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Book #4: A Feast for Crows by George R. R. Martin - Chronicles of a Hereditary Geek [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Darth Paradox

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Book #4: A Feast for Crows by George R. R. Martin [Jan. 29th, 2009|08:42 pm]
Darth Paradox
Gah, I've reached the end of what's published so far. And so I join the hordes of people waiting for the publication of A Dance with Dragons...

#4: A Feast for Crows by George R. R. Martin

The wide-ranging battles of the second and third books are mostly over, but the intrigues for the throne continue. After being accused of the murder of his nephew, and actually murdering his father, Tyrion Lannister has vanished. Danaerys Targaryen rules a city-state of freed slaves, and has decided to temporarily halt her march of conquest towards Westeros. And Jon Snow has been elected Lord Commander of the Night's Watch, one of the youngest men to ascend to that post. That's where things stood at the end of A Storm of Swords, but what is the common thread between those three characters?

The answer is that none of them appear in the fourth book. It seems that the book was getting far too long, and so GRRM decided to split the book in two, lengthwise. It was a much better idea than cutting each of the fourth book's story arcs in half, and yet I remain wracked with frustration over the absence of the fifth book. I suppose I really am part of the fandom, now.

But oh, the plotting. I think Cersei's arc was probably my favorite in this book, because of the Greek-tragedy aspects to it. The dual crimes of hubris and trying to avoid a prophesied fate lead Cersei fairly directly from her post as Queen Regent to her sudden imprisonment beneath the Great Sept; as someone who despises the character (and loves the way she's written), seeing her get her comeuppance was very satisfying.

I think my least favorite part was Brienne's arc. Quest though she may have, she seemed to just meander around and not do much of consequence for most of the book.

I know a few of you have been waiting to discuss this book with me; comments are a spoiler-permitted zone now that I'm all caught up.

Next up is a gift from shardavarius: Soon I Will Be Invincible. I'm nearly two-thirds done with it already, and it's poking all the right parts of my comic-geek lobe.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: iurbina
2009-01-30 05:00 am (UTC)
Soon I Will Be Invincible is an excellent book. I'm glad you're enjoying it.
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[User Picture]From: xaandria
2009-01-30 05:29 am (UTC)
I don't know why, but I've always liked Arya's arcs. I am miffed that I won't know what happened to her for AGES.

And now that Sansa's not the simpering spoiled little bitch she was before, I'm starting to commiserate with her. And I won't know what happened to HER, either. Or Bran, heir apparent of the Stark house.

And dangit, I wanna know what happened to Nymeria.
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[User Picture]From: darthparadox
2009-01-30 05:58 am (UTC)
Oh, right, I nearly forgot. Arya's arc in this book was fantastic. But not knowing what will happen to her or Sansa until, oh, 2012 or so? GAH.

We know what happened to Nymeria - she's leading a gigantic wolf pack in the Trident/Harrenhal area. It's never been said explicitly, but it seemed pretty obvious to me. We've been getting about four references per book of random people being terrorized in the area by a pack led by a huge she-wolf.
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[User Picture]From: xaandria
2009-01-30 06:11 am (UTC)
I'd gotten that far with Nymeria--but dangit, I want someone to recognize her. Preferably someone who's wronged the Starks.

Wonder what would happen if Ghost or Summer or Shaggydog came across her.
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From: yts88
2009-01-30 07:03 am (UTC)
I'm more interested in what GRRM's favorite character is going to do in book 6. I'm putting money down that good ol' Tyrion gets to ride a dragon.
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From: ext_119907
2009-01-30 07:41 am (UTC)
Can't help with Nymeria, but no worries about the Stark children -- they're all slated to be POVs in ADwD (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Dance_with_Dragons#Characters).

(Unless you were just offering a comment on how long it's going to be before book five even comes out, in which case I say: Zing!)
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From: ext_119907
2009-01-30 07:49 am (UTC)

More swag!

♥ ♥ ♥ to the Cersei chapters. I was really uneasy when she became a POV character -- I still hate the Sansa chapters, and I thought the last thing I needed was another POV from an unredeemable character. But it was a truly fascinating journey through the tragedy of her downfall, and I'm glad we did get to see how desperate and pathetic she really is -- somehow it makes her shenanigans easier to take, knowing how much they say about her.

I still love the hell out of Brienne, even if her chapters really didn't go anywhere. I predict she'll have to kill Jaime someday, and I predict after a brief fight he'll let her. I love them both (I love him more), which is rather torturous.

A lot of foreshadowing all around...sometime I should ask your opinion on the Popular Fandom Controversies (chief among them, who are Jon Snow's parents? I've long been persuaded of the Lyanna + Rhaegar theory myself -- and his was the Song of Ice and Fire, after all -- but I think there are plausible counterarguments yet to be made.) What else...I don't suppose you've read the preview chapters for ADwD yet? There are four available, Dany's in the back of the book and these three:

(1) http://www.georgerrmartin.com/if-sample.html (Check this soon, it rotates)

(2) http://www.georgerrmartin.com/chapter.html

(3) http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html?ie=UTF8&docId=1000194603

And finally, you are free to revel in the greatness and hilarity that is grrrm, and I say that as someone who enjoyed AFfC. :D
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[User Picture]From: darthparadox
2009-01-30 04:51 pm (UTC)

Re: More swag!

I'm really looking forward to Cersei and Dany meeting. Obviously the prophecy will come into play, but the comparison is an interesting one - between a woman who fancies herself powerful and strong but is merely grasping and petty, and a teenage girl who is slight of build and relatively soft-hearted, but still a better queen and mother than Cersei will ever be.

I don't see the controversy over who Jon's father is. It's been fairly clear all along that he bears strong resemblance to Eddard; if his father doesn't end up being Ned, GRRM'd better have a damn good explanation. I really doubt it was Rhaegar, because of how persistent Targaryen blood has been; surely, if Rhaegar was Jon's father, he'd have some sign of the usual hair or eyes. I'm curious as to what the other controversies are, though - I like speculating!

I've avoided the preview chapters so far; at present I'm at a reasonable breaking point for the book, but if I start reading it only to have to stop after four chapters, it'll just frustrate me, and I'd just have to read them again when the next book comes out anyway.
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From: ext_119907
2009-01-30 05:06 pm (UTC)

Re: More swag!

Oh, dear. You should probably read this, then:
http://www.towerofthehand.com/articles/a/0011/

Putting everything we know about Eddard's character and timeline together, I don't think it's even possible. Keep in mind this world preserves our understanding of genetics; Jon Snow is certainly of Stark lineage, but that doesn't imply one specific Stark.

Honestly, everything in the FAQs at the Citadel (http://www.westeros.org/Citadel/FAQ/ -- scroll to "6. About the Characters") and Tower of the Hand (http://www.towerofthehand.com/articles/faqs.html) are worth reading, if for nothing else than picking up on details you may have missed during the readings (Alleras frequently falls into this category) and finding fodder for arguing with other fans. :D
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[User Picture]From: darthparadox
2009-01-30 06:28 pm (UTC)

Re: More swag!

I'd forgotten Lyanna was a Stark. (I have trouble keeping all the minor and historical characters straight.)

Thanks for the FAQ links! I have indeed missed a few other details...
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