R.'s Reviews > A Game of Thrones

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
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did not like it
Recommended for: nobody, for the love of God, Montresor

And now, the review that will win me no friends.

I did not, could not, make myself finish this book. I mark it read out of percentages -- I probably made it about 80% through before giving up in utter exhaustion.

Let me sum it up. This is a several-hundred-page incomplete story -- by which I mean "modern fantasy novel," of course -- no, let me try again. This is a medievalish soap opera about unlikeable (to varying degrees) people having transgressive sex (described too much to be classy, too little to include any actual seeming pleasure in any acts -- sexual or otherwise, now that I think of it) and maiming and killing (okay, I think there's some pleasure in the maiming and killing, actually) and being maimed and killed. And hating every minute of their hideous lives, which rubbed off on me, the reader, pretty easily.

This book contains, at best, trace elements of joy. It attempted to break my spirit. I fear I will hesitate to do medievalish SCA stuff because I might worry that I could never be happy again if it's like this book.

It's true. I really didn't like it. Martin's craftmanship is good, but so is the headsman's (ideally), and I don't want his services, either. And at least the headsman would be BRIEF about it.

Anyway, on the bright side, I'm saved an infinite number more pages hoping for a resolution only, perhaps, to have the author not get around to it before kicking off. Not that that ever happens in modern fantasy. (Sour grapes? No. I didn't try to finish that series, either. It didn't so much lack joy as any point at all. But I'm not reviewing it here.)

Okay, off to find something to cleanse the mental palate of the unspeakable ooze that got left there.
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Reading Progress

August 13, 2008 – Shelved
Started Reading
September 2, 2008 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-4 of 4 (4 new)

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message 1: by Cindy (new)

Cindy I thought this first one was fabulous. :-)

message 2: by R. (last edited Aug 27, 2008 04:50PM) (new) - rated it 1 star

R. Is that an indictment of later books? :)

message 3: by Cindy (new)

Cindy Alas, it is kind of. The third one became formulaic in its violence. (Kind of like how you know that Josh Whedon will kill off an important character who is sympathetic.) In the third book, each chapter has someone getting maimed in some peculiar way, and the people who are killed in earlier chapters turn out to be not dead. I found it tedious after awhile and put it down.

message 4: by Cindy (new)

Cindy Well, if only I'd had your foresight, but no.... it didn't occur to me that it was the never-ending story until most of the way through. And I thought there was going to be redemption coming.... that I can tell, there's never redemption in his world.

But really, fabulous craftmanship. Just didn't have a soul I thought.

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