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.
This book has a huge cast of characters and while as it seems overwhelming at the beginning, they quickly became distinctive. The characters are all very developed and unique. Several characters stood out to me. For example, Daenerys is such a strong and remarkable character. Tyrion was such a funny character and made me laugh a lot. Arya was also kick ass and brave. I could go on the other characters forever. Martin isn't afraid to harm his characters and I became emotional in several place. This book starts out slow, but quickly becomes exciting. There are so many plots that are linked together flawlessly. I became enthralled in what would happen next and needed to know more. The world building is also done so well. I never felt overwhelmed by what was happening and Martin explains it perfectly. The map in the book also helped a lot. The concept of winter being years long, also interested me and I hope that comes into play in later books. This book is rather thick and at times, it felt like it would last for forever. At the same time, I never felt bored. I don't think that the story could be told in less content, but at the same time, it is a bit tiring reading it. Martin's writing is pretty good. He is really good at make a story believable. I haven't watched the show, but I am definitely interested in it now. I would recommend anyone that likes Epic Fantasy. It has really well developed character, an interesting plot, and great world building. I am definitely interested on continuing with the series, but I am going to take a break before continuing reading this series.