Kirstine's Reviews > A Storm of Swords: Steel and Snow

A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin
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Nov 14, 2015

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bookshelves: fantasy, own, reviewed, 1-men
Read in May, 2012

It is a good book.
Rationally I know this. And I did enjoy it. There are some great characters, great stories and great writing. It's a very imaginative and epic tale. And it has tons of things I love, like dragons and sword fighting and magic and a huge wall of ice AND WILDLINGS. Rationally I know this.

But.. My emotional response?
Too many characters.
Too many storylines.
Too many things happening in different places.
AHHH. My poor head.

The things is, I care about too few of the PoV characters in these books to make any of them a quick read. I'm sorry, but the individual chapters are simply too short for me to properly bond with anyone who doesn't possess a personality that naturally resonates with me.

And it's so frustrating, because I find most of the storylines (and characters) exciting and compelling, I'm just not getting enough of any of them to really get into it. They're like sub-stories, with some a vague (or not so vague) relation to a main story that's hinted at (ALL THE TIME), but won't be revealed till the final book AND IT IS SO ANNOYING.
Because am I supposed to read each chapter, because I care about said character and want to know what happens to them? Because I don't. You can't give me 10 pages for every 100 I read and expect me to emotionally bond with ALL (or any) of them. I'll hand it to Martin that he writes all of the characters well, despite them all being so different. They all have their own voices, and that is the mark of a great writer. It's not that the chapters are bad (although some are more exciting than others) it's that they're too short.

It's a matter of personal taste, of course. I'd simply prefer fewer PoV characters and longer PoV chapters, and if that lessens the epic scale of the series, then I'm okay with it.
I'll keep reading though, because Martin is an incredible writer, and I know hanging on will pay of a hundred times in the end, but right now I am very frustrated.

I have hopes that things change with A Feast For Crows and A Dance With Dragons, what with having to split the PoV's up - so more time for each character! - but perhaps things will already get better in the second half. Let's see!
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