I was going to include this in Mount TBR, but that wold have been cheating, as this isn’t my book! I borrowed A Feast For Crows from R MONTHS ago and never got round to reading it past the first third, so I’m including it on the Once Upon A Time Reading Challenge and you can decide if that’s cheating or not.
This is the fourth book in A Song Of Ice And Fire, but to be honest, it’s not is it? It’s the fifth, the third being in two parts of 700 pages each. When a separately bound tome of 700 pages stops being a book I shall start a strictly hat based diet. But the purists (of which there are many, and they are terrifying) will say it’s the fourth, so fourth it is.
So I’ve now read 3,500 pages of GRRRRRR Martin, and all I can say is… WHAT THE ACTUAL F**K IS GOING ON???????
Right. First of all. Cersei. What is going on? I get that after the gore filled blood bath Hammer House of Horror terror-on-toast fest of A Storm of Swords (wolf’s head stitched onto a man’s body? really?) you’d be a little, shall we say protective of your offspring but her deranged scheming is so obvious. I spent a large part of this book wanting to kick Cersei Lannister in the face. Also, the lesbian thing was ridiculous. Hilariously so, but ridiculous.
Brienne. Bless her cottons. I love this woman, even though, again, I did spend a good percentage of the book shouting at her. She’s so trusting and yet so fierce. The best bits of the book were Brienne’s chapters, the one in the middle with Septon Meribald (best character in the book) describing his childhood as a soldier and how war creates broken men were genuinely moving, and with child soldiers big news at the moment very poignant to read. I was distraught at what happens to her and now must read A Dance of Dragons IMMEDIATELY.
Sansa and the Vale; am I wrong for having the slightest thing for Littlefinger? Just because he’s so sly. I do feel sorry for Sansa, she has been dealt a bad hand throughout all of this, and now has to put up with the Brat Of The Year (whilst Tommen continues to be the cutest child possible ‘when I’m King, I’m going to outlaw beets’ made my ovaries twist a little bit, not gonna lie).
My favourite thing about this book, however, was the story of Arya. Arya has always been my favourite character, even though she has spent a good third of the books going round the same fifty mile radius in circles. In this one, she really came into her own. Braavos, the Venice of this world, is a fascinating and beautifully described place and I love love love the idea of the House of Black and White. I also have to admit to a little squeak of joy when Sam and Arya face each other-though would she not be slightly more eager for news of Jon?
Speaking on Jon…. I missed him in the book. There have been many many complaints about the lack of Tyrion/Jon/Daenerys in this book. I don’t think it was a lesser book for the lack of them, I enjoyed it a hell of the lot more than the first part of A Storm Of Swords, but I was wondering what the hell was going on at the Wall, and in Meereen. Also, these reports of the death of Davos ‘going to be played by Liam Cunningham snarf snarf’ Seaworth are making me nervous….
Anyway, Season Two of A Game of Thrones (also known as A Clash of Kings, still my favourite of the books) starts on Sunday. This series is probably the only fantasy series apart from Terry Pratchett to have got me excited enough to read as much of it as I have. The amount of people I know who love it, the number of people reading it on the bus, and the popularity of the TV series show that, actually, sometimes, fantasy is a Good Thing.