At the end of this book, Martin added a page of acknowledgements, stating that “This one was a bitch”. It was a bit of a bitch to read as well.
Don’t get me wrong; the story was as fascinating as ever, and the general feeling of Lord of the Rings meets The Tudors remains. It’s well written, and transports you completely to another world. But it’s massive. Epic. And this only covers half of the characters; the next one in the series is going to cover the rest of them over the same period.
I noticed that this one included some changes in style compared to the previous books, more slang words which are just that little bit different from our own, but close enough not to be annoying. I’ve found that the writing style has really improved as the series has gone on – it didn’t really appeal to me at the start of the first book, and now I’m involved. Forever. Despite the fact that I can’t remember half the people’s names.
I really like the habit of just killing off the characters with no regard for how important they are, or how much influence they have on the story. It’s like real life: chaotic and interesting.
As with all of this series, I’m keen to read the next one, but I know I’m going to have to wait as I don’t think I can deal with the pressure of another long book right now. Soon, soon.
I can’t find a decent picture of the book, so lets just have my favourite, The Hound instead.