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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

My Game of Thrones Review 11/27/2012

The Game Of Thrones--the first book in series (of 5?) had to be an awesome project for the author.  The story evolves beautifully from the viewpoint of ten families (kingdoms).

It hit me as probably just about exactly how the history of England progressed.  The author made up his own country and in my copy created a map, without which I don’t think I could have followed the story.  It was daunting enough having nearly 50 people to keep up with.  Told from the viewpoints of so many individuals including their titles and their geneaology(s) the plot twists in and out of vision.  For instance, each character has a first name, a last name, a title and a reference to their relationship to each other individual (son, cousin, father, bastard of, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, etc.) which are all used interchangeably in the text, magnifying the confusion.  Exactly no names were pronounceable.  Being proper nouns, even the dictionary didn’t help with that.  I did not follow it well, but was able at least to find the plot and realize it was more about the separate families than each person.  After I got through that obstacle, the story was full of deception and intrigue.

On a personal basis, 17 pages of eyeballs being gouged out, horse entrails falling on warriors trapped under their thrashing bodies, routine beheadings, outright evil mean acts and war strategy isn’t my thing. This was juxtaposed to human feelings of concern, heartbreak, worry, love, loyalty.  Odd.   I found it kind of interesting when the rare instances of fantasy popped in for a visit to the plot.  In fact, I spent way too much time trying to figure out what the character had actually seen from his/her venue.

As I mentioned in an earlier facebook post, the author spent a huge amount of time researching words and found the most obscure usages for ordinary terms, then stuck with them religiously.  Unless you are a Rhodes Scholar, I doubt anybody will be reading this story without some kind of word reference source handy.

Interestingly, since I was using an Iphone as my dictionary, most of the words I looked up came from wikipedia’s reference to the movie version of the very book I was reading. Go figure.  The visuals painted by the author do what a book is supposed to do and sets you into the story nearly as a participant.  I don’t think I would sit through the movie knowing as I do that Hollywood would make the dreadful pictorials even more absurdly graphic.  I’m quite sure the history is realistic in all its human acts of inhumanity¸  however.  I’m not sure yet if I’ll go on to the next volume.


  1. Hey Melody,
    Interesting to read your review. Apparently, the HBO series is very graphic including sexually. Might plow through the books; won't watch the series. I don't like the books. I've read them twice, first three years ago, the first one last year. I can't abide them. I don't know if it is the violence or the dread that I have for the Stark family or what. This should be right up my alley. No interest from this reader.
    Let me know if you go on to Book Two.

  2. I didn't much care for the books either. Don't think I read all of them. I just couldn't find anybody in there I really wanted to root for.