In a time long forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons off balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. As the cold returns, sinister forces are massing beyond the protective wall of the kingdom of Winterfell. To the south, the king's powers are failing, with his most trusted advisor mysteriously dead and enemies emerging from the throne's shadow. At the center of the conflict, the Starks of Winterfell hold the key: a reluctant Lord Eddard is summoned to serve as the king's new Hand, an appointment that threatens to sunder both family and kingdom. In this land of extremes, plots and counterplots, soldiers and sorcerers, each side fights to win the deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.
©1996 George R.R. Martin, (P)2003 Books On Tape, Inc., published in arrangement with Random House Audio Group,a division of Random House, Inc.
"Martin's trophy case is already stuffed with major prizes...He's probably going to have to add another shelf, at least." (Publishers Weekly)
"The first volume in Martin's first fantasy saga combines intrigue, action, romance, and mystery in a family saga." (Booklist)
"Grabs hold and won't let go. It's brilliant." (Robert Jordan)
"This novel is an absorbing combination of the mythic, the sweepingly historical, and the intensely personal." (Chicago Sun-Times)
I have recommend this book to friends. I have purchased the entire series to date, and at the time of this review, I am halfway through book 2 (and loving it). However, take heed of the reviews when purchasing this series. This is a great EPIC in the medieval/fantasy genre. It contains graphic depictions of rape, murder, sex, incest and more political intrigues than I can keep track of. HBO, not Disney turned it into a serious, yet some listeners were expecting Harry Potter.
The massive story does start off a little slow, but it is laying the ground work and introducing a vast ensemble of characters. Once the story takes off, it kept me glued to the edge of the throne until the very end. I can honestly say, I have never read a book with this many central characters in my life. On of the complaints I have noticed in some reviews is of main characters dying off. The beauty of these books is that no one is safe.
The narration of this book was also very impressive. For the 5% of the listeners that gave
Roy Dotrice a less than favorable review, image trying to a voice to such a vast array of characters. Mr. Dotrice does a tremendously outstanding job of giving a voice to 7 main characters and countless minor characters.
This audiobook lives up to it's great reviews
I watched the series on tv and loved it, couldn't wait for the next week, missed it when it ended.
I enjoyed the narrator . It is a compelling story .
This book was great for my commute.
very enjoyable read
reminds me of the lord of the rings
this is the first time I have heard him read, but really enjoyed his acting performances. So knew he would be great!
no really just enjoying the entire series
The performance by Roy Dotrice was absolutely amazing. He really brought life to all of the characters.
This book is incredibly long, but if it were possible I wouldn't have put it down until it was finished.
I started the audio book after watching the show. I've done that with other books before, and sometimes if the performance isn't very good, it can completely ruin the book, especially if the show or movie set you up with high expectations. In this book I was never dissapointed by the life brought to every character by the performance. It was a pleasure to get the full story with all the details that couldn't fit into the show. I'm now absolutely hooked on this series.
Captured me from the moment the book began. Mid-Evil SCI FI would be my best description. The story and performance are well matched. Looking forward to Book II.
This was a a better than average fantasy story. The "wheels within wheels" aspect is done well, but there are so many different points of view in the novel that it takes time to get used to the author's "technique". After a few chapters it does seem to flow well and works.
Unlike Goodkind, this author does not seem to rely so heavily on "carrot and stick" tools in his writing. He does use it somewhat. But he weaves an intricate web of connections between characters that holds up the story, as opposed to new fantasy vocabulary that the reader is introduced to constantly in the Goodkind books. I appreciate this author's form much more than the formers.
The author does seem to write himself into corners quite a bit. Some authors can find interesting ways to get out of these spots (King has done some awesome work on this). But this author's technique for dealing with these issues is to kill off characters or to switch personas and handle tough scenes in the 2nd person. That does get a little bit annoying.
I actually liked how the story ended. This book finishes like it could actually end there and stand alone without the huge number of novels that followed. I'm into the next book and I am somewhat regrettig it. Several "obvious" things from the first book's ending are now being "retooled" to suit a continued series.
It seems to be developing more and more into a soap opera than a fantasy epic. As in the story does not have a drive and purpose such as the "Lord of the Rings", but seems to written simply to perpetuate itself. Some people love this style of writing. It's just not my cup of tea.
The story was very good. The development of the characters was longitudinal. Well done.
The King's hand. He was a patriot until the day he died. A great man.
I read and enjoy almost all genres, but spend most of my money following interesting, evolving characters in series.
I rank the series in with Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series. I admit I had to go back and listen to the beginning again just to get characters and descriptions fimly set in my mind. But I've done the same thing with Wheel of Time. I can firmly place myself in the fantasy world Martin describes. I have now read all of the series so far and can recommend it to other lovers of epic fantasies or to any reader that enjoys getting to know characters and following them in a series.
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