Cassy's Reviews > A Clash of Kings

A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin
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Apr 07, 14

bookshelves: physical-own, 2011, fiction-scifi-fantasy-paranormal, region-elsewhere
Read from June 04 to 15, 2011

This isn’t going to be a cutesy review. I am well into the third book. I fear that if I don’t blurt out my thoughts about this one soon, then all the books in the series are going to meld together in my memory. Here are my three main impressions:

1. Bleak, dreary, and dismal

Don’t expect any happiness in this book. Martin is merciless with his characters. And if you do see a bright light, don’t trust it. One character learned she won’t have to marry an abusive, horrible guy. She and I were elated. Then someone pointed out that her ex-fiancé could still rape her as he desires and few would be able to stop him. Darn.

2. Eeny, meeny, miny, moe

It occurred to me halfway through a big battle that I didn’t know who I was rooting for. The defender is a cruel king and has a tenuous claim to the throne, but I like a few of the characters in his castle and feared what would happen to them if they lose. The attacker would probably be a fair king, yet he is cold and distant. He has a better claim than most to the throne. However I doubt he could hold it for long. Precisely who did I want to win? It was not a problem of apathy. Martin drew the characters and politics so craftily that I just could not decide. Honestly, instead of picking, I sat back and enjoyed the twists and turns.

3. Better keep up!

The scope of the plot is ever-expanding. I give Martin kudos for having such a grand vision and keeping it all straight. I don't feel that any of the storylines are unnecessary (except, I hate to say it, maybe Arya’s). And I have complete faith that they will culminate in the most amazing way by the end of series. Yet it is inevitable that you will prefer some perspectives over others. I counted the pages in between Daenerys’ chapters – an average of 130 pages! And this is a middle book. There are no cliffhangers, but very little is resolved. If it is resolved, that means someone died. Unless they are only pretending to be dead, of course.

I lied. One more point.

4. Awesomeness

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Reading Progress

06/07/2011 page 193
19.0% "I need more Daenerys." 2 comments
06/12/2011 page 546
54.0% "Just dismal." 1 comment
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Comments (showing 1-41 of 41) (41 new)

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Michael She's good, yes. But I do love me some Tyrion.

Michael She's good, yes. But I do love me some Tyrion.

message 3: by Cassy (last edited Jun 08, 2011 08:55AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Cassy Agreed. I loved a few pages ago when Cersei is snapping at him about some note and he gives it over saying something like "what is the use of the Hand if not to hand you things, my sweet sister". He is one witty imp.

Michael Not sure if you've seen the HBO series yet, but Peter Dinklage is perfect casting for Tyrion.

Cassy So jealous! I have only been able to watch little videos on the HBO website. From the 20 seconds I've seen of Dinklage, I like him!

Michael Well, I'm sure the series will hit Blu-Ray and DVD soon...and then you can consume all 10 episodes. It's really good stuff.

Cassy Honestly, that's how I prefer to watch most tv shows - spend a couple days when the DVDs are released. I struggle with patience waiting one week to the next for the original airings.

message 8: by Alicia (new) - added it

Alicia @Cassy: Love the review!

@Michael: I thought there was a rule about guys not being able to say "I love me some ." I'm so confused about all the guy-rules! Argh!

message 9: by AH (new) - rated it 4 stars

AH Great review. I saw your status update at page 546 and those were my thoughts exactly. I did feel that the story picked up from there and I did enjoy the book. Can't wait to start the next one.

Cassy Thanks, Alicia and AH!

Unfortunately, I don't remember exactly what happened at page 546 anymore! I agree, though, that the plot picked up toward the end. I read some reviews stating the first half of the book is just set-up. Despite that and the depressive mood, I still LOVED this book. And why are you waiting?!? Start the next one! I am trying to get ready for the book 5 release.

Michael Alicia Reads wrote: "@Cassy: Love the review!

@Michael: I thought there was a rule about guys not being able to say "I love me some ." I'm so confused about all the guy-rules! Argh!"

I think I missed that day in guy school...LOL

message 12: by Sari (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sari I actually like Arya. I think in this book, her story is one of the story lines I'm following most closely, but I think that every book is different. (I'm not done yet, only on about page 850). She is young but I think she's got a lot of promise.

Cassy Sari, just saw your comment!

Yeah, Arya is a fan favorite. I enjoy her storyline as well. Sansa and she sure are going down different paths after (view spoiler). Arya is becoming independent and quite dark, while Sansa is more and more dependent on others. Good stuff!

message 14: by Alicia (new) - added it

Alicia I wanna read that spoiler so bad!

Michael @Cassy. It gets even more interesting where these two characters go in the third book. I won't say more.

@Alicia Reads. If you've read the first novel, you're OK to click on the SPOILER.

Cassy Ha ha! It's from book one. You are clear to read it, Alicia! No big reveal for you. Even as I read it way back when (i.e. May), I wasn't too surprised.

Cassy Michael, the third book is where Arya (view spoiler)

Michael Cassy. The answer is book three.

message 19: by Alicia (last edited Aug 31, 2011 10:22AM) (new) - added it

Alicia Oh that's a relief. I can stop pulling my hair out now! :)

By the way, I think that happens for the first time in book one. (Yes, I did read the other spoiler, even though you said it was for book three. I couldn't help myself! I have low spoiler will power sometimes.)

Cassy Me too, Alicia. Those little spoilers are too tempting!

message 21: by Leonardo (last edited Oct 29, 2011 09:43PM) (new)

Leonardo Duenas-Osorio I enjoyed the book review, and must admit that the thread of messages was very interesting too---although there are other unique threads for other books and genres, such as the one by Lisa Lee.

Cassy Oh, Leo. You and your odd comments...

Kaluba Mataka great summary Cassy, i must admit that i came to know of the books through the TV show and i am now an ardent fan.

Cassy Thanks, Kaluba! I finally saw the TV show when it was released on dvd last month. Amazing. I'm glad you followed the show to the books!

message 25: by Mou (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mou I actually enjoy reading Arya the most. Her perspective is a unique one and I couldn't help but root for her throughout.

Bridge Great review! Just about to start reading the book. Just finished GofT :) I have however watched both series but I know Clash of Kings is different to the series so Im looking forward to it :D

Melliott I LOVE Arya! How can you desert her? She was one of the people that made me want to know what happened after the first book!

Cassy I love Arya too! I promise! I just don't understand where her story is headed.

Susan Maybe Arya's story is not as important as some other characters, but is still a pretty compelling story.

Cassy I completely agree, Susan. I enjoy Arya herself and her story. I am, however, confused how her story will converge with the rest of the plot by the end. I don't know how far along you are in the series, but her storyline keeps straying further and further away from the other characters and main action.

Susan It does keep you on your toes. I've only read the first two books. I have been looking for the third book, A Song of Swords, at the library but I haven't been able to snag it yet. I may ask about it and get on a waiting list or something. I'm really looking forward to finding out what happens next. Happy reading!

Paige Nice review. I think it's important to remember that Arya is very young, and VERY motivated (for revenge). Remember that long list of names she repeats every night? Right now she's getting life experience, continuing her training in sword-fighting, observing and preparing, no matter how far away she roams. Let's just give her some time and see what she does.

Tameekah Fantastic review! I sound so cheery on a review of how dark a book is, blasphemous. I love Arya, however, and cannot stand to go through Danny's point of view. The Starks are my favorites, all of them, especially the Bastard.

Cathy Cadman Arya is going to grow up. Her story will be awesome in the future. I'm not wild about Danny.

message 35: by Alexandra (new) - added it

Alexandra O clever.

Aaron Once you get to dance of dragons aryas story gets pretty interesting. Actually it may be in a feast for crows. I don't remember exactly which book. The most compelling characters in the series though are probably Jon and tyrion. Love their storylines. And obviously dani because of her climb from a maiden under the oppressive hand of her brother to such great heights. Just wait, things get crazy.

John-justice Hill I think Arya's story is completely necessary. One of the few characters I'm actually rooting for, still. I do love Tyrion and Jon the most.

message 38: by Llyr (new) - rated it 5 stars

Llyr Biehler I like Arya, but her story is so dreadfully boring until book 4.

Arnab Just finished this book. It is good writing, but nothing nice really happened - although many nice things could have happened. Winterfell fell. Arya escaped, but no one knows that yet. And characters keep dying so easily, I find it hard to really attach to anyone.

Does this get better, or does it remain as bleak? Because if it does, I'm done with it.

Cassy Hi Arnab! It's still bleak, but I think it's worth continuing! People keep dying, alliances keep changing, battles are fought. But I respect your decision if you want to stop. You did give it two books!

Melliott I read all of them, and I have to say it was a slog, but I still want to know what happens to everyone. But by the time he comes out with the next book, I'm going to have to read them all over again so I remember who's who! Aggghh.

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