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I have finally managed to get around to reading the first part of book five in the A Song of Ice and Fire series! It seems like it’s taken a long time for me to get to this point, and with just part two to go before I’m fully up to date with the series [so far!] it’s nice to know that I am on the home stretch.  I’ve put off watching series five of the TV show because I want to finish reading the books first, so once the next book is done I foresee a big marathon ahead!

In the aftermath of a colossal battle, new threats are emerging from every direction.

Tyrion Lannister, having killed his father, and wrongfully accused of killing his nephew, King Joffrey, has escaped from King’s Landing with a price on his head.

To the north lies the great Wall of ice and stone – a structure only as strong as those guarding it. Eddard Stark’s bastard son Jon Snow has been elected 998th Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch. But Jon has enemies both inside and beyond the Wall.

And in the east Daenerys Targaryen struggles to hold a city built on dreams and dust…

This story isn’t exactly a direct continuation of “A Feast for Crows” but rather a parallel story that will eventually merge with the “Feast” storyline and *then* continue onward. Because of this we are covering some of the ground that may have been mentioned or skipped over in “Feast” and are re-introduced to characters like Jon, Daenerys, Bran and Tyrion. For me personally, I loved being back with Dany, even though certain parts of her storyline are a little frustrating. She remains to be one of my favourite characters, and I have high hopes for her to not be dead by the end of the 5th book! We didn’t get any Arya this time [well, we did but not in the right fashion!], but I guess that is because we had a fair amount of her in “Feast” but again she’s one of my top characters so am looking forward to spending some time with her in the next book.

I found this book quite hard to maintain my focus when I first started reading. I had a lot of other things going on at the same time – cosplay, knitting, work – that I found it hard to be in this world. I found that I was skipping chunks of text and would have to go back and re-read chapters to make sure I was on the right footing which made me realise just how many cliff hanger endings to chapters there were and that annoyed me a little bit – I noticed this with Tyrion and Davos particularly, although it did also happen with Dany and Jon.

“Reek” as a character annoys me, both who he is “now” and who he “was”. He was never a favourite, so it’s great to see his fall from grace, but at the same time his chapters are hard reading because of how dark they are and what’s been done to him… I didn’t need to know his torture, how many fingers had been taken or what… else… had been done to him.

I look forward to the next book for sure, but I will certainly need to break and read a few other books between now and then. I find that Martin’s world is so involved, so vivid, that I can’t sit and read them in one go. Anyone else have this problem?

What are you reading at the moment? My next book is to be “Cinder” – Marissa Meyer, wish me luck!

Kialtho

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