A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book

A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book One

A NEW ORIGINAL SERIES, NOW ON HBO.

Here is the first volume in George R. R. Martin’s magnificent cycle of novels that includes A Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords. As a whole, this series comprises a genuine masterpiece of modern fantasy, bringing together the best the genre has to offer. Magic, mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fill these pages and transport us to a world unlike any we have ever experienced. Already hailed as a classic, George R. R. Martin’s stunning s

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3 Responses to “A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book”

  1. MISTER SJEM "sonofhotpie" Says:
    3,932 of 4,109 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Well plotted and paced; excellent, fresh fantasy tale, May 9, 2001
    By 
    MISTER SJEM “sonofhotpie” (CALIF BAY AREA United States) –
    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)
      

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1) (Mass Market Paperback)

    First off, I’m a heavy duty fan of GRRM. I’ve read over a 100 different fantasy authors in my time (started at 12; I’m now 32). Took about 5 years off from the genre b/c I felt it was all getting too formulaic and cliched.

    So, when I came back to fantasy at the end of 1999, I read the usual: Goodkind, Jordan, etc. and then someone told me about GRRM and man, that was the kicker!

    Here are the reasons to choose GRRM. I’ve also listed the reasons not to choose him to make it fair b/c I know their are certain personalities who won’t like this series:

    WHY TO READ GRRM

    (1) YOU ARE TIRED OF FORMULAIC FANTASY: good lad beats the dark lord against impossible odds; boy is the epitome of good; he and all his friends never die even though they go through great dangers . . . the good and noble king; the beautiful princess who falls in love with the commoner boy even though their stations are drastically different . . . you get the idea. After reading this over and over, it gets old.

    (2) YOU ARE TIRED OF ALL THE HEROES STAYING ALIVE EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE UNDER CONSTANT DANGER: this gets even worse where the author kills a main hero off but that person comes back later in the story. Or, a hero does die but magic brings him back.

    This sometimes carries to minor characters where even they may not die, but most fantasy authors like to kill them off to show that some risked the adventure and perished.

    (3) YOU ARE A MEDIEVAL HISTORY BUFF: this story was influenced by the WARS OF THE ROSES and THE HUNDRED YEARS WAR.

    (4) YOU LOVE SERIOUS INTRIGUE WITHOUT STUPID OPPONENTS: lots of layering; lots of intrigue; lots of clever players in the game of thrones. Unlike other fantasy novels, one side, usually the villain, is stupid or not too bright.

    (5) YOU ARE INTERESTED IN BIASED OPINIONS AND DIFFERENT TRUTHS: GRRM has set this up where each chapter has the title of one character and the whole chapter is through their viewpoint. Interesting tidbit is that you get their perception of events or truths. But, if you pay attention, someone else will mention a different angle of truth in the story that we rarely see in other novels. Lastly and most importantly, GRRM doesn’t try to tell us which person is right in their perception. He purposelly leaves it vague so that we are kept guessing.

    (6) LEGENDS: some of the most interesting characters are those who are long gone or dead. We never get the entire story but only bits and pieces; something that other fantasy authors could learn from to heighten suspense. Additionally, b/c the points of views are not congruent, we sometimes get different opinions.

    (7) WORDPLAY: if you’re big on metaphors and description, GRRM is your guy. Almost flawless flow.

    (8) LOTS OF CONFLICT: all types, too; not just fighting but between characters through threats and intrigue.

    (9) MULTILAYERED PLOTTING; SUB PLOTS GALORE: each character has their own separate storyline; especially as the story continues and everyone gets scattered. This is one of the reasons why each novel is between 700-900 pages.

    (10) SUPERLATIVE VARIED CHARACTERS: not the typical archetypes that we are used to in most fantasy; some are gritty; few are totally evil or good; GRRM does a great job of changing our opinions of characters as the series progress. This is especially true of Jaime in book three.

    (11) REALISTIC MEDIEVAL DIALOGUE: not to the point that we can’t understand it but well done.

    (12) HEAPS OF SYMOBLISM AND PROPHECY: if you’re big on that.

    (13) EXCELLENT MYSTERIES: very hard to figure out the culprits; GRRM must have read a lot of mystery novels.

    (14) RICHLY TEXTURED FEMALE CHARACTERS: best male author on female characters I have read; realistic on how women think, too.

    (15) LOW MAGIC WORLD: magic is low key; not over the top so heroes can’t get out of jams with it.

    REASON TO NOT READ GRRM

    (1) YOU LIKE YOUR MAIN CHARACTERS: GRRM does a good job of creating more likeable characters after a few die. But, if that isn’t your style, you shouldn’t be reading it. He kills off several, not just one, so be warned.

    (2) DO NOT CARE FOR GRITTY GRAY CHARACTERS: if you like more white and gray characters, this may unsettle you. I suggest Feist or Goodkind or Dragonlance if you want a more straight forward story with strong archetypes.

    (3) MULTIPLE POINTS OF VIEWS TURN YOU OFF: if you prefer that the POVS only go to a few characters, this might be confusing for you.

    (4) SWEARING, SEX: there’s a lot of it in this book just as there is in real life.

    (5) YOU DEMAND CLOSURE AT THE END OF EVERY BOOK: this isn’t the case for all stories in the series. Some are still going on; some have been resolved; others have been created and are moving on.

    (6) IF YOU WANT A TARGET OR SOMEONE TO BLAME: this can be done to some extent but not as much. This is b/c he doesn’t try to make anyone…

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  2. A. Ryan "Merribelle" Says:
    447 of 466 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Possibly the best of Fantasy in the last 20 years, August 25, 2003
    By 
    A. Ryan “Merribelle” (Westminster, CA USA) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1) (Mass Market Paperback)

    I spent quite a while staring at the blank screen in front of me to come up with a fitting description of A Game of Thrones by George RR Martin. Should I compare it to the classic Lord of the Rings for its impressively epic scope? Would it be best to focus on the honest, often painful humanity of the many characters – so rare in a fantasy novel – that personalizes each point of view? Perhaps I could impress other customers here with the sheer brilliance of a plot that weaves so many seemingly disparate stories together to form a believable alternate universe in which not only politics, intrigue, war, adventure and romance can coexist plausibly, but magic as well. How could I do such a work justice?

    I might as well get this part out of the way first. Obligatory Synopsis: in a fantasy continent that bears a familiarity to Middle Ages England, Winter is coming. Winter in this world means a sort of mini ice age that will last for seven years before receding. In the always-frosty Northern area, the races of nonhuman beings are gathering to advance with the snows; there are hints that there is an ancient, evil power behind their forces. At the same time in the South, political infighting for the Throne has begun. Overseas, the daughter of the dispossessed former King is maneuvering forces of her own for a bid for the throne. All this is told through the various stories of both “good guys” and not-so-good guys.

    For starters, AGOT can’t be accurately compared to any other book or series in the Fantasy genre (not without insulting it). The nearest thing of its type is the laborious Wheel of Time series by Jordan – see what I mean? And yet this first in the Song of Ice and Fire series is fathoms above that aimless, droning style. Martin has perfected what Jordan had arguably introduced; the multiple characters’ points of view telling the vast saga on an intimate, up-close scale. Never did I feel that I was being strung along, but rather lead by increments toward an incredible revelation somewhere up ahead. Martin builds the suspense masterfully in each book.

    But by far the most striking thing about the Song of Ice and Fire is the “rules” that the author breaks. Martin is not afraid to tell the tale from the point of view of some very unlikable, even immoral characters. He is bold about revealing facts from a character’s past that challenge one’s impressions and assumptions about their ethics. He does not lay all his cards on the table up front, but rather unexpectedly reveals details that later change the whole picture and twist the plot admirably. And his most unusual move: this author even allows “favorites” to die occasionally (no names here…)! These risks pay off well to serve the story as a whole, bring a sense of true humanity to the people of this world and drive the reader on to the next series installment.

    It’s just too bad that I can’t magically transplant my sense of admiration for AGOT onto this page. Hopefully, you are intrigued enough to give it a try; it would be a shame to miss what IMHO could be the best series of the decade.
    -Andrea, aka Merribelle

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  3. triquestral "triquestral" Says:
    1,399 of 1,498 people found the following review helpful
    2.0 out of 5 stars
    Kindle editing – AARRRGGGHHHH!, April 13, 2011
    By 
    triquestral “triquestral” (Copenhagen) –

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book One (Kindle Edition)

    NB: THIS REVIEW REFERS TO THE KINDLE EDITION ALONE! This is a great book, and I’ve eaten up the series and have been on tenterhooks for George RR to get his finger out and publish A Dance with Dragons for YEARS now. (And the tv series!! Be still my beating heart!!!) But I have to comment on the extremely bad editing of the Kindle edition of A Game of Thrones. It is sloppy and unprofessional. When I first got my kindle, I never experienced this, but now it seems like every book gets worse and worse. I thought Sacajawea was bad, but A Game of Thrones starts out with poor editing and gets progressively more appalling as you get further into the book. People who only read the kindle edition will think that Princess Elia comes from Dome, since that is how it is (almost) consistently spelled throughout the book. (It’s Dorne). But on the other hand, the `tom cat’ is a `torn cat’- go figure. Little things like that at first, but now, in the last third of the book, the mistakes are coming on nearly every page. Random parentheses, inappropriately capitalized words, italics that make no sense, sentences that end abruptly – that kind of thing. It would be irritating, but something I would just accept in a free edition of a book (maybe). But for a Kindle book that costs more than the paperback, I expect more. I also own a hard copy of this book, and none of these typos are in that edition. I’m not sure how the Kindle editions are made, but I expect the same kind of professional editing that you get in print books. You don’t get that here, disappointingly.

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