Once in a while, there comes a novel that makes you realize that no matter how many pages you’ve read, you’re still longing for more. A Song of Ice and Fire is exactly that type of novel. And if you used to have a special moment of the day that you liked to spend reading, now every moment of the day will become a good moment to read A Song of Ice and Fire.
Here are just five reasons why A Song of Ice and Fire is such a great novel.
1. The Writing Style
The first thing that will catch your eye is the writing style. The words are so well chosen and flow so naturally, that even the description of a rock will mesmerize you. I must admit that I used to skip the descriptive parts of a novel. But with A Song of Ice and Fire, there is no such thing as an unnecessary description. Because you’ll need all the information you can get, to even try imagining the vast universe that George R. R. Martin describes.
2. The Kingdoms
This brings me to the second reason why this book is so great, this being the worlds created by the author. There are so many kingdoms with so many cultures and interests, that it’s no wonder that every book in the collection has a map in the beginning, revealing all the regions that you are about to discover.
3. The Characters
And the kingdoms are as complex as the characters populating them. If you thought that it was hard to keep up with all the kingdoms, wait until you’ll be introduced to all the characters. And the novel is so focused on the characters, that even the chapters are named after them. Don’t imagine a first person narrative, because this is not the case. Every chapter focuses on a different kingdom, that is seen through the eyes of the character, revealing the plots, interactions and situations that he has to confront or just witness.
There’s no way of getting bored while reading A Song of Ice and Fire, because every time you start a new chapter, the action happens in another kingdom. So, by the end of the first book, you won’t feel like you’ve just read 800 pages of the same story, but 100 out of eight different stories the happen at the same time, each one influencing the outcome of the other.
And these characters are so well described that you won’t be able to prevent yourself from developing a love or hate relationship with them. The villains are so vicious that you will actually wish for them to suffer the most violent death. And don’t imagine that the good guys are the stuff of fairytales. There’s no McDreamy riding his white horse and saving all the girls. They’re just real people who can die just as fast as the villains.
4. The plot
Since heroes are just as likely to die as villains, this is just one of the things that makes the plot really captivating. You never know what to expect, because everything is possible. George R. R. Martin can kill a character just as fast as he created him. Don’t think that it’s enough for a character to be good or extremely involved in the plot to survive. It’s not a soap opera, where the main character can’t die, because the show is all about him. Just like in real life, the show goes on no matter who dies.
5. The Fantasy & Reality Mix
But the plot is not just about expecting the unexpected. It’s also about mixing realism with fantasy. On the one side, you have the realism of the fight for power in the kingdoms, the relationships between characters and the situations that they have to face. And, on the other hand, you have the sigils of every kingdom, that hide more incredible stories than you can imagine, girls that go through fire and come out without a scratch, boys that transform themselves in wild creatures in their dreams and last, but not least, dragons.
A Song of Ice and Fire is made up of five books and rumor has it that there are more to come. And I know that reading almost 6000 pages on the same subject sounds scary, but you know what’s really scary? Finding yourself longing for another 6000 pages, because the story is so good that you don’t want it to end.