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)
The latest addition to the Game of Thrones series is just as compelling as the books that came before it. The story follows an expanding number of characters to unexpected places.
My enjoyment of the story was tempered by my frustration with the narration. I'm not sure why Roy Dotrice felt the need to create various accents for the characters. I'm also not sure why most of those accents are British. Certain characters sound as if they are toothless and speaking with a mouthful of marbles. I found most of the voices to be distracting and irritating.
Some of my recent favorite books are the Outlander books by Diana Gabaldon and the Song of Ice and Fire books by George RR Martin. I almost always enjoy Stephen King books and I've read mountains of fantasy. Actually, if it is a good book I will probably enjoy it no matter what the genre.
I am an avid reader and listener and am always excited to find an author I enjoy. George R. R. Martin definitely fills the bill! I think every one of the books is well written and artful. The character development was creative and intertwining of situations and characters in the plot was nicely complicated. Truly a refreshing change from the predictable plots and characters in more recent fantasies I have read.
Great story, plot, content. Martin is a master of fantasy. performance leaves something to be desired. Listened to all of the ice and fire books read by him. He changes how he pronounces names and often has a different accent for the same character. Didnt keep his head in the game. still great though
This was an excellent followup to his series. Although a little slower at times it is classic Martin describing everything in this world he has created. Huge fan and I don't look forward to waiting years before the next release.
What a wonderful tale. The narration is excellent. The one suggestion I would have is that George Martin uses punctuation to indicate when a (usually true but unacceptable) response is one that a character wants to say but doesn't. That subtlety is lost in the audio version, but could be remedied through some clever sound engineering, i.e. using some echo to characterize an inner voice.
This book is number 5 in a series, so I guess I would like to recommend you read from the beginning.
A Song of Ice and Fire easily qualifies as the best told story I've ever had the chance to know. Martin's world is just so livid and engaging. The characters - their thoughts and reactions often seem like real people to me - they are that well described! It's a wonderfully detailed world that still doesn't fall into the trap of becoming difficult to comprehend.
I've been enchanted with these books since the first chapters of A Game of Thrones, and have serious doubts I'll ever fall out of love with them. The only downside is that they are really hard to match. After having finished Swords I had trouble finding other books to read, just because I was still so into the world of Martin. They really are something that add to the fantasy-genre and I think they have also been a big part of moving the genre forward.
My recommendation does come with a warning however - especially for this book. It really is dark and full of terrors. Martin paints a picture of a war-torn continent, and he doesn't gloss it over one bit. Reading these books is delving into the darkest sides of humanity there are. At the same time, there is also a glimmer of hope coming through to you via some of the characters. The ones that try to do good, or try to stick with their principals amidst all the horrible things happening. That is what still makes the books not just readable, but brilliant.
John Snow because of his interaction with several characters
it was very unintrusive, that is he did not impose his views on the listener
way too long for one sitting but every bit was great
Well worth the wait. Amazing book and series. Lets hope we don't have to wait quite so long for the next one :) Also those who may be timid about watching the HBO series.....Don't be. Also Fantastic.
This book focuses on Jon Snow, Tyrion, and Daenarys with some followup on Arya and Cersei. Without Spoiling anything, I can tell you that there seems to be a death of one of the major characters. Of course once I finished it, I wanted more. I hope it doesn't take as long to get the next book out.
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