A Game of Thrones: A Song Of Ice And Fire: Book One

Mass Market Paperback | August 4, 1997

byGeorge R. R. Martin

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From a master of contemporary fantasy comes the first novel of a landmark series unlike any you’ve ever read before. With A Game of Thrones, George R. R. Martin has launched a genuine masterpiece, bringing together the best the genre has to offer. Mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fill the pages of this magnificent saga, the first volume in an epic series sure to delight fantasy fans everywhere.
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 forces are massing beyond the kingdom’s protective Wall. To the south, the king’s powers are failing—his most trusted adviser dead under mysterious circumstances and his enemies emerging from the shadows of the throne. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the frozen land they were born to. Now Lord Eddard Stark is reluctantly summoned to serve as the king’s new Hand, an appointment that threatens to sunder not only his family but the kingdom itself.

Sweeping from a harsh land of cold to a summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, A Game of Thrones tells 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; a child is lost in the twilight between life and death; and a determined woman undertakes a treacherous journey to protect all she holds dear. Amid plots and counter-plots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, allies and enemies, the fate of the Starks hangs perilously in the balance, as each side endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.

Unparalleled in scope and execution, A Game of Thrones is one of those rare reading experiences that catch you up from the opening pages, won’t let you go until the end, and leave you yearning for more.

From the Hardcover edition.

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From Our Editors

in this absorbing tale, a long-ago event has thrown the seasons into disarray, and the royal house of Starks has a motto befitting the kingdom's volatile conditions: "Winter is coming". Prophetically, it becomes a metaphor for the horrors that could consign the kingdom to the darkest moment in its history.

From the Publisher

NOW THE ACCLAIMED HBO SERIES GAME OF THRONESFrom a master of contemporary fantasy comes the first novel of a landmark series unlike any you’ve ever read before. With A Game of Thrones, George R. R. Martin has launched a genuine masterpiece, bringing together the best the genre has to offer. Mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fil...

From the Jacket

"A Game of Thrones is a contemporary masterpiece of fantasy. The cold is returning to Winterfell, where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime. A time of conflict has arisen in the Stark family, as they are pulled from the safety of their home into a whirlpool of tragedy, betrayal, assassination, plots and counterplots. Each d...

George R. R. Martin is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of many novels, including the acclaimed series A Song of Ice and Fire—A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, A Feast for Crows, and A Dance with Dragons—as well as Tuf Voyaging, Fevre Dream, The Armageddon Rag, Dying of the Light, Windhaven (with Lisa Tutt...

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Format:Mass Market PaperbackDimensions:864 pages, 6.9 × 4.2 × 1.42 inPublished:August 4, 1997Publisher:Random House Publishing Group

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0553573403

ISBN - 13:9780553573404

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Customer Reviews of A Game of Thrones: A Song Of Ice And Fire: Book One


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Epic Epic, exciting, unpredictable, rich, vast, and filled with unique, unforgettable characters. A must-read for every fantasy fan (though most of them have likely already read it).
Date published: 2017-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Start This was such a fantastic start to the series. So addicting and so much easier to read than I ever expected it to be.
Date published: 2017-01-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Astounding Inexorable feelings brought on by this novel, action packed Amazing writing. You can really tell which characters point of vies you are reading of without even checking it out on the beginning
Date published: 2017-01-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible My favourite fantasy series since "The Lord of the Rings"
Date published: 2017-01-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from You'll be hooked After watching the first season and falling in love with the show I knew I had to read the books. The books are sooo much better than the show, there a few different things that take place which makes it interesting to read and I imagined places and characters differently than on the show (in a good way). By far my favourite fantasy series.
Date published: 2017-01-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Writer This is the first fantasy series I have read. I recently just began watching the show as well and can say I am completely addicted to both! Amazing.
Date published: 2017-01-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it A great fantasy series - I watched the first season of the show first which helped me picture some of the characters.
Date published: 2017-01-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from a different approach I've always loved fantasy books, and this one rose to popularity because of the author's different approach in the genre. he proved that fantasy novels are not just always about elves, dwarves etc that most of the others followed after tolkien
Date published: 2016-12-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Adored I adored this book. The plot is so detailed, the character development is amazing. Although this book spends a lot of time establishing roles, at no point does it ever become boring. There is action in every chapter and characters you will fall in love with. Highly reccommend.
Date published: 2016-12-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Game of Thrones- Simply Amazing Went beyond my expectations while I was reading this novel. A bit slow at first, but it picks up near the middle all the way through to the end. It gave great character depth, and provided different perspectives, which I greatly enjoyed.
Date published: 2016-12-30
Rated 1 out of 5 by from meh good writer knows what he's doing, writes a bad book in spite of himself.
Date published: 2016-12-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good It was really good but Im not sure that I see what all the hype is about.
Date published: 2016-12-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from After watching the show, I wanted to read the series I don't read fantasy these days, so I wasn't sure if I'd be into GoT as a book, despite having devoured the series (finally catching up over the course of several weeks). I was most interested in reading how the books mirrored, strayed from and added context to the TV series. I really enjoyed the read (I don't know the last time I read 700+ pages of anything). I'm not sure if I would have been as into the book if I wasn't already dedicated to the HBO version of the characters, though. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-12-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved it One of my favorite books of all time
Date published: 2016-12-27
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good but annoying The different point of view each chapter made this book difficult to read for me. I would get heavily invested in whoever I was reading...and then it switched...which was fine...but then the character wouldn't have another point of view for another 200 pages...which bothered me. The overall story was interesting but definitely takes some time to get into.
Date published: 2016-12-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic Long read with a ton of characters but it's definitely worth it. I don't usually read fantasy novels but this was a great introduction into the genre for me.
Date published: 2016-12-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Takes a While to Get Into the Rhythm I didn't enjoy this as much as I wanted to at the beginning, but once I got used to Martin's writing style, I was addicted!
Date published: 2016-12-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing!!! This book and series are amazing! A must read; even if it is a long read.
Date published: 2016-12-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved this bought it as a christmas gift and the bf loved it
Date published: 2016-12-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Fantastic, realistic, portrayal of the fantasy genre. Filled with memorable characters and wonderful twists, this truly is a book of high literary caliber
Date published: 2016-12-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Book Great characters, great writing, plenty of mystery and intrigue. Could not put it down.
Date published: 2016-12-12
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Okay Decent book, but not my genre. I can definitely see how people love and devour this series though. A masterpiece of the genre.
Date published: 2016-12-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! Great plot and interesting characters
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Classic and great Loved the series!!
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Such a great book! Amazing character development, exciting, thrilling, suspenseful!
Date published: 2016-12-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Fantasy Series I do not enjoy a lot of fantasy but I enjoyed this book. I read it for the first time nearly 20 years ago and I have re-read it a few times.
Date published: 2016-12-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Hooked after one chapter GRRM is the new Tolkien for a reason - his storytelling and character development hook you from the very beginning. A must for any fantasy fan!
Date published: 2016-12-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from great high fantasy read A Game of Thrones is a fantasy book which has a very complex story. It is about knights, kings, family as well as betrayals and drama. It is told from the point of view of many characters, which can become confusing at times, especially at the beginning since you are not familiar with the characters yet. But once you get used to it, it becomes very interesting because that way you can see what every character is thinking. Just make sure to read the name of the character at the beginning of the chapter when you start another or else you will get mixed up. The descriptions were really well written even though they could be long at times and I sometimes surprised myself jumping a couple of paragraphs several times, but the writing of the author was still really enjoyable. Also, just like for the descriptions, since it is a massive book I felt like some parts were dragging on a little too long, but then just a couple of pages later, the action was starting again and it was all forgotten. My favorite characters are either Arya or Daenerys. Both girls are such independent and strong women, I just couldn’t help but admire them. For the character I hate the most, let’s say that I cannot wait for that little sh*t of Joffrey to be dead already… In conclusion, I recommend this book to everyone who enjoys a good fantasy book. I am for sure going to continue on with the series even though I am probably going to read a couple of other books in between each one. I am also watching the TV series at the same time. I have two episodes left of the first season and so far it is as good as the book. It helps to put a face on the characters since there are so many…
Date published: 2016-12-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Took 700 Pages, But It Was Worth It I had extremely high expectations going into this series and I was a little let down with the majority of the book. I still enjoyed it a lot, but not nearly as much as I had anticipated. It's not a standard fantasy; there was much less magic and much more political intrigue than I am used to. Thankfully, in the last 100 pages, it picked up for me and I LOVED it.
Date published: 2016-12-04
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not as good as everyone makes it It's definitely a well told story, but it isn't the pinnacle of fantasy like so many people make it out to be
Date published: 2016-12-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Brillliant Fantastic start to a truly incredible series.
Date published: 2016-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Absolutely loved this series!
Date published: 2016-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thumbs up This is where it all starts. A Song of Ice and Fire is such a detailed fantasy world that's full of intrigue, violence and politics. Believe the hype surrounding this and dive in.
Date published: 2016-11-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from MASTERPIECE Couldn't stop reading... better than the show!
Date published: 2016-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great! This book was great! I couldnt put it down! Great characters!
Date published: 2016-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Epic Only one way to describe this novel (and series): Epic. The world-building is extensive, and the characters complex. I wish GRRM had aged up a few of the characters (something he's said himself I believe). Buckle up, this book is a long haul!
Date published: 2016-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The best book ever!! This is the best fantasy series since Tolkien's Lord of the Rings and Rowling's Harry Potter!!
Date published: 2016-11-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Takes a while to get into It's a difficult read at first because you're learning about this huge,complex world but the further along you go the more fascinating it becomes. Once you finish you'll rush into the next book in the series.
Date published: 2016-11-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Game of Thrones Very long and felt like it was dragging, but it was still a good story.
Date published: 2016-11-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So good! Took a little while to get into it...but then at a certain point I couldn't put it down!!!
Date published: 2016-11-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Insane!!! This book serie is my all time favorite (and ive read a lot of books). it is so incredible. Everytime i think about the books i get really excited for the next one to come out. They are so good!
Date published: 2016-11-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from epic Even though I knew what was happening since I watch the show, I was still shock and surprise. A great read for all fans.
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! This book is gripping from page one! Loved the writing style and Martin's approach to the fantasy genre! The whole book series is terrific.
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book I simply had to read this book and series as I love the show. It was great to be reminded of things that I had forgotten since watching the first season. I would recommend this book to anyone.
Date published: 2016-11-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I got on the band wagon late... But I still enjoyed the book
Date published: 2016-11-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I got on the band wagon late... I did still like it though.
Date published: 2016-11-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Challenging Read I started the books after watching the first season, they are quite hard to follow so they do take longer to read than normal but are extremely detailed. Great read for the advanced reader and fantasy/medieval buff
Date published: 2016-11-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Brilliant Fantastic start to the series, can't believe I took so long to get around to reading it!
Date published: 2016-11-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A great novel for newcomers to the fantasy genre I read this book a couple of years before the HBO series started, and it was a great experience. The world building is rich and intriguing, the characters are fleshed out and likeable, and the plot is non-stop and full of mystery. Books > TV Show.
Date published: 2016-11-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Meh I decided to read the book before diving into the show. I found it took a lot to really get into the story and by the end of this book I still felt like I really didn't know any characters but I'll continue on and hope it improves.
Date published: 2016-11-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from *Applause* I cannot believe I waited this long to read this masterpiece. I honestly don't know how George R.R. Martin managed to pull all of this off. Everything was so well crafted and thought of that everything just MADE SENSE. The world building was fantastic and the character developments were astounding. George R.R. Martin built an entire world and missed not a single thing. I found that nothing was redundant. Everything that he laid out in this book was necessary. Usually, I find that lengthy books like this one beats around the bush. This book was different. George R.R. Martin made it so that every little detail mattered. Just truly impressive. This deserves nothing less than a five star rating.
Date published: 2016-11-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Glad I Picked This Up I just finished this book and thoroughly enjoyed it. Cant wait to read the next one. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-11-08
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Hard to get into but still a great read! I initially bought this book after the show was out to see what all the fuss was all about! While I found the plots interesting and well written I found the multiple perspectives very difficult to keep up with. I couldn't get into the book and ended up watching the show - after watching the first season I started the book again and absolutely loved it! Very well written but maybe a little too detailed!
Date published: 2016-11-08
Rated 2 out of 5 by from I don't see what the big deal is I picked up this book to see what the fuss was all about and I didn't particularly enjoy it. While some of the story lines are interesting and the characters are lovely, the many, many, many characters and story lines make for a confusing read. I found myself having to constantly refer back to the family trees and to previous chapters to re-orient myself which made the book very tedious to read.
Date published: 2016-11-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Epic! An epic series. A must read if you are watching the show!
Date published: 2016-11-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved it! Started reading the series recently and love how the show followed this book almost perfectly, but there's so much more character development when reading the books! (of course)
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I watched a couple seasons of the show before starting the first book so I knew what to expect but was still blown away. The attention to detail and depth into which the characters and environments are explored is mind-blowing!
Date published: 2016-11-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from One of the Best Fantasy Series Since Tolkien This book is a must read. In the field of fantasy, many many books feel (or even copy) Tolkien's formula. Not so here. Truly a breath of fresh air in the fantasy genre.
Date published: 2016-11-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from EPIC!!!! Hate using the word but definitely an epic read. Have to admit it was a little hard to get into as there were so many characters right off the bat and different POV's to get a handle on. However once I did, it was a non stop ride. Could not put it down. The best Fantasy series I have read since the Lord of the Rings!
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great start Enjoyed this very much. Great start to a series. Bit gory for my tastes but still very well written and enjoyable.
Date published: 2015-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from In love with this book Iam in love with this book and feel that I am safe in saying I will love the whole series. I admit that I am quite surpised to how much I love this book. I don't usually read fantasy novels, or have I really been interested in reading them. I usually read mystery, suspense novels, along with the occasional happy go lucky novel. After a while, I was getting bored of these genres. I took a chance on games of thrones and wow. Iam so glad I did. I can not believe how good, no, amazing this book is. The characters and surounderings are greatly detailed and its beautifully written. The book has everything to friendship, love, revenge, betrayal, lust,. I love how the boom also has wolves as pets and also dragons. There are a lot of characters in the book and at first I found it a bit to keep track of who is who and what family they belong too. at about 100 pages, I found I knew the characters now with ease and just in case you forget, Martin has all the characters categorized under their families and rank I. The back of the boom, with easy and fast look up. This book is so good that even if you can't get to it for a few days, you know that you can pick it up and get right back into it, the storyline and then again won't want to put it down. Boom number 2, yes please.
Date published: 2015-10-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Read This is an awesome book everyone should get or at least watch if you dont have time on your hands but yes get it yay
Date published: 2015-09-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read I loved this book. At first I thought it would be too long and I would get tired of it. I couldn't have been more wrong. It's a page turner, for sure.
Date published: 2015-09-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fun but confusing A great tale wonderfull language and interesting characters. It could do wih more clarifiation on who is who eary on as i had to stop part way through and restart du to confusian
Date published: 2015-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! Absolutely loved the book and very glad I picked it up. I was a little hesitant to read it but I was not disappointed! Cannot wait to read the second book.
Date published: 2015-07-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Defining moment This book and the ones that follow are the finest fiction books written in this or any century. The detph of the saga and the story told are the stuff of legend. The multiple viewpoints, intrigue and battles that rage throughout are epic in scope, yet there is a human quality. The reader will be drawn in to this world and not wish for the story to end.
Date published: 2015-04-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read Great series
Date published: 2015-01-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic A fairly intense read but very mch worth it. The characters are smart funny an a little twisted.
Date published: 2014-12-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing The plot, the characters, the dialog. It's all excellent. He leaves a little to be desired in terms of his writing style, but after a chapter or two, I stopped noticing. I was so swept up in the story. I'm usually a slow reader, but I ploughed through this in less than a week.
Date published: 2014-11-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I loved it I really enjoyed this book.
Date published: 2014-11-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very entertaining. There were parts of the book that made it very difficult to put down. I definite ly do not recommend reading if you have work to do!
Date published: 2014-10-31
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Wonderful Fantastic beginning to a series. It is shocking and newer style than what I am accustomed too from a fantasy novel. An epic story to last forever is clearly incoming.
Date published: 2014-08-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderful Fantastic beginning to a series. It is shocking and newer style than what I am accustomed too from a fantasy novel. An epic story to last forever is clearly incoming.
Date published: 2014-08-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Game Of Thrones Cant stop turning the pages....
Date published: 2014-07-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Riveting Why did I wait so long to read this?!?
Date published: 2014-05-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excelent book! My wife has read all the books and we have been watching the series on TV. Am definitely not disappointed and look forward to the next book!
Date published: 2014-05-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thrones Well once I got into the groove it was awesome, very happy I started to read them
Date published: 2014-05-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from GoT Brilliant! Exquisite detail in character development.
Date published: 2014-04-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Game of Thrones If you like fantasy, you will love this series, Fire and Ice by George R. R. Martin! The books can be somewhat confusing and are extremely detailed, so you can't speed read them! He draws you quickly into this wondrous world he's written. I've watched the first three seasons of the HBO Series, " Game of Thrones " but I have always found reading the books a much more satisfying experience. The only complaint I have is the author is slow getting out book 6 & 7!! Be prepared, if you read this series, he really leaves you hanging at the conclusion of book 5!!! I want to call him and tell him to hurry up already :-)
Date published: 2014-04-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This is an intricate and detailed world brought to life masterfully. A fantasy world that feels real and raw. Highly enjoyable.
Date published: 2014-04-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I very much enjoyed this book. The characters drew me right in and I found myself finding things to love and hate about each character whether "good" or "bad". I will definitely continue reading this series.
Date published: 2014-02-20
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Game of thrones More slower parts than I'd like, but nesasarry to understand the deep plot lines.
Date published: 2014-02-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great start to what is sure to be a fantastic series! I wanted to read the books that the TV series was based on, since I loved the show so much. I was not disappointed. Very descriptive, tangled web of power and relationships. You really get some nice back story to the history of the families and the settings for the series. I bought the first book in July 2013 and I've just finished number three!
Date published: 2014-01-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect book Finished this book 2 years ago before the HBO show started. I devoured it in a day and a half and was astounded by the world and the writing. What a fantastic start to what should be a fantastic series.
Date published: 2013-08-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Best! How do I even begin to review A Game of Thrones? Wow, what a great read. Everything about this novel was a work of art, from the interesting plot, to the complex characters, to the setting and time period. Having each character's perspective as chapters really makes the reader understand, not just context, but emotions. Myself personally, I was able to delve deep into the character's mind and really have an idea of how they were feeling at the present moment in the novel. If this story was told from the perspective of just one individual, it would be incomplete, and not nearly as interesting. Also, when you are able to either love or hate a character, you know Martin has done a great job in his storytelling method. Living in a modern era, we will never know what it was like to live in an age where kings and queens ruled, so to be able to read a novel where this is in fact the case, really is a fresh read in terms of interesting ideas and different plot lines. The castles, the lands, the people, the wars; the time period makes the novel all the better. I knew what I was getting into, as I already watch the 'Game of Thrones' television series, but I knew that I still had to read this novel. I had heard so many great reviews, and I knew I would be missing out on a great story. I wasn't wrong. George R.R. Martin has created a world where kings fight to rule, where dragons are mythical creatures, where blood is shed for power. When one plays the game of thrones, there can only be one victor.
Date published: 2013-07-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from recommended read A long time ago seven kingdoms existed and they were brought together under King Robert through battle. Now there are those who wish more power and plot to get that and those who are forced to leave to save their lives and plot to return gloriously. There are also those content with who they are and their king refuses to let them be and wishes their services. This is a land where summers last for decades but winter is approaching and the supernatural forces beyond the kingdom are amassing. This is also a land of magic and dragons. With all the wonderful themes of life and death, war, deception, betrayal, cowardice and bravery how could this book have not lived up to its expectations. I thoroughly enjoyed the read. I had a bit of trouble for the first 100 pages getting the characters straight but Martin does a great job of giving each character their own chapter to help keep them in place. A recommended read!!
Date published: 2013-01-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Must Read This book and it's series has been out for decades and has always been a word of mouth among a certain following. I am not a fantasy reader, but this is by far the most engrossing and exciting story I've ever read and the world is fortunate to have been made aware of it. This series is an absolute masterpiece of epic fiction. From the complexity of the plot line to the clarity and depth of the characters to the exciting cliffhangers, it is impossible to resist.
Date published: 2012-12-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Better Than I Expected! Someone recommended this book to me and I wasn't actually interested to read it but I said I would give it a shot. Well, I couldn't put it down. It was a fantastic read and I felt like I had to read the 2nd book right after I finished the first one. It's a long book (by my standards) but it was definitely a 5 star story. Highly recommend it
Date published: 2012-08-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A Written Masterpeice A Game of Thrones was truly a complex piece of work. Portions of the novel were gripping and fast paced, but it also had its slow moments. Alternating the chapters viewpoint throughout the novel gave the novel more depth and insight to all the characters tangled relations. The conclusions of the final chapters forgave the slower chapters because I am looking forward to getting "A Clash of Kings" in my hands.
Date published: 2012-08-16
Rated 3 out of 5 by from An Epic Tale More reviews at: www.eyesonthepages.blogspot.ca Martin's A Game of Thrones is more than just a story, it's an EPIC TALE. I can't really say too much about the book without spoiling one plot line or another, that's how intensely tangled the plots were within the story. I really liked how you got all of the different characters points of views and that they were all actually different. Each character was always their own person, and every single one of them seemed so real and alive! My two favorite characters are easily Arya and Brandon. Tyrion, Ed and John were also amazing characters that I couldn't help to get attached to. It's also great how Martin isn't afraid to kill off some of the main characters. I find when that happens, it always makes for an awesome and intense story. The reason why I only gave it a three out of five is because while it was good, it was just so LONG. I took me just over a week to read this book and it kind of felt more like a chore to me than anything, unfortunately. Also, I never really understood why they didn't want the Lannisters to rule. I mean, they seem evil... But, did they say they were going to enslave all of the citizens or something? I wasn't too sure about that part... All in all, A Game of Thrones is an epic tale with an extremely intense and bad ass ending that I absolutely loved. I can't wait to get started on the next one, A Clash of Kings!
Date published: 2012-07-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing! Absolutely incredible book, I couldn't put it down! Can't wait to get my hands on the next one! For my full review please go to http://tubchairtimes.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/game-of-thrones-george-rr-martin.html
Date published: 2012-05-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really Really Good Novel ! One day I went to a book store, looking for a book and I found this book. I started to read it at home and could not stop reading it. I found the idea really good and title of the chapters really original, the names of the principal characters of the story. The book is like a Lord of the Rings, it is in a world that the author invented and it has the name of Westeros and it is built of 7 kingdoms ruled by one king. There is some strange creatures in that world, but they are considered as legends to the people. The time in this book is medival with castels and sword fighting like in Lord of the Rings, but the difference is that the story is more psychological. The characters are really endearing and the story good. I really recommend everybody to read that novel.
Date published: 2012-04-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Keep the books coming! Not into these kinds of books at all, but when I seen some previews for the HBO show thought I'd give the book a try. As soon as I was finished the first chapter I went out and bought the other 4 books following it. Really love the descriptive writing, makes you really fall in love with the characters or despise them.
Date published: 2012-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Re-defining the genre I can't say enough good things about this book! I loved the HBO series and sincerely debated diving into the books ~ which at 1000+ pages each, and 7 books predicted in the series (5 of them already written) ~ appeared a daunting task to say the least. I feared boredom, I was concerned that I've never been one for the "fantasy" genre, my excuses were endless. I am now obsessed with this story and committed to reading every last page, and no doubt wanting more still! I highly recommend this book/series to readers of all genres. The characters are compelling, the storyline gripping ... and in the end I'm still not sure who I'm rooting for, but I am enjoying the journey. A series opener not to be missed!
Date published: 2012-01-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing.. I watched the show first and loved I was more so excited to find out about the books and by the first page I was amazed by the 10th page I was delightfully blown away by 20th page i was Obsessed I couldn't put it down I drowned in the characters,and I enjoyed every last bit of it like a good meal.It was so cleverly written that every word,character and landscape came alive and made my mind its home.The book junkie in me raged strong n proud n I had to complete the series to at least try to appease the insatiable thirst I had for the book.
Date published: 2011-11-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Show does it Justice! Kudos to HBO for doing this series justice! I picked up the book after falling in love with the show and I was so happy to see that they were very similar with few differences. It was very readable, I don't usually enjoy the genre but it was a light read. Each chapter is a different characters perspective too. So you keep bouncing and you never get bored.
Date published: 2011-11-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic & Original First and foremost, this is the first part of a fantasy series. But, not the type of fantasy like Lord of the Rings, Wheel of Time, or what have you. This is more akin to 'The Once and Future King'. In terms of feel, it's like the tv series 'The Tudors' (it focuses on noblemen, and highborn etc.. and the drama & politics) mixed with the grittiness and realistic approach as Ridley Scott's Gladiator film. In short, quite a good (original) read, which will have you wanting the next book once you're finished this installment.
Date published: 2011-09-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Game of Thrones Amazing book. I couldn't put it down, and when I was done I couldn't wait to start reading the next one. It is a very grounded series that isn't as crazy as some of the other books in the fantasy genre.
Date published: 2011-08-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing but at times long-winded. George R.R. Martin's A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire is an epic tale of war, politics and romance all rolled into one. Although there are several sub-stories going on (which I assume are carried onto the later novels) the main ones focus on the mysterious murder of the King's right-hand man and the effects of the murder on the Kingdom as a whole, and girl trying to reclaim what was originally hers. Each chapter focuses on a different main character and the struggles they themselves have to go through. Although I like the idea of seeing through the eyes of various different characters I found myself impatient at times, wanting to read a chapter focused on a character I preferred more. Also, some chapters seemed to go a little too slow and boring, especially if the previous chapter was interesting and exciting. The book itself, and the other ones in the series run for a few hundred pages (around 700 or so) and there are a lot of characters and locations to remember so I suggest that people who want to enjoy just a light read to stay away from it. Overall A Game of Thrones is an amazing novel and one that every Medieval-Fantasy geek should check out.
Date published: 2011-08-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing This book is phenomenal, can not wait to read the rest of this series!
Date published: 2011-07-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great way to prepare for upcoming HBO series HBO has been long promoting the highly anticipated Game of Thrones series, and, if you read the novel, it is easy to see why. "A Game of Thrones", the first in Martin's "A Song of Fire & Ice" series is an epic fantasy tale that twists and turns like the dragons of old. Set in Westeros, "Thrones" tells the tale of several of the leading houses of the 7 Kingdoms, and their individual bids to gain power or, simply to hold on to what they already have. The book made me think of Ken Follett's "Pillars of the Earth" with magic and myth thrown in. Then, just to add fuel to the fire which is the main storyline of the book, you have the foreboding Haunted Forest in the North that seems to be more active by the day, and yet hardly noticed by the warring houses in the south. I won't go into great detail, but needless to say that while the "end" of this novel left you with more questions than answers, it was to be expected given that there are already three other books that continue the story and plans for two more in the near future.
Date published: 2011-04-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Human Drama of Operatic Proportions Words cannot express how much I loved this book. it has been on my 'to read' list for far too long, I finally got at it and could not put it down. The universe is very intricate and balanced - the character rooster is massive, but they are all so great. I love books with a lot of characters, but it's hard to give the characters the space and backstory they deserve - but man this one does it, and does it well. The people are very real, in the sense that even the good guys make mistakes, and even the bad guys are not always the bad guys in every situation. I am so very glad to started this series and can't wait for the second. I urge everyone I know to pick this one up - even people who say they don't like fantasy - this isn't fantasy, it's a human drama of operatic proportions.
Date published: 2011-02-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Knights, Castles Medieval Goodness! I loved this book and I have high hopes for the rest of the series (even though I know about the controversy regarding the fifth book). The world feels real and so do the people in it. The "high fantasy" element is quite toned down in this book, yes the world does have dragons and magic but its not over done and taken for granted. One look at G.R.R. Martin's website (www.grrmartin.com) makes me appreciated the way the man thinks. A avid medieval history enthusiast, collector of 54mm knights & scale models of castles. He crafts the world he creates in his own recroom for us to read about. I know I've been light on the plot, characters, events because I don't want to spoil anything. With the upcoming HBO series, I would whole heartily recommend anyone who wants to watch the show to read the book first. Sean Bean will be a great Eddard Stark and I'm sure HBO will acquit themselves well (as they are known to do). The TV series will be great but I can't help but think if I watched the show first it would take some of the magic away from the book when and if I decided to read it. It started to happen just having seen the trailer. In my minds eye, I had a younger Brian Cox as Eddard, but after the trailer Sean Bean took over. I had someone else maybe a younger Christian Bale,as seen in Henry V w/Kenneth Branagh. The imagery we project to the characters makes them more alive rather than something we equate to an actor on a tv series. The pacing can be trying for some, it wasn't for me. I loved the political intrique, the personal quarrels both internal and external and as each chapter is a different point of view of a different character the book never lagged for me. I kept wondering how "Bran" was doing after I hadn't read about him for a few chapters, so the characters started to take on the importance of real people. So if the trailer for the HBO series peaked your curiosity at all, go out and read this book!
Date published: 2011-01-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very entertaining but at times very sad This book was a little hard to get into at first but once you memorized all the characters (and there are so many) and see where the plot is going it gets really dramatic and exciting. This was an excellent first book for this series. The characters bring a lot of emotions out of me and at times I just want to strangle a few of them. This is one of those books that will keep you on the edge because anything can happen. You don’t know who will be killed or will betray or who will make the next stupid move. My only fear is getting attached to certain characters because I know there’s a huge chance he/she will die but that’s what keeps me reading. Great fantasy novel.
Date published: 2010-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Winter is coming I was looking for a fantasy series to immerse myself into and the Fiction boys at my store rave about "A Song of Ice and Fire", so I decided to give this first book a try. True to their word, it captured my attention and opened up my imagination to this Medieval-like fantastical world, filled with different lands, cultures and house factions, fables and creatures. Truth be told, I did not get what I initially was looking for. There is little of the showy fantasy-magic business whatsoever, but this minimalist approach worked. What I loved most of the novel was the treatment of the multitude of characters - each chapter focusing on one character in a third-person narrative, all this while filling in for others as the story is driven forward. Onward read with the series, but I beg of you Martin, hurry with the fifth one. I, born of the Dragon horoscope year, do not want to be kept waiting!
Date published: 2009-12-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Decent story but lonq-winded. After many recommendations I decided to tackle this behemoth last spring. I'm no stranger to Mr. Martin's works so I had really high hopes for this novel. The book starts off at a good clip with lots of cool events occurring straight off. Halfway through I found that it really slowed down to a crawl. In a book this size, you really have to move it along or it takes forever to get through it. As it was, this took me about seven months to read, on and off. In that same time, I read about a dozen other books. There was just nothing pressing in the plot for me to return back to it. Eventually I was sick of seeing it on my bedstand and I bulldozed my way through the rest of it. Don't get me wrong - there are great characters here and the setting is very original, but it's really dull in the middle third. The end picks up substantially and now I am anxious to read the next instalment. Just maybe not tomorrow...
Date published: 2009-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Song of Ice and Fire Begins Wow. What a great beginning to a fantasy series. It took a little while to keep the characters and their relationships straight at the start but luckily the book contains an Appendix showing the family trees of the Great Houses. Once I got that straightend out in my mind I fully enjoyed this epic fantasy. The characters are well written, the story was engaging and I can't wait to continue reading this series. Easily in my top 5 books read this year and possibly #1. UPDATE: ReReading this work 3 years later and after watching the excellent HBO show has made this work even more enjoyable than it was the first time. With the characters firmly established in my mind before beginning, any confusion originally experienced was no longer present. A truly pleasurable read.
Date published: 2008-10-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Must Have Series George RR Martin is an awesome writer, as proven here in the first installment of his Song of Ice and Fire series. This series has everything. Love, lust, hate, murder, mystery, and dragons. Written as a third person meta text, A Game of Thrones introduces you to some wonderfully developed, in depth characters who interact beautifully with each other and the world that Martin has created. Martin also does not treat his main characters the way that other authors do. Other authors more often than not have their main characters as the focal point of the storyline throughout the text or the series. Martin dose not do this. He drops in and out for chapters or books at a time through the following installments of Clash of Kings, Storm of Swords, and Feast for Crows, if he doesn't kill them off entirely to bring in new people. For those not used to reading meta texts, this book will take some getting used to, but I promise you that if you read the book in its entirety, you will become a fan of this wonderful series and join the rest of the Song of Ice and Fire fan community in slavering for the upcoming latest installment, A Dance With Dragons. Enjoy.
Date published: 2008-08-07
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Dissapointing I don’t understand all the glowing reviews for this book, the series, or how it spun off to be a board and card game. It starts off with a very short bit of swordplay; weakly written. I've never read a sword fight this poor, and it really should have warned me away right then and there. When we finally get to the "battles", the description is so bland, and the combat so vague and uninteresting, I was tempted to skip over it. It would have been better that I did, actually. What seems to be the big claim for this book was its "political intrigue". This was lost on me, as the big twist was given away in the first few chapters. Worse, everyone knows what everyone else is doing regardless of time spans, or locations. When questioned about anything, people will simply fess up right away. No need to worry about witty dialogue here! Sorry, but one character with some whit is not enough to save this book. On the subject of characters, they were all very hollow. The good guys did the honourable thing all the time; the bad guys lied all the time. Not sure if you should trust a character? Bam! He lies a lot. Thinking you may have an ally? Bam! He starts talking about honour. Anything and everything the characters can do to be one dimensional, they do. Have a tough choice for a character coming up? Bam! Here's someone to explain the situation in full, in case you missed it, followed by the most obvious course of action, which will invariably be followed -- May or not be due to it being the only choice that will keep the character alive. Lame. The combat was weak; at large scale even weaker. The Intrigue was lacking, and obvious. "Hints" were not hints, but giant flashing neon signs telling you where to look. The characters were uninteresting, obvious, and made few to no choices on their own. If you are looking to get into and easier to read fantasy book, and don’t want to start off with a book that will challenge you at all, this one will do. If you are looking for some quality fantasy work, that will work your brain a bit, Malazan book of the fallen is where you want to go. May even expand your vocabulary too, that one. This... not so much.
Date published: 2008-05-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Song of Ice & Fire - A Game of Thrones This is a great Series. It was the first Fantasy Series I read and haven't been able to put them down since. It has lots of characters. The Fantasy element is not extreme but kind of realistic . The element of politics is huge and they is no lack of action, sex, love & violence
Date published: 2008-03-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A riveting novel! Wow! This book is great! I am not yet done reading it, I have 200 pages left, but I can tell that the ending will make me want to read more about Eddard, Catelyn and all the rest. That's exactly why I went out and bought the rest of the series. This book is definitely a page turner. Whenever I had a time, I read and read and read, until my eyes began to water. I might only be in grade 7 and haven't read as many books as most people, this is definately one of my favorite books, although nothing can beat the Vampire Diaries series. When my eyes hit the first word, I just couldn't stop reading, this book is fantastic from the beginning and hopefully to the end( remember I haven't yet finished this book). I recommend this book to anyone who loves fantasy. So go out and buy it, find a nice quiet spot to read and you won't be able to put it down.
Date published: 2008-02-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Spellbinding - gripping writing A saga of epic proportions, which was un-put-downable! I am not a usual fantasy novel reader, but this book was fantastic. The writing style is excellent and never gets bogged down. If you like medieval fiction, this book may appeal to you, as it is set in a time of knights, castles, tournaments and battles, with a touch of the supernatural thrown in for good measure. And, the best part of it, is that there are sequels!
Date published: 2008-02-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it!! Once you start reading it's difficult to put down. I went through this fairly long book in record breaking time and immediately wanted more!
Date published: 2008-02-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Didn't want to put it down! Deeply human characters, twisted and complex sub-plots, exotic lands and a hint of magic keep you reading this tale of kings and queens, knights and battles, politics and betrayal... I couldn't put it down, and dove right into the sequels one after the other! Be prepared for a cliffhanger of a series though, as nothing is really resolved at the end of each book - it seems it's one long, ongoing tale, and the author seems notorious for taking his time writing his sequels (though who can blame him - each book approaches 1000 pages, and his writing is of the highest quality with beautiful prose and witty dialogue). The only trouble I have with this book (and the series in general) is that the sheer number of characters can be a bit overwhelming and make the sub-plots tricky to follow... If you savour losing yourself in lengthy tales of old-world intrigue laced with characters that come to life, don't miss this series!
Date published: 2008-01-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent start to a series... I was recommended this book by a friend of the genre when I was a "newbie". I fell in love with all of the characters (well, maybe not Cersei and Littlefinger). The story centers around 5 siblings at a time when the Seven Kingdoms are in danger from beings beyond the wall. They all seem to be destined for great things, and have to travel very different paths full of pitfalls to get there. It's the start to an epic story, filled with intrigues, murders and a touch of magic. A great read!
Date published: 2007-10-14
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Piece of crap.... Recommended by my wife, and she later explained it's "low-fantasy"; a genre which contains a minimum of magic, and tonnes of mock-history. To like this book you really have to fall in love with the characters; which sadly I could not. It starts out lovely. The first scene is a breathtaking winter sword fight, but the next 400 pages are boring political conflicts, and borderline incoherent descriptions of landscapes and hundreds of places with no significance. I began to recognize patterns in the books; all the food seems to involve "honey." I found Martin's use of language initially very interesting, but he repeats things way too often, and there is so much unnecessary gibberish in his book. He gets away from an entertaining story, in my opinion, in favour of creating a gigantic epic. I ask: what's the purpose of creating an epic story at the cost of entertainment?
Date published: 2007-09-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Strong start to an excellent series! This series is one of the best pieces of high fantasy sets I've ever read! From the beginning you are introduced to a menagerie of interesting, diverse, and lifelike characters in a remarkably well-crafted world, in the middle of political unrest and power struggles. As the characters mature and the plot becomes more complex, George R R Martin continues to hold together the characters and events with a unity and clarity that surpassed even my greatest expectations. I highly reccommend this book to any type of reader!
Date published: 2006-11-29
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Pulls me right out.... The first book of a trilogy that I dared not continue. Sure, certain aspects of Martin's novel were strong, building an aura of suspense and excitement. Yet, the novel just falls short. The novel is marred by too many indistinguishable characters and a story that just stops flowing. I saw no point to continue...
Date published: 2006-07-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing An amazing story with intricate and deep character arcs, A Game of Thrones is a perfect launch pad for an amazing new series. The plot is a fascinating look at the politics and treachery of a divided and splintered world.
Date published: 2006-07-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic This novel shook up the world of high fantasy upon its debut. The multi-character perspective (like Wheel of Time) provides great insight into the various characters. Speaking of characters there is a wonderful blend of bad and good, likeable and loathed. The world, in which it is set, while not quite comparable to that of the Wheel of Time, is rich and full of a wonderfully complex history. The action is fast-paced, and it prepares the reader well for the frantic speed at which things develop in the next books.
Date published: 2006-07-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best first book in a series! From the beginning of starting George R.R. Martin's series of "A Song of Ice and Fire" I cannot put down the books withought reading a quarter of each book. This book in particular is very good in introducing the characters and plots that will be followed throught the continuing other 6 novels. It has reaffirmed my love of fantasy literature, and even though it it quite large, I am sure anybody who loves big battle scenes, intrigue and hidden twists and turns will thoroughly enjoy this book. and the series.
Date published: 2006-07-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Striking Epic action. Erratic plot. Brutal violence. Sex. Capture your attention? George R.R. Martin’s acclaimed masterpiece series: A Song of Ice And Fire, begins here. A Game Of Thrones will introduce you to a magnificent highly-detailed medieval world in which the deftly written story follows the views of numerous characters. The almost-omniscient view lets you empathize with characters both protagonistic and antagonistic, which gives the reader more sense of vision. This enables you to judge the characters (all of which are pleasingly ‘round-characters’) firsthand for yourself. As the chapters rotate from character to character, I find I cannot put down the book as I wish to reach a certain character again, but find myself immersed in the next character’s chapter. This repeats until, before you know it, the 800 pages have flown by. Not to worry however, as GRRM has released four books in this series so far, and has promised another three or so. This brings the total number of books in the series up to seven. This may sound like a lot, but trust me, you’ll get that hollow feeling when it’s all over just like it felt when Tolkien’s series ‘The Lord of the Rings’ ended. A Game Of Thrones is a solid and satisfying novel, full of intense action and battles with all the gory details included. The novel is quite believable, even it being fantasy and including the presence of a few fictional gratuities such as the horrifying, frozen undead wights and the hint of dragons. Still with the realistic details of human nature including sex, violence, and evil immoralities, the novel can be compared to the non-fiction world. Beware of becoming too attached to the characters as GRRM is not afraid to kill them. The pattern the prologues share throughout the series is an example of this, in which we get to know an interesting character only to see him die. There is also a satisfying amount of humour present throughout the book, at some parts which you will laugh out loud. The intertwining plot consisting of ample treachery will have you routing for certain characters, lamenting over some and wanting to see others meet horrible deaths. This novel is greatly acclaimed, one of the only ones being able to boast of having a boardgame and a collectible card game based on it without being made into a movie. If a movie is made (and made well) it would no doubt reap at the box offices as this novel is one I will have on my self for years to come. Harry Potter was good (albeit simple and childish), Lord of the Rings was better (albeit written somewhat confusingly) but A Game Of Thrones takes the cake in my opinion. I strongly recommend this book and if you are even slightly interested from what I’ve said, you won’t be disappointed. A Game Of Thrones is worthy of your money.
Date published: 2006-06-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible! What an outstanding book! I have read fantasy books from about 25 different authors and this is could be the best series of all! The characters are so real that you feel as though you know them. Mr.Martin is a spectacular author who creates worlds and people who will not allow you to put the books down. If you are thinking of purchasing this book,then I would say you might as well buy the whole series because you'll buy them after you finish the 1st novel anyways. A must read!!!!
Date published: 2006-06-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Pulls You Right In Martin's A Game of Thrones is the first in the seris 'A Song of Ice and Fire'. The first entry does its job well in pulling you into the plot and each characters story. The characters are well brought to life, and Martin makes you hate some and love others. One character in peticular stands out for me, and has since (after reading the next tewo books) become one of my favourite characters ever. One thing I love about this book, is how everyone seems so human. In a lot of books, the heores are so perfect, and the villians so evil In life, this is not always so. As it is in Martin's writings. I would easily recommend this book to anyone lookign for a long, rewarding fantasy experience. Go buy it.
Date published: 2006-06-08
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Spectacularly average After reading such spectacular fantasy books as Jordan's "wheel of time" and Guy Kay's "fionavar tapestry", i was dissapointed. It seems Martin dances around any action to be found in this novel, leaving it bland, the plot slow. Definitely NOT worth buying; go to the library or borrow it from a friend that was foolishly awe-struck by this book enough to buy it. Besides, it seems Jordan is going to finish the WOT before Martin finishes this tale, and we all know how slow Jordan is...
Date published: 2006-06-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best ever! Best fantasy series ever. Intriguing plot, amazing characters and super-convoluted character network. Masterpiece!
Date published: 2006-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A must read Fantasy This is an absolute must read for all fantasy lovers. And if you're interested in high fantasy for the first time this is the best! Martin is not afraid to have lots of characters (over 25 main ones by the end of the latest book A Feast for Crows). He's also not afraid to make you love people you hate, hate people you love and kill off those you love or hate as well. It's intricate and non-stop action. This is by far the best fantasy book I have ever read! (and that's saying something!)
Date published: 2006-05-30
Rated 1 out of 5 by from ..what's all the fuss about... Why so many positive reviews for this well written but ultimately dull knights and castles book? A host of weak minded, petulent, bickering characters inhabit a rather weakly envisioned world.There's no meat on the bone for this dog of a fantasy epic.
Date published: 2005-11-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from GREAT book! I was recommended this series while I was reading the ultra-long series' of Robert Jordan and Terry Goodkind. Amidst the grandiose works of these two authors, I seriously doubted that I could find another series I would enjoy quite as much... and I was VERY pleasantly surprised. George R. R. Martin is an excellent author, providing an excellent plot filled with intense suspense. His writing style allows the reader to empathize with his characters, and there is no shortage of character growth throughout the story, adding yet another wonderful dimension to the novel. One thing to be said of Martin, he is not afraid to kill off his characters. I could barely put the book down, and thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it. I recommend this book to everyone!
Date published: 2005-09-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Starved For More When a friend bought me this book I thought she was mad. This is not my type of novel in any way. But I was quickly embraced by the fast paced story, the clever narration, and the depth of the characters. I could not read the series fast enough!!! I felt starved for more and more. Even when not reading the story I found myself throughout the day thinking of the characters and the developing storyline. You will not be dissappointed by this amazing tale of knights, intrigue, betrayal, love, loyalty, honor and magic.
Date published: 2005-04-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An absolute must read! This is one of the best fantasy series ever. Characters are fully 3 dimensional, the plot has political complexity worthy of Robert Jordan and there is enough action to keep you glued to the pages until ridiculous hours of the night. I chose this series at random and I am extremely glad that I did. I can't wait for Book 4!
Date published: 2004-06-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I Love This Book! Best fantasy series ever. That's all that needs to be said. I'm slowly going insane waiting for the fourth book to come out.
Date published: 2004-03-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A mix of everything This book is excellent....it has adventure, suspense, romance, desire, desperation, lies, politics, the supernatural/mystic and the very human.
Date published: 2003-08-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from King VS. King This book is all about power and family. It is based loosely on the Wars of the Roses that occured in England. If you're a fan of the epic fantasy genre, then you know that Tolkien is considered to be the greatest of all authors in this area. I would put Martin, at a close second. Our Grandfather & Father's generation experienced LOTR with Tolkien, our generation, has Martin with the series A Song of Ice & Fire This first book in the series sets up different families all vying for power and struggling to reclaim a kingdom over each other. But be forewarned this isn't for the faint of heart, bloody-gruesome deaths, incestous love affairs, back-stabbing plotting family members, children playing war games of their own. While this book does have supernatural, wizards, warlocks, & magic involved, it's not the basis of this book, more just a backdrop to guid the story along. This book has everything. If you want an intellectual and stimulating read of high fiction in epic fantasy, this book is for you.
Date published: 2003-08-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Top of the class! At first I was sceptical of this book's ability to capture me. I had first been exposed to fantasy through Robert Jordan but found myself disappointed with his latest works...and then a friend of mine recommended this book... WOW!!! It totally blew me away! I read the entire thing in two days and then rushed out and bought books two and three and devoured them as well. This is by far some of the best work that I have ever read, and I have read a lot! It kept me at the edge of my seat practically from the first page, with so many surprises and plot twists that I was stunned. This book, this whole series, is a real masterpiece...READ IT! NOW! :D
Date published: 2003-03-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Read it. The best fantasy series on the shelf. Do not hesitate, buy the entire series and lock your door, unplug the phone and turn off the PS2...You will be hooked for days. Also recommended: Kate Elliots', Crown King's Dragon.
Date published: 2002-07-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A VERY good read! This is a super book Great characters, great writing and a super concept. George R Martin got it right with this book!
Date published: 2002-05-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This series is so good I bought #3 in hardcover... I bought book one because I thought it was funny that another Fantasy author had the initials R.R. I was expecting a light read to tide me over until Heart of Winter came out (Jordan). G.R.R. Martin blows Jordan out of the water. As per all the other reviews, characters die, and you end up pulling for the bad guys. This is the best series I have ever read, bar none. Both Heart of Winter and Storm of Swords came out in hardcover the same week. I bought both, and read Storm first. I will read the series again when book four comes out, and will by it the day I find it. In one word, Awesome.
Date published: 2001-04-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow!!!!! My girlfriend bought me this book because she thought the cover was cool. Once I started this book I could barely put it down. It is just an amazing story, where anything can happen. Definitely worth the read.
Date published: 2001-03-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The king is dead. Long live the king! Long ago, the world was chaos... Then came the Father. He wrote of hobits and elves, of balrogs and dark lords, of sorcery and magic rings. He wrote a great story, and gave it onto mankind, and there was much rejoicing. He gave mankind the laws. The good shall be Good, the evil shall be Evil. The laws of the Father ruled. As the years passed, there was much writing in mankind, and it abided by the laws of the Father. And one day came the Son. He wrote of kings and lords, of treachery and honor, of blood and history, of the coming winter. He wrote a great story, and gave it onto mankind, and there was much rejoicing, and the laws of the Father were shattered... You should be warned, this series isn't for the faint of heart. It's hard, it's gritty, and it's the best out there. Characters you expect to live will die, and characters you expect to die will live. Sometimes the good guys win, sometimes the bad guys win, but first you'll have to guess who they are. No black and white characters here, it's all shades of grey. The plot is amazing, twisted and full of surprises. Who is working for whom, who can you trust? In the game of throne, who are the pieces, and who are the players? You'll be surprised at every turn. This book and those that follow are a must read for any fantasy lover. It's going to change the way you view the whole genre.
Date published: 2001-01-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from George has wrecked it all!! Thanks to Mr. Martin, I will no longer look at Fantasy novels the same. Main characters that die, unpredictable plots and character depth without falt. Obviously, no one told him the rules. I don't even think I will be able to read too many of the fantasy author's works I used to read. Way to go Mr. Martin, your a breath of fresh air.
Date published: 2001-01-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from a worthy read After a series of disappointments of late including the latest from Goodkind and Jordan, this is a book to heartily endorse. The characters are well drawn and diverse. None are without flaws and some are inexplicable. The pacing is crisp with enough info flowing to keep you on your toes without overwhelming with unprofitable repetition and detail (as does the latest Jordan). Martin's details strike true with the cultural backgrounds and histories seemingly well grounded in medieval culture. A bit grim in tone but a better read for it. I gave it a four because I haven't read many books worthy of five. If there were a 4.5, this book would earn it. Enjoy
Date published: 2001-01-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent This trilogy is one of the best novels I have ever read. Martins ability to weave a tale that keeps the reader wanting more is remarkable. His eye for detail is in league with Tolkien and the plot moves at the right pace. Some dislike how the chapters are titled according to which character they are about, I found this refreshing and helped heightened the storyline. Often I didn't want the storyline of the character being read to end but by the end of the next chapter I didn't want that character to end either. This unique mix created anticipation and excitement as I flew the pages to keep pace with the story. Be warned though that the series is definately intended for adults and the language and sexual content is not for younger readers. The term fantasy is also misleading, it is more about medeival political intrigue and has nothing for those in search of elves, dwarves and a host of creatures. That said I still highly recommend this series, I can't say enough good things about it, it is indeed the best series that I have EVER read!!!!
Date published: 2001-01-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Don't pass this over This book was skillfully written and magically portrayed with Martin's magical abilities to tell a fantastic story. It's intriguing with many twists, turns and lots of the unexpected. I don't usually like Sci-fi/ Fantasy novels because they are often TOO fantasy-ish. Martin uses just the right amount of fantasy and reality in this book. The ending left me begging for what happens next in the sequal
Date published: 2000-12-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Such wonderful characters While the overall plotline was something that you might find in any of a hundred other fantasy novels, the characters were compelling enough to keep me reading. Martin's unique way of switching POV's through chapters was fantastic... and I have to say that the reader in me hates it when they kill off a character that I love, Martin is adept at picking out a completely un-developable character -- much as I may like him -- and getting rid of him in an exciting and shocking manner. Very definetly worth a read for the character development alone, plotline be darned.
Date published: 2000-12-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A gripping plot runs through this brilliant epic! Until I read the novel, I disliked the fantasy genre because of the unpronouncable names and bizzare magics. A realist, I loved this book, and George Martin is my favourite author...The story is exquisite, the characters are believable, and the plot is gripping. Building an entire world is difficult, but making it exciting is genius...Trust me, A Clash of Kings is of brilliant calibre too...
Date published: 2000-12-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I couldn't put it down!!! This book was like some kind of addictive nicotine-containing piece of art: I just couldn't put it down. The intricate storyline just made me tell my friends about it and they just wouldn't listen hopefully you will. Read this book: It was and is and always will be absolutely awesome.
Date published: 2000-11-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Gane of Thrones This book was beyond excellent! I can't wait to read the next two books in the series. Martin draws you in from the very beginning and keeps you guessing with every turn of the page. I loved everything about it from the many intricate plots to each and every character he introduces us to. I highly, highly recommend this book to all fantasy lovers and even to the ones who are remotely curious about fantasy novels!
Date published: 2000-11-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A great soap opera fantasy! Women, check this out! I really enjoyed this book despite the lack of magic and dragons. Also the magic that is alluded to (which I hope appears in the next book) is different from conventional wizardy. Although I too found knowing which character each chapter was about annoying when I wanted to get back to a more favourable character. The character development is phenomenal and plot twists completely unpredictable, which is refreshing from a genre that generally has become one story rewritten over and over. I'd even recommend this book to a female or anyone who didn't generally like fantasy novels due to the fact A Game of Thrones has so much more to offer its readers!
Date published: 2000-09-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awsom!!! READ THIS BOOK! One of the best fantasy novels of all time. 100% enjoyment! If you are not a Goerge R. Martin fan, you will be after you read this one!!!
Date published: 2000-09-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Game of Thrones If your the kind of person who really likes to lose yourself in a good fantasy novel then this book is for you. The characters are great and the storyline even better. The only drawback to the whole book was that I read it too fast and now I have to wait for the next book of the series to be published.
Date published: 2000-09-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Book! Now and then one finds a jewel in the rough... And what a jewel it is! An intricate plot, fully fleshed out characters that seem to breathe the same air you do, a refreshing twist on a genre I thought was becoming cluttered by low talent makes this book a must read! Far more satisfying than Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series.
Date published: 2000-08-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good but... I liked it but I HATE how the author starts the chapters by telling you who's talking becuase when i don't like the character and I don't want to read about them I tend to want to skip the chapter; but that's just a personal opinion! The book was great other than that!
Date published: 2000-07-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Different, but the same... As the title suggests this book is different in some aspects, but still seemed a little reminicent of of a Raymond E. Fiest book (Minus the magic and dwarves... ect.). Like a Fiest novel the book concentrated heavily on political events rather than magic and, well fantasy. Not to say it was bad, far from it, it was actually very good, it just doesn't seem to be much of a fantasy, more of a 'Realistic Fantasy'. But then again my favorite author is Fiest, because of all the real world aspects. I do recommed this book, but not if you are looking magic, dragons(which will show up in later installments), an other epic things. I loved it and im spending the 30-40 dollars to get the sequel now.
Date published: 2000-06-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from really good book this book is one of the best i've read in a long time to say the least.i highly recomed it
Date published: 2000-04-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Game of Thrones This one of the best Fantasy novels I have read in YEARS. The character Devolpment is great. The plot is Excellent. A real page turner I Could'nt put it down for days!
Date published: 2000-03-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredible This book was the most amazing read I've had in a long time. It carries you through with suspense and action. After reading a ton of books which simply repeat used plots, this book, and Mickey Zucker Reichert's "The Renshai Chronicles" were refreshingly new. Someday, I hope to inspire readers like they inspired me.
Date published: 2000-03-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This Book is a "Keeper" Read this book when you have some days off because you simply cannot put it down. It won "Best Fantasy of the Year" for a reason....it was!!! I read an interview with George R.R. Martin that he plans to write six books to the series, I can hardly wait. It draws you in and won't let you go.
Date published: 2000-02-27

Extra Content

Read from the Book

The morning had dawned clear and cold, with a crispness that hinted at the end of summer.  They set forth at daybreak to see a man beheaded, twenty in all, and Bran rode among them, nervous with excitement.  This was the first time he had been deemed old enough to go with his lord father and his brothers to see the king's justice done.  It was the ninth year of summer, and the seventh of Bran's life.The man had been taken outside a small holdfast in the hills.  Robb thought he was a wildling, his sword sworn to Mance Rayder, the King-beyond-the-Wall.  It made Bran's skin prickle to think of it.  He remembered the hearth tales Old Nan told them.  The wildlings were cruel men, she said, slavers and slayers and thieves.  They consorted with giants and ghouls, stole girl children in the dead of night, and drank blood from polished horns.  And their women lay with the Others in the Long Night to sire terrible half-human children.But the man they found bound hand and foot to the holdfast wall awaiting the king's justice was old and scrawny, not much taller than Robb.  He had lost both ears and a finger to frostbite, and he dressed all in black, the same as a brother of the Night's Watch, except that his furs were ragged and greasy.The breath of man and horse mingled, steaming, in the cold morning air as his lord father had the man cut down from the wall and dragged before them.  Robb and Jon sat tall and still on their horses, with Bran between them on his pony, trying to seem older than seven, trying to pretend that he'd seen all this before.  A faint wind blew through the holdfast gate.  Over their heads flapped the banner of the Starks of Winterfell: a grey direwolf racing across an ice-white field.Bran's father sat solemnly on his horse, long brown hair stirring in the wind.  His closely trimmed beard was shot with white, making him look older than his thirty-five years.  He had a grim cast to his grey eyes this day, and he seemed not at all the man who would sit before the fire in the evening and talk softly of the age of heroes and the children of the forest.  He had taken off Father's face, Bran thought, and donned the face of Lord Stark of Winterfell.There were questions asked and answers given there in the chill of morning, but afterward Bran could not recall much of what had been said.  Finally his lord father gave a command, and two of his guardsmen dragged the ragged man to the ironwood stump in the center of the square.  They forced his head down onto the hard black wood.  Lord Eddard Stark dismounted and his ward Theon Greyjoy brought forth the sword.  "Ice," that sword was called.  It was as wide across as a man's hand, and taller even than Robb.  The blade was Valyrian steel, spell-forged and dark as smoke.  Nothing held an edge like Valyrian steel.His father peeled off his gloves and handed them to Jory Cassel, the captain of his household guard.  He took hold of Ice with both hands and said, "In the name of Robert of the House Baratheon, the First of his Name, King of the Andals and the Rhoynar and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms and Protector of the Realm, by the word of Eddard of the House Stark, Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North, I do sentence you to die."  He lifted the great sword high above his head.Bran's bastard brother Jon Snow moved closer.  "Keep the pony well in hand," he whispered.  "And don't look away.  Father will know if you do."Bran kept his pony well in hand, and did not look away.His father took off the man's head with a single sure stroke.  Blood sprayed out across the snow, as red as summerwine.  One of the horses reared and had to be restrained to keep from bolting.  Bran could not take his eyes off the blood.  The snows around the stump drank it eagerly, reddening as he watched.The head bounced off a thick root and rolled.  It came up near Greyjoy's feet.  Theon was a lean, dark youth of nineteen who found everything amusing.  He laughed, put his boot on the head,and kicked it away."Ass," Jon muttered, low enough so Greyjoy did not hear.  He put a hand on Bran's shoulder, and Bran looked over at his bastard brother.  "You did well," Jon told him solemnly.  Jon was fourteen, an old hand at justice.It seemed colder on the long ride back to Winterfell, though the wind had died by then and the sun was higher in the sky.  Bran rode with his brothers, well ahead of the main party, his pony struggling hard to keep up with their horses."The deserter died bravely," Robb said.  He was big and broad and growing every day, with his mother's coloring, the fair skin, red-brown hair, and blue eyes of the Tullys of Riverrun.  "He had courage, at the least.""No," Jon Snow said quietly.  "It was not courage.  This one was dead of fear.  You could see it in his eyes, Stark."  Jon's eyes were a grey so dark they seemed almost black, but there was little they did not see.  He was of an age with Robb, but they did not look alike.  Jon was slender where Robb was muscular, dark where Robb was fair, graceful and quick where his half brother was strong and fast.Robb was not impressed.  "The Others take his eyes," he swore.  "He died well.  Race you to the bridge?""Done," Jon said, kicking his horse forward.  Robb cursed and followed, and they galloped off down the trail, Robb laughing and hooting, Jon silent and intent.  The hooves of their horses kicked up showers of snow as they went.Bran did not try to follow.  His pony could not keep up.  He had seen the ragged man's eyes, and he was thinking of them now.  After a while, the sound of Robb's laughter receded, and the woods grew silent again. That was when Jon reappeared on the crest of the hill before them.  He waved and shouted down at them.  "Father, Bran, come quickly, see what Robb has found!"  Then he was gone again.Jory rode up beside them.  "Trouble, my lord?""Beyond a doubt," his lord father said.  "Come, let us see what mischief my sons have rooted out now."  He sent his horse into a trot.  Jory and Bran and the rest came after.They found Robb on the riverbank north of the bridge, with Jon still mounted beside him.  The late summer snows had been heavy this moonturn.  Robb stood knee-deep in white, his hood pulled back so the sun shone in his hair.  He was cradling something in his arm, while the boys talked in hushed, excited voices.The riders picked their way carefully through the drifts, groping for solid footing on the hidden, uneven ground.  Jory Cassel and Theon Greyjoy were the first to reach the boys.  Greyjoy was laughing and joking as he rode.  Bran heard the breath go out of him.  "Gods!" he exclaimed, struggling to keep control of his horse as he reached for his sword.Jory's sword was already out.  "Robb, get away from it!" he called as his horse reared under him.Robb grinned and looked up from the bundle in his arms.  "She can't hurt you," he said.  "She's dead, Jory."Bran was afire with curiosity by then.  He would have spurred the pony faster, but his father made them dismount beside the bridge and approach on foot.  Bran jumped off and ran.By then Jon, Jory, and Theon Greyjoy had all dismounted as well.  "What in the seven hells is it?" Greyjoy was saying."A wolf," Robb told him."A freak," Greyjoy said.  "Look at the size of it."Bran's heart was thumping in his chest as he pushed through a waist-high drift to his brothers' side.Half-buried in blood stained snow, a huge dark shape slumped in death.  Ice had formed in its shaggy grey fur, and the faint smell of corruption clung to it like a woman's perfume.  Bran glimpsed blind eyes crawling with maggots, a wide mouth full of yellowed teeth.  But it was the size of it that made him gasp.  It was bigger than his pony, twice the size of the largest hound in his father's kennel."It's no freak," Jon said calmly.  "That's a direwolf.  They grow larger than the other kind."Theon Greyjoy said, "There's not been a direwolf sighted south of the Wall in two hundred years.""I see one now," Jon replied.Bran tore his eyes away from the monster.  That was when he noticed the bundle in Robb's arms.  He gave a cry of delight and moved closer.  The pup was a tiny ball of grey-black fur, its eyes still closed.  It nuzzled blindly against Robb's chest as he cradled it, searching for milk among his leathers, making a sad little whimpery sound.  Bran reached out hesitantly.  "Go on,"Robb told him.  "You can touch him."Bran gave the pup a quick nervous stroke, then turned as Jon said, "Here you go."  His half brother put a second pup into his arms.  "There are five of them."  Bran sat down in the snow and hugged the wolf pup to his face.  Its fur was soft and warm against his cheek. "Direwolves loose in the realm, after so many years," muttered Hullen, the master of horse.  "I like it not.""It is a sign," Jory said.Father frowned.  "This is only a dead animal, Jory," he said.  Yet he seemed troubled.  Snow crunched under his boots as he moved around the body.  "Do we know what killed her?""There's something in the throat," Robb told him, proud to have found the answer before his father even asked.  "There, just under the jaw."His father knelt and groped under the beast's head with his hand.  He gave a yank and held it up for all to see.  A foot of shattered antler, tines snapped off, all wet with blood.A sudden silence descended over the party.  The men looked at the antler uneasily, and no one dared to speak.  Even Bran could sense their fear, though he did not understand.His father tossed the antler to the side and cleansed his hands in the snow.  "I'm surprised she lived long enough to whelp," he said.  His voice broke the spell."Maybe she didn't," Jory said.  "I've heard tales .  .  .  maybe the bitch was already dead when the pups came.""Born with the dead," another man put in.  "Worse luck.""No matter," said Hullen.  "They be dead soon enough too."Bran gave a wordless cry of dismay."The sooner the better," Theon Greyjoy agreed.  He drew his sword.  "Give the beast here, Bran."The little thing squirmed against him, as if it heard and understood.  "No!" Bran cried out fiercely.  "It's mine." "It be a mercy to kill them," Hullen said.Bran looked to his lord father for rescue, but got only a frown, a furrowed brow.  "Hullen speaks truly, son.  Better a swift death than a hard one from cold and starvation.""No!"  He could feel tears welling in his eyes, and he looked away.  He did not want to cry in front of his father. "Lord Stark," Jon said.  It was strange to hear him call Father that, so formal.  Bran looked at him with desperate hope.  "There are five pups," he told Father.  "Three male, two female.""What of it, Jon?""You have five true born children," Jon said.  "Three sons, two daughters.  The direwolf is the sigil of your House.  Your children were meant to have these pups, my lord."Bran saw his father's face change, saw the other men exchange glances.  He loved Jon with all his heart at that moment.  Even at seven, Bran understood what his brother had done.  The count had come right only because Jon had omitted himself.  He had included the girls, included even Rickon, the baby, but not the bastard who bore the surname Snow, the name that custom decreed be given to all those in the north unlucky enough to be born with no name of their own.Their father understood as well.  "You want no pup for yourself, Jon?" he asked softly."The direwolf graces the banners of House Stark," Jon pointed out.  "I am no Stark, Father."Their lord father regarded Jon thoughtfully.  Robb rushed into the silence he left.  "I will nurse him myself, Father," he promised.  "I will soak a towel with warm milk, and give him suck from that.""Me too!" Bran echoed.The lord weighed his sons long and carefully with his eyes.  "Easy to say, and harder to do.  I will not have you wasting the servants' time with this.  If you want these pups, you will feed them yourselves.  Is that understood?"Bran nodded eagerly.  The pup squirmed in his grasp, lickedat his face with a warm tongue. It was not until they were mounted and on their way that Bran allowed himself to taste the sweet air of victory.  By then, his pup was snuggled inside his leathers, warm against him, safe for the long ride home.  Bran was wondering what to name him.Halfway across the bridge, Jon pulled up suddenly."What is it, Jon?" their lord father asked."Can't you hear it?"Bran could hear the wind in the trees, the clatter of their hooves on the ironwood planks, the whimpering of his hungry pup, but Jon was listening to something else."There," Jon said.  He swung his horse around and galloped back across the bridge.  They watched him dismount where the direwolf lay dead in the snow, watched him kneel.  A moment later he was riding back to them, smiling."He must have crawled away from the others," Jon said."Or been driven away," their father said, looking at the sixth pup.  His fur was white, where the rest of the litter was grey.  His eyes were as red as the blood of the ragged man who had died that morning.  Bran thought it curious that this pup alone would have opened his eyes while the others were still blind."An albino," Theon Greyjoy said with wry amusement.  "This one will die even faster than the others."Jon Snow gave his father's ward a long, chilling look.  "I think not, Greyjoy," he said.  "This one belongs to me."

From Our Editors

in this absorbing tale, a long-ago event has thrown the seasons into disarray, and the royal house of Starks has a motto befitting the kingdom's volatile conditions: "Winter is coming". Prophetically, it becomes a metaphor for the horrors that could consign the kingdom to the darkest moment in its history.

Editorial Reviews

"The major fantasy of the decade . . . compulsively readable."—Denver Post"We have been invited to a grand feast and pageant: George R.R. Martin has unveiled for us an intensely realized, romantic but realistic world."—Chicago Sun-Times"A Best Book of 1996: Martin makes a triumphant return to high fantasy . . . [with] superbly developed characters, accomplished prose, and sheer bloodymindedness."—Publishers Weekly, starred review"A splendid saga . . . . Inventive and intricately plotted."—BookPage "Magic . . . George R.R.Martin's first fantasy epic [is set] well above the norms of the genre."—Locus"Such a splendid tale and such a fantasticorical! I read my eyes out and couldn't stop 'til I finished and it was dawn."—Anne McCaffrey