player in books to come. The Ironmen are making ever more aggressive strides toward conquering the Seven Kingdoms at large, and they also are interested in Danaerys. I'm still at a loss as to what people expected from Feast; no, it doesn't end in an epic confrontation like at the end of Clash or Storm, but the subtle advances of the master plot and the focus on the fallout of the War of Five Kings is just as important in the grand scheme. I would like to make it clear to any potential readers; the only loss in A Feast for Crows is the loss of Jon, Dany, Tyrion and Bran. It is unfortunate, but I don't feel as if it ruins the series or even bogs it down. The pace of this book is on akin to A Game of Thrones, but where in the debut volume events were ramping up, in this volume they are winding down. Coming in at over 900 pages, even with the exclusion of the Dornish and Ironmen chapters, including four of the ball-carrying POV characters would have expanded Feast beyond a doorstopper; it would have been a veritable tome. Further complaints are, I feel, more directed at fans' annoyance at the absence of A Dance With Dragons. Feast is no weaker than any other novel in the series. It is as GRRM states it is in the afterword; the full story with half the characters. Feast is a worthy entry in the series, and well worth re and re-reading, as are all the rest. The subtlety of the writing and characterization, the hints and snapshots we get of the larger events, the development of the characters and the overall tone of loss in this book are not the flashy, quippy, action-packed events of A Clash of Kings. Nor are they the epicly brutal events of A Storm of Swords. This is a book about the victors licking their wounds, the losers facing their fate, and those who have been left untouched preparing for worse. To Download You copy please click here

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