Sunday, June 12, 2011

Game of Thrones

What can I say, I am a sucker for anything on TV where people have swords.  Growing up in the 90s I watched Braveheart more times than I can remember.   I watched all the Hercules and Xena stuff from Sam Raimi.  I watched the classic Erroll Flynn take on Robin Hood and even watched that Prince Valiant movie where everyone apparently thought they were in a Western… with swords, which made it ok.  As you can imagine, when I heard about HBO producing Game of Thrones, I got excited.

Well, I don’t have HBO, and with the amount of time it usually takes them to release a series on DVD it will probably be a while before I get a chance to watch their take on Game of Thrones.  For a geek who is a sucker for anything on TV where people have swords, this wait is incredibly annoying.  However the upside is that having taken the release of this series as an excuse to finally read the books, I can rest assured that I have plenty of time to finish them. 

Now that I have finished Game of Thrones, I find the fact that the HBO show took this book as its title to be a little funny.  Here comes the closest thing to a spoiler I’ll give you – the whole book is a setup to the rest of the series.  Yes, the idea that the first novel in a series would setup the rest of the books seems shocking but it is a crazy enough idea that it just might work!  I find it funny that this first book seems to carry the most recognizable title of any book in the series (or the series itself) when the majority of the action will clearly occur in the other novels.

I found myself really liking this book.  I thought Martin created some great characters and established a complex network of relationships that has the potential to pay off when all the players fully interact (which will probably entail a lot of sex and stabbing). 

My recommendation is that you give this book a read knowing that you are jumping into a full series.  Everything I have heard tells me that the payoff is coming, and will be well worth it.