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A Storm of Swords
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 9:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have purchased the unabridged audio downloads for all four books ... I will listen to them as I ride into and back from work.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 10:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know this book gets better, because I read it years ago, but my god is it slow. After 600 pages, the only character developing has been Daenerys. I like how she finally got her army. And it's mildly interesting how Robb has won all his battles and yet lost his realm (though much of that happened last book by Theon--and his marriage was done "off-screen.") However, the rest of the characters are just being wasted.

Tyrion is doing nothing. The chapter where he meets the Dornish "Viper" was useless. The only other thing he's done is marry Sansa.

Jaime has spent this entire book making fun of Brienne, then getting his hand chopped off. Finally, after 600+ pages he has had some character development when he goes back for her in the bear pit. But way too much of this book is spent with the characters riding around in the rain feeling sorry for themselves. There's lots of storms, but hardly any swords.

Arya's story is one long disappointing string of riding, fleeing, getting caught (again), and going to more places we don't care about--sometimes twice. Her biggest excitement was throwing a crabapple at Gendry when he said something she didn't like.

Bran is (you guessed it) traveling. They met a man in a cave who gave them food. Wow. Gripping stuff.

Jon finally fled the wildlings. I'm glad he didn't kill the innocent old man. His story is interesting, but moving slowly, too.

Samwell has had about two chapters, and they were good, but so much tension is lost when there are spaced between many hundreds of pages of Catelyn feeling sorry for herself, Arya feeling sorry for herself, Sansa feeling sorry for herself, Tyrion feeling sorry for himself, Jaime feeling sorry for himself, and Bran feeling sorry for himself.

This book is way too long. There are too many chapters that are just alike, having the characters repeat their actions, and fail to move the story forward. I sincerely hope that Feast isn't like this (I still haven't read it, so don't spoil it for me!).

Oh well, I know it has a powerful ending. I'm getting close to the Red Wedding. At this point, I want to slit Catelyn's throat myself just so I don't have to listen to her whine about losing everything.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malik23 wrote:
This book is way too long. There are too many chapters that are just alike, having the characters repeat their actions, and fail to move the story forward. I sincerely hope that Feast isn't like this (I still haven't read it, so don't spoil it for me!).


Uh-oh.

I agree, I was pretty stoked when Catelyn got whacked. Probably my biggest disappointment in the series was in AGoT, when Catelyn's POV took over for Robb's. Not that Robb was all that, but it sucked when you had to get her POV for the battle where they captured Jaime, and then we didn't get any more battle scenes from Robb. Just a lot of whining from his mother.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2008 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That really struck me, too, how Robb was never a POV character, especially since he seemed to be set up as someone really important. Same thing with Davos and Stannis.

I'd like to see Cersei's POV, and Littlefinger's, Mance Rayder's, Varys's, and maybe even Joffrey's.

So Feast is disappointing? Any non-spoilerish things you can say about it?
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, after the Red Wedding, this book is fantastic. I remember why I loved it so much now. It's a shame that it takes over 600 pages to get good!

Jaime writing his own pages . . . Joffrey's wedding . . . Jon's leadership . . . Tyrion's trial . . . Tywin's scene in the privy . . . amazing stuff.
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 9:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malik23 wrote:

So Feast is disappointing? Any non-spoilerish things you can say about it?


Well, I'm assuming you've read or heard something about it, haven't you? If not (and this has nothing to do with the plot), Martin kind of went overboard writing it, and the way things were going, it was going to be a 2,000 or so page monster; instead of finishing the book, he just finished half of the POV's (ending up around 900 pages). So the book is disjointed. It's not bad or anything, but many of the main POV's aren't in it, which is frustrating. Lucky for me, I hadn't even heard of George RR Martin before 2006, so I didn't have to wait the 5 years after ASoS was released to read AFfC, only to find that many of the main story-lines were going to be put off another 3 years. (Just pick up a copy and flip through it to look at the chapter headings, and you'll quickly see who's missing, as well as the new pov's.)

Someday, I'll read the first 4 books again, and I'm sure I won't be as frustrated with AFfC as I was the first time (probably because I'll have book 5, and maybe even book 6 ready to read after it). But it's definitely a detour form ASoS, and it doesn't have the thrilling buildup and conclusions of the former book, because it's really only half of a book.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I'd heard that it was split in two. And I heard that it covers POVs from new or different characters. That's actually a good thing, in my opinion. When new POVs were introduced in the past (Theon, Davos, Samwell) I was skeptical at first but then quickly won over. This is a very big world he has created. There's no reason why a handful of POVs should hog the spotlight.

With that said, I'd expect that these new POVs have a reason for being brought forward into the spotlight. If those reasons aren't evident in Feast, I'll be disappointed.

And I'm a little worried about your claim that the book has no resolution. If Storm of Swords had been split in half, this would have been before all the good stuff. And it would have made that book a horrible disappointment. The last 400 pages are great, as I mentioned above, but the buildup is too long and monotonous.

I'll have to keep that in mind as I read Feast, that its conclusion is still coming. Hopefully the newness of the storylines will be enough to keep me going.
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've read Feast twice, and liked it much better the second time, though it's still, IMO, the weakest of the four books. When I read it the first time part of my frustration was because I was looking for things I was missing, rather than focusing on what Martin wrote. Some of the major POVs are absent, and while each of the individual POV stories reaches a climax, there isn't a large scale climax like there was in each of the first books.

On my second read, that made much more sense. Given the situation of Westeros at the end of Storm, everything is so disjointed, a large scale climax would have been hard to pull off. When I stopped looking for things that I felt were missing I found that I enjoyed the writting much more.

And keep in mind too, it's not as if Martin cut the book directly in half. He decided to tell all the story for half of the characters, rather than half the story for all the characters. So the resolution we get for the characters in Feast wasn't affected - what was affected was which characters we got.

It's not as if I struggled through the book - I still enjoyed it - but it was the weakest so far, IMO.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 9:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mortice Root wrote:

On my second read, that made much more sense. Given the situation of Westeros at the end of Storm, everything is so disjointed, a large scale climax would have been hard to pull off. When I stopped looking for things that I felt were missing I found that I enjoyed the writting much more.


Yeah, that's sort of what I figure. It's not like the book is a piece of crap that Martin just crapped out to meet a deadline so he could move on to other projects, but it is frustrating to read. I bet that it's better the second time around. I personally love Brienne, and there's a good dose of her in there, with a good climax.


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And keep in mind too, it's not as if Martin cut the book directly in half. He decided to tell all the story for half of the characters, rather than half the story for all the characters. So the resolution we get for the characters in Feast wasn't affected - what was affected was which characters we got.


Yeah, it's not half a book, like if Martin just didn't write the last 500 pages. It's more like if you ripped out the Daenerys, Tyrion and Jon chapters (and maybe a few more) from ASoS. What you would have left over would still be good, but not complete.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 22, 2008 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm putting this here because I don't want to see the spoilers for Feast in the other thread, and to continue our conversation.

I'm liking Feast so far. I'm about 200 pages in, and I see no problem. I'm not bored. I like the characters, both the old and the new. The developments follow logically from the previous book, and it's clear that these characters have ended one chapter of their lives to start a new one. No complaints!
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 22, 2008 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you're liking it; my biggest problem in the beginning was just that I've always hated the Greyjoy chapters. ASoS was great, because there weren't any. But AFfC is full of them.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 23, 2008 12:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, the Greyjoy chapters are the ones I'm looking forward to the least. But I did like Theon's story in the previous books.
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2008 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually Storm of Swords was my favourite of the series. It has the most dramatic beginning, it really intensely focuses on Daenerys and Jon coming into their own. By contrast Feast for Crows left me rather depressed.
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2011 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So, I'm on to ASoS in my reread, and it has just occured to me what it is Littlefinger is aiming for in his political maneuvering.

During ACoK Petyr leaves King's Landing to gain the support of Loras Tyrell and the other forces that didn't go over to Stannis after Renly's death, and is not heard from for quite some time. We know from events in ASoS that he most likely spent these weeks arranging a number of things: the Tyrell/Lannister alliance, the death of Joffrey, and Sansa's escape from the Keep.

What is interesting, though, is on his return he requests a specific reward: to be named Lord of Harrenhal, and made liege lord to the entire Trident. He's granted it because it is an empty title - Harrenhal is controlled by the Starks, and no one holds Harrenhal for long.

But what I hadn't considered before is this: At the end of A Storm of Swords, because of what he did in A Clash of Kings, he is both the Lord of the Trident and Lord Protector of the Vale, and if he marries Sansa then he will have a legitimate claim to Winterfell - being the husband to the surviving heir (as the realm believes Bran, Rickon and Arya dead).

If Petyr can eliminate Roose Bolton, he's in a position to control half of Westeros.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Murrin wrote:
So, I'm on to ASoS in my reread, and it has just occured to me what it is Littlefinger is aiming for in his political maneuvering.

During ACoK Petyr leaves King's Landing to gain the support of Loras Tyrell and the other forces that didn't go over to Stannis after Renly's death, and is not heard from for quite some time. We know from events in ASoS that he most likely spent these weeks arranging a number of things: the Tyrell/Lannister alliance, the death of Joffrey, and Sansa's escape from the Keep.

What is interesting, though, is on his return he requests a specific reward: to be named Lord of Harrenhal, and made liege lord to the entire Trident. He's granted it because it is an empty title - Harrenhal is controlled by the Starks, and no one holds Harrenhal for long.

But what I hadn't considered before is this: At the end of A Storm of Swords, because of what he did in A Clash of Kings, he is both the Lord of the Trident and Lord Protector of the Vale, and if he marries Sansa then he will have a legitimate claim to Winterfell - being the husband to the surviving heir (as the realm believes Bran, Rickon and Arya dead).

If Petyr can eliminate Roose Bolton, he's in a position to control half of Westeros.


yep yep. not giving any spoilers for ADwD but...there is conjecture about Roose's fate and...well...this looks more and more feasible. there are no sansa chapters in ADwD...i'm VERY anxious for the next book already. Laughing
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In this book we learn that Sansa is the smartest Stark. She just needs to stop assuming that other people are smarter.

(I'd quote the scene where she considers what would happen if Margaery married Joffrey but I'm at work. She gets it exactly right, I think.)
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