Becky’s Twenty-Fifth Book Review: “A Clash of Kings” by George R. R. Martin

SPOILER ALERT: DO NOT READ IF YOU HAVE NOT READ “THE GAME OF THRONES” AND ARE PLANNING ON IT

Yesterday I finished reading “A Clash of Kings” which is the second book in the Game of Thrones series by George R. R. Martin. I was once again captivated by this world which Martin has created for his numerous characters. I really admire his work, I don’t know how he can possibly keep everything straight when he is writing! As mentioned in my previous post about the first book, Martin writes his novel from different perspectives. There are many main characters who tell the story from their eyes. I love this and I hate it. I love being able to learn so much more about each character and have the ability to see things through different perspectives. I think it keeps the book very interesting. What is frustrating is when there are cliff hangers at the end of a chapter and you have to wait for multiple characters to tell their story in order to find out what is happening next.

I continue to love the Stark family and hate the Lannister family. I believe that Martin writes the novel in the perspective of different families and different people within families so the audience can better understand each character and their motives but ultimately the Stark family is portrayed as “the good guys” and in turn, the Lannister family is portrayed as “the bad guys”.

Then there is Daenerys Targaryen. I am still unsure about her and how I feel about her. In the first book we see Daenerys as a victim more than anything else. She is a hostage under her evil brother’s care and it is only when she marries (originally for his benefit) that her life becomes something worth living. Daenerys is the last of the ‘dragon family’ and after her husband dies in the first book she decides that she is going to rule as queen. Being free from the dominance of her brother (who also died in the first book when Daenerys husband gave him a crown of molten gold) Daenerys uses all the strength that she has gained from the loss of her husband along with the legacy of her family to get what she wants. At the conclusion of the first book, Daenerys became mother to three dragons–the first dragons in hundreds of years. These dragons give her a power over others and she uses it to her advantage. There are times when I feel bad for Daenerys who has had a rough life and at the same time, she considers everyone the enemy, including the Starks. So I am still not sure how I feel about her.

(At the beginning of the second book, this is where the Stark’s wolves stand) In the first book the Stark family found a litter of Direwolves–one for each child and I really enjoy listening to how the children are connected to their own Direwolf. Sadly, Sansa’s wolf, Lady is dead (killed in the first book at the order of Queen Cersei, the evil bitch). Arya lost her wolf Nymeria and I am really hoping that she comes back into the picture. John (Eddard Stark’s bastard) took his wolf, Ghost with him to the north. Robb regularly bring his wolf, Grey Wind into battle. Bran is still protected by his wolf Summer as is Rickon by his wolf, Shaggydog. This is one of the coolest things that Martin does in his novel, is keep the wolves involved with the story.

Martin’s use of language and the creativity that has gone into developing this whole other world is just unmatched. I am almost reminded of what J.R.R. Tolkien did with creating his world but I found it overwhelming when I tried to read those books. Martin creates a new world, but it is easy to understand. I highly recommend reading these books!

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