TITLE: A Storm Of Swords: Steel & Snow
AUTHOR: George R.R. Martin
SERIES: A Song Of Ice & Fire (#3, Part I)
PUBLISHER: Harper Voyager
GENRE: High Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Adult
RATING: 4/5 Stars
Winter approaches Westeros like an angry beast.
The Seven Kingdoms are divided by revolt and blood feud. In the northern wastes, a horde of hungry, savage people steeped in the dark magic of the wilderness is poised to invade the Kingdom of the North where Robb Stark wears his new-forged crown. And Robb's defences are ranged against the South, the land of the cunning and cruel Lannisters, who have his young sisters in their power.
Throughout Westeros, the war for the Iron Throne rages more fiercely than ever, but if the wall is breached, no king will live to claim it.
What I Liked:
- Martin's writing continues to blow me away, as it has done in the previous two installments of this series. I have never read such a masterful handling of multiple plot-lines in one series. Ever. Every individual story is so different, and yet they tie together so beautifully that it continues to keep me guessing. Yes, I have seen the show, but the book really highlights how expertly Martin does this.
- I am always a huge fan of Martin's characters, and this book felt a lot less about plot development (though there were a few twists) and a lot more about character development.The characters that I have met a lot faced a lot of hardship and challenges that gave a huge insight into their personalities, and I also got to see a lot more of some characters I was interested to hear more about (Margaery Tyrell, Melisandre, Sam) and even met some fantastic new ones as well (Olenna Tyrell and Oberyn Martell, I'm thinking of you)! It was nice to not have plot twists and death flung at me left, right and centre, and to be able to focus on the characters a little.
What I Disliked:
- While I really enjoyed the character development, and there were a few twists and turns plot-wise to keep me on my toes, this was only half of the third book. That means I didn't get one of Martin's special killer climaxes, which I always really enjoy. I wouldn't say that the ending really disappointed me as such, it just didn't totally blow me away either. It did leave me wanting more however.
I seriously love this series, and I can't wait to keep going with it because it's going to be amazing, I can tell. This felt the most like a filler book than any of the other books I have read so far, but it was well done! It gave a huge insight into some of my favourite characters and there were a couple of twists that had me wide-eyed and mouth open, though as this was only half of the third book, I wouldn't hope for a massive ending. I would also say that in terms of characters, there are a lot. Watching the TV show has really helped me in terms of remembering who everyone is but Martin doesn't look like he will ever stop introducing new characters. So if you are easily confused then I wouldn't recommend this series.