5.09.2017

A Bookly Tuesday | A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire #1 by George R.R. Martin | Thoughts & Update

A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire #1 by George R.R. Martin. Phew, let me wipe that imaginary sweat off my brow, and say that if this wasn't in paperback edition, I would've happily used it as a doorstop before I commenced in reading it, because for some reason I'm the kind of person/reader who is perpetually drawn to the large, heavy tomes rather than smaller ones, but when the time comes that I actually pick them up to read them, I'm left shaking my head, not knowing what the hell I was thinking to even pick them up in the first place. Ideally, it was a goal of mine to finish the first novel in this series before summer semester at uni started, and while that ended up not being the case (my reading habits took a bit of a nose-dive last month), the good news is that I've read about 75% of it!

Knowing nothing about the HBO Game of Thrones series, and not being much a fan of fantasy literature at any rate (historical fiction is what I tend to prefer, where fantasy, save for some series, is just a genre that I just don't tend to gravitate towards anymore), I just had to see for myself, in regards to this series, what the world was going essentially ape-shit insane over, and so wanted to share some of my thoughts on it so far! 😁

So yes, I knew there was a reason why I was always intimidated by gargantuan novels such as the likes of this series, LOTR, and others, and that's for the simple reason that I was always hesitant to invest and immerse myself into such beautiful, complex, immaculate and carefully crafted worlds that these critically acclaimed, bestselling authors take ages to bring to life. I just didn't think I had the time to dedicate to reading such series, where it would be doing the series much of a service if I didn't have the time to savor each page.

Well, what is there to really say that hasn't already been said ten thousand times over? Not only does this book not suck, but George R. R. Martin managed to hook me in the first ten pages of A Song of Ice and Fire #1. He doesn't rely too much on the fantastical aspects in the narratives of each medieval realm; he relies more on the familial ties and struggles to hold power, maintain loyalty, the political aspects of the different dynasties, and he manages to accomplish this while keeping the narrative and storyline at an engaging level. He leaves the fantastical myths and legends, so far, as just that. They're not readily accepted by the characters themselves. Well, except the decades-long weather patterns. Years of winter, years of summer. Sure, those are just accepted in this series.

As for character development, at 600 pages in, while I'm growing tired of some of the characters, like Jon and Arya, constantly getting the short end of character development, (with Jon, it's still bastard this, bastard that, I'm pretty sure there's more to him than that, and Arya, despite her obvious capabilities and bravery, is still considered the ever so blase role of 'nuisance baby sister' by Sansa and always gets a tsk tsk sigh, oh, my young child reaction from her father in each excerpt we read of them), the character development of the rest are mostly well crafted, and I'm sure I will see more from those two characters as the series progresses!

 I find this novel to be extremely well-paced, and each chapter splits itself into a 'meanwhile in a different realm' among different characters: Dany and the Dothraki, the Tully relatives at Riverrun, the Lannisters (who seem to be everywhere), and the North and South. I've become attached to many of the characters and their own stories and roles in their respective dynasties, and can't wait to go more in depth in a review upon finishing this book! I'm glad to finally be reading it, because hey, better late than never! 😆

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