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  1. #46
    Illustrious Gambler saintjon's Avatar
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    Massive spoilers like the thread title says.

    The only consolation as far as Meereen is concerned is that the city is devolving into what it always was at heart, a plague-ridden smoking pit of death and chaos. (p.s. the Green Grace is the Harpy IMO)

    I thought the book was a great and enjoyable trip to a disappointing end. I don't think Arya was with Varys per se, I think she skinchanged herself into Mr. One-Eared tomcat though (on purpose or not?)

    I loved the Arya chapters but the way he has written these Faceless Men kind of takes the fun out of becoming a super-assassin. I only want her to become Faceless Arya so she can go out and rape some face as it were, and these goddamn priests are hell-bent on beating the personality out of her. How much longer before she says hell with this and leaves? Hopefully not much longer at all.

    Good theories about Jon skin-changing into Ghost for survival, I just figured that Melisandre would fire-kiss him or otherwise heal him and I think Ghost is the missing link of how to bide time until she can do it uncaught.

    I REALLY like the potential presented by this though. When your black brothers literally knife you in the back are you still a black brother? This might be the liberation of Jon we're seeing. Rob's will is still out there somewhere.

    What the hell happened to Davos? Some of my favourite chapters, awesome build-up with Manderly in the second or third one or whatever and then he's off again.

    I think Ramsay is as full of **** as he usually is. People can't see 3 feet in front of their faces with the snowstorm, I bet he sent that raven without even know who won or much of anything beyond his capture of Mance. If he crushed Stannis that bad how could Theon and Jeyne have gotten away? He might have Lightbringer (that would definitely embolden him to the lie I think he's told) but I really doubt that Stannis is dead. Ramsay is one of those characters who always brings my favourite Dark Tower quote to mind: My first thought is that he lied with every word.

    Jon Connington gay: are you sure? I guess he was awfully devoted to Rhaegar. He sounded like he would be willing to wed if not for the greyscale though. Great new character though I enjoyed his stuff a lot. Reminded me of a character from Samurai X kind of.

    Varys gets 0 logos points. If he wants anarchy so bad all he has to do is fire up the propaganda machine and ramp up the Joff, Tommen and Myrcella are all born of incest messages. Killing Kevan Lannister seems like a good move in that direction but certainly not the most direct course. At some point Varys has to GO though, busy little bee that he is. Some of his plans make about as much sense as G. Gordon Liddy's.

  2. #47
    The Green Grace as the Harpy would make sense. After all, she's the one who was pushing so heavily for Dany's marriage to Hizdahr zo Loraq in the first place.

    Varys has been pulling for the Targaryens from the beginning. When Stark and Lannister were the biggest players, he worked to set them against each other...now Lannister and Tyrell are the most prominent, so Varys is working to pit them against each other. If Joff, Myrcella, and Tommen becomes too widely believed it could weaken Lannister too quickly. I think he is telling the truth when he says he's doing what is best for the realm. Or what he perceives as best for the realm, anyway. Unfortunately his path is just as bloody as any other, and probably more so than some.

    On an unrelated note, was anybody else hoping that Eddard would mention Jon's mother when Bran was watching through the weirwood?

  3. #48
    Illustrious Gambler saintjon's Avatar
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    My big thing from that Bran chapter: was Bloodraven a "snow" bastard? Three weirwood arrows is very familiar.

    re Varys: In book one he pushed very hard for the more peaceful resolution that Ned confess and take the black, which would have defused the war. At the time it seemed he was unimpressed as anyone that Joff then went and killed him.

    So thanks to Wert about the boat name implication, who do you think the prophecy was warning against though? Jorah, Tyrion, Moqorro or all 3? I think the red priest myself.

    Is it wrong that I kind of like Victarion? The guy's the perfect naval officer really, he only has enough imagination to deal with the problem at hand and he's brutally methodical.

    I kind of liked seeing Theon go through hell. TBH I REALLY liked it. Piece of crap. I love the positioning of him being just the guy Asha needs to dethrone Euron though.

    Lastly for this post, Bran= strongest green seer ever? He's talking it up with everyone in the godswood when his mentor said it wasn't really possible. He just started too!
    Last edited by saintjon; July 24th, 2011 at 11:07 AM.

  4. #49
    Reek rhymes with geek
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    While it wasn't 1-3, I still enjoyed the book - even reading during lunch at work (which I nver do). It's as much a transition book as AFFC, and the amount of content really drags out the pace, or, conversely, heightens the tension for the next 2-5 year wait.

    Is there anyone who does not have intentions of marrying Dany? If we have a whole new host of suitors in Winds of Winter, I will expect another Red Wedding.

    I've had enough of Mereen and Slaver's Bay. Dany needs to wipe out the whole lot of her opponents, pick up the Unsullied with her Khalissar, marry Victarion, and sail right into King's Landing.

    Tyrion's obsession with whores and crossbows went on about 2 chapters longer than necessary. As did Dany feigning ignorance and claiming "to be just a young girl" - sounded more like "I'm just a simple country lawyer..."

    I don't see there being any dnager of Tyrion getting Grayscale, even though he keeps poking his finger tips. Connington is already playing out that subplot, no need to burden the half-nose Imp with any more disfigurements.

  5. #50
    Registered User Werthead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by saintjon View Post
    My big thing from that Bran chapter: was Bloodraven a "snow" bastard? Three weirwood arrows is very familiar.
    Not sure what you mean here. Bloodraven was the bastard son of King Aegon IV by Mylessa Blackwood of the Riverlands (Tytos Blackwood, who appears in Jaime's ADWD chapter, is descended from her brother, we presume). He wasn't from the North. After Aegon V came to power, he was packed off to the Wall in chains, but within a few years of arriving he had become Lord Commander of the Night's Watch.

    re Varys: In book one he pushed very hard for the more peaceful resolution that Ned confess and take the black, which would have defused the war. At the time it seemed he was unimpressed as anyone that Joff then went and killed him.
    If you remember Illyrio and Varys's conversation, the problem wasn't that there was going to be war but war 'now', months before Drogo was going to move on Westeros. So Varys was desperately trying to delay the Lannister-Stark conflict until Drogo was in a position to move. In fact, it's been strongly suspected that Varys approved of the attempt on Daenerys on the grounds it would deliberately get Drogo moving faster.

    So thanks to Wert about the boat name implication, who do you think the prophecy was warning against though? Jorah, Tyrion, Moqorro or all 3? I think the red priest myself.
    Moqorro. Jorah is likely one of the three betrayals Dany has already faced and Tyrion is the lion in the same prophecy as the seneschal thing. Seems to be no need to warn against Tyrion twice.

    Jon Connington gay: are you sure? I guess he was awfully devoted to Rhaegar. He sounded like he would be willing to wed if not for the greyscale though. Great new character though I enjoyed his stuff a lot. Reminded me of a character from Samurai X kind of.
    Yes. When Rhaegar's going on about how beautiful Connington's lands are, I think you can see it there. The really interesting - and tragic - question would be if Rhaegar returned his feelings. What if his marriage to Elia and then what happened with Lyanna was down to him wantint to fulfil the prophecy and he didn't have much interest in women at all? That would be a very impressive subversion of what we've been led to believe to this point.

    More prosaically (spoilers, I guess, from outside ADWD):

    Spoiler:
    GRRM confirmed that Connington is gay at a signing.

  6. #51
    Humble Grifter Luya Sevrein's Avatar
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    Oh heck. Is everyone doing the 'WAIT, ONE OF MY ESTABLISHED CHARACTERS IS SUDDENLY GAY!' thing, now?

    I'd never thought it was a purely defined thing in GRRM's world, really. People ask 'Would you rather a boy?' pretty casually.

    But then I'm still reading, I'm just moaning. ;D

  7. #52
    I just finished. This series is going down the same path as the Wheel of Time: Author gets way too bogged down in unnecessary detail and barely moves the plot forward. I wait years between book 3 and 4 and I get a massive pile of "Blah." I wait 5 more years for this book and i get a massive pile of "Meh."

    Of course, GRRM's decline started after book three, whereas jordan lasted until about book 6. I vote to have Brandon Sanderson finish this series.

    Good thing the series is on HBO since they cancel their shows after 2-3 seasons. This series had so much promise when it started with a large, interesting cast and a shocking disregard for convention. Thankfully, Erickson fulfilled the promise of this series through the Malazan books. This series needs to be put to rest ASAP.

  8. #53
    Humble Grifter Luya Sevrein's Avatar
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    I love GRRM's writing, I could read about hsi world for years, which is odd since that's usually the part I don't like. He is a master of character and history and just general... Wow.

    But I do agree, after quarter of the book down, I just feel like things are dragging on. All I've heard, too, is that about... one plot strand get's sorted out (vaguely) and another a tiny amount, yet two-to-three new ones are introduced.

    Heck. D:

  9. #54
    Quote Originally Posted by StoneBurner View Post
    I just finished. This series is going down the same path as the Wheel of Time: Author gets way too bogged down in unnecessary detail and barely moves the plot forward. I wait years between book 3 and 4 and I get a massive pile of "Blah." I wait 5 more years for this book and i get a massive pile of "Meh."

    Of course, GRRM's decline started after book three, whereas jordan lasted until about book 6. I vote to have Brandon Sanderson finish this series.

    Good thing the series is on HBO since they cancel their shows after 2-3 seasons. This series had so much promise when it started with a large, interesting cast and a shocking disregard for convention. Thankfully, Erickson fulfilled the promise of this series through the Malazan books. This series needs to be put to rest ASAP.
    The thing is though, that so much went down in books 2 and 3 especially there was simply no way Martin could have such an eventful follow up book (ADWD and AFFC essentially being one book), all the characters needed a chance to regroup from the red wedding and the battle of the green fork and the red river and the invasion of the wildlings and the ruin of the Stark house and the death of Prince Oberyn and Tywin Lannister...A LOT happened. It had to cool down at some point, everyone had to have a chance to lay their new seeds. And now it seems like they'll hatch, and everything will get into gear again in the two final volumes. To me, GRRM hasn't made a misstep in any real regard except in taking so damn long to write the books. These two books needed to be slower, but I've enjoyed them (haven't completed ADWD yet but I am loving it regardless) and I'm excited to see the next two. I think Martin is too good a writer for this to be anything other than a needed wind down, and he would have learned from Robert Jordan's mistakes surely, I think many epic fantasy writers did. Not many huge spanning series' like ASOIAF existed back then, Robert Jordan, to my knowledge was one of the first, and didn't have other big series' to learn from like Martin and Erikson and Carey and Sanderson do. Your apprehension isn't unwarranted, but I do believe you'll be proven wrong for those reasons.
    Last edited by TooNice; July 25th, 2011 at 04:52 AM.

  10. #55
    Saturn Comes Back Around Evil Agent's Avatar
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    I'm halfway through the book.

    I have to say I'm still loving it... and it keeps getting better.

    Just read an amazing Bran chapter. His POV has been my favourite of the book, by far. I've also been enjoying the Davos chapters (which happily confirmed my theories regarding Manderly!), and am utterly disturbed and heartbroken over the Reek chapters.

    Also, really loving the worldbuilding (up in the North, and on Essos). Combined with AFFC (which expanded upon the Iron Islands and Dorne), I'm starting to think that the great contribution of AFFC/ADWD is the worldbuilding.

    If I had to critique the book so far, I'd say it's still a little on the slow side... but that doesn't stop me from enjoying the hell out of each chapter. It's sooo good to be reading GRRM again.

  11. #56
    I can't pick a favourite POV this one, I'm enjoying them all a great deal except Dany's. Typically I favor Jaime, Jon and Tyrion's POV's, but Tyrion's haven't been as good this time as it's a little on the slow side. However now that *half way point spoiler* Jorah Mormont is with him I'm loving them.

  12. #57
    Omnibus Prime Moderator PeterWilliam's Avatar
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    I finally finished it last night. I really enjoyed the Arya chapters. While it is slower in terms of earth shattering action and consequences, it is a transition book. With that as its purpose, I thought it was rather good. FWIW, I am not necessarily a GRRM fan. I read the series, buy it in hardcover and have plans to eventually re-read them (have only ever re-read Tolkien, Donaldson and Williams in my entire life). I would say that GRRM has arranged events well for the final mad rush.

    It's interesting to note that up-thread someone mentioned the series taking 8 books. That was my first thought upon finishing last night. Also...

    • Agreed. Jon's not dead.
    • While Jon wasn't born of the Dayne woman, I still don't believe the story about the fisherman's daughter. I'm still waiting on some clarification of the time Rhaegar had with Lyanna.
    • Still not a fan of Stannis or Theon
    • Still really like Arya, Varys and Mopatis
    • Trapped wondering what Mopatis-Varys endgame is. It certainly involves war and bringing a Targaeryn, or two, to Westeros.
    • Can't wait for updates on Jaime and Samwell stories


    Can anyone tell me the difference between the White Walkers and the Others? Is there a difference? Is it a mindless epidemic/zombie-esque apocalypse? Are the Others a sentient species with a particular goal? That is the only part of the story I found frustrating as the story seemed to go one way, then the other on that issue.

  13. #58
    Registered User Werthead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterWilliam View Post
    While Jon wasn't born of the Dayne woman, I still don't believe the story about the fisherman's daughter. I'm still waiting on some clarification of the time Rhaegar had with Lyanna.
    I think ADWD leaves very little chance of the Rhaegar & Lyanna-as-Jon's-parents theory not being true. If it isn't true, then GRRM may have to pull something out of thin air to explain it, which won't be credible. I know people are complaining it's too obvious, but it's the only conclusion that the evidence now favours, and I doubt he can present an alternate theory which is credible (and, if the series stays at 7 books, that means there is a solid chance we'll find out Jon's parentage in the next one, as he said long ago that we'd learn the truth in the penultimate or final volume).

    Can anyone tell me the difference between the White Walkers and the Others? Is there a difference? Is it a mindless epidemic/zombie-esque apocalypse? Are the Others a sentient species with a particular goal? That is the only part of the story I found frustrating as the story seemed to go one way, then the other on that issue.
    'White Walkers' and 'Others' are two phrases referring to the same creatures, a race of apparenty intelligent, sentient beings. The zombie wights are their minions.

  14. #59
    Illustrious Gambler saintjon's Avatar
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    I really don't care if Connington is gay I was just curious. He was my favourite new character of the book! I'm probably going to change my Steam name to Con Jonnington.

  15. #60
    Reek rhymes with geek
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterWilliam View Post
    While Jon wasn't born of the Dayne woman, I still don't believe the story about the fisherman's daughter.
    Can we call it a Red Herring?

    Trapped wondering what Mopatis-Varys endgame is. It certainly involves war and bringing a Targaeryn, or two, to Westeros.
    I wonder about Varys' statements about entitlement to the throne. Viserys certainly would have been worse than Joff. Does the eunuch not then support Dany? Or was she one potential alternative out of a few, and even then best used as a distraction (until she rose in the rankings by hatching some dragons)?

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