This is the first time I've read a book of nearly a thousand pages, and wished there was more when I reached the end. I had the feeling Mr. Martin had had to cut out some bits in order to fit this book into a publishable length. It's superb writing, with each character well rounded and acting in accordence with thier motivations and beliefs. No one is bad just because they are evil, and children act like children. I can't wait to read the next volume in this series.
ACoK is a tad longer than its predecessor, and filled with even more deception, betrayal, and intrigue. I really enjoy the point-of-view changes for each chapter, as they make the book feel like a soap opera, with some scenes playing out in chronological order and some happening simultaneously with other chapters.
This is every bit as absorbing as the first. It picks up where the first left off with a few new characters and the continuation of the Starks and Lannisters. Expect more emotionally wrenching events and not much justice. There are remaining loose ends that leave us needing to read the next.
The second book in a series always has a lot to live up to. And while I'm sure I'm in the minority here, I don't think this book managed it. It was still good, don't get me wrong but it just didn't have the same pull for me as the first book did, so it took me what felt like forever to get through it.
Additionally, there were new characters as narrators (which wasn't actually a bad thing, necessarily) and they didn't rotate in a pattern (some characters got more "airtime" than others... again not necessarily a bad thing if they were just more active) plus I was reading slowly... so sometimes when I got to a chapter I realized "wow, it's been FOREVER since I read about this person" and I couldn't remember what had happened to them before. So I spent a fair amount of time going back to find the last chapter for that person and skimming it to try to remember what was going on. Pretty annoying. But maybe less of a problem had I been reading at a better rate.
There were also a lot more battles in this book. Battle scenes that went on for entire chapters, and I just ... meh. I end up having to read and re-read a paragraph just because battle scenes don't interest me as much so I tune them out. I figure you could write an entire battle scene in a single paragraph (X and Y clans battled, person Z was injured, A and B died, C was captured by D and taken back to camp) and I would be just as happy.
But there were some great moments. Love loved all the scenes with Arya, same as last time. And am really starting to love Jon as well. Hated Theon here, but his chapters really added to the story, I think, especially the whole deal with Bran and Rickon. Smart (though jerk-ish) move on his part, and I think it will really affect the actions of the other Starks.
Another fantastic one from Martin. A Clash of Kings is bigger and more magical than the first book, with lots of action and several painful turns for some favorite characters. The ending isn't as strong as the first book, but it does leave you hungry for the next one. Martin is the savior of modern fantasy fiction.
This was the second of Martin's well-regarded "Song of Fire and Ice" series.
Generally speaking, it was good. The writing when considered narrowly, is quite good. Martin's style doesn't have much in the way of dialog, but I do like the scenes he paints. When considered broadly, he's created a sweeping pre-industrial political situation, and the interplay of different leaders and kingdoms is wonderful.
When considered somewhere in the middle, though, this is a ponderous book. That was a whole lot of pages to get through before the requisite second book cliffhangers at the end. And with a style that doesn't flow quite as well as other authors, it really took some determination on my part to actually finish. Part of me really wishes I didn't like the story, because at times I really wanted to just shelve the book.
Sword & light magic fantasy. Part two of Martin's ongoing epic follows up on a very wide cast of characters, including the randy dwarf, the smokin' dragon queen, the moody-bastard, etc. Fun stuff, even if Martin's language is a occasionally misogynistic for no good reason.
This is book two of one of my favorite series of all time. The characters are well developed-either you love them, despise them and sometimes your not sure. My favorite thing about all the books in this series is the ability of the author to surprise me. Some things you think are going to happen do, but there are a lot of times when you don't and I love that. It makes these books hard to put down. I would recommend this book and all the others to anyone. They are fantastic!
I finally started to get into the plot of the book but it was a little hard to follow the way he wrote the story. There was no flow to the story and I got lost a few times but I had a hard time putting it down. The characters are well developed which made the story interesting.
Shantal G. - , reviewed A Clash of Kings (Song of Ice and Fire, Bk 2) on
George RR Martin rules the fantasy genre. I haven't read any other fantasy which gives as much character development as this series. Another reviewer criticized the book because the characters weren't either all good or all bad. That's part of what makes these books so great-- the characters are fully dimensional, not just parodies of good and evil. These books are fabulous and I'm just dying waiting for the next one....
i found this to be a little slower than the 1st GRRM book. BUT you do get to know more about each character and their struggles within their situations, Lots of twists and turns and betrayal and death, But his writing is very entertaining! you just cant get to attatched to any particular character! because they may be dead next chapter! hahah
anyways this book was a little slower but still a great read! bigger than the 1st but definately not boring!
A more interesting read than the first book in the series, A Game of Thrones. The dwarf character, Tyrion, is still the same lovable smartass, and the elaborate scheming at court - as people connive and blackmail their way to power while avoiding getting killed by their frenemies - was flat-out fun to follow along with. Happily, other characters actually acquired some depth and seemed less cardboard than they were in the first book. For fast readers looking for a downtime read that isn't over as soon as you get started, it's definitely worth delving into.
The downside of having a series with multiple POVs: some of them are very, very, very, very, very, very boring. Furthermore, the pacing was uneven throughout: half of this very long book had gone by before I think something fairly exciting actually happened. Nevertheless, A CLASH OF KINGS is yet another astounding display of George R.R. Martin's unmatched skill at developing a world that is so complex, so full, you're willing to read more than five thousand-page-long books about it. Oh yeah, we CAN do that. Excellent.
The 2nd book in Martin's Song of Ice and Fire series is as good if not better than the first. A Clash Of Kings picks up where A Game Of Thrones leaves off. The Stark family has been split up with Robb leading an army in the North, Jon Snow serving the Night Watch at the Wall, Lady Catelyn with her father at Riverrun. Sansa is still betrothed to Joffrey in Kings Landing. Arya has escaped Kings Landing and is currently moving north trying to get back to Winterfell, which is where her brothers Bran and Rickon still are.
Since the death of King Robert, there are now 4 "kings" in the Seven Kingdoms. Robb Stark in the North, Lord Renly Baratheon and Lord Stannis Baratheon are all at war with each other as well as the current occupant of the Iron Throne King Joffrey Baratheon, who while still underage is being assisted by his mother Queen Cersei and his Uncle Tyrion the acting Hand of the King. At the same time, Danaerys is leading a small army of Dothrakis and planning to sail to the Seven Kingdoms and retake the Iron Throne herself....
All this and Jon Snow and the rest of the Night Watch continue to fight the "wildlings" and whatever other strange beings are beyond the Wall....
I've never read a more compelling tale. I'm #6 in line to read the latest novel-A FEAST FOR CROWS. My advice is to start with #1 and savor every page! It's as good as Lord of the Rings, better, really.
Great follow on to book one. Can't wait to read book 3! Have to buy it but I'll share it when I'm done.
Reading this series is a huge addition to my enjoyment of the season episodes which I have been watching via Net Flix.
Highly complex (possibly too complex) fantasy, with many plot lines interwoven. Keeping all the characters straight without notes is a real challenge. For my money, not as good as Tolkien or Donaldson, but OK.
Not worth the time! 950+ pages. It looks impressive, but the story didn't impress me. Gore, incest, and dwarf sex do not a good book make. There are very few "good" characters, most characters are in the gray area, or are "all bad." He seems to kill off the few "good" characters there are, or have such bad things happen to them that I didn't want to attach myself to them. If I'm not emotionally invested in the characters, I can't like the book.