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Just to start with a few lines on the brilliant TV adaptation of the first book of George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series. I thoroughly enjoyed it; the acting and staging were superb, and while I wouldn't go as far as Abigail Nussbaum in extolling its superiority to the original book, I certainly agree that it builds very effectively on what I felt was anyway an effective novel.

It is going to be very difficult to select a single episode to nominate for next year's Hugos for Best Dramatic Presentation - Short Form, though I suppose either or both of the last two might be appropriate; to be honest I'd rather nominate the entire series in the Long Form category even though it will then be doomed to defeat by this year's cinematic releases.

Changing the subject back to the books, back in 2006/2007 I started rereading the whole series, in the hope that A Dance With Dragons would come out neatly in time to fit my pacing. But after I had reread A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings and the two parts of A Storm of Swords, the new book seemed no closer to coming out and I left A Feast for Crows on the shelf - I had read it for the first time shortly after it came out in 2005, which was a lot more recent then. Now, of course, I have been caught out by A Dance With Dragons finally appearing, so felt a sudden need to catch up.

I don't have a lot to add to what I wrote about it, getting on for six years ago. I had forgotten the details of the Dornish links with the Targaryens, the encounter between Samwell and Arya in the streets of Braavos, and the promise of queenship made by Petyr Littlefinger to Sansa Stark, the first and third of which presumably will get more play in the coming book (the three queens presumabl being Cersei, Daenerys and Sansa; or Myrcella if Cersei is done for by the religious zealots she has unleashed). I still think that the abandoning of the Greyjoy plotline is a bit of a weakness in the structure. But the Dornish bits made more sense to me now, partly because it's a contrast with Cersei's mishandling of her own situation, but mainly because I don't resent the introduction of yet more viewpoint characters as I did on first reading. Brienne's story is in a similar way a contrast to Jaime's, as well as a means of grounding the narrative in the sufferings of the smallfolk.

Anyway, I found it an easy and very pleasurable (if long) read, and am very much looking forward to starting the next volume.

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April 2023



  • nwhyte
    25 Jan 2023, 13:24
    O tempora! O mores!
  • nwhyte
    24 Jan 2023, 10:34
    Hello! Your entry got to top-25 of the most popular entries in LiveJournal!
    Learn more about LiveJournal Ratings in FAQ.
  • nwhyte
    8 Dec 2022, 12:44
    UK mailboxes aren't waterproof?! That seems like an odd design.
  • nwhyte
    29 Oct 2022, 16:28
    Now I know that "psephologist" is a word.
  • nwhyte
    9 Sep 2022, 11:19
    That would make things less awkward.
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