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Review: A Clash of Kings

February 20, 2012

Author: George R.R. Martin
Title: A Clash of Kings
Published: 1998
Pages: 752


This is the second part in George R. R. Martin’s wildly successful series, A Song of Ice and Fire. It starts off pretty much where Game of Thrones left off: the Kingdom is turmoil, the two brothers of King Robert are vying for the throne and Robb has proclaimed himself King of the North. Plus, other stuff as well.

I was slightly disappointed in this book. It often bordered on the tedious, far too bloated and it groaned under its own weight. There’s just too much waffling and it slowly dwindled my interest. The middle was a bit of a slog to get through. Also, Martin has a tendency to repeat information that the reader obviously knows. It comes downright silly when a relative thinks of their brother as Jon Snow, bastard brother, now at the Night Watch. Who thinks like that?

Saying that, I did enjoy it. If I hadn’t I wouldn’t have bothered reading it. There are moments of wit and bravado. There are times when you just can’t stop turning the pages, and it’s those moments when you start to enjoy the novel. If the book was halved then it would have been much tighter. Cut out all of Catelyn’s ‘oh noes Ned!’ cut Arya’s slog through pages and pages of dullness in half, cut down the Onion Knight’s love letters to Stannis and probably add more Tyrion (you just got to love a character who is so gleefully in it for themselves) . I’ll probably just watch the television series rather than reading the books. Unless, I start the third one and can’t stop reading it.


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