Dubbed the American Tolkien by Time magazine, George R. R. Martin has earned international acclaim for his monumental cycle of epic fantasy. Now the number-one New York Times best-selling author delivers the fifth book in his spellbinding landmark series - as both familiar faces and surprising new forces vie for a foothold in a fragmented empire.
In the aftermath of a colossal battle, the future of the Seven Kingdoms hangs in the balance once again - beset by newly emerging threats from every direction. In the east, Daenerys Targaryen, the last scion of House Targaryen, rules with her three dragons as queen of a city built on dust and death. But Daenerys has three times 3,000 enemies, and many have set out to find her. Yet, as they gather, one young man embarks upon his own quest for the queen, with an entirely different goal in mind.
To the north lies the mammoth Wall of ice and stone - a structure only as strong as those guarding it. There, Jon Snow, 998th Lord Commander of the Nights Watch, will face his greatest challenge yet. For he has powerful foes not only within the Watch but also beyond, in the land of the creatures of ice.
And from all corners, bitter conflicts soon reignite, intimate betrayals are perpetrated, and a grand cast of outlaws and priests, soldiers and skinchangers, nobles and slaves, will face seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Some will fail, others will grow in the strength of darkness. But in a time of rising restlessness, the tides of destiny and politics will lead inevitably to the greatest dance of all.
Enchanted? Check out the rest of George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series.
©2011 George R.R. Martin (P)2011 Random House
"Martin has produced--is producing, since the series isn't over--the great fantasy epic of our era. ... his skill as a crafter of narrative exceeds that of almost any literary novelist writing today." (Lev Grossman, Time)
"Martin's love for sophisticated, deeply strange fantasy permeates Dance like a phantasmagorical fever dream…Martin seems poised in the last two books to bring home one of the best series in the history of fantasy." (Jeff Vandermeer, Los Angeles Times)
"Fans of A Song of Ice and Fire will surely think the wait was worth it. ... The great attraction of the story must lie in its panorama of a medieval kingdom: knights in armor, mercenary ‘sellswords,' tavern wenches, struggling and surviving inhabitants in all forms, from low to high." (Tom Shippey, Wall Street Journal)
Why has Roy Dotrice decided to give Daenerys and Bran such excruciatingly irritating voices this time around? Did his good reviews go to his head - does he think it's all about him doing funny accents? Even if this book wasn't crushingly disappointing, long-winded and rambling, I can hardly bear to listen to the old crone who's supposed to be a 15 year old regal princess, mother of dragons, or the wizened old peasant that Bran has become. I haven't finished the book and doubt that I will. And by the way what has happened to all the audible listeners' reviews? I can't find them on the main page any more. And they were a big part of helping me choose a new book - probably wouldn't have ordered this one if I'd been able to read any besides the two stellar ones Audible put up there.
I watched the HBO series, then read the first 4 books. I was able to imagine most of the characters from the HBO series which was so good. I decided to try the last book from Audible since I had some saved credits. What a huge disappointment. I wish I had bought the book instead. This narration is ruining it for me. I know I can't expect it to be like the HBO actors voices, but the narration is so horrid! Maybe the narration would be OK reading a Charles Dicken's story for children, but for this series, the voices sound so cartoony and sort of gutter British or just plain weird. He just doesn't have the rhythm for the dry humor either. It makes you wonder about the production. How could they have thought this was good? This may well be the first ever recorded book I can't finish - and I've been listening to books for a very long time. Save your credits. Buy the book.
Man of leasure
The choice to divide the last 2 books by character instead of time was a big mistake. There are too many characters anyway, but trying to remember what happened to a different character in the last book 1500 pages ago is next to impossible.
It gets 2 stars because whenever the book decides to move the plot along it does it pretty well, unfortunately that rarely happens. This book could be abridged to 2 hours and still be an hour and forty five minutes too long. And yes Roy Dotrice does mess up the female characters. And it would be more bearable if the next book was release in a decent time frame. What upsets me the most is that the whole thing has so much potential. Please do not waste your credit!!!!!
Wow, after all these years what a let down! The plot is even more confusing than it was after the last book. Nothing happened that moved the story forward. In fact, one small step forward, one giant step back. Roy did a horrible job on the female voices. And more new characters. How old will I be when the next book is finished?
Please read the many poor reviews and save your credits this book may not be worth the read to some folks BUT this production is of such awful quality any one who has already burned two credits deserves some sort of compensation for this travesty
I'm not sure if George decided to let the TV series keep his fans hooked or what, I loved the books and was so looking forward to this newest installment in the series,but the story Spiraled out of control and completely lost all of the former suspense and intrigue that kept me up all night, Looks like all of his energy is now focused on the mindless masses preferred medium that is the television, as a side note, Roy needs to listen to his own previous readings to jog his memory of how he used to read the parts. Sorry, but I will NOT be continuing the journey, and from what i have read i will not be the only one.
Ditto to all of the reviews about the narrator...I mean I cringe everytime I hear Dany's voice. And the story in many parts of the book are downright boring. I mean who cares about half of the characters? When I saw that the book was 49 hours long, I thought "cool this is going to be a fun journey." I am halfway through and debating on whether to finish.
Riy Dotrice is a fantastic narrator, in fact he won a Guinees Book of World records for voicing over 500 chartacters in Thrones, If you enjoyed Georges' series thus far you should be aware that there are many plot twists and unexpected events. This book is no different. I made a silly assumption that I would be hearing Dany's Dragons going north to the wall to fight the White Walkers, an epic battle of sorts but there was no real battles at all. Tyrion pov's made the book the worthwhile with hilarious jests and jokes with his biting wit, The flow of the series seems to have had its head chopped off but still fantastic imagery and insight into the human condition visualizes in our minds. Regardless of endpoint
A Song Of Ice and Fire started off with such wonderful possibilities, such rich and well developed characters and a highly detailed world that fired the imagination. The series slowly went downhill as Martin's fame grew, until he clearly hit a wall in "A Feast For Crows" which went nowhere as the story arc spiraled out of control. 5 books into the story, In "A Dance with Dragins" Martin still sees the necessity of introducing dozens of new characters and factions while leaving countless story arcs dangling undeveloped and unfinished, it's as he has lost control of the narrative and suffers from ADD, there have been so many new arcs and characters introduced that it becomes impossible to have any empathy whatsoever for the incoming characters, reading Martin becomes a chore, something to get through, a sort of drudgery, not unlike the tortured paths he sets his characters upon.
The world he creates for us, once seemingly so rich and detailed has become a tedious and tiresome place. As I read this I can only trudge through it, wondering what has become of the characters that were once central to the story (while also wondering what has become of that central story) all the while watching an assemblly line of new characters and story arcs come along Martin's assembly line all the while not caring one whit about any of them. After two duds back to back , in half a heartbeat, I have decided to get off the George RR Martin bus, the remaining novels, should his lordship Martin choose to finish them, will not be purchased or read by me. I would rather be flayed alive than spend another couple of months listening to these tedious books.
Roy Doltrice, with his shallow voicings (I swear I think he only has three characters voices in him) hasn't helped Martin's cause any at all.
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