Monday, July 5, 2010

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

About the Book:
Title: A Game of Thrones (#1 of a Song of Ice and Fire)
Author: George R.R. Martin
Publisher/Year Published: Voyager Books, first published 1996
How I got it: I can never resist a nice and shiny cover (I bought it)

Synopsis: As warden of the north, Lord Eddard Stark counts it a curse when King Robert bestows on him the office of the Hand (chief counsillor to the king, rules when the king is not available). His honour weighs him down at court where a true man does what he will, now what he must... and a dead enemy is a thing of beauty. The old gods have no power in the south, Stark's family is split and there is treachery at court. Worse, a vengeance-mad boy has grown to maturity in exile in the Free Cities beyond the sea. Heir of the mad Dragon King deposed by Robert, he claims the Iron Throne.

"When you play a game of thrones, you win or you die."

Martin paints a world in which on one side you have Eddard Stark, man of extreme honor, and his family and on the other side the courtiers and their intrigue. The family is thrown right into the middle and noone comes out unscathed, not even the children.

King Robert has taken his throne by force, slaying the whole family of the former king except one boy (a prince) and a pregnant woman, who dies giving birth to the last princess of that line. Eddard finds Robert has changed over the years, a substantial part due to the influence of his conniving wife and her family, and doesn't recognize his friend from the past in the decisions he makes. His acception of the position of Hand of the King breaks up his family and we follow them in their different struggles, while also seeing everything through the eyes of the 'enemy' princess, who was raised outside the Seven Kingdoms.

With everyone fighting for the crown, it's no surprise people get hurt.

If you are a fan of epic fantasy, or any kind of fantasy for that matter, I'd strongly recommend this book to you. It blew me away with its amazing wordlbuilding. It had just the right pace for me. First Martin takes the time to introduce the characters to you and then he starts weaving his epic plot. It changes point of view each chapter, which made me connect with all the characters and come to love them. As the plot progresses, we see not only strong men, but also strong women who truly make a difference, definitely a winning point to me.

Martin made me laugh, he made me cry, he made me gasp in horror and astonished me at unexpected turns. In other words: this books goes on my all-time favourites list and I am definitely reading the rest of the series.
I give it 5+ bright shiny stars.

I reviewed this one for The Broke and the Bookish

1 comment:

  1. Sounds great! My friend is obsessed with these books and I want to try them. Your review did a great job of explaining the story to me.