March and February have been really uninspired months for me in terms of books. I started two different books and plowed through only to toss them aside midway because I just couldn’t get into them. Then I spent a lot of time playing Animal Crossing instead.
I just wanted to read something I knew I would enjoy; so I took the plunge and picked up George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones for a second time. It was just as good the second time around, but instead of feeling ripped up and down by all the twists, this time I savored it…like a fine vintage from the Summer Isles.
This month, I’m going to change my format for this particular post (since normally I give a brief synopsis and “yay” or “nay”), and instead first judgingly point my finger at you if you’ve only watched the HBO show. Anyone who’s read the books can tell you they are SO MUCH BETTER than the show (not to say the show isn’t entertaining). Fundamentally, there is no way the series could cover all of the content of the books in 12 episodes a season, unless they went into 30 seasons or something. So when I had friends who were like, “OMG THEY KILLED ROBB!” the rest of us were rolling our eyes.
Recently a friend of mine complained, “But the books look so long!” and she’s not wrong, but if you enjoy the show – why wouldn’t you want to have more enjoyment that started the whole thing?
Anyway – I digress. Let me explain why you should also read more than the Ice & Fire series, if you’re already a fan.
During my first year of teaching, I was reading a lot of sci-fi and horror anthologies. I’m a fan of short stories because if it sucks, you only have a few more pages to go, and if it rules, you’ve just found a new author you can explore. I honestly don’t even remember where I first read Martin’s Meathouse Man (which has also been made into a graphic novel), but instantly I knew it was one of the best short stories I had ever read, and it totally resonated with me for weeks.
To which I discovered Game of Thrones…
In the morning on the way to work, I would say to my carpool buddy, “So I’m reading this book…it’s like fantasy medieval, sort of, with knights and kings and wolves!” I distinctly remember her raising a super skeptical eyebrow. And while reading it before bed at night, I literally remember putting the book down in my lap simply to process it’s awesomeness.
Once I ripped my way through the books that were released, I moved back to his other short stories and novellas, like In the Lost Lands (which has recently been optioned for a movie starring Mila Jovovich!), and Fevre Dreams. The list goes on and on…
So basically what I’m saying is,
#1 – IF YOU LIKE THE SHOW, READ THE DAMNED BOOKS!
#2 – IF YOU”RE BITCHING THAT THE NEWEST GOT BOOK ISN’T RELEASED YET, PICK UP HIS OTHER AWESOME WORK.
However, I will end here, saying there is one special thing that the show did better than the books: