Just as I begin to care about these characters again, they were so cruelly ripped away... by the book ending... (view spoiler)[or er, stabbing... Not...moreJust as I begin to care about these characters again, they were so cruelly ripped away... by the book ending... (view spoiler)[or er, stabbing... Not that I believe anyone is dead until I see them beheaded onscreen, and even then... I'm looking at you, Catelyn and Mance. (hide spoiler)]
A Dance with Dragons runs concurrently with A Feast of Crows for about two-thirds of the book. The final third concludes both volumes, but most of the viewpoints still stem from the characters in Dance, e.g. Tyrion, Jon, Dany.
What can I say? It's George R. R. Martin. Of course I loved it. I would have loved it more if I could actually remember who these people were and whether or not they were dead and who was allied with whom and who had secret alliances with whom. It's been about ten years since I read A Storm of Swords, so I barely remember even the very basics of where the tale left off with any of these characters. I spent a whole bunch of time on thetowerofthehand.com (great website that provides summaries by spoiler level) before/during/after almost every chapter, which really killed the flow of the narrative for me. I was probably a third of the way through the book before I cared about what was happening to anyone except Tyrion. Then the book ended. Literally, my first reaction upon seeing the word 'Epilogue' was FUCK!
I loved the Tyrion chapters best, as I always do. There are just no words that can convey his awesomeness. Dany has always been one of my favorites, but as much as I enjoyed her chapters, she annoyed me this time around. She seems to have lost the backbone/harsh practicality she had in books past or maybe it's just me misremembering. Surprisingly, I probably liked the (view spoiler)[Theon (hide spoiler)] chapters second best. He's a complete a train wreck, but a really engrossing one. Yet, another example of the ruthless GRRM that we all know and love.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
Heaven and Hell engage in political machinations to control the Apocalypse while Christine, a fluff reporter, and Mercury, an apathetic, jaded angel,...moreHeaven and Hell engage in political machinations to control the Apocalypse while Christine, a fluff reporter, and Mercury, an apathetic, jaded angel, question the wisdom of the whole end of the world thing.
I really enjoyed the beginning plot setup/progression, but it lost steam for me during the resolution. The tone/style is similar to Terry Pratchett/Douglas Adams, and the antics/puns were pretty funny. (The reoccurring pawn/prawn bit went a little long for me though.) However, I probably am missing the context for many of the jokes. My knowledge of Christianity is pretty sparse. The only names I recognized were Lucifer and Michael, and I'm not sure I remembered who Michael was.(less)
'The Kite Runner' is about Amir's life from childhood to middle age, and how betrayal and secrets can spiral out of control, haunting, influencing a l...more'The Kite Runner' is about Amir's life from childhood to middle age, and how betrayal and secrets can spiral out of control, haunting, influencing a lifetime of actions. Besides this, his life is shaped by those of friends, family, and culture and politics in Afghanistan.
The book is a dramatic page turner that kept me riveted. I finished the last 250 pages in a single sitting very, very late at night. The plot was great, and the characters were sympathetic, but frustrating. I would keep rooting for them to be the better person, and not let their weaknesses consume them.
My biggest criticisms would be that the author was openly manipulative of the reader at certain points turning dramatic into melodramatic. This lead to some cheesy lines, but also some great quotes:
"When you kill a man, you steal a life. You steal a wife's right to a husband, rob his children of a father. When you tell a lie, you steal someone's right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness. There is no act more wretched than stealing."
"Children aren't coloring books. You don't get to fill them with your favorite colors."
Also, I wasn't a fan of how the narrative would (intentionally) become rambling back stories in the middle of (and break up) intense moments.