Wednesday, 25 July 2012
In Which I Gush Grossly About George R.R. Martin. (Game of Thrones Review)
Published: April 2011 by Random House Publishing Group (first published January 1st 1996)
Long ago, in a time forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons out of balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom's protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens.
Here an enigmatic band of warriors bear swords of no human metal; a tribe of fierce wildlings carry men off into madness; a cruel young dragon prince barters his sister to win back his throne; and a determined woman undertakes the most treacherous of journeys. Amid plots and counter-plots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.
As I warned in my last post, this is less of a review than an excuse to gush disgustingly about how much I love this man and his books!
The characters are obviously what makes a story, and these characters are fantastic. They may even have taken the place of the HP crew as my favourite fictional characters ever. Although Westeros isn't in our world, and the inhabitants live in a completely different time, the characters are still relatable, and easy to like (or in some cases, hate). Although I've pledged allegiance to House Stark, Tyrion Lannister has to be my favourite character, followed closely by Sansa Stark. I can gush for hours about why I love Tyrion, but I think anybody who has read the books/seen the show will understand why without me having to go on and on.
Sansa snook up on me. I disliked her at first but then suddenly one day I was like 'oh, I actually love this character!' My love for her grows as more bad stuff happens to her. I've seen a lot of people saying how they hate Sansa, and I seriously do not understand it. How do you hate an 11 year old girl who is basically being used and abused by everybody around her, the people who were supposed to love and care for her? To me, she is by far one of the strongest characters, and every time she uses courtesy as a shield/weapon, I cheer. I have a feeling things are just going to get worse and worse for her as the books go on, and I'm kind of dreading it, but also really (morbidly) interested in how she'll deal with it.
As for the other houses; I never really warmed to Robert Baratheon, and as for his son...Oh, Joffrey. What can I say about him? Other than 'what a little bastard', in both senses of the word. He's just...evil. I think he's written excellently and I think he's a great character, but I'd happily swing the sword that cuts his head off. His mother is a c*&t too, but I kinda like his 'uncle', the Kingslayer. Not so much like, perhaps, but he does intrigue me.
There's far too many characters to discuss them all, although I should mention Ned Stark, the main man of Book One. Oh Ned, stupid, loyal, noble Ned. You broke my heart, man. Saying that though, I'm kinda thankful for you going and giving up chapter space to Tyrion. There could never be enough of this story told through Tyrion's eyes.
One thing I was disappointed with when reading the book is my lack of interest in the Daenerys chapters. The khaleesi was one of my favourite characters/storylines in the show, but for some reason I was bored by her chapters. I'm hoping they start to interest me more as I read on, but currently whenever I see her name at the start of a chapter, I find myself sighing and seeing how many pages there are until I can read somebody else's, which is a shame!
Rating: 6/5 (They're just that good)