A Song of Ice and Fire
After ten days of intense reading, I finally finished the third instalment of the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series, “A Storm of Swords” yesterday. The last two days I went to sleep reading it, woke up, and started again. Well, almost.
What can I say, George RR Martin has me hook, line and sinker. I would so like to do nothing better than start the fourth book “A feast of crows” right away, but I know that if I were to do that, the wait for the 5th book is going to be way too long. So, I guess I will give it a few more months before I pick up the 4th instalment.
The last hour was spent checking out GRRM’s website, and I am looking forward to reading his two novellas, The hedge knight, and The Sworn Sword in the not too distant future. Those apparently are set about a century before the ASoIaF begins, and are about famous characters from Westeros’ history.
The first two books – “A Game of Thrones” and “A Clash of Kings”, good as they were, didn’t really get me so much. But after finishing this 3rd instalment, I am totally sold into the story of the seven kingdoms and their devious knights. Probably the most fascinating thing about these books is the characterization. Every single major character has evolved, and is so crisply painted, that by now, I have a picture in my mind, for every character. Think Arya Stark, think Bran, think Stannis Baratheon, Tyrion the Imp, Tywin Lannister, even relatively minor characters such as Lysa Arryn and Brienne of Tarth- here they are, in my mind’s eye. Jaime Lannister is probably the one character whose evolution has been a bit hard to take. Possibly, beacause, this is the first book, in which, there are chapters written from his point of view. I think it’s a difficult ask – getting into the head of so many different characters. GRRM does that so brilliantly, I have to think he flirts with schizophrenia.
Fantasy finally is about inventiveness, and there is a lot of that as well. Wights, The Wall, direwolves, the names, the myths – wonderful creations all. GRRM’s attempts at verse – songs, that appear more frequently in book-3 fall just a bit short though.
I suppose I am a fanboy now. Even Daenerys Targaryen, that boring dragon princess has become more interesting.
And oh, that other book, “When we were orphans”. That was a major letdown. Good English can hold you for 100 pages, but with a plot thinner than wafer thin, and abysmal dialogues, it’s a wonder that I even managed to complete it. I try to read different genres – but if what passes for Booker worthy literature are books such as these, well, I better stay away.