Jump to content



Photo
- - - - -

George Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire BOOK Discussion thread-Book 5 out July 12th


  • Please log in to reply
283 replies to this topic

#241 Clak

Clak

    Made of star stuff.

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:33 PM

I think I'm just going to enjoy the show. ;)
Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. -George Carlin

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” -Mark Twain

“When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -Jonathon Swift

#242 pippin

pippin

    CAGiversary!

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 03 April 2012 - 09:39 PM

Personally, I was glad to see Baelish put in his place. The fact that Cersei responded to him by showing him what power really is doesn't exactly change much. We already knew that she is more powerful than him, it's just that he tried to overstep her and she wasn't going to let that happen.

#243 crunchb3rry

crunchb3rry

Posted 04 April 2012 - 01:59 AM

(as crunchberry aka Mrs. Jorah Mormont notes).


Lol, careful, you're showing a little too much interest in Baelish...

I really don't think they need to emphasize Cersei's power anymore. Certainly not after having a baby killed semi-onscreen. Where the first guy didn't even want to do that heinous shit, so the guy she warned about not doing his job had to do it himself.

I think maybe the whole thing was setup for events down the road that won't be revisited until then. Especially when they introduced BOOK SPOILER
Spoiler
.

#244 dothog

dothog

    n ur race snakin mai kart

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 10 April 2012 - 07:29 PM

Not a fair analogy as those are still both songs when you're talking about cover versions.

Books and tv/movies are different media so I don't mind changes and kind of like seeing what a director/producer/screenwriter changes. Some are good and some are bad of course as with any change/adaptation.

But I generally do a good job of enjoying shows/movies without thinking much about what they changed and whether I liked the book version more etc. as I just view them as separate entities as much as I can so I can just enjoy each on their own merits.


Yeah, I got a little goofy there. Out of hand, even.

I realize the show is good fun for people. I suppose it's just that I don't like the two existing in the same space for fear that one (the TV show) will somehow influence outcomes in the other (the books). I realize this is unlikely.

In any case, I'm glad there's a thread for the show and one for the books.

Personally, I was glad to see Baelish put in his place. The fact that Cersei responded to him by showing him what power really is doesn't exactly change much. We already knew that she is more powerful than him, it's just that he tried to overstep her and she wasn't going to let that happen.

You're confusing the books and the show. The characters are not facsimiles. Cersei Lannister in the books is not in a position to overpower anyone except for peons. Anyone with a modicum of awareness is already a step ahead of Cersei. This is not my opinion, this is stated explicitly by Tyrion, Varys, etc.
Posted ImagePosted Image

#245 crunchb3rry

crunchb3rry

Posted 10 April 2012 - 09:56 PM

Cersei Lannister in the books is not in a position to overpower anyone except for peons. Anyone with a modicum of awareness is already a step ahead of Cersei. This is not my opinion, this is stated explicitly by Tyrion, Varys, etc.


True. In the books (which has been dealt with a little, probably more to come on the show) her father was really the one in power. After Robert died her son became King, but she couldn't even control him, so Tywin temporarily passes his Hand duties to Tyrion to keep Joffrey in line. I think the show is just emphasizing how much power Cersei *thinks* she has, then you've got a scene where Tyrion just up and sends that guy to the wall, replacing him with Bronn. One second Bronn is just a sellsword, the next second Bronn controls the guards in the same way Cersei did against Littlefinger.

That was one of the few real big events of book 4, that
Spoiler


I suppose it's just that I don't like the two existing in the same space for fear that one (the TV show) will somehow influence outcomes in the other (the books). I realize this is unlikely.


I'm pretty sure the show will never influence the book. If anything it's the other way around. Martin has revealed the full story to a select few show creators. You've got some scenes put in the show that were dealing with stuff that is being dealt with in future books. Such as
Spoiler

Edited by crunchb3rry, 10 April 2012 - 10:07 PM.


#246 evantrees

evantrees

    rejection and peace tiramisu

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 10 April 2012 - 11:30 PM

There is one word in there that I find makes it hilarious.

#247 Clak

Clak

    Made of star stuff.

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 11 April 2012 - 03:12 AM

I loved that scene from last episode in Littlefinger's brothel, where he wipes the woman's mouth right before she kisses dude. The look on Littlefinger's face was priceless. He's still the man, even if he does have to let some people think they have more power.
Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. -George Carlin

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” -Mark Twain

“When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -Jonathon Swift

#248 Clak

Clak

    Made of star stuff.

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 07 June 2012 - 06:43 PM

Fuck Dorne, and Fuck the Martells. God this shit is boring...
Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. -George Carlin

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” -Mark Twain

“When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -Jonathon Swift

#249 dothog

dothog

    n ur race snakin mai kart

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:23 AM

Lots of GRRM news lately. First he reveals the word Brienne yelled out, then he gives a solid indication of his internal deadlines for the last books (he's feeling the heat from the softcore series already).

I'm not including the Brienne reveal. A google search will get you there. Not trying to be a dick, just don't think spoiler tags are sufficient.
Posted ImagePosted Image

#250 Anexanhume

Anexanhume

Posted 12 June 2012 - 05:08 PM

You could double wrap the spoilers.

Still, 6 years for two books is incredibly ambitious given his pace and other commitments. If he pushes himself like that, quality could suffer. Plus, they'll basically be writing scripts off of edited manuscripts for the last season. Would be a hell of a cross promo to release the book right before the show, though.

#251 Strell

Strell

    LOBSTERS!....IN MY PANTS!

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 12 June 2012 - 06:05 PM

quality could suffer.


I barely had the strength to quote this part.


Posted Image
Aminal Crossing: Strell@Tazmily, 2836-3590- 0819

"One of the more...amusing screwballs around here..." - shrike4242
Join the El Hoardo Fan Club!
Threadless.com puts the fun back in laundry!...lafundry! HOORAY! (Referral link)
Wii Obscure FAQ and Facts Thread [Version 2.0] ::: Wii Shop Thread ::: DSi Shop Thread


#252 Anexanhume

Anexanhume

Posted 12 June 2012 - 06:31 PM

I barely had the strength to quote this part.


How do you think it felt writing it? The only thing that's scarier than him not finishing it is him finishing it shittily (see last two Dune books Herbert's son wrote).

#253 Strell

Strell

    LOBSTERS!....IN MY PANTS!

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 12 June 2012 - 06:44 PM

How do you think it felt writing it?


This is an extremely complex question, all things considered, and I could write pages on what I think may or may not have been in his head (and may still be).

In short - as I've expressed here - I think he lets his exposition get in the way, and is now trying to bolster his writing to live up to the label of "high fantasy" by creating a juggernaut that has since broken free of his control. This would explain a lot of things - the droves of characters, this need to create history and constantly remind everyone about it, the endless details, etc.

Part of that is acceptable, but the majority of it does - in my opinion - make his writing suffer, because now he's got to inch all these tiny extrapolations forward, and if any one of them gets left behind, it starts dragging all the others backward, and then you functionally can't progress.

See also: Stannis's march toward Winterfell. That's a good allegory and it's right there.


Posted Image
Aminal Crossing: Strell@Tazmily, 2836-3590- 0819

"One of the more...amusing screwballs around here..." - shrike4242
Join the El Hoardo Fan Club!
Threadless.com puts the fun back in laundry!...lafundry! HOORAY! (Referral link)
Wii Obscure FAQ and Facts Thread [Version 2.0] ::: Wii Shop Thread ::: DSi Shop Thread


#254 Anexanhume

Anexanhume

Posted 12 June 2012 - 07:08 PM

This is an extremely complex question, all things considered, and I could write pages on what I think may or may not have been in his head (and may still be).

In short - as I've expressed here - I think he lets his exposition get in the way, and is now trying to bolster his writing to live up to the label of "high fantasy" by creating a juggernaut that has since broken free of his control. This would explain a lot of things - the droves of characters, this need to create history and constantly remind everyone about it, the endless details, etc.

Part of that is acceptable, but the majority of it does - in my opinion - make his writing suffer, because now he's got to inch all these tiny extrapolations forward, and if any one of them gets left behind, it starts dragging all the others backward, and then you functionally can't progress.

See also: Stannis's march toward Winterfell. That's a good allegory and it's right there.


I'm not quite sure what you mean. I think Martin is scared of the high fantasy label because it is ridden with tropes and other expected things he doesn't want or feels he needs to conform to.

In regards to the level of detail he provides, that's a bit of personal preference there. I certainly don't mind the level of detail in describing the food, for instance. But I could also definitely do without. However, I appreciate the level of detail when it comes to characters or back stories. I also think it adds to the story. So many little nuggets in there to gain a greater understanding of character motivations, pick up on foreshadowing and other things that enrich the story in my opinion. Because of it, every character feels "real" and you can sympathize and understand their position, even if you don't regard them as good or a hero in the traditional sense. I get annoyed with Dany's chapters not because of poor writing, but because I think she's being a moody little indecisive bitch. But it's with that repetition and living inside her head that I can be driven to have that opinion about her that may be changed completely later. Martin could have simply glossed over her for this book and we wouldn't lose much story wise. But then the opinion would be "What's happening with Dany? Why is Martin developing her more" versus "I don't like reading Dany's chapters. I don't like how she's acting."


I'm not sure what you mean about Stannis.

#255 dothog

dothog

    n ur race snakin mai kart

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 12 June 2012 - 08:23 PM

I think the level of exposition is worthwhile. More often than not, it is very rewarding. I think anex has hit it on the nose, the characterization is so strong in the series. It's the appeal of ASOIAF. You can't separate it from the exposition.

I disagree strongly that the level of exposition, or any other facet of his writing, is an affectation to meet some genre-imposed ideal. GRRM is definitely going for medieval fantasy, but not because he's concerned with the genre so much as he enjoys the medieval setting, the customs, creating escutcheons and family words and court intrigue and whatnot.

In fact, he's been happily operating within multiple genres for decades, and because of that I can't imagine how you can assert that he's deliberately trying to "live up" to anything. People at the level he operates are way, way past that. If we're talking about the Kvothe author and his wish fulfillment protagonist, that level of author is definitely trying to "live up" to a genre. But GRRM is too old and too good for that bullshit. He's a pro.

This isn't to say I don't have my issues with certain chapters, or that I believe the so-called Meerenese knot ever really existed, but it's inconsequential.

As for the series being out of his control, I agree only in the sense that he underestimates the amount of space he'll need to cover all the multi-layered threads in his head. I don't think that much of the layering and exposition merely "comes out on the page," as they say. I think that's one of his skills that's hard for us mortal planners to understand: the dude just has a lot of strands in his head. Lots of ins and outs.

Anyhow, if he falls ill and/or dies, nobody's finishing it for him.
Posted ImagePosted Image

#256 Anexanhume

Anexanhume

Posted 12 June 2012 - 10:10 PM

Anyhow, if he falls ill and/or dies, nobody's finishing it for him.


The books. The show is its own beast and Dave & Dan know how it ends.

#257 Strell

Strell

    LOBSTERS!....IN MY PANTS!

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 12 June 2012 - 11:05 PM

I'm not quite sure what you mean. I think Martin is scared of the high fantasy label because it is ridden with tropes and other expected things he doesn't want or feels he needs to conform to.


My point is that when you start getting accolades, people start expecting more of you. For the most part, he's avoided a lot of the usual pitfalls, so he gets some credit there.

characters


It's all fine and good until you set up nearly two books full of 1) uninteresting characters and/or 2) made up characters that no one gives a shit about, which he just did. I'm being a bit unfair/hyperbolic here, yeah, but I can't stand the on-the-fly generation.

Did anyone really give a shit about Quentyn?
Does anyone give a shit about the people Tyrion ends up running around with?
Did Dany do a damn thing AT ALL in the fourth or fifth books?

I'm not sure what you mean about Stannis.


In the fifth book, he begins a huge march in the dead of winter, and people are dropping like flies. Pack animals run off and they have to chase them down. People are miserable without food and trodding around in unforgiving wilderness. What should have taken X days (I want to say ten) ends up becoming thirty, and then Martin didn't even finish saying what happened to them.

I.e., a really good allegory for the way the story is going so far - a bunch of details all bungling over each other and halting the whole story because oh look, let's talk about some other family from the far south that barely figure into the story until Martin says so even though they were ignored up until some page.

Dothog I'm ignoring because the mofo likes all that shit with Dorne and the Ironborne and all the other cultures that take up 20% of the novel but add 0% to the story.

Don't make me hash up PM-given details in this discussion, I see you deliberately not bringing them up in here.


Posted Image
Aminal Crossing: Strell@Tazmily, 2836-3590- 0819

"One of the more...amusing screwballs around here..." - shrike4242
Join the El Hoardo Fan Club!
Threadless.com puts the fun back in laundry!...lafundry! HOORAY! (Referral link)
Wii Obscure FAQ and Facts Thread [Version 2.0] ::: Wii Shop Thread ::: DSi Shop Thread


#258 dothog

dothog

    n ur race snakin mai kart

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:09 AM

Well, you're pushing the buttons just about anyone can agree on.

  • Q-mart definitely felt extraneous from the start.
  • Tyrion and the Non-European, "Ethnic" Name, Rough Ridin' Crew certainly enjoys GRRM's creative use of da alfabit.
  • While I'll defend a lot of Dany's stuff, the Life Lessons of DwD did get a little old.

I'm not denying that I've nitpicked at GRRM's methods, but this is real talk, son. And the real talk of it I have yet to re-read one of the ASOIAF books and not be more impressed by that book than I was the first time around. How many fun, absorbing books can you say that for? That compliment wouldn't exist without all that exposition.

GRRM's not doing it because he wants his book filed under F for Fantasy, he's doing it because he cares about the characters. He doesn't want them to inhabit a world devoid of the detail he imagines for them.

So Q-mart is a good example here. I don't like the boy, and I was tapping my foot impatiently throughout all of his chapters the first time through. However, I think GRRM wants a "life" for the dragons as much as he wants one for Dany. He doesn't want the dragons to be cutouts. I would guess that's why Q-mart is there, in part to show Dorne's impotence (no Red Viper jokes!), but also to show the extent of dragon-related violence beyond reports to Dany and perhaps change the Targ-Dorne dynamic in a more interesting way.

And I liked that the situation with Stannis wasn't resolved. To me so many other things about Winterfell came up that I felt Stannis was just one part of that. There's Reek, the Manderly Dinner Party Surprise, the King Beyond the Wall, the Greyjoy girl. That's a lot of material. It feels arbitrary to pick on the Stannis narrative.

In the end, I guess that in the moment, when I want to see-what-happens-next-let-me-turn-the-page-dammit, some of the exposition can be tiring. However, on re-reading these things, they're very rewarding, and it becomes more clear that the exposition is worth it.
Posted ImagePosted Image

#259 Strell

Strell

    LOBSTERS!....IN MY PANTS!

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 13 June 2012 - 04:10 AM

You want an example and I picked one.

Here's another: How many stupid rhymes did Reek need? Be honest now. That's padding and everyone knows it. It was the Apply Directly to the Forehead of Westeros. Good shits.

You could bring the magnification back another notch and argue that the Boltons are just as unneeded. It's like this weird obsession with Winterfell when I thought the whole lesson I was supposed to learn was that the Starks aren't the main characters, or perhaps aren't as central under a traditional definition. Winterfell has been taken over, then burned to the ground, all of its original inhabitants are gone, the stepchild is stuck there in the hands of a maniac who doesn't functionally alter the story anymore...so why is so much time and effort there?

You're telling me - in a way - don't hate the playa, don't hate the game, don't hate what I don't hate. Which is odd because what I'm hearing is that someone else's acceptance invalidates my general distaste, which seems like a strange argument to make when you just got done saying it was invalid from the other side.

That stuff just gets under my skin. It's being called history and perspective and depth, and that's fine. But no one is going to remember any of it. What did Illyrio eat when he met with Drogo?

Note: I get I'm being a bit unfair. Really I'm not out for argument. I'm just kind of surprised that there's all this ...ah, this insistence that GRRM should keep on keepin' on, but what if he dies, but he needs to finish, but what if the quality suffers, but it hasn't suffered yet, but what if IT DOES, HOLY SHIT, no way that's not gonna happen, he'll finish when he's finished, but WHAT IF THE SHOW CATCHES UP OH SHIT...

None of that resolves unless you start analyzing what already exists, and what already exists in my head is 60% good and 40% bad.

Q-Mart, though. That's good. That's almost as good as Khal Jazzy Jeff.


Posted Image
Aminal Crossing: Strell@Tazmily, 2836-3590- 0819

"One of the more...amusing screwballs around here..." - shrike4242
Join the El Hoardo Fan Club!
Threadless.com puts the fun back in laundry!...lafundry! HOORAY! (Referral link)
Wii Obscure FAQ and Facts Thread [Version 2.0] ::: Wii Shop Thread ::: DSi Shop Thread


#260 dothog

dothog

    n ur race snakin mai kart

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 13 June 2012 - 11:52 AM

I'm not asserting some variation on "don't hate the playa, hate the game." I'm just defining the Game, and for GRRM, rich characterization and exposition in a medieval fantasy setting is the Game. If you're trying to convince people that his exposition is arbitrary, that the Boltons just developed out of describing a leaf on a tree near Winterfell, I disagree. The exposition is intentioned, just as the repetition is a stylistic choice.

It feels like the picking of nits to enumerate instances of exposition/repetition/other stylistic choices you don't enjoy in ASOIAF relative to the fundamental flaws in other popular works. I may not enjoy some of his choices the way he desires, but I don't think of his choices as worthy of strong derision -- for instance, his repetition is not grossly superficial in the way that the T&A in the HBO show is. If anything in his works were as superficial as the tittays in the HBO show, I'd stop reading the same way I stopped watching the show after a half of the first season.

As for the "WHAT IF HE DOESN'T FINISH" point you added, I'm not sure what the resolution is that you're referring to, nor can I follow the 60/40 breakdown. Anyhow, while I enjoy the exposition, I do see your point for other issues, including the repetition. Is he ever really gonna tell us where the whores go? Because I'm sick of guessing at this.

At first I thought Whoreville but that was too obvious. Of course they'd go to Whoreville, right?
Posted ImagePosted Image

#261 dmaul1114

dmaul1114

Posted 13 June 2012 - 06:05 PM

Yeah, I'm with dothog here. The exposition, detail and characterization are the things I like most in series. Same reason I love the LOTR books so much--super detailed, amazing amount of history etc.

That's what sets books like these apart from say stuff like R.A. Salvatore's books that are just a lot of action. Basically the equivalent of popcorn action movies. I like those too, but get more enjoyment out of books/films with more artistic/literary merit.

Edited by dmaul1114, 13 June 2012 - 08:16 PM.


#262 dothog

dothog

    n ur race snakin mai kart

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:04 PM

Exactly, Tolkien's a good example. I had a friend who decided to read the books after seeing the movie. He kept complaining to me about how "talky and boring" Tolkien was, and I'm like, Muchacho, this is what Tolkien does. If you don't like descriptions of the Shire, you gotta get out now.

I'm not suggesting it's Capital W Wrong to be impatient with GRRM and to dislike his devotion to every character and setting. I'm just saying that if you honestly dislike it beyond its being a minor annoyance on the first read-through, you'd probably be happier reading something else.
Posted ImagePosted Image

#263 Clak

Clak

    Made of star stuff.

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:45 PM

You'd think that with all that description that it would make it easier to picture certain things in your mind, but not really.

I mean if I have to read one more description of what someone is wearing I'm going to bash my head against a wall. Boiled leather? Really? A doublet? you don't say!

Fuuuuuuuuuu
Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. -George Carlin

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” -Mark Twain

“When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -Jonathon Swift

#264 Confucius

Confucius

    Corporate Shill

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 16 June 2012 - 01:36 AM

Is it just me or did GRRM discover the word nuncle between books 3 and 4? So annoying.

#265 GhostShark

GhostShark

    The Drunken Whaler

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:02 AM

Is it just me or did GRRM discover the word nuncle between books 3 and 4? So annoying.


I noticed that too, but I don't have a problem with it. Or the exposition for that matter. I read high fantasy, and fantasy in general, to learn about the worlds. It just wouldn't be the same without it.
Posted Image

Stinging Death To All Enemies

#266 Confucius

Confucius

    Corporate Shill

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:08 AM

I don't mind exposition. I don't know who is jumping into a middle of a series mid stream but I guess it's for them and to be a refresher if you're reading the books how they're released.

As for the words, I don't mind strange spellings and the like. It adds to the book in my view and is part of the creative process. I just don't like when an author falls in love with a word all of a sudden and decides it's really awesome. In the middle of the fucking series. nuncle. so dumb. But I guess you win some and you lose some.

Ees7Y.jpg


I'm 100% shocked that books still exist in today's day and age. I thought they'd be out by now. They make up like 1% of today's entertainment and unless you're 60 or older, stray away from books and start emersing yourself with real entertainment.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Codes for Free / Codes for Trade


#267 Clak

Clak

    Made of star stuff.

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:11 PM

I'm starting to notice that Martin has a certain style, wherein not much happens until the last quarter or so of the book.
Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. -George Carlin

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” -Mark Twain

“When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -Jonathon Swift

#268 Clak

Clak

    Made of star stuff.

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:13 PM

I don't mind exposition. I don't know who is jumping into a middle of a series mid stream but I guess it's for them and to be a refresher if you're reading the books how they're released.

As for the words, I don't mind strange spellings and the like. It adds to the book in my view and is part of the creative process. I just don't like when an author falls in love with a word all of a sudden and decides it's really awesome. In the middle of the fucking series. nuncle. so dumb. But I guess you win some and you lose some.


That and maester piss me off. I actually pronounce it master in my mind.
Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. -George Carlin

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.” -Mark Twain

“When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." -Jonathon Swift

#269 GhostShark

GhostShark

    The Drunken Whaler

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:27 PM

I'm actually used to Maester, having played Final Fantasy X so many times, but yeah, I can see how that can often times be confused with master unless you've seen the word a lot.
Posted Image

Stinging Death To All Enemies

#270 Confucius

Confucius

    Corporate Shill

  • CAGiversary!

Posted 16 June 2012 - 03:45 PM

The "three-and-ten" age crap bothers me too. There's no rhyme or reason why characters started using that in book 4. It's not like a certain class or geography of people use that style. Everyone and their nuncle just starts saying ages that way.

Ees7Y.jpg


I'm 100% shocked that books still exist in today's day and age. I thought they'd be out by now. They make up like 1% of today's entertainment and unless you're 60 or older, stray away from books and start emersing yourself with real entertainment.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Codes for Free / Codes for Trade