George RR Martin
Published By: Harper Voyager
Publication Date: January 6, 2003
Date Read: March 31, 2014
Genre: Adult - Fantasy
From Goodreads:"The things we love destroy us every time, lad. Remember that."
The first volume of A Song of Ice and Fire, the greatest fantasy epic of the modern age. GAME OF THRONES is now a major TV series from HBO, starring Sean Bean.
Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime. And the struggle for the Iron Throne has begun.
As Warden of the north, Lord Eddard Stark counts it a curse when King Robert bestows on him the office of the Hand. His honour weighs him down at court where a true man does what he will, not what he must … and a dead enemy is a thing of beauty.
The old gods have no power in the south, Stark’s family is split and there is treachery at court. Worse, the vengeance-mad heir of the deposed Dragon King has grown to maturity in exile in the Free Cities. He claims the Iron Throne.
Reading these books has honestly been quite a long time coming for me. I am absolutely obsessed with the TV adaptation of this series and I have forever been wanting to give these books a go. I tried to read A Game of Thrones quite a while back and gave up because I really couldn't get into it. George RR Martin's writing is phenomenal but extremely wordy and sometimes it can be extremely difficult to read. After trying (and failing) to get into this book more than once I decided to give the audiobook a try... and I loved it.
Game of Thrones is the book that has so many characters that it follows you can't really pinpoint a main character. It follow the story of many lives and how they all interlink somehow in the fight to be King (or Queen) of the Iron Realms.
I have to admit that if it weren't for my love of the series I probably would have given up on this book (again). This first installment in the Song of Ice and Fire series is slow... very slow. There's a hell of a lot of world building that you can't miss out as the reader needs to know about this fantasy world in which we are following. We need to know it and god knows there would be complaints if we just went right into the story being confused as to why any of this was happening. The world-building is necessary but it is long-winded and can be a tad boring at times. It's nothing we can change and honestly if you can get through this bit it is absolutely worth it.
After getting through the long-winded world building I started to fall more and more in love with this story. Honestly George RR Martin may just be some kind of genius as I don't know how he came up with this amazing world and storyline. From families fighting to the throne to the relationships between them I love everything about it. One of his strengths has got to be his characterisation. In this series you will find that there are no good or evil characters, Every character has shades of grey and you don't really know who is the good guy... and I LOVE that!
I do think having seen the TV series adaptation helped a lot while listening to this book. There are times when this book, especially in the audiobook, where you can get really confused about what character is what. There are so many characters that we have in this book and we have so many different perspectives so we can follow the story of them all that had I not seen the show I would have probably gotten confused about them. The narrator did a great job of coping with the infinite amount of characters and perspectives in this book but there are only so many different voices you can put on and sometimes I got a little confused over who this part of the book was about.
A Game of Thrones is a phenomenal start to the series and it just reminded me how incredible George RR Martin is for coming up with this amazing story. I loved it and it made me really appreciate the incredible job the showmakers have done creating a series from this book. It is no easy feat and my hat comes off for them. Bravo. I do admit that they stuck so close to this book that I did find it a little boring at times because I already knew everything that was going to happen but I still adored every second of it and I can't wait to get my hands on the second book in the series.
"When you play a game of thrones, you either win or you die."