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A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
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A Game of Thrones

by George R. R. Martin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: A Song of Ice and Fire (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
22,09967359 (4.4)4 / 1126
  1. 171
    Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson (majkia)
    majkia: Both feature war-torn landscapes, confusing and conflicting motivations for main characters, and focus on complex characters whose loyalties are strained and oftentimes change.
  2. 183
    The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie (MyriadBooks, Navarone, martlet)
  3. 152
    Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay (allthesedarnbooks)
  4. 110
    A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin (Sunnussu)
  5. 132
    Shogun: A Novel of Japan by James Clavell (saturnine13)
    saturnine13: If you like gritty, faux historical fiction, how about another with an asian flavor? Shogun, like A Game of Thrones, concerns the byzantine political intrigues of a multitude of different characters painted in moral shades of grey, generously heaped with gruesome action and heart-breaking romance. While Shogun lacks dragons, it does have the added interest of being mostly based upon real events and people.… (more)
  6. 100
    The Hedge Knight II: Sworn Sword by George R. R. Martin (jpers36)
  7. 91
    Last Argument of Kings by Joe Abercrombie (music2084)
  8. 115
    The Great Book of Amber by Roger Zelazny (ryvre)
    ryvre: Both are fantasy books with lots of politics and intrigue among the royal families.
  9. 50
    The Iron King by Maurice Druon (Fayries)
    Fayries: George R. R. Martin himself wrote that "Druon's series was one of my major inspirations".
  10. 40
    The Curse of the Mistwraith by Janny Wurts (Konran)
  11. 40
    Acacia: The War with the Mein by David Anthony Durham (Anonymous user)
  12. 40
    The Gilded Chain by Dave Duncan (MyriadBooks)
  13. 41
    Malice by John Gwynne (Toby_Sugden)
    Toby_Sugden: The start of what looks like a great fantasy series
  14. 41
    Hild by Nicola Griffith (Anonymous user)
  15. 41
    Dragon Bones by Patricia Briggs (quenstalof)
    quenstalof: Both are high fantasy epics with dragons :-)
  16. 41
    The Winter King by Bernard Cornwell (sboyte)
    sboyte: Like Game of Thrones, this book shows us the lives of medieval men and women with a bit of magic and politics thrown in.
  17. 20
    The Dragon Waiting by John M. Ford (nessreader)
  18. 53
    Dragon Prince by Melanie Rawn (MyriadBooks)
  19. 21
    Spirit Gate by Kate Elliot (ImLittleJon)
    ImLittleJon: There are some similarities between Martin's and Elliott's series. Their epic scale is similar, with multiple interweaving plotlines, characters noble and humble, interacting cultures, and so forth. Both begin in a world where magic is a matter of legend, but slowly creeps back into usage. Spirit Gate might not be A Dance with Dragons, but it will help make the time pass until that book gets published.… (more)
  20. 98
    Assassin's Apprentice by Robin Hobb (Tjarda, Patangel)

(see all 26 recommendations)

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English (629)  Spanish (11)  Dutch (6)  French (5)  German (4)  Finnish (3)  Portuguese (Brazil) (3)  Swedish (2)  Catalan (2)  Polish (1)  Italian (1)  Danish (1)  Hungarian (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (670)
Showing 1-5 of 629 (next | show all)
A Game of Thrones, the first book in the Song of Ice and Fire series, is incredible! I am not going to be too detailed because there are thousands of other reviews out there, but hopefully I will provide enough information for you to decide if you want to read this book.

The book is written from multiple viewpoints, but it is easy to read because they are separated by chapters. Each chapter is a different person you are reading about. It is also written in a unique dialogue, but Martin still makes it understandable. I had no difficulty reading through the book. Also, this book flows very well because there are not many places in which you would actually want to stop reading (probably the only one in the series that has such little down-time)

The story is original, multi-layered with lots of sub plots, and is non-formulaic (good beats bad against impossible odds). It is incredibly exciting, suspenseful, mysterious, and very unpredictable. There is almost no way for you to know what is going to happen.

The story is also very violent. This may upset some people, so it will be good to know going in that there is a lot of battles, sex, incest, swearing, and just about everything else.

The characters are well developed and enjoyable. Some are even clever and secretive. Unlike most fantasy books, Martin’s characters are not totally good or evil, they are definitely in between. His characters are also very personable. You can think of them as real people and you develop strong emotions towards them throughout the novel. I’m not going to say which characters, but many of his characters are killed off and new ones appear throughout the series. If that bothers you than this may not be the book for you.

If you are tired of reading formulaic fantasy, having the heroes stay alive against impossible odds, and a lot of violence doesn’t bother you, than I would definitely give this series a try. However, this is the only book in the series that can stand alone (just barely since I know I wanted to read more) so be in for a huge time commitment if you read past this book. Also, be in for a disappointment if you love all of the books and then get left without closure on book 5, since the others haven’t been released yet.

Note: If you want to watch the TV show I would definitely read the books first or you will get bored with the books because they become predictable. ( )
  AshleyMiller | Sep 10, 2014 |
I picked this up after watching the series and was lucky that I had seen the series since there's so many characters to keep straight. I enjoyed it very much and will probably read the entire series. ( )
  creynolds | Sep 4, 2014 |
Wow. What an imagination! Multiple characters, multiple settings, multiple adventures. ( )
  aimless22 | Sep 1, 2014 |
I think that one of the biggest mistakes regarding the "A Song of Ice and Fire" chronicles is saying that it is practically "the side version of Lord of the Rings". It is good? Yes. It is epic? Absolutely. But the stories and scenarios and characters are completely different, so no, this is not a second "Lord of the Rings". But that doesn't necessarily mean that the series does not have a charm on its own. And although the main theme of the book seems to be "political intrigues", you can still enjoy a great amount of the fantasy touch.

As I said before, the story of this book is not one bit like Lord of the Rings. The focus is on the political intrigues that happen among the Great Houses. The great King Robert one day comes to the cold city of Winterfell asking his best friend to ask as the "Hand" of the King, the second person who has more authority in the Kingdom. Winterfell's leader Eddard Stark agrees, although he feels like something is very wrong in the whole story.

One of the good aspects of the book is that is happens through the point of view of different people. You will see the whole story through the eyes of the young Brandon Stark, through the eyes of the ambitious dwarf Tyrion Lannister and several other interesting and somewhat complex characters, which gives a different taste to the book. The story does not emphasize one single as being particularly good or evil, which is great. And unlike most of the stories that have more than one character's point of view, you can actually feel like the story has shifted, not that the characters act and think exactly like one another, as it happens on Bram Stoker's Dracula.
The "bad" thing about the book is that there are LOTS of characters and those who didn't watch the series may feel slightly confused at first.

I nice book. Perhaps not something that will quench Tolkien's fans' thirst for another Lord of the Rings, but enough to entertain you for a couple of hours. ( )
  aryadeschain | Aug 26, 2014 |
What a fantastic book. It can take a while to get into, but when you do the rewards are well worth it and it's refreshing to read a fantasy work that not only is well written but has great character's too.
Highly recommended! ( )
  JohnEKerry | Aug 20, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 629 (next | show all)
And yet, I couldn't stop reading. And it wasn't with the kind of self-loathing desperation for closure that took me to the end of The Da Vinci Code. I read A Game Of Thrones with genuine pleasure. It may be a cartoon, but it's one that is brilliantly drawn. Archaic absurdity aside, Martin's writing is excellent. His dialogue is snappy and frequently funny. His descriptive prose is immediate and atmospheric, especially when it comes to building a sense of deliciously dark foreboding relating to a long winter that is about to engulf his fictional land.
 
The best about this is the way you can trust it to all fit together and make sense. If Martin mentions something without explaining it, it’ll be explained later, or anyway alluded to so that you can put it together yourself. It’s overflowing with detail and you can trust that all of the detail belongs and is necessary and interesting. The world and the story are completely immersive, with no jolts to jerk you out of your suspension of disbelief.
added by Shortride | editTor.com, Jo Walton (Sep 9, 2009)
 
This is a perfect book.

There's honestly nothing I can think of that could improve it in any way. This is a book that made me shout at it, that made me giggle and cry, that made me gasp, that made me tremble and hate and love. It's seamless; I'd say it's unputdownable, except that sometimes I found I desperately needed to put it down because I was overwhelmed with the wonder of it, only to pick it up again half an hour later.
added by Shortride | editSF Site, Amal El-Mohtar (Mar 15, 2007)
 

» Add other authors (17 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
George R. R. Martinprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Altieri, Alan D.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Burns, JimCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dotrice, RoyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hiltunen, PetriIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hlinovsky, SatuTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thulin, LouiseTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Youll, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
this one is for Melinda
First words
"We should start back," Gared urged as the woods began to grow dark around them. "The wildlings are dead."
Quotations
"The common people pray for rain, healthy children, and a summer that never ends", Ser Jorah told her. "It is no matter to them if the high lords play their game of thrones, so long as they are left in peace." He gave a shrug. "They never are."
Bran thought about it. "Can a man still be brave if he's afraid? "That is the only time a man can be brave," his father told him.
The blood of the First Men still flows in the veins of the Starks, and we hold to the belief that the man who passes the sentence should swing the sword. If you would take a man's life, you owe it to him to look into his eyes and hear his final words. And if you cannot bear to do that, then perhaps the man does not deserve to die.
A ruler who hides behind paid executioners soon forgets what death is.
Some old wounds never truly heal, and bleed again at the slightest word.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
If you are combining a translated copy please check carefully as in some languages this book was split into two volumes. In some languages there is a single volume edition and a split edition - you should only combine the single volume edition with the English edition.

Languages known to have multiple-volumes - French*, German*, Italian*, Portugese, Romanian and Swedish*.

Languages marked by an asterisk also have a single volume edition.
This is the single-volume edition "A Game of Thrones". DO not combine with the omnibus edition containing "A Game of Thrones" and " A Clash of Kings".
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
Original language
Book description
Publisher description for A Game of Thrones;

Long ago, in a time forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons out of balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom’s protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens.
Here an enigmatic band of warriors bear swords of no human metal; a tribe of fierce wildlings carry men off into madness; a cruel young dragon prince barters his sister to win back his throne; and a determined woman undertakes the most treacherous of journeys. Amid plots and counterplots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.
Haiku summary
Long suffering Starks,
betrayal is always near,
beware Lannisters.

(leahdawn)

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0553573403, Mass Market Paperback)

Readers of epic fantasy series are: (1) patient--they are left in suspense between each volume, (2) persistent--they reread or at least review the previous book(s) when a new installment comes out, (3) strong--these 700-page doorstoppers are heavy, and (4) mentally agile--they follow a host of characters through a myriad of subplots. In A Game of Thrones, the first book of a projected six, George R.R. Martin rewards readers with a vividly real world, well-drawn characters, complex but coherent plotting, and beautifully constructed prose, which Locus called "well above the norms of the genre."

Martin's Seven Kingdoms resemble England during the Wars of the Roses, with the Stark and Lannister families standing in for the Yorks and Lancasters. The story of these two families and their struggle to control the Iron Throne dominates the foreground; in the background is a huge, ancient wall marking the northern border, beyond which barbarians, ice vampires, and direwolves menace the south as years-long winter advances. Abroad, a dragon princess lives among horse nomads and dreams of fiery reconquest.

There is much bloodshed, cruelty, and death, but A Game of Thrones is nevertheless compelling; it garnered a Nebula nomination and won the 1996 Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel. So, on to A Clash of Kings! --Nona Vero

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:54:36 -0400)

(see all 10 descriptions)

A tale of court intrigues in the land of Seven Kingdoms, a country "blessed by golden summers that go on for years, and cursed by cruel winters that can last a generation." The cold is returning to Winterfell, where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime. A time of conflict has arisen in the Stark family, as they are pulled from the safety of their home into a whirlpool of tradedy, betrayal, assassination plots and counterplots. Each decision and action carries with it the potential for conflict as several prominent families, comprised of lords, ladies, soldiers, sorcerers, assassins and bastards, are pulled together in the most deadly game of all, the game of thrones.… (more)

» see all 21 descriptions

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