karen's Reviews > A Game of Thrones

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
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Jul 29, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: icky-sex
Read from July 29 to August 02, 2011

nerds, now i am among you.

this is going to be a review where i just prattle on and on about meee meee meee, because let's face it - there are a million reviews of this puppy out there so i don't have to worry about doing a disservice to the book. you'll either read the book or you won't. but you should: it's got direwolves.

i wasn't going to read this. after years of watching hordes of desperate sad-eyed nerds coming up to me, asking "any news on the george r.r. martin release??" (like the bn computer knows more, somehow, than the internet. it doesn't) and i would have to tell them (not without some schadenfreude-glee) "nope - it has just been moved back another year!!" it gave me a solid sense of "there but for the grace..." like when you see a very young junkie and you congratulate yourself for dodging that particular bullet.

despite what i kept hearing about how awesome the books were, i just filed it away in the mental RA folder of "stuff nerds like" and figured one day i would read them, you know - for research, but not before they were all out - i wasn't going to get sucked into the trap of so many before me - the waiting game of disappointment and having to reread the older books again and again to keep track of who was even alive at this point. "when you play the game of thrones, you play to become frustrated and impatient."

i have seen it a hundred times.

so when the teevee show came out and people were drooling over how good it was, i paid them no mind. i pushed it two feet past the "someday" pile in my brain. because i am not one of those people who watch a movie before reading the book, am i??

but connor wore me down. he really wanted me to see it and he wanted to talk to me about it and his bearded little face was all lit from within with enthusiasm and i just couldn't say no to him.

so i did it. i watched the teeveee. on demand - several episodes in a row, pissed off if i started to get too sleepy to make it through another episode.

so so good.

so now, i had to read it, right? i owe it to the gods of fine literature and all.

so i did, and god this book is fun.

i am glad they changed a few things for the filmed version - i'm not sure i would have been too comfortable watching a thirteen-year-old actress play daenerys.

in the same line of thought - natalie - i know you have not watched the show yet, but your crush on jon snow?? perfectly understandable to someone watching the show - he has that dark brooding thing i can see a girl going for, but if you have only read the books?? girl, your crush is on a fourteen-year-old boy. i have notified the authorities, you perv.

in the end, i am glad i watched the show first, if only so that i know how to pronounce the characters' names. oh, you crazy high fantasy novels and your names...

alfonso won't read this series because of the incest and because they never tell you where the soldiers pooped. i am not kidding. several people complain that the seasonal imbalance complicates the growing cycle and where is all their food coming from. this point i can understand - fantasy novels are supposed to care about developing a fully-realized world and all, and that is kind of a major detail, but it doesn't bother me at all. i am no connoisseur of fantasy- i am a dilettante at best. so i don't care where people are getting their food - i don't care if the social hierarchy is a realistic one, given the particulars of this realm, i certainly don't care where the soldiers are pooping. nor do i care in any novel where and when the characters poop. i just like this book's quiet intrigues and betrayals. the diplomacy, the lack of hesitation when it is time for a character to be killed off. i love how there aren't any "good guys" or "bad guys," only "effective" and "ineffective" characters. every one of them does at least one thing that'll make a reader go, "oh, bad move." so he dropped a few details when it comes to agriculture - he spent all his energies into creating characters that i love reading about.there are facets to this thing - sides of the argument rarely seen in a straight-ahead rollicking plot-driven novel.

and i'm not really sure where the misogyny accusations come from. is it because women can't really ascend to power except through marriage?? because i don't think that was invented for this book - i am pretty sure that has happened, historically, in other places. and if it's the looting and raping, well - that happens in war, too. wait, is it sansa?? yeah, she's kind of a wash. but the girl wants what the girl wants. she's at least more complicated than bella, right? there are plenty of good characters here that aren't weak or power-mad, or just regular-mad... okay - there are a couple. but sheeeeit - all the characters here are pretty bad, on the moral spectrum, right? littlefinger is my very favorite, but i wouldn't want to know him in my real life. i appreciate his devotion, though.

so i am super excited about clash of kings, both the book i will read and the show i will watch. swords and boobies and direwolves. i don't even know how i am going to make it until then.

oh, because i was talking about boobies and HBO just there, connor was telling me this story about louis ck, and i loved it, and i found this quote. it is relevant!! hbo is nudity-crazy!! but he took care of their lust for flesh:

HBO was asking us why there was no nudity on the show, and what they really meant was, Why wasn’t Pamela Adlon, who played my wife, nude? When I hired Pam, I didn’t tell her she was going to be doing anything like that. It wasn’t supposed to be that kind of show. So I said, “You know what, I’ll do it.” And I did that episode, and they were like, “O.K., we have plenty of nudity, thank you.”

hbo, thwarted!

look, dana, i read one of your books!!

and i have just discovered betterbooktitles.com!

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Comments (showing 51-100 of 145) (145 new)

karen who said anything about false dragons?

Richard G i did in message 50. it's funny i do forget a lot of this series which is why i am going to read again before i read "a dance with dragons" but i completely forgot about pooping. for me it's about the twists and turns. i'm using that word twist a lot tonight.

karen oh, so you did. i got lost in the sea of words.

now i shall go to sleep, full of grilled cheese.

message 54: by Richard (last edited Aug 03, 2011 10:00PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Richard G can i have some, the gruyere one sounded good to me sleep well. oh by the way leslie talked me into buying a book "mr. peanut" nice cover. hopefully i sparked an interest for her to read "east of eden". hopefully it will be a mutually beneficial taste swap!

Kwesi 章英狮 Gah! You gave this book a 5! I must read this book as soon as possible. *saving money*

karen i'm sure there are tons of cheap copies floating around!!!

richard - mr peanut is very good!! i will work on pushing the steinbeck...

Richard G stupenda!!

message 58: by mark (new) - rated it 5 stars

mark monday yahoo! i actually couldn't believe it when your review for this popped up...i thought it would be a joke review.

i think one improvement the series has over the book (feet don't fail me now, i'm nervous at making such a bold statement) is in the much more three-dimensional characterization of Cersei. good job, hbo! and good job on this review, karen.

karen i agree - but i think both sansa and khal drogo/daenerys storylines were better in the book.

Richard G i am not a big fan of the daenerys storyline. i was surprised when i learned that people were eager for daenerys. well, have you finished "clash of kings" hehe? i know, you are probably 3/4 of the way through. how do you do it? i just finished "towers of midnight" sanderson is really doing a terrific job. i just can't see how he can wrap up the story in one more book which is the plan, but we shall see.

karen yeah, but richard, (view spoiler)

come on!

Richard G dragons and draaaaaggoooooonnnsss do not soar in the sky for me not even naomi novik's and they got high scores on their sat's.

message 63: by Cat (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cat For what it's worth, I think that GRRM's world still rotates through seasonal changes each year, and that the decade-long seasons on which so much emphasis (both literal and figurative) is placed are more of a global warming and cooling thing, a general change in climate.

I don't actually know whether that makes the whole system any more plausible in terms of crops and harvests and other tricky agricultural details, by the way. I also don't know what the official (Martin's) word on the subject is...it's just what I've always assumed!

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio I have lost all respect for you. I need to go re-read that Elegant Complexity review and rekindle my love.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio I almost fell asleep just scrolling through the 61 reviews of this book by my GR friends.

karen did you lose respect for them, too, or just me???

also: ppbblltt!

i like what i like.
right now, it's not you.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio Remember when I didn't know what ppbblltt! meant? I do. I think I actually looked it up, too... I've learned so much from you over the years.

karen yes - i have so much wisdom to impart to you spring chickens......

message 69: by Courtney (new) - added it

Courtney I too have a crush on the tv show Jon Snow. aww so cute. and I have a coworker who is named Danae who looks exactly like Danerys. so funny. and she just had a kid. haha.

karen i have a crush on those dragons.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio karen wrote: "i have a crush on those dragons."

I have a crush on their mother.

karen wait - i thought you were too good for g.o.t. - what happened?

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio My brother got me into the show -- I was won over. The books probably wouldn't work for me, but the story in moving pictures did the trick.

message 74: by Courtney (new) - added it

Courtney it was all of those boobs.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio I do love those.

message 76: by Lisa (last edited Jul 05, 2012 08:25PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lisa If I could give this review two likes I would (then I'd also be 100th like, which would be awesome but I was one like too early). I agree with pretty much everything and I loved the anecdote. :)

Just curious, have you read any of the other books yet?

karen i just finished the second one last night. loved it. i will probably review it tomorrow night.

i am definitely going to read the third book before the third season, because i keep almost getting spoiled, and i do not want to.

but i am seriously hooked now.

Richard G if i might, you are in for a really big treat, enjoy!!!

karen eeeee!!!

Richard G he sustains, twists and goes forward!

message 81: by Keith (new)

Keith Chawgo Well Karen - you did it again. I went out and bought the series and watched it within four days and have to say that I am hooked. So much so, that I have now purchased the five books to read.

Do not understand the misogyny remark because from the television show it seems to me to be all about the women. Classic quote from My Big Fat Greek Wedding - The Man is the head of the family but the woman is the neck and she can turn the head any way she wants.

Not sure how the books read but I guess I will soon find out. Thanks again for another great review and recommendation.

karen woo- hoo! yeah, i am of the same mind, but i am not as sensitive to that as some other people because i have never doubted the power of ladies, so.

message 83: by [deleted user] (new)

I'm trying to weigh the pros (boobies, direwolves, and swords) vs. the cons (addiction, incest, teens, and death of beloved characters)I liked how you incorporate your large circle of friends into your reviews.

karen seriously - what a name-dropper i am.

but i do stand by this book, if you have any interest at all in high fantasy. i didn't think i did, but i lived and i learned. the show is fantastic. so many great things - sigh....

message 85: by Kate (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kate Copeseeley Everyone has their opinion, but I think the women are pretty badass in this series. Catelyn, Cersei, Danys, Arya... We may not like all of them, but they are pretty amazing. Greyjoy's sister turns out to be pretty high on the badass scale, too. Dany's story starts out as awful, but she proves herself to be a strong character by the end of the first book. I think. That is just MY opinion. :)

message 86: by Heather (new)

Heather Wood Wow. Seriously awesome review! These series is on my to-read pile by my bed (which is taller than my bed, and teetering) but made me move it to the top. :P x

Danielle Omg how did I miss this update! It was only two days ago!! Now, I'm going to read it XD

Danielle And because of your review, I am now off to buy the books. Thank you...for making me spend more money. :P

karen woohoo! but at least they are only cheap mass markets!

Danielle Guess what?! I found it in stock at my local library!! Woohoo!!

karen it was meant to be!

message 92: by Jennifer (new) - added it

Jennifer Lane "sad eyed nerds" hee hee

I started this but didn't have the concentration required to continue. Maybe I'll try it again someday!

Danielle karen wrote: "it was meant to be!"

Soooo I just went to the library to pick it up and guess what?? It was transferred this morning to another branch because someone put a hold on it last night!! I knew I should have gone to the library right after work. Darnit! Now I'm on hold but at least there are 4 copies floating around so hopefully someone will return theirs soon.

karen whaaaat? that's jive, man...

Avid Reader Poop. Just wrote how I started this, am loving it and thrilled at the fact that the names (so far) aren't wacko. Now your review tells me it's probably all downhill from here? Were there no Bobs or Chips in times forgotten?

karen downhill?? how so?? i read the first two and lurved them! i am reading the third the first weekend in november! i am excited! no hills here!

Tatiana "i am glad i watched the show first, if only so that i know how to pronounce the characters' names."

I thought the exact same thing. XD

karen they aren't always what you expect, right?

Pandionhalatius37.6 Don't get too attached... Too late. I really, really dislike Danerys. I'm sorry, I really can't stand her. Sansa is also on the hate list, for being whiny and wimpy and conformist and crushing on an evil little weasely twerp. I think Tywin is awesome!

message 100: by karen (new) - rated it 5 stars

karen but.... dragons!!! she has dragons!!!

but i get it. she is very single-minded.

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