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A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin

A Clash of Kings (1996)

by George R. R. Martin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: A Song of Ice and Fire (2)

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Showing 1-5 of 425 (next | show all)
excellent 2nd book; very well written; grabs ya and keeps ya; falling in love and hating characters over and over; makes ya ready for the next!!! ( )
  longhorndaniel | Jul 19, 2017 |
From my Cannonball Read V review ...

I didn’t consume this book in the same manner as the first one in the series. It was on an e-reader instead of paperback, so that possibly had something to do with it; it wasn’t staring up at me from my nightstand, begging to be finished so it could take its rightful place on the bookshelf.

[Spoilers ahead]

As the title suggests, this book in the series focuses on the fights between Stannis Baratheon, Renly Baratheon, Robb Stark and Joffrey Baratheon (Lannister). Joffrey continues to be a little shit, Renly makes a brief appearance before taking his leave thanks to a creepy death fog baby, Stannis gets all eaten up by some wildfire (well, his troops at least), and Robb wins some battles and loses some he isn’t even fighting (sorry Winterfell). Theon is also a shit, although one can sort of understand how he came to be shit. I have little sympathy for him, but I can imagine a world where he wouldn’t make such piss-poor decisions. Tyrion, as Hand of the King, makes some great decisions, plays and nearly beats Cersei at her own game, and is rewarded with a missing nose.

The women continue to be complex but also frustratingly bound by duties. Cersei is a fascinating character, and one whose perspective is not readily shared, so she’s also a bit of a mystery. When she loses it, it’s interesting. Sansa and Arya are going about their own adventures, both devastating in their own ways. And Daenerys remains in search of ships, braving some pretty rough going to find people who may help (or may not). Jon is also still beyond the wall, Bran and Rickon are doing … things, and Catelyn believes they are dead.

Much like last time, I found myself speed-reading the chapters focused on Arya and Tyrion. I was less interested in most of the rest, although the chapters providing the perspectives on the Blackwater Battle were difficult to put down. The chapters from Bran and Jon’s perspectives were especially boring to me (I just don’t find the beyond the wall stuff that interesting right now; silly political infighting is so much more my speed) and even Martin’s great writing couldn’t keep me interested if anything remotely shiny or pretty were nearby to distract me.

One thing that was sort of fun was seeing things that didn’t show up until the third season of the TV show. Because I’m still catching up to that, my images are colored by what I’ve seen on HBO; I’m looking forward to book three because I know there are things in there that have not yet made it on screen. As for a recommendation – yes. Of course. Read it if you like the TV show. Read it if you don’t like the TV show. Just read it. ( )
  ASKelmore | Jul 8, 2017 |
A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice and Fire, #2) by George R.R. Martin is a fantasy book, the second of the series. This book was translated into a season of the popular Games of Thrones series on HBO.

Surprisingly I enjoyed A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice and Fire, #2) by George R.R. Martin. Surprised because I do not like the books of the genre, I love the movies and, of course, the TV show but never imagined I’d be entertained as much as I am in this series.
Frankly, if I wasn’t a fan of the show I never would have attempted again to read the books (I failed miserably once, 150 pages into the first novel).

A Clash of Kings picks up right where A Game of Thrones left off and keeps the same format of alternating story perspective based on the characters. The visuals of the TV show helped me very much in keeping track of what’s going on, as the second season was very faithful to the source material – at least in what made it onto the screen.

When my friend told me about the series, he mentioned that one of the things he enjoyed was the author was constantly shifting your alliances. One book Jaime Lannister, for example, is a person you cannot stand, while the next you silently find yourself rooting for the bastard. I can certainly see, after reading two books, how Mr. Martin accomplish this in a deliciously devious way.

The characters, they are complex and three dimensional, as I mentioned none are “good” and none are “evil”, but complex human beings trying to stay alive and working for their own best interest. It was actually surprising to me that the author can juggle so many complex characters, each interesting in their own way, with their faults, likes, dislikes and characteristics.

Mr. Martin created a wonderful universe, filled with small details which he is not afraid to focus on. The book ties up some loose ends from the previous one, but leaves the reader off with endless possibilities of what might come.

For more reviews and bookish posts please visit: http://www.ManOfLaBook.com ( )
  ZoharLaor | Jul 8, 2017 |
I enjoyed the 2nd part of this series a little more than the 1st. Way more action and less political intrigue. Also, quite a few twists I didn't see coming. I'm in for the long haul. ( )
  Joseph_Stelmaszek | Jun 27, 2017 |
As Series Three of 'Game of Thrones' is building up on my Sky Plus recorder I need to start to watch series one and two. Of course I can't do that until I'm up to date with the books, hence reading reading this - volume two.

I read Book One in the series as a bit of a gamble. At few people had recommended it to me and fairly disparate friends they were, there must be something if an unpleasant holiday companion, a multi-pierced computer fiend and a straight-laced teacher all rave about the same books. I started book one and was hooked.

Martin has produced something incredibly special, it's a multi-layered sword and sorcery epic, a fantasy and yet politically sophisticated. The plot rolls along at a pace and yet never seems to reach a climax. There are hundreds of characters with back-stories, alliances and suspect morals. Imagine Lord of the Rings with less elvish names and poetry or John le Carre rewritten as fantasy and you're somewhere there.

In A Clash of Kings the same families are plotting, politicking and occasionally fighting. Some come to the fore e.g.. the Greyjohns and the Baratheon brothers and the Stark children tie the narrative together. The multiple narrators keep the interest and the plot swings and turns through 900 pages.

I'll take a bit of a break to watch the first two series and then read book three - I could devour it in one fell swoop but a like a short intense burst of pleasure! ( )
  pluckedhighbrow | Jun 26, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 425 (next | show all)
Martin manages very well to have satisfying volume completion and satisfying character arcs within the volume—slightly less well than in the first book, but still remarkably well considering how difficult it is.
added by Shortride | editTor.com, Jo Walton (Sep 10, 2009)
Roy Dotrice rises to the challenge, providing each character with his or her own unique voice.
added by readysetgo | editAudiofile (Jun 1, 2004)
Once again Martin treats us to a magnificent tapestry that is, at once, both stunningly detailed and amazing in its ability to draw the reader into its grasp.
added by Shortride | editSF Site, Wayne MacLaurin (Feb 1, 1999)

» Add other authors (20 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
George R. R. Martinprimary authorall editionscalculated
Burns, JimCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Candeias, JorgeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dotrice, RoyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Howe, JohnCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Macía, CristinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rostant, LarryCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Youll, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
to John and Gail
for all the meat and mead we've shared
First words
The comet's tail spread across the dawn, a red slash that bled above the crags of Dragonstone like a wound in the pink and purple sky.
This world is twisted beyond hope, when lowborn smugglers must vouch for the honor of kings.
Crowns do queer things to the heads beneath them.
"In a room sits three great men, a king, a priest, and a rich man with his gold. Between them stands a sellsword, a little man of common birth and no great mind. Each of the great ones bids him slay the other two. 'Do it,' says the king, 'for I am your lawful ruler.' 'Do it,' says the priest, 'for I command you in the names of the gods.' 'Do it,' says the rich man, 'and all this gold shall be yours.' So tell me--who lives and who dies?"
There's no shame in fear, my father told me, what matters is how we face it.
Some men are like swords, made for fighting. Hang them up and they go to rust.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
In the portuguese edition The Clash of Kings is actually the 3rd book, because the publisher split game of thrones in two books game of thrones and Muralha de Gelo (Wall of Ice)
Dette er den andre av to deler av boken "A Game of Thrones" i serien "A Song of Ice and Fire". De har utgaver med forskjellig tittel på omslaget og tittelsiden. (Henholdsvis { Bok I Del II} & {Bok 2})
Publisher's editors
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Publisher description for A Clash of Kings;

Time is out of joint. The summer of peace and plenty, ten years long, is drawing to a close, and the harsh, chill winter approaches like an angry beast. Two great leaders--Lord Eddard Stark and Robert Baratheon--who held sway over an age of enforced peace are dead...victims of royal treachery. Now, from the ancient citadel of Dragonstone to the forbidding shores of Winterfell, chaos reigns, as pretenders to the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms prepare to stake their claims through tempest, turmoil, and war.

As a prophecy of doom cuts across the sky--a comet the color of blood and flame--six factions struggle for control of a divided land. Eddard's son Robb has declared himself King in the North. In the south, Joffrey, the heir apparent, rules in name only, victim of the scheming courtiers who teem over King's Landing. Robert's two brothers each seek their own dominion, while a disfavored house turns once more to conquest. And a continent away, an exiled queen, the Mother of Dragons, risks everything to lead her precious brood across a hard hot desert to win back the crown that is rightfully hers.

A Clash of Kings transports us into a magnificent, forgotten land of revelry and revenge, wizardry and warfare. It is a tale in which maidens cavort with madmen, brother plots against brother, and the dead rise to walk in the night. Here a princess masquerades as an orphan boy; a knight of the mind prepares a poison for a treacherous sorceress; and wild men descend from the Mountains of the Moon to ravage the countryside.

Against a backdrop of incest and fratricide, alchemy and murder, the price of glory may be measured in blood. And the spoils of victory may just go to the men and women possessed of the coldest steel...and the coldest hearts. For when rulers clash, all of the land feels the tremors.

Audacious, inventive, brilliantly imagined, A Clash of Kings is a novel of dazzling beauty and boundless enchantment--a tale of pure excitement you will never forget.
Haiku summary
Winter is coming.
who cares? lets kill everyone
valar morghulis
New guys ev'ry page
Don't even try to keep track
They're going to die

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0553579908, Mass Market Paperback)

How does he do it? George R.R. Martin's high fantasy weaves a spell sufficient to seduce even those who vowed never to start a doorstopper fantasy series again (the first book--A Game of Thrones--runs over 700 pages). A Clash of Kings is longer and even more grim, but Martin continues to provide compelling characters in a vividly real world.

The Seven Kingdoms have come apart. Joffrey, Queen Cersei's sadistic son, ascends the Iron Throne following the death of Robert Baratheon, the Usurper, who won it in battle. Queen Cersei's family, the Lannisters, fight to hold it for him. Both the dour Stannis and the charismatic Renly Baratheon, Robert's brothers, also seek the throne. Robb Stark, declared King in the North, battles to avenge his father's execution and retrieve his sister from Joffrey's court. Daenerys, the exiled last heir of the former ruling family, nurtures three dragons and seeks a way home. Meanwhile the Night's Watch, sworn to protect the realm from dangers north of the Wall, dwindle in numbers, even as barbarian forces gather and beings out of legend stalk the Haunted Forest.

Sound complicated? It is, but fine writing makes this a thoroughly satisfying stew of dark magic, complex political intrigue, and horrific bloodshed. --Nona Vero

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:51 -0400)

(see all 11 descriptions)

Five separate factions vie for control of the realm of the late Lord Eddard Stark, while an ancient form of magic, an everlasting winter, and an unearthly army threaten to return.

» see all 9 descriptions

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