Book Review: A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George R.R. Martin

It has been two years since I finished the fifth installment of George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, series and since that day I’ve been eagerly awaiting the release of part six. It’s been a painful wait and now the TV adaptation Game of Thrones has caught up with the books and the two will diverge further, meaning when I get to it I’ll have expectations and ideas that may be miles off.

The major irritation however is not being able to enjoy more of Martin’s amazing writing and the world of Westeros that he has created. This book, collecting three novellas, exists in the same world but is a very different beast.

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Set a century before the first installment they follow the adventures of Dunk and Egg. A young, hulking hedge knight and his quick witted squire, who has a secret about who he really is.

In a way they serve as a good introduction to the world, showcasing the down and dirty medieval world he has created. Here dragons are a recent memory, and magic still believed in, but the more pressing dangers are men and their ambitions.

It lacks the sprawling, split perspectives of the others, sticking with Dunk exclusively and so we see things from the perspective of the brave but naive knight. He blunders along and gets involved in his adventures and relies on his skills with a sword to survive.

The tales are short but involving and in Dunk Martin creates a likeable and heroic lead, who you root for throughout. There are not of the duo’s adventures planned and I am eager to read on. But far more eager for part six of A Song of Ice and Fire, although I’ll have to reread the previous ones to refresh where I am.

If the size of those other books puts you off check this out as it’s a nice, smaller introduction and will let you know if it’ll be your kind of thing. Although it is worth mentioning that it lacks the complexity and ambiguity of those books.

Verdict: Entertaining and showing Martin’s skill as a writer it gave me my Westeros fix and would work as an introduction for new readers. Full of action and bits of humour, it’s a cracking read. 8/10.

Any thoughts? You know what to do. BETEO.

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