Daily Archives: 09.14.2011

A Song of Ice and Fire

I know, I know.

This week is just like the Island of Misfit Toys.

Or under-represented topics.

Or polar opposites.

Your choice.

But the absence of any proper discussion about books since May comes with good reason.

No, I haven’t forsaken reading.

About a week before the honeymoon, I realized I had zero clue as to what I was going to read (besides magazines) while we were en Europe.  That’s kind of frightening for a person who can put The Deathly Hallows away in less than a day if need be.

Having been totally enraptured by the millions of dollars that HBO threw at The Game of Thrones, I decided that it was time to commit to actually reading the books.

And the prospect of cramming 3,880 pages into my suitcase was The Insurance Policy against boredom.

When you add in the 959 pages that A Dance With Dragons brought to the table?

Well.

I think it’s safe to say that I’ve been occupied.

I am no stranger to fantasy.  I like to think that my childhood affinity for My Little Ponies and The Castle in the Attic lead me straight into the welcoming arms of Redwall, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Dragonriders of Pern, Harry Potter and His Dark Materials.

To worlds of woodland creatures who talk, the universe beyond the wardrobe, dragons that can travel between places and times, The Boy Who Lived and little girls who are wise beyond their years.

They’re detailed.  To the point where I feel like I should have some sort of textbook sitting next to me while I read to help me make sense of the thousands of years of history that have led up to these books.

Instead of focusing on one singular plot or purpose, he instead chose to create a world.  There is no quest, there is no singular aim.  And the further I read, the more I was able to see how it resembled ours.  The complexities of faiths that are at-odds with one another.  The issues that accompany social change.  The challenge of self-governance, or lack thereof.

Or more simply, loyalty.  Morality.  The Brotherhood of Man.

What speaks even more to the series is the fact that George R.R. Martin is an absolutely unapologetic author.  You’ve fallen in-love with a character?  They’re probably dead by now.  Things are starting to make sense?  Your world is about to be turned inside-out and upside-down.

I like to think that these are The Thinking Man’s fantasy series.  Because you don’t have to be into velvet and swords.  You do need to be into politics and history.

Or to distill that thought even further, Marcus is reading these books and he’s not even a books-reader.

Yes, I’ve just tried to sell you on an entire series without telling you what happens.  But that’s because if you actually wanted to know the plot, you could just Wikipedia it.  I’m the one who is telling you that they’re readable and enjoyably so.

Don’t fret – book club as we know it will resume soon!  I have managed to squeeze in a few other books here and there.

Have you read any of the books in the A Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) series?

What was your favorite book or series when you were a pup?

I will say that prior to kindergarten, I was rather fond of I am a Bunny.