I committed a big book club sin last night, even though I was the hostess. I sat through the entire meeting, having read less than 50 pages of the month’s book, Cutting for Stone, a novel I had proposed to the group and had been eager to read. My interest hasn’t flagged, I’ve just been too captivated by George R. R. Martin‘s Song of Fire and Ice Series to read anything else for the past month.
Reading a book after you’ve seen the movie or TV series is usually a disappointing experience. HBO’s first season of Games of Thrones was executed so perfectly (it won 13 Emmy nominations), I thought the books would pale in comparison but they complemented each other perfectly. The casting was well done and the characters stayed true to the dialogue in the books. One of the most intriguing and likeable characters is Tyrion Lannister, a dwarf from a powerful family. In both the book and the TV series, he delivers priceless one liners that linger with you for days. The books provide a great deal of background and character insight that the TV series just couldn’t explore because of time limitations.
Games of Thrones and the subsequent books will appeal to both historical fiction and fantasy fans. Although it is set in the imaginary Seven Kingdoms, the medieval setting with its politics and warfare give it a gritty, historical feel. The jousting and sword battle scenes (combined with the lavish sex scenes allowed by HBO) were what kept my husband hooked to the TV series. Those details are even richer in the books. As I am a fan of both genres, I enjoyed both the fantasy elements and historical detail.
If you choose to pick up Games of Thrones, just to see what all the hype is about, get ready to lose yourself in a delicious read. You’ll be hooked to George R. R. Martin’s epic saga with his thrilling plot and his unforgettable characters. The series is so good that you won’t even feel guilty as you neglect all other reading obligations, hurling yourself back into George R. R. Martin’s world night after night.