A Game of Thrones Introduction

A Game of Thrones is like The Lord of the Rings meets the nightly news. It"s got all the things you want in an epic fantasy novel: knights, castles, war, barbarians, strange gods, made-up languages, and even dragons (sort of). But it also has sex, murder, conspiracy, mutilation, incest, rape, và worst of all, lice. So, if you picked up this book hoping for an escape inlớn an anxiety-không tính tiền l& of enchantment & chivalry, then you"re probably going to lớn be disappointed: A trò chơi of Thrones may be fantasy, but it"s also very real.

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A trò chơi of Thrones is the first book in George R.R. Martin"s fantasy series, A Song of Ice và Fire, which is currently five sầu books long and not yet complete. (Check out the "Brain Snacks" for some bạn angst over that fact.) This first novel tells the story of a medieval-lượt thích fantasy lvà that"s different from what we"re used to in this type of book: you"re not going khổng lồ get wizards throwing magical fireballs và you"re certainly not going to find absolutely evil demons fighting against perfect heroes.

Instead, what we read is a lot more lượt thích our own history: there"s a civil war, và the characters you lượt thích don"t always bởi the right thing (& don"t always win). Unlike other fantasy stories, where people worry about dragons (The Hobbit, we"re looking at you), people in Martin"s world worry about infection & poison and debts that they owe.

On top of its real-but-fantastical nội dung, we also love A Game of Thrones because of how it"s set-up: each chapter is told through the eyes of some particular character, from a young child khổng lồ an exiled princess. Each of these characters gets several chapters lớn tóm tắt their story, so we get lớn know these characters pretty well while still hearing the story from all angles. (See our discussion of "Narrative sầu Technique" for more on that.)

Martin had been a writer almost all his life: he sold his first professional story when he was just twenty-one (so, if you"re procrastinating about writing your fantasy epic, get khổng lồ work). He also had a gig as a Hollywood writer, but itching for something different, he started khổng lồ write A Game of Thrones in 1991, between projects. Clearly, Martin let himself write a giant, epic story – the kind of story that he couldn"t write when he was working for Hollywood, the kind of story that would be too expensive for Hollywood to make. Go ahead, Hollywood, we dare you.

Oh wait. In 2011, HBO actually turned A Game of Thrones into huge, expensive sầu TV series. Though the book wasn"t a mega-hit when it first came out in 1996, the whole HBO thing helped quite a bit. And in addition to the highest honor of being made inlớn a TV show, A trò chơi of Thrones won the 1997 Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel; và the Daenerys chapters won a Hugo Award for Best Novella when they were printed separately as "Blood of the Dragon." Not bad.

What is A Game of Thrones About và Why Should I Care?

We hope your school or workplace isn"t run by people who keep dragons as pets; but except for that & a few other things, the world of A Game of Thrones looks a lot lượt thích the world today. That"s right – the big ol" fantasy novel is really quite, well, real. Just hear us out.

George R.R. Martin"s novel may not be about your upcoming math chạy thử or annual employee đánh giá, but this book is about people doing the following things:

growing up changing dealing with adversity arguing with familymaking friends making enemies

This is a story about being put inlớn situations where you may want to act heroically (or just effectively), but where it"s not always clear how to lớn go about doing that. And because we read this story from multiple points of view, it helps us remember that everyone – even the villains in our own lives – have sầu their own conflicts and baggage.

So in many ways, A trò chơi of Thrones gets us thinking about our own lives. Because when it comes down to lớn it, this is a story about ordinary, everyday life. Plus dragons.

A trò chơi of Thrones Resources


It"s OfficialThis is George R.R. Martin"s website, so it"s got a little bit of everything, from his bio khổng lồ some fan-made art that he seems lớn like for his books.

Not a Blog George R. R. Martin does a lot of writing, and some of it is on this not-a-blog. If you want lớn see what he has khổng lồ say about editing anthologies or working with HBO, this is your site.

Best Fan-Site EverThe best apart about Tower of the Hvà is that you can mix the "scope" for the site: so if you"ve sầu only read A Game of Thrones, you can mix that as the scope & the site won"t show you information from the later books. That means no spoilers. Awesome.

Chatting with the FansAnother fan-site, the Citadel, includes an archive sầu of fan correspondence with Martin. That"s right, he"s a real person.

A Non-samseinfo.comer Gives it a ShotTor.com features a reading (analysis) of the whole series, with chapter-by-chapter thoughts. It"s no samseinfo.com, but it"s fun lớn see what someone else thought when they read A trò chơi of Thrones for the first time.

Movie or TV Productions

On the Small ScreenHBO put a lot – a lot – of money into the production & promotion of this show. (They even had food trucks in NYC and LA that had "authentic" food from the Seven Kingdoms.) Apparently, it was worth it: Peter Dinklage even won an Emmy for his version of Tyrion Lannister. Sure, it doesn"t follow the book exactly, but it"s definitely worth watching.

HBO Tells AllHBO has a very nice trang web and guide for the TV show that might be helpful for people interested in the book. Oh, and check out those house symbols.

The Author"s Take on TVThis interview with George R.R. Martin discusses a lot of interesting issues surrounding the HBO adaptation.

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TV Tropes Recaps the EpisodesOne of our favorite sites, TV Tropes recaps every episode of the HBO series, including a description of how the episodes differed from the book.

In the News

Rave sầu ReviewsAt the New York Times, David Orr gives his (positive) thoughts on Martin"s fantasy novels. But wait: Orr isn"t a sci-fi reviewer; he mostly writes about poetry. When poetry reviewers are reading a book about dragons, you know it must be good.

Sales StatsThis article tracks the sales of A Game of Thrones and the other books in the series over time. Surprise: The HBO series really launched these books into the realm of bestsellers.

Realpolitiông xã in a Fantasy WorldMartin"s books are loved both by fantasy authors và by real people (zing, take that fantasy authors). For instance, the journal Foreign Policy has an online article about how Martin"s series showcases real issues of international relations.

Influential khổng lồ the MaxJohn Hodgman argues that Martin is one of our world"s best storytellers, creating complex characters & unclear moral situations. That"s why he made it on Time"s 2011 menu of the 100 most influential people. Unexpected, but kind of awesome.


The tác giả Speaks (at Google!)It"s an hour long, but this Q&A is full of interesting information.

Fantasy tác giả a Fantasy AuthorIn another chat with the author, Martin is interviewed by fantasy author Joe Abercrombie. Here he discusses both the book và the TV show.

Peter Dinklage on Tyrion LannisterNow that it"s a TV show, you can find lots of videos of the actors discussing their characters. Here, celeb Peter Dinklage discusses how this book is really about the human drama.

Opening SequenceWhat vày you think of the TV show"s opening sequence? Why did they decide khổng lồ show everything as if it were clock-powered?


Mini-PodcastThis "podcast" is only eight short episodes, but it has a lot of interesting discussion on where this book came from & how Martin feels about the games. If you want lớn hear hlặng talk, this is a good place to start.

The tác giả Talks FandomIn this interview, Martin discusses the creation of his fantasy world & how his fans appreciate it. And boy, vì chưng we.


The Man Behind the NovelsThis is pretty much exactly how we pictured hlặng, to be honest.

Don"t Judge a Book by its Old CoverAn old-ish cover for A Game of Thrones. Doesn"t quite convey the awesomeness of the book.

Sean Bean as Eddard StarkWhat a dude.

Emilia Clarke as Daenerys TargaryenWhat bởi you think? Is this how you pictured the princess?

George R. R. Martin as College ProfessorThis comic strip will be appreciated by anyone whose had some trouble with the, um, massive sầu freakin" length of the books.

The Art of A Song of Ice và FireProfessional and fan art of Martin"s world. Pretty amazing stuff.

A Game of Thrones in LEGOsIf you don"t think this is awesome (or hilarious), you may not have sầu a heart.