Fairly heavily forshadowed in the the first book, the enigmatic “blood-red” comet takes center stage here, and would seem to be a driving force throughout the series.
‘But what does it really mean?’ I often asked myself as I progressed further and further. Some theorize that it signified Daenerys Targaryen’s reign, and the re-birth of ancient magic; while others thought it indicative of seemingly everything else. However varied these theories are, they all share one thing in common: an excellent source of motivation for virtually every character.
That’s right, a literary tool used to propel the story forward. Martin utilizes this technique incredibly well, too, it’s almost seamless, really. This precision derives from the author’s intimate knowledge of each and every character. He knows their deepest fears, ambitions, faults, and secrets. Nothing is contrived.
In complete earnestness, I cannot take credit for the insights regarding the celestial phenomena acting as a literary tool. I believe in giving credit where it’s due, and this is all courtesy of a great GR friend and fellow A Song of Ice and Fire fanatic, Stepheny Fowler. I’d like thank you for enlightening me, once again, as we continually discuss these brilliant books!
Along with this knowledge comes a history lesson, so to speak (of which there are many,) of the numerous Houses. What began (in A Game of Thrones,) as an interesting foray into the past has taken on a fascinating life of its own. It’s almost as if the historical aspects are characters themselves.
Alas, I digress..
Unfamiliar faces emerge, interesting alliances are formed, nothing is set in stone. Alongside all this, Martin consistently develops such themes as political intrigue, which made the first installment so fun to read. Most prevalent of all, however, is the novel’s increasing complexity (even more so the second time around,) intense war scenes, and utter insanity.
One of the newly emerging faces belongs to Davos Seaworth. First seen in the Prologue, I liked him almost immediately, and feel for him very much. He’s easily one of my favorite contenders for the Iron Throne.
Although he’s in the first book, Theon Greyjoy’s character is given several POV’s, resulting in a deep understanding of who he is, on a very personal level. I don’t like him at all. In fact, I loathe him!!
Speaking of which, I’d like to discuss the whole (view spoiler)
I hate Theon!!!!
Jaime Lannister’s candidness really surprised me, as he blatantly admitted to (view spoiler) This scene will probably always be one of the most memorable and touching of mine.
“A truly epic fantasy set in a world bedecked with 8,000 years of history, beset by an imminent winter that will last tend years and bedazzled by swords and spells wielded to devastating effect… here he provides a banquet for fantasy lovers with large appetites.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Winter is Coming..