A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 3)

9780008115425: A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 3)

Of the five contenders for power, one is dead, another in disfavor, and still the wars rage, as alliances are made and broken. Joffrey sits on the Iron Throne, the uneasy ruler of the Seven Kingdoms. His most bitter rival, Lord Stannis, stands defeated and disgraced, victim of the sorceress who holds him in her thrall. Young Robb still rules the North from the fortress of Riverrun. Meanwhile, making her way across a blood-drenched continent is the exiled queen, Daenerys, mistress of the only three dragons left in the world. And as opposing forces maneuver for the final showdown, an army of barbaric wildlings arrives from the outermost limits of civilization, accompanied by a horde of mythical Others—a supernatural army of the living dead whose animated corpses are unstoppable. As the future of the land hangs in the balance, no one will rest until the Seven Kingdoms have exploded in a veritable storm of swords.
“Of those who work in the grand epic-fantasy tradition, [George R. R.] Martin is by far the best. In fact . . . this is as good a time as any to proclaim him the American Tolkien.”—Time
“Long live George Martin . . . a literary dervish, enthralled by complicated characters and vivid language, and bursting with the wild vision of the very best tale tellers.”—The New York Times
“One of the best series in the history of fantasy.”—Los Angeles Times

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The third volume of his six-volume fantasy epic "A Song of Ice and Fire", "A Storm of Swords" continues Martin's vigorous account of the civil wars which follow the death of King Robert--the usurper who deposed a dynasty gone mad and dangerous--and the judicial murder by his widow and heir of Ned Stark, the man who made him king. The surviving Stark children are scattered--Robb leading a revolt in the North; Arya learning hard lessons as she treks through the war zone; Sansa an observer of court intrigue; crippled Bran heading towards a sorcerous destiny; and Jon engaged in desperate defence of the ice-wall against barbarians and worse things. Daenerys, pretender and ruler of dragons, is building an empire elsewhere. Meanwhile, characters we have thought of as villains, notably Jaime Kingslayer, are developing belated consciences. Martin keeps on upping the ante of violence and betrayal in this compelling saga of a fantasy middle ages soiled with blood and mud; his economic use of magic and his fascination with complex characters make this the sword-and-sorcery series for people with adult taste. As the series proceeds, his writing gets ever leaner and sharper, the evocation of the magical ever more sinister. -- Ros Kaveney


‘Colossal, staggering… Martin captures all the intoxicating complexity of the Wars of the Roses or Imperial Rome in his imaginary world… one of the greats of fantasy literature.’

‘Fantasy literature has never shied away from grandeur, but the sheer-mind-boggling scope of this epic has sent other fantasy writers away shaking their heads… Its ambition: to construct the Twelve Caesars of fantasy fiction, with characters so venomous they could eat the Borgias.’

‘Truly epic… An extraordinarily rich novel… with its magnificent action-filled climax, it provides a banquet for fantasy lovers with large appetites… The book stands out from similar work by virtue of its superbly developed characters, accomplished prose and sheer bloody-mindedness.’
Publishers Weekly

‘A vast, rich saga, with splendid characters and an intricate plot flawlessly articulated against a backdrop of real depth and texture.’

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