Review: A Storm of Swords: Steel and Snow by George R R Martin

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

About The Book:
A Storm of Swords 1: Steel and Snow
George R R Martin
Series: A Song of Ice and Fire
Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Medieval, Adult
Age Range: 16+
Publication Date:
2nd June 2011
688 pages (paperback)
Harper Collins
Winter approaches Westeros like an angry beast. The Seven Kingdoms are divided by revolt and blood feud. In the northern wastes, a horde of hungry, savage people steeped in the dark magic of the wilderness is poised to invade the Kingdom of the North where Robb Stark wears his new-forged crown. And Robb’s defences are ranged against the South, the land of the cunning and cruel Lannisters, who have his younger sisters in their power. Throughout Westeros, the war for the Iron Throne rages more fiercely than ever, but if the Wall is breached, no king will live to claim it.


I think epic fantasy is now listed as one of my new favourite genres, purely off the back of this series and even though I probably won't be able to read any other ones without comparing them to A Song of Ice and Fire.
I feel like, honestly, if I compare this book to others on my bookshelf this deserves five stars for sure. But somehow because I already know the plot (okay, okay there are a few deviations, but pretty much!) there is a certain element I don't experience and therefore I can't give it top marks. But in all other respects I adored this so much. I was actually surprised at certain ways they changed this book when they made it into a show.
Since this book is pretty much all of season 3 I was expecting the Red Wedding in this book, but it became apparent that it wouldn't be. And it was a lot closer to the Purple Wedding than I thought it was, which I think to readers it would've been an even bigger shock factor than watchers of the show.
I particularly enjoyed the introduction of Jaime's POV in this book; he's quickly become one of my favourite characters, his dynamics with everyone are just great and I'm really hoping we get some of his POV when he's interacting with Cersei and Tyrion later on. Arya's storyline in this book was actually really good, especially compared to the show (don't hate me but I think she's only going to get interesting in season 5). But the highlight for me had to be the Queen of Thorns or Olenna Redwyne/Tyrell, although we only really saw her properly in one chapter, she was god damn amazing! I really hope we see a little more of her soon.
For me it was this book where the story really started to pick up and spread out in its many directions and depths. I think for the most part Martin has completed the majority of his world building and can really pull out all the stops in terms of his plot.

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