A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, #5) A Dance with Dragons discussion


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Who thinks Daenerys should have flown back to Westeros a long time ago?

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Georgina I really like her but I wish she'd get a move on. And even though one of her dragons killed a child I felt that locking them up wasn't the right decision. She should have been trying to train them instead of neglecting them.


message 2: by Tim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tim Schultz I completely agree. Throughout the entire book that really annoyed me.


message 3: by Ruthie (last edited Sep 07, 2011 06:35PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ruthie Who thinks Daenerys should have flown back to Westeros a long time ago?
Well yeah, the only problem is she had to wait for her dragons to grow up. I think she should have gone straight back to Pentos once Illyrio sent those ships to retrieve her and there wait for her dragons to grow up and train them as they did. But alas, if that happened, she would never learn to rule. I guess you could say ruling Mereen was practice to ruling Westeros.

Georgie wrote: "I really like her but I wish she'd get a move on. And even though one of her dragons killed a child I felt that locking them up wasn't the right decision. She should have been trying to train them ..." <-- yes, i totally agree.


Benjamin Goshko I'd like to see her return to Westeros, but I'm in no hurry.

What annoyed me was that her character used to be clever and cunning - she conquered three cities by guts and guile. Yet in the latest book, she regresses and is more immature than she is in "A Game of Thrones," falling for the same husband trap she wisely avoided in Quarth. It's as if all of her wisdom evaporated and her fixation with Daario was so out of character and unbelievable it was nauseating.


James How to train your dragon Dany ?! 3 dragons in the whole world and no maester or anyone guiding her in the history/care of dragons ? ya right. that part bothered me. the whole Mereen story is boring except for Barriston the Bolds introspections. She is just kinda lounging in Mereen, but why ? i don't buy the slave angle.


Hazel She spent her entire life up until khal drogo being told she was nothing, useless, and pathetic. So, now she has people who love her, who would die for her. Why would she leave that behind? She knows she can't take them all to westeros. She also has a sense of responsibility for the people she has freed from slavery, and as such, won't abandon them to die of hunger, or to be re-enslaved, she wants to be able to take them all with her, and as that's impossible, she stays with them instead.

Also, she's what? 14, 15, an obsession with a charming man isn't that strange. Look how stupid people get over film stars and pop stars.


Wastrel But in her case, she wasn't just stupid about HIM, she just became stupid in general. [Similarly, Cersei has become more stupid with each book - in the first two, she was driven and bitter but pretty smart, had a dry sense of humour, and I actually quite liked her in an anti-heroine sort of way. By the fourth book, she was not only unbelievably stupid but also a certifiable dribbling loon]. But to be fair, Dany's been like that the whole time. Having re-read the first book recently: there's none of the TV series' sense of gradualy progression of character, she just flops about from imperious to meek, naive to wise, in a seemingly randomised way.

As for Meereen being practice: at this rate, she'll have to conquer ten or twelve more cities to practice on before she manages a vaguely tolerable degree of competence.

The whole of this book was a waste of space so far as Dany goes. If he needed her to end up in the Waste again, he should just have cold-opened in the Waste, and let her brood bitterly on what had happened. [Which wouldn't have taken much time, let's be honest, it wasn't that complicated].

In fact, I think he could just have had a gap in the narrative for, say, about five years or so. It would have given some characters time to age up, it wouldn't have made things appear so rushed, and it would have saved us a few thousand pages of filler - some of it was entertaining filler, but there was nothing there that couldn't have been pushed five years later, or else just told briefly in flashback.


Dave It is well past time for her story to move forward. Her story really hurt Dance with Dragons imho


Will IV Wastrel wrote: "[Similarly, Cersei has become more stupid with each book - in the first two, she was driven and bitter but pretty smart, had a dry sense of humour, and I actually quite liked her in an anti-heroine sort of way. By the fourth book, she was not only unbelievably stupid but also a certifiable dribbling loon]"

That's because Cersei relied on the men around her. Of coarse, she thought she was so strong and didn't need them so she fought them like enemies. Once they were out of the way, The kingdom starts to fall apart around her because she didn't realize how important those people were. So it's not that she was initially smart and has become dumb, she's always been stupid and short-sighted, it just didn't become apparent until later.


message 10: by Jack (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jack Thomas While it would have been the best decision for her to make, I don't feel like she acted out of character. She spent the whole book making bad decisions, but in the end... she's a teenager. And teenagers can be very stupid. It was within her character to act that way.

But of course, that doesn't mean I have to like it. That dang book was like a tornado of boring.


message 11: by FittenTrim (last edited Oct 22, 2011 02:02PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

FittenTrim I think we all need to face the growing probability that Dany will never go back to Westeros.

Blasphemous to write, I know. But she has no memory of Westeros: when she dreams of home, Dany doesn't dream of Westeros... she dreams of the Red Door of her childhood home in Braavos.

As you read these books, you get hit with Martin's not-so-subtle pounding of the fact that "birth right" and "claim to the throne" are mularkey.

Dany's other driving force is revenge. Does anyone in these books who desires "revenge" get it? No.
Did Visersys get revenge? No, trying to get revenge led to his death.
Did Robb get revenge for Eddard's death? No, the desire for revenge led to his death.
Will Arya kill anyone on her list? No, she didn't even kill The Hound when she had the chance.
Is it a coincidence that once Jon thinks about getting revenge on the Boltons... he's 'killed'?

At a certain point, Dany will come to the same belief herself: All the people she'd want revenge on: Robert, Ned, Tywin, etc. are dead. There's no one left to hate. And her desire to reclaim her "right" to rule is weak-sauce too.

Martin hasn't been stalling because he needs the dragons to get big... or because he needed the winter & white walkers to attack.

Martin has been "stalling" because it would take a person a while to give up on their childhood/lifelong dream. To come to the realization that "my need to reclaim my parents throne" is ego-driven not "manifest destiny".

It will probably frustrate readers (just as many other twists and turns already have), but it's the bittersweet ending Martin has talked of.


message 12: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV FittenTrim wrote: "Does anyone in these books who desires "revenge" get it? No."

False. Tyrion got revenge against his father and against Shae. Arya gets revenge against Weese, her abusive captor in Harrenhal. There have been a couple othors I'm forgetting, but the point is there are characters who get revenge.


message 13: by Duffy (last edited Oct 23, 2011 01:52AM) (new) - rated it 1 star

Duffy Pratt Littlefinger seems to be doing a pretty good job at getting revenge. And the Red Wedding was a nice revenge too.

Having said that, I agree that Dany will never get to Westeros, but that's because I think the odds are pretty slim that we will ever see volume 6, at least from Martin.


Wastrel I think it would be a good twist, plot-wise if Dany didn't come home. BUT: that would be a big problem structurally. Dany's story hasn't been half the story so far - he can't get away with saying "this is two stories side by side that don't relate" - Dany's story is so clearly subordinate in the attention given to it that it HAS to connect somehow, in the end, with the "real" story.

I think Dany invading Westeros is most likely. Two alternatives, however, are quite possible:
a) Dany doesn't come back, but her army does, lead by somebody else - that way, the story of creating her army still plays a role, even if she doesn't lead it
or
b) Dany decides not to invade Westeros - but then the Others invade and Dany decides to counter-invade, not to regain her throne but to defeat the Others.

I think b) would be best. Bonus points if Dany's victory lands her the throne anyway, but she's already dead or abdicated by then and the throne instead goes to Jon.


Irsyad Iskandar I think that Daenerys is going to conquer the eastern world while Aegon takes Westeros.


message 16: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV That seems most plausible to me.


message 17: by Duffy (new) - rated it 1 star

Duffy Pratt I think the Bolton's largely see it as revenge. Also, Theon's capture of Winterfell is a kind of revenge, as is Ramsay Bolton's treatment of Theon. These may be misguided. They may be gross over-reactions as you put it. And they may end up backfiring. But all of these are forms of revenge.


message 18: by FittenTrim (last edited Oct 23, 2011 10:10PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

FittenTrim I've been thinking more and more about Dany and Westeros. It's been Martin's decision not to bring Dany back to Westeros. I keep wondering: WHY? My best guesses:

A. It could be that he sees the dragons as so powerful that once they're there, it's game over; so it has to be at the end of the story. But that doesn't feel like Martin.

B. He's saving Dany & the Dragons in Westeros for the BIG BATTLE: the Dark Force of the White Walkers vs. the Dragons. But the big "good vs. evil" battle doesn't feel like Martin either

C. Dany doesn't get to Westeros until the land's been destroyed and ravaged by constant war. At that point, she doesn't need dragons... there's no army to fight. She takes over a ruined country. Feels more like Martin and his melancholy ending.

D. As I wrote earlier, he never intends Dany to get to Westeros. She grows up and moves on, forgetting petty revenge and birth rights. Would be an incredible let-down for readers, but isn't Martin trying to tell a more 'human' story? It's my "best guess" right now.

BUT LET'S MOVE AWAY FROM MY LARGER POINT, AND TACKLE THIS 'REVENGE-GATE' THAT I SEEM TO HAVE CREATED.

Will wrote: False. Tyrion got revenge against his father and against Shae. Arya gets revenge against Weese, her abusive captor..."

I could see it on Tyrion, but it's not like he plotted and plotted and got his revenge.

Do you consider Weese's death revenge? IMHO, it came across as "here's a douche, go kill him." :)


Duffy wrote: "Littlefinger seems to be doing a pretty good job at getting revenge. And the Red Wedding was a nice revenge too.

Ned had never seen Littlefinger before in his life... and Ned spent those few weeks he did know him trusting and trying to partner with him. I suppose you could argue it was revenge on Brandon, who he lost to fair & square. Or revenge on Cat for never loving him. Doesn't feel like real revenge to me.

I'll grant you the Frey's do get revenge on Robb for not keeping his word. Is it a betrayal or revenge?

Duffy wrote: "I think the Bolton's largely see it as revenge. Also, Theon's capture of Winterfell is a kind of revenge, as is Ramsay Bolton's treatment of Theon. These may be misguided. They may be gross over..."

The Boltons are getting revenge the Starks? I don't see it. Revenge on Theon? Umm, I may have forgotten, but I didn't think Theon treated him so bad. Ramsey was an a-hole to everyone, don't think revenge had much to do with it.

IMO, Theon takes Winterfell to impress his Dad, not so much because he wanted revenge on the Starks. And even if it is, Did Theon actually GET revenge? Bran & Rickon escaped unharmed, and his desire for revenge got him "killed" as much as Visersys and Robb's did.

I'll give it up to Casey who wrote my point better than I did: Revenge as a form of Justice does not appear to be part of Martin's M.O.


message 19: by A (new) - rated it 4 stars

A Dragons can not hold a country, she needs her army with her to enforce her reign. She needs her army because no dragon is going to protect her while she sleeps in her bed at night, or keep the poison out of her food.

She needs an army because everyone who sees those dragons who is not loyal to Dany already has designs on killing her and taking those dragons. As readers we know the bond those dragons have to Dany is too strong to for anyone to just "take" them, as we have already seen, but the people in Westeros have no idea or will be blinded by greed, just like everyone else thus far.

Finally she needs her army and her loyal followers because we have already seen throughout the story how important the placement of a loyal staff is in running the kingdom. She can't just come to Westeros with her three dragons, and shuffle the deck around and expect to be alive to reign very long - that hasn't worked for ANYONE so far.


Sathya Guys somehow i have this lingering feeling that GRRM will make Dany stay at Mereen till the last book only to give a glimpse of her landing at westeros at the last page of the last book, where she will promptly killed by Ser Barristan.


Steve No, I'm happy to let Mr. Martin write the book. I'm not an author so if he was writing it the way I thought it should be, it would be terrible.


Sathya Steve wrote: "No, I'm happy to let Mr. Martin write the book. I'm not an author so if he was writing it the way I thought it should be, it would be terrible."

True steve. But what we are asking is whether Mr.GRRM has the story already planned out or is he making stuff as he goes ? Because the part about mereen certainly sounded like it ?


JulieLaLa I also felt that Dany should have moved on to Westeros. I can't say I enjoyed her storyline. As to the future, I had thought that she and Jon Snow would become the new rulers of Westeros (I thought Jon was the product of rape by a Targaryan and Ned's sister).


message 24: by A (new) - rated it 4 stars

A JulieLaLa wrote: "I also felt that Dany should have moved on to Westeros. I can't say I enjoyed her storyline. As to the future, I had thought that she and Jon Snow would become the new rulers of Westeros (I thought..."

His mother is identified as a common woman who Ned fell in love with on the campaign with Robert Baratheon to destroy the Targaryan dynasty. Her name is even given in book 5 if I remember, but I can't quite recall what it was.

Either way I agree with you and other people that this story is heading to a meeting between Dany's Dragons and the white walkers in the north, and thus Jon will play an important role. What kind of song of ice and fire would it be otherwise?


Deale Hutton While I enjoy Danerys character, GO TO WESTEROS!!! What are you waiting for? No, don't say it develops the plot. MOVE ON!!


message 26: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV Sathya wrote: "True steve. But what we are asking is whether Mr.GRRM has the story already planned out or is he making stuff as he goes ? Because the part about mereen certainly sounded like it ?"

It's a combination of both. He knew going into it where he wanted his characters to be by the end of the series, but the path the characters take to get there changes as he writes and learns what his characters would do given the personality he gave them and the situation they're in.


Sathya But the thing i am most scared about is GRRM playing GOD with his characters. For eg . he sees that people start loving a character , so he builds that character up and brings down the axe on them . All major character deaths have followed this part. So the question should not be ""when Dany will fly to westeros? " but rather "IF Dany will go to westeros at all ?????????"


JulieLaLa A wrote: "JulieLaLa wrote: "I also felt that Dany should have moved on to Westeros. I can't say I enjoyed her storyline. As to the future, I had thought that she and Jon Snow would become the new rulers of W..."

Really? I always felt that the story of Jon's mother was a lie by Ned (because Robert loved Lyanna so much, but either she was raped by Targaryan and was ashamed or she loved the Targaryan and didn't want to break Robert's heart). Anway, neither here nor there. Get back to Westeros, Dany!


message 29: by Will (new) - rated it 4 stars

Will IV Sathya wrote: "But the thing i am most scared about is GRRM playing GOD with his characters. For eg . he sees that people start loving a character , so he builds that character up and brings down the axe on them ."

GRRM has also answered this concern before. He stated that he doesn't do that.


Shaunna Gathercole Willoughby Irsyad wrote: "I think that Daenerys is going to conquer the eastern world while Aegon takes Westeros."

That is what I'd like to see and eventually seeing that in the past Targaeryans married in the family, that Danny and Aegon would unite the countries.


message 31: by Sue (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sue I couldn't agree more. I get what Martin is trying to do & on some level I appreciate it. Both Dany and the dragons have to grow up, have to make mistakes and learn from them and logistically she really hasn't had enough muscle to do the job even with the dragons. That being said, the male-dominated world of Westernos just keeps getting worse and worse and all I want is for Dany to roll in and have her dragons light it all on fire. She needs to stop marrying random dudes, follow her heart and go kick some ass.


Deale Hutton Sue...all right!!! agree!!!


message 33: by Nick (last edited May 21, 2012 11:17AM) (new)

Nick Yeah I just finished the Dance With Dragons which is not too shabby since I started Game of Thrones late March of this year. Since I ended Storm of Swords I have been anxiously awaiting the time when Dany comes to Westeros and curb-stomps Cersei and the Lannisters w/ dragons. But I had to endure Feast of Crows which added little to the main plot except Cersei getting more corrupt, (Big Surprise!) and enduring Breanne Of Tarth wandering aimlessly on the Kings Road for like five or six chapters. He should have killed her off with Renly save us the time and boredom. Also in the 600 or so pages it had No Tyrion, No Jon, No Dany.

But I had hope still that Martin would bring her back to claim Westeros with her dragons to battle with the Lannisters and the worthless Greyjoys in Dance with Dragons (I mean it had "dragons" in the title right?) Then she once she united the realm in the "Winds Of Winter" she would fight the Others with Jon the "lost" targaryan.

Nope not even close.

I have a sneaking suspicion that Jon IS Ned's bastard at this point not to say GRRM didn't toy with the notion of making him the Targaeryan prince. Now though its seems he won't. Why else include the long lost Prince Aegon who now is going to steal Dany thunder who for four books was the "Last Targaeryan" and only dreamed of returning to Westeros.

Long story short, GRRM needs to make Dany get off her ass in Meeran (Really don't care what happens to the people and stuff of Estros) and head to Westeros to united the realm to fight the Others and fulfill prophecy even if GRRM needs to take a five year gap in the novel to let the characters grow as Wastrel suggested and do a quick recap if necessary. ( In Harry Potter, JKR didn't write about Harry sitting on his ass all summer did she?) I felt a gap would have been perfect after the Red Wedding and Joffrey's death in the Storm of Swords. However it could still work.

In the end though, I anxiously await the next book addicted as ever..

P.S he should make someone visit Valaryia seems too awesome of plot place as to leave sitting on the sidelines.


message 34: by Kirby (new) - added it

Kirby Well, until reading these theories, I'd still been convinced that Dany would eventually make it to Westeros. I thought that all of her experiences had been making her the perfect ruler for what the kingdom's going to need. She's lived with and loved the "savage" Dothraki, which would make her the perfect ruler to unite the "free folk" and the Westerosi against the Others. She's been learning about the advantages of the triarch (sorry, can't remember who rules that way), so she would see that the wisest choice would be to co-rule with Aegon and someone else, perhaps Jon. She's been through a lot and is able to actually empathize with those she rules over. She's also already learned of the dangers of the black magic that's gaining such a foothold in the realm.

But, now- I don't know. Maybe she never will make it.


message 35: by Dale (new) - rated it 3 stars

Dale Pearl My perfect ending to this book series would be for Bran to mind control the Black Dragon and eat Danerys. I just hate her character. She does next to nothing and is the charm and heroinne of the entire story. She freed a few slaves, big deal! How many Dothrakis did she lead to death by wandering through the desert? She is a useless and unexciting character in my opinion and they could take her out of the box and it would be substantially shorter and more entertaining.


Derek Brown Awesome comment Dale. I am not a Dany fan myself at all, but I wouldn't have seen the Bran mind control thing coming a mile off. I'd like to see that happen, and then Jon, Bran and Arya each get a dragon.


Michael Evans Danny would make a terrible ruler of Westeros, I'd much rather see Aegon somehow end up in power and see Danny dead at the hands of anyone... literally anyone.


Maxime YES! BUT Would you all agree that she has no real enemies in Westeros. Who will she attack? Most of the royal families are seeking for her support, only the Lannisters and the Tyrells are against her! But she can burn all of them with only Drogon!

So Martin is brewing something so she can have real enemies. Like the Others. Who had no particular purpose so far...


message 39: by Seed (new) - rated it 4 stars

Seed Ruthie wrote: "Who thinks Daenerys should have flown back to Westeros a long time ago?
Well yeah, the only problem is she had to wait for her dragons to grow up. I think she should have gone straight back to Pen..."


If Mereen was her practice for Westeros, she will get eaten alive by the Small Council alone.


message 40: by Eyehavenofilter (last edited Aug 01, 2012 09:49AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Eyehavenofilter Ok I just caught up? Whew. Lots of great plot ideas in here. But one that really stands out is the connection to the Song of Ice and Fire bit.that makes sense. But them methinks, GRRM always pulls the rug out from under us all, so, although id love to see a battle tween the white walkers ie the others, and the dragons...I don't know if that will happen. But it would be gobsmacking awesome! Wouldn't it?


message 41: by Seed (new) - rated it 4 stars

Seed GOBSMACKING!


Eyehavenofilter I'm laughing so hard I'm snorting right now!


Eyehavenofilter Today on the menu for the small council we have.... Oh dear....that can't be right?


message 44: by Brett (new)

Brett I think some of you are misled in the belief that Aegon is actually a Targaryn (pardon my spelling). In the fifth book I believe that magical person who keeps coming and giving Dany prophecies mentions a Mumours Dragon. I believe that Aegon is that Mumours dragon and that the Cheese prince has misled everyone about it upbringing. We all know that there several people who look similar to the Targaryns throughout the world. Even Cersie thought the bastard she made admiral of the fleets looked like Rheaghar.

On another note the real question I have is who will fly the dragons with Dany? I think one is likely to be Bran. My reasoning for that is because the three eyed crow says he will fly but will never walk again. I think this has to mean he will fly a dragon because if flying meant just taking over the mind of a crow then by that logic he could also walk (because he takes over the mind of Hodor, and his wolf). For that reason I really think that he will have a large roll with the dragons. I am also of the belief that Jon will ride the other dragon. I think the red priestess will bring jon back to life in the next book just because we have to much unanswered about his lineage. (for that one person who believed that we already know where he is from you are mistaken. There have been several "possibilities" 1) targaryn and stark child. 2) the sword of the morning's sister and 3) the fishing women from the sisters island. There has been no clarification of who the child actually is. But I believe #1 is the best possibility.

What does everyone else think?


Eyehavenofilter I'm thinking its about damned time for the next book! Oh... Am I impatient?
Yes I am... Tired of trying to read GRRM's mind....yes that as well... Ready for clarification? Hell yes!
( sobbing into my Kleenex..... Yesssssss!)


Roger Sathya wrote: "Steve wrote: "No, I'm happy to let Mr. Martin write the book. I'm not an author so if he was writing it the way I thought it should be, it would be terrible."

True steve. But what we are asking is..."


Sathya wrote: "Steve wrote: "No, I'm happy to let Mr. Martin write the ubook. I'm not an author so if he was writing it the way I thought it should be, it would be terrible."

True steve. But what we are asking is..."


Yes, he's making it up as he goes. He's much like Lucas, I think. Makes us think he's got this massive story all figured out and such when, in reality, he had ONE good story (first book for GRRM, Episode IV for Lucas) and is now scrambling to write the rest of the story.


Roger Will wrote: "Sathya wrote: "But the thing i am most scared about is GRRM playing GOD with his characters. For eg . he sees that people start loving a character , so he builds that character up and brings down t..."

Of course he does that!

Ned Stark
Khal Drogo
Jon Snow (though, he may not really die)
Robb Stark
Other people ...

He kills them off intentionally, trying to make the story "memorable" or something. Leaves all the boring characters alive and in stupid circumstances (i.e., Bran, Theon). Only, at this point it is not dramatic or shocking. Just waiting for dragon lady to get iced by her dragons in the next book so that her silly handmaiden can take over for her.

Sorry, sounds very bitter, eh? Yeah, this last book in the series was MASSIVEly disappointing to me.


Roger Brett wrote: "I think some of you are misled in the belief that Aegon is actually a Targaryn (pardon my spelling). In the fifth book I believe that magical person who keeps coming and giving Dany prophecies ment..."

I think Hodor is the one, true Targaryen. Incest would have a Hodorian effect. In the end, everyone will be dead and Hodor will find a pretty chair, it's just a little pointy ...


Whitney St. Marseille she should have went, now Aegon has a chance of beating her, although I think I would like to see them allied.


Eyehavenofilter Hmmm Hodor a Targarean ? That's a new and twisted thought!
How very GRRM of you!, Brett!


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