Books I Read: Dance With Dragons (Basically Spoiler Free)

Title: Dance with Dragons (Book #5 of the Song of Ice and Fire saga)
Author: George R. R. Martin
Genre: (Very) Epic Fantasy
Published: 2011
My Content Rating: (Very) R for sex, language, violence, and whatever else you got

As I do with sequels, I won't summarize this for fear of spoilers. If you've read the first four, you're probably going to read this one. If you haven't, know that Game of Thrones (being book #1) starts a massive fantasy epic that includes a couple of continents, hundreds of knights, a number of kings, some assassins, wights, dragons, a deadly winter that lasts for decades, and direwolves (among other things).

To sum it up in one very, very simple sentence: Song of Ice and Fire is about what happens when kings die and nobody can agree on who's next.

(In two sentences: Nobody can agree on a king and there's some kind of creepy evil threatening to come down on them all while they're fighting about it.)

The only reason I don't immediately recommend these books to everyone I know is the content rating. It's pretty severe. If you can get past that, though, you should read this series. It's epic in every sense, and I'm glad I've read it. Even though the series has yet to be finished and George Martin consistently and sadistically gets me to care about people doomed to die.

Oops, was that a spoiler? Sorry.

Let's talk in the comments. I'll label my spoilers much better in there.


Matthew MacNish said...

[SPOILER ALERT]What's there left to be said? Who do you think Jon Snow's parents are? And do you really believe George is enough of a dick to have actually killed him off?

I don't. I'm sure it's going to go the way of Bran and Rickon.[/SPOILER ALERT]

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

I'm afraid to start these books (my mom was using a scorecard to keep the character's straight last fall) - not because of the content, but because of the LENGTH. And I'm afraid fast-paced kidlit may have spoiled me for epic fantasy.

Matthew MacNish said...

I've got not problem going back and forth, Susan. I just read 4 YA books in a row (three by A.S. King, then the Brooklyn, Burning I wrote about on Wednesday), and I'm now back into another Epic Fantasy (with airships).

Rena said...

OMG, soo much love for Mr. Martin's works.

[Spoiler Alert] Just remember not to bug him about finishing the series. Every time someone pesters him about finishing, he kills another Stark![Spoiler alert over]

Ken Lindsey said...

Can't wait for the next book!!

[SPOILER ALERT]I don't think Jon's dead, but I think we will see him as Ghost for awhile. Also, I'm pretty sure Ned's sister is Jon's mom and she was "taken" (to use a soft word) by Rhaegar while he had her in his custody. But, I guess we'll have to wait and see![SPOILER ALERT ENDS]

Nick said...

Does book 5 make 4 worth it?

Steve MC said...

(Very) cool review, and thanks for the lack of spoilers (and labeling thereof).

The first three are among my favorite books. Especially once, just like Susan's mom, I wrote down the page number in the House Index for every time a character first appeared.

I've been stuck halfway through book four, though - it's just so much more grim and meandering than the previous books. Was Dance a return to form?

Ryshia Kennie said...

I have to confess that I have meant to read George R. R. for ages. I just saw an interview with him that got me more motivated to read one of his books. But so far he's in the TBR pile.
I've tagged you for the Lucky 7 Meme details on my blog.

Joshua McCune said...

Bought this back in still only halfway through... Grrm has jumped the ocean imo

K. Marie Criddle said...

I'm with Bane on this...I soared through the first four books in a month, then died halfway through this one. However, whether it was from actual boredom or sheer GRRM exhaustion, I don't exactly know. Maybe once Parade for Icicles or whatever the next one is comes out, I can get back on the dragon.