HBO’s hit series A GAME OF THRONES is based on George R. R. Martin’s internationally bestselling series A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE, the greatest fantasy epic of the modern age. A GAME OF THRONES is the first volume in the series. Kings and queens, knights and renegades, liars, lords and honest men…all will play the GAME OF THRONES. Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime. And the struggle for the Iron Throne has begun. It will stretch from the south, where heat breeds plot, lusts and intrigues; to the vast and savage eastern lands; all the way to the frozen north, where a 700-foot wall of ice protects the kingdom from the dark forces that lie beyond. The Game of Thrones. You win, or you die. Book One of A Song of Ice and Fire begins the greatest fantasy epic of the modern age. Winter is coming…
Readers of epic fantasy series are: (1) patient–they are left in suspense between each volume, (2) persistent–they reread or at least review the previous book(s) when a new installment comes out, (3) strong–these 700-page doorstoppers are heavy, and (4) mentally agile–they follow a host of characters through a myriad of subplots. In A Game of Thrones, the first book of a projected six, George R.R. Martin rewards readers with a vividly real world, well-drawn characters, complex but coherent plotting, and beautifully constructed prose, which Locus called “well above the norms of the genre.”
Martin’s Seven Kingdoms resemble England during the Wars of the Roses, with the Stark and Lannister families standing in for the Yorks and Lancasters. The story of these two families and their struggle to control the Iron Throne dominates the foreground; in the background is a huge, ancient wall marking the northern border, beyond which barbarians, ice vampires, and direwolves menace the south as years-long winter advances. Abroad, a dragon princess lives among horse nomads and dreams of fiery reconquest.
There is much bloodshed, cruelty, and death, but A Game of Thrones is nevertheless compelling; it garnered a Nebula nomination and won the 1996 Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel. So, on to A Clash of Kings! –Nona Vero