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Overview In the aftermath of a colossal battle, the future of the Seven Kingdoms hangs in the balanceâ€”beset by newly emerging threats from every direction. In the east, Daenerys Targaryen, the last scion of House Targaryen, rules with her three dragons as queen of a city built on dust and death. But Daenerys has thousands of enemies, and many have set out to find her. As they gather, one young man
embarks upon his own quest for the queen, with an entirely different goal in mind.
Fleeing from Westeros with a price on his head, Tyrion Lannister, too, is making his way to Daenerys. But his newest allies in this quest are not the rag-tag band they seem, and at their heart lies one who could undo Daenerysâ€™s claim to Westeros forever.
Meanwhile, to the north lies the mammoth Wall of ice and stoneâ€”a structure only as strong as those guarding it. There, Jon Snow, 998th Lord Commander of the Nightâ€™s Watch, will face his greatest challenge. For he has powerful foes not only within the Watch but also beyond, in the land of the creatures of ice.
From all corners, bitter conflicts reignite, intimate betrayals are perpetrated, and a grand cast of outlaws and priests, soldiers and skinchangers, nobles and slaves, will face seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Some will fail, others will grow in the strength of darkness. But in a time of rising restlessness, the tides of destiny and politics will lead inevitably to the greatest dance of all.
Reviews Book reviews nowadays are becoming more and more varied. From airing out comments on the pacing of the author's ability to publish a book- to making social commentaries- up to how you found the damn book that took him six long years to finish. No, I ain't bitching out. But I would say six years was too long a wait.
Sure, everyone has been saying this isn't just what he is doing. After all he has a life of his own. And he also edits, comments, reads, and watches football. But I strongly believe when one makes an epic fantasy- THIS big, one has an obligation to live up to.
Not only that people are paying for the lifestyle that you now have, they are also paying for the plane tickets to all the conventions that you are invited to. Not to mention the electricity and the La-Z-Boy furniture you're comfortably sitting while watching the game.
In return to all this, people expect authors to write at the top of their line. ON time, if a date has been set. What was that they say in grade school again? Symbiosis?
Remember that co-existence among species? Of course, my relationship with George is more of the commensal type. We live dependently with each other without harming each other. Kind of like a shark to a remora. He gives and I get to live in his world even if its just a few days or a month- tops! And I pay a few dollars for him to keep it coming-(or going!)
Escaping this world to be in Westeros with Tyrion has been the best experience I've ever had (barring Quick Ben's journey to saving Burn from that dreadful sleep).
And to hell with what you think of the result for the six years wait. I would exchange everything that I have to go to Westeros. And I'd prabably drop-by the Seven Cities on my way there. George R. R. Martin is an asshole. And you know what? I knew after finishing the first book (Game of Thrones) in the Song of Fire and Ice series. I remember being 14 years old and, (grievous spoiler, in case you’ve neither read the first book nor seen the HBO series) when that fateful moment came where our righteous and heroic Lord Stark was killed, walking up to my mom aghast saying “He KILLED the hero. You can’t kill the hero.” He was true to the series most quoted saying, then: Winter is coming.
He is just as true to the saying with the latest offering. A Dance With Dragons picks up where the last one ended off, and once again R. R. Martin remains the only major fantasy writer that has produced sequels where the quality of the writing and the storytelling does not degraded with each new entry. The novel is a turn-pager. I got through the plus-1000 page hardcover book in less than 5 days, and that is despite the fact that I had other things to do. I could not help myself. The book just kept pushing me back.
I won’t spoil any moments in the story, and to be honest, that is the draw of this series. Once again, R. R. Martin paints us a world at once fantastical, where some people can change their faces and others possess animals, and starkly real; characters are just as likely to die of sickness brought on by overpopulation and old age than they are in some glorious fight or by the hand (paw) of some
monster or another. Once again we are brought into what serves just as much of a deconstruction of the fantasy epic as an epic itself, and once again the end result is one of the best things the genre has ever produced.
Now lets hope he has an easier time writing the next installment and that it does not take five or seven years to write. But even if it does, I’m sure the end result will not disappoint. DONE. i've been reading this for months, it feels like, but hit the last page today and--wow! jaw-dropping as usual. it's always amazing how with every secret exposed, GRRM manages to tack on another mystery. i don't want to spoil anything, so i will just say--
1. lots of dany, tyrion, and jon in this volume. i think, for me, jon and the night's watch were featured in the most exciting, agonizing scenes. because this book is a twin to the previous volume, most (all?) of the characters from Feast won’t appear until the next volume. i’m dying to know what littlefinger is up to. 2. more dragons! 3. crazy revelations. 4. you know that thing that the starks say? let's just say it’s here.
the worst part of finishing the book is decidedly that the promise of the next one is so incredible. hoping the hbo series can tide us all over until then! Where oh where to begin. Well, I really enjoyed the book. But then there were some parts that really drove me crazy. I guess that's Martin's specialty.
I think some of the plotlines and POVs that were added in this book were completely unnecessary. There seem to be way too many threads interweaving and while Martin does a very good job at keeping everything in line, it almost seems to take away from my enjoyment of the book as a whole. Due to this, some of the characters from previous books got very little attention. I mean, come on, Bran had like three chapters! Davos didn't get much love either. And then we got just the smallest amount of a tease with some of the other characters from the fourth book.
I did a quick, rough count of all of the existing POVs and it is up in the 20s. If he does 15 page chapters for each of the "20" POVs, we are looking at 300 pages to get through one round. That is a little ridiculous. Unfortunately, there is no easy way to fix this now that the damage has been done. This book did not seem quite as strong as others in the series. It was still a really enjoyable read, but it had the feel of the second book in some trilogies; tying story lines together, moving through some difficult plot points, basically just getting everything set up for the next book. I think it needed to be done, as there were so many story lines it was beginning to feel like things were getting out of Martin's control and coming unraveled a bit. I can see why it took him so long to finish this book, it must have been a monster to tackle.
I do think that Martin did a great job towards to end of the book when all the characters got back on the same timeline. I am hoping that the momentum of this book and the HBO series will help Martin to write the next book relatively quickly. I think the Winds of Winter is going to be a really good one. I'm really looking forward to hearing about some of the characters that did not appear in this one, and finding out what happened to a lot of the characters towards the end of this book. I just hope I don't have to wait another 5 or 6 years to find out. : It is impossible to write a review that wouldn't be bursting with spoilers for all the friends I have that are reading this book or this series. So I am going to keep this very short and simple.
It was as spectacular as I had hoped it would be. All the threads are pulling together, and the major players are slowly all coming together at just a handful of major locations. It feels like we are steaming towards the end of the game now.
As always, there are a couple of cliffhangers with the individual character arcs that leave me in a near-panic, but regarding the one that I think people will find most upsetting, I say: no. There's no way he's dead. No way. He's far far too tied in to the overall arc. But this was a watershed moment that had to happen to him.
And finally, part of what makes this series so fantastic is that it can still surprise me. Though it is well-plotted, very obviously well-planned, and even though GRRM likes to sprinkle foreshadowing through the books, there are still moments
that leave me with my jaw on the floor. Those I feel like I know where the overall story is headed for the climax, I know that between there are here, there will be more than a few moments that leave me stunned.
Please, please, let there not be another 6 years between this one and Winter. Holy crap. Man, do I love this series. A review is pretty impossible, because there is just so much to talk about, but basically anything I write will be spoilers for those who haven't started this series yet, or even those who have read the series, but just haven't gotten to this book yet.
And for those of you who haven't started this series, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR??? O.M.G. is it awesome. Are you afraid it will be another 6 years until GRRM gets the 6th book in our grubby little fingers? Are you concerned that the series will drag out and something unspeakable will happen to GRRM before he completes it?
Hogwash. You are sooooo missing out on one of the best series out there--don't be a chicken. ;)
But, a short & sweet--if vague--review.
He is tying up loose ends, characters are converging at key locations, and the story is heading toward the eventual conclusion, and I'm fairly confident I know what it is, now more than ever after reading this book. But the wonderful thing about GRRM is that even if I know what is going to eventually happen, he still manages to shock the shit out of me on a regular basis. I had to lift my jaw off the floor a couple times in this one, and I love that about this series. Keep the shocks coming, Georgie-boy.
I will say that I wasn't super crazy about the first half with the timeline issues. There were a few times where I was like, wait...I thought he/she was in Old Town/Bravos/Kings Landing/dead/wounded/married/in the dungeon at Casterly Rock/etc. And then I would remember. Oh yeah, we're still reading the stupid past.
But I will forgive my Georgie-boy, because he is the shizzit. I am very sad to think that I won't be returning the the world of westeros for another few years. Opening this book (or in my case turning on the kindle) felt like coming home after a long time away. I really dragged out finishing this because I was happy reading it.
This is no FfC. Every chapter was engrossing, every story moved the plot forward. Things started to come together - but not in the way you would expect -- In a way that smacks purely of Martin. Several surprises even though you know the parallel timeline in FfC. Several shockers as only Martin can do.
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