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  #1  
Old 07-14-2011, 12:30 AM
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Default **Spoilers** A Dance with Dragons

So having finished the book once and in the middle of a 2nd read-through at a more leisurely pace I thought to discuss it here with others who have read the book.

Its only Thursday morning and others might not have had the time to read it through. So I will ask in advance if anyone has an issue with discussing it now?
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Old 07-14-2011, 01:27 AM
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Default spoilers for the whole book

I don't But not sure about the others.
Anyway, there are spoilers for the whole book in my post.








So what did you think? I did enjoy the book. However, i didn't remember everyone so i skimmed through some of the chapters.

I do have to admit the plot hasn't really moved forward, except for that thing with Jon. I find it really annoying that GRRM put that chapter in the end. Especially since we have to wait 2-3 years before we know if he is dead or not, if he is going to be resurrected or not.
It would have been better if he would have left that chapter out and put it in the next book.
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Old 07-14-2011, 06:25 AM
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Varys must be a long-term, deep-cover agent for the Targs, which would explain all his actions since the series' start. Everything is aimed at de-stabilizing the Seven Kingdoms to allow a Targ to regain the throne.

The Boltons may have Mance Rydar but I don't think they've destroyed Stannis' army. The banker's arrival at Stannis' camp will frustrate the planned Karstark betrayal.

Although I think Jon is really dead, if Melisandre can get to him in time, we may have an un-Jon to go with our un-Cat.
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Old 07-14-2011, 07:00 AM
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Martin is an excellent author known for his convoluted plot lines that end up being a master lace. However, he seems to either have no talent or patience for real suspense. I never believed the Onion Knight was dead in AFfC. Nor was Brienne.

I agree with you Ishara that the book seemed hardly to have gone anywhere. One thing I find interesting is having read the pre-release excerpts years and years ago the changes to the script and how and when plot devices were put forward.

I was right on Jon but not how. Is he truly dead or dying? Hmm I think the Red woman idea has merit. I don't think Ramsey was telling the whole truth, a shocker there I know.

Tyrion had some great moments.

I felt the addition of Rhaegars son and Connington a bit late into the game was not needed. Then again this book could be one of the middle of the series by the time it is done.
Dany, meh. I think the whole Daario thing was a cop-out. She had burned away all her vanity and youth before and all of a sudden is simply hot to trot with the dude.
Female dwarf seems a bit of an easy plot device especially how her brother and her are related to Tyrion.
Mormont did pretty much nothing.
Victarion having a red priest guide has potential but his plot hardly advanced.
Quentyn dying was a shocker, dumb kid that he was. It seems that Dorne will have to draw and alliance through its princess and the newly alive Targaryan male.


Overall I feel the book is a worthy read however I feel Martin is not dealing with too many plot-lines and trying to weave as fine a thread as he had before with less success. It was a bit meandering at times and certainly did not advance the plot much but the charm or revulsion of the characters is still there and it is a worthy addition to the series. Martin is a master and I do think he can pull all these seemingly useless threads back into a semblance of an order if not a masterpiece. However, the pacing of the books will need to be brisker from here on out otherwise its the WoT in terms of length but without all that careful planning on RJs part that makes his epic work.
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Old 07-15-2011, 07:31 AM
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Absolutely terrible and pointless. That's how I feel about the last 5 years I just waited for this book.

GRRM has completely lost his way at this point. I don't even think he knows where he's really taking the story at this point.

Almost ZERO real plot advancement occurred. Hopefully he's actually working on Winds of Winter because I simply don't care to wait another 5 years for more cliffhangers and more deaths.

The entire Quentyn plotline was an utter waste of time...why devote so many damn chapters to it???

Jon is clearly not dead dead and I'm getting sick of people coming back from the dead anyway.

Stannis is clearly still alive too even though we are supposed to think he's gone.

I also agree on the Aegon plotline...dont add something like that in Book 5 of a 7 book series.


I'm pretty pissed right now on it overall. Its well written and interesting at times but none of the excessive plotting is getting anywhere at this point.
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Old 07-15-2011, 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
Absolutely terrible and pointless. That's how I feel about the last 5 years I just waited for this book.

GRRM has completely lost his way at this point. I don't even think he knows where he's really taking the story at this point.
I agree here, I think your statement is supported by the obscenely long wait to get the book. It is obvious GRRM had a block and even with the book out now was not able to satisfy that.

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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
Almost ZERO real plot advancement occurred. Hopefully he's actually working on Winds of Winter because I simply don't care to wait another 5 years for more cliffhangers and more deaths.
Those cliffhangers were not even resolved satisfactorily. Brienne shows up like Doc Brown and is like "Jaime, something has to be done about your kids". Ok not so much Back to the Future but its frustrating when you expect to deal with two books that are obviously a poorly edited single book and just feed "cliffhangers".


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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
The entire Quentyn plotline was an utter waste of time...why devote so many damn chapters to it???
And Victarion is shaping up to be the same thing.

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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
Jon is clearly not dead dead and I'm getting sick of people coming back from the dead anyway.
That and you want vindication that he is a Targaryan although I think Aegon being back might be RR Martins way of screwing with that

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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
Stannis is clearly still alive too even though we are supposed to think he's gone.
Yeah for a man with intricate plots he has no subtlety. I would not believe those statements could be true together but with Martin it seems that more and more.


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Originally Posted by Davian93 View Post
I'm pretty pissed right now on it overall. Its well written and interesting at times but none of the excessive plotting is getting anywhere at this point.
The book is plodding and full of unnecessary additions but I still enjoyed it. Frustrating, yes but I liken it to Perrin's plot. As long as it gets where it needs to go (In a fistpumping uber fanboy way) I will forgive him the crappy parts.

I should add the books first chapter and epilogue were very satisfactory.

Varys killing Pycelle and Kevan was unforseen and while I think its a bit of a stretch for the character it could herald his desire to actually start effecting the change he so inadequately professed to.
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" 'Looks like the game can be won after all,' [Mat] said. 'Tell the foxes I'm mighty pleased with this key they gave me. Also, you can all go rot in a flaming pit of fire and ashes, you unwashed lumps on a pig's backside. Have a grand bloody day.' "

"Till shade is gone, till water is gone, into the Shadow with teeth bared, screaming defiance with the last breath, to spit in Sightblinder’s eye on the last Day."

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Old 07-17-2011, 06:29 AM
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This doesn't bode well. I have been waiting for this damned book for 6 years along with everyone else. Cursing GRRM all the way for the wait. (Hell, he's no spring chicken, he could die before he ever THINKS about finishing). NOW...all these rave reviews...

Hate to think such a good story could go to shit like that.
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Old 07-18-2011, 10:28 AM
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First off I completely agree with a lot of the opinions here. There was way to little plot advancement for such a long wait. I feel that if the parts of Feast for crows and a dance with dragons that ran on the same timeline were put together and condensed it would be a good book.
A few things on Dwd.
Aegon does seem a very late entry to the game but I feel he is just the mummer's dragon that is talked about in more than one prophecy. It was dragged out a bit but I came to like the plotline with him and Jon Connington. I especially like the potential with Connington and his greyscale.
Quentin was an idiot and deserved to burn.
Varys is clearly working to prepare Westeros for the Targs arrival.
As to Jon, I have a big theoryland style theory in the works for him and how the plot will go from here but it's as of yet incomplete. A few things on it though:
-Mel had a vision of him as a man, then a wolf, then a man again.
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The flames crackled softly, and in their crackling she heard the whispered name Jon Snow. His long face floated before her, limned in tongues of red and orange, appearing and disappearing again, a shadow half- seen behind a fluttering curtain. Now he was a man, now a wolf, now a man again. But the skulls were here as well, the skulls were all around him.
-The second dream to do with this came a while back from Bran:
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Jon dreams of the direwolves, and realizes that one of the female wolves is dead. Then he hears a voice behind him, a silent shout or whisper, and he looks around, searching for a lean grey shape. He sees a sapling weirwood rapidly growing from the cliff side, and it has Bran's face, except it has three eyes. He wonders if his brother always had three eyes, and the weirwood tells him that it wasn't the case until the crow. John smells wolf, tree and boy, and warm earth, hard stone and death. Bran tells him that he likes it in the dark, and then the weirwood touches Jon to open his eye. Suddenly Jon slips into Ghost and sees things from his perspective.
-Third, his death fits the prophecy for Azor ahai reborn perfectly.
Quote:
"when the red star bleeds and the darkness gathers, Azor Ahai shall be born again amidst smoke and salt to wake dragons out of stone."
The knight that was getting swung around by Wun Wun was bleeding and his crest is a star. Winter was just heralded by the white birds so the darkness has gathered. He noted how the blood from his wounds looked like they were smoking. Then last you have the salt in Bowen's tears. I think the "wake the dragons out of stone" is yet to come.
-So with all this I feel Jon is now chilling in Ghost and will be resurrected but by other means than Mel.

As to resurrection being used to much, there really hasn't been that many so far. besides the mindless wights there are only a few characters that we have that have been brought back. There have been a lot of cliffhangers and feints but few real resurrections. Also Martin said at one point that all of the little resurrections were paving the way for a major one in the future I guess. Which makes sense cause if you just had a character brought back to life in book 6 or 7 after never having seen it previously in the book it would look kind of cheap.
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Old 07-18-2011, 03:49 PM
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I'm going to be contrary here. While yes, it did drag on, it finally felt good to be back in the North, to be focused on Ice and Fire - not the much less interesting War of the 4-6ish Kings.

On the other hand, if everything could just hurry up a little bit, it would be wonderful.

Did not see Jon, Aegon, or Tyrion's misfortune coming.(Dany's escapade seemed about par for the course.) I skimmed the chapter after Jon's Red Meeting, I was in such shock. I saw a review which claimed that one main character seemed pretty dead after this book, and I thought it was Tyrion when he fell off the ship.
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Old 07-18-2011, 06:33 PM
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Just finished the book.

Wow.

No way in hell GRRM will be able to complete this in just two books, unless he's going to split each into two again.

I love the details and the character stories, but the major plot is only creeping forward. Could have been expected since it was split in half, but considering the last two books now and what happened in them... yeah.

I was really surprised about what happened to Jon. Either he's dead, and that's a shame. Or he'll survive by some miracle, and that's old and stale by now. Loose-loose situation

I wonder if GRRM did this so that Jon is somehow released of his vows? Although his place is at the Watch IMO. This story hasn't only been about who gets to be king, but I have been waiting for an Other invasion, who is to take care of that if not Jon?

I don't know what to make of this book.
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Old 07-19-2011, 12:33 AM
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I almost wonder if GRRM decided that he had to bring in the Aegon and Connington plotline to make up for the fact that Dany is such a vapid disappointment that ending the series with her on the throne would be an abomination. Her entire part in this series has been the most boring, and that time she spent in Meereen was frankly unforgivable. What could she possibly have been thinking? Meereen is too far from Westeros that she could possibly have envisaged ruling both it and the Seven Kingdoms. She should have simply played the part of a marauding horde, marched past the city, demanded tribute, fed some of the schmucks to her dragons, and then continued on her way. I kept hoping that Selmy would just flat out ask her what the hell they were doing wasting their time out in the middle of bloody nowhere. At least he killed Quentyn. That idiot deserved to die. Hopefully Dany will die of dysentery and Aegon will get her dragons and marry Arianne instead of her. That's unfortunately too much to hope for, but honestly, I'm going to be pissed if Jon really is dead and yet she stays alive, filling the book with yet more dull chapters of her wandering aimlessly in the Far East.

I'm not quite sure what to make of the Arya plotline. Is there some point to her becoming a Death Priestess? At least I still find her interesting, but honestly I'd rather see her return to Westeros and kill Qyburn and the resurrected Mountain. But will she do that, or will she just stay in Braavos and eventually just really become "No One" and cease being Arya Stark? That would be an incredibly crappy way to "kill" her off.
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Old 07-19-2011, 04:20 AM
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I agree on Arya. It would also take a long time for her to go beyond an Acolyte, if she is to finish her training. The next book has to jump a few years if we are to have her full trained and ready. I don't like it.

Dany was hard reading, more than usual. Aegon was better in that instance, they were at least invading now. But since doing things gets you killed in GRRMS books, I don't suspect they'll live long.
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Old 07-19-2011, 05:19 PM
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Any thoughts on Coldhands? Is he Benjen?
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Old 07-19-2011, 11:13 PM
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Also, does anyone take Aegon to be support for R+L=J, at least until Jon got knifed?

Heres what I'm thinking.

Aegon I took over Westeros with 3 dragons and his 2 sisters riding them.

Daenerys now has three dragons, and now two cousins/siblings/etc. One of these dragons is white, obviously Jon's colour. I'm not sure between Aegon VI and Dany who is green (Rhaegal) and who is black (Drogon), but probably that order due to Dany and Drogo's little campout on the Dothraki sea. Of course, ASOIAF nerds have probably already made the connection between Viserion and Ghost's colouring in relation to R+L=j
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Old 07-19-2011, 11:47 PM
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Any thoughts on Coldhands? Is he Benjen?
Yes, that would be logical
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Old 07-20-2011, 09:40 AM
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Quote:
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Also, does anyone take Aegon to be support for R+L=J, at least until Jon got knifed?

Heres what I'm thinking.

Aegon I took over Westeros with 3 dragons and his 2 sisters riding them.

Daenerys now has three dragons, and now two cousins/siblings/etc. One of these dragons is white, obviously Jon's colour. I'm not sure between Aegon VI and Dany who is green (Rhaegal) and who is black (Drogon), but probably that order due to Dany and Drogo's little campout on the Dothraki sea. Of course, ASOIAF nerds have probably already made the connection between Viserion and Ghost's colouring in relation to R+L=j
New to ASOIAF theorizing LOL ... this gives me an idea. Can wargs control dragons? Was there anything in the books to say that the Targaryens (SP) were wargs?
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Old 07-20-2011, 10:28 AM
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New to ASOIAF theorizing LOL ... this gives me an idea. Can wargs control dragons? Was there anything in the books to say that the Targaryens (SP) were wargs?
Not that I recall. It will be interesting, if Jon survived that is, if/when he meets a dragon. Although he's so untrained being a warg that he'll probably not be able to do much to/with a dragon.

I was dead sure that Quentyn was gonna be one of the dragon riders. I got real surprised of that outcome.

I'm thinking you do not want to go invading a dragons mind if you're a warg. I'm thinking it'll be similar to Fitz in the Tawny Man Trilogy (sequal to Farseer trilogy).
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Old 07-25-2011, 04:49 PM
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Where do whores go?

Duh.

Through the Hodor.
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Old 07-25-2011, 07:44 PM
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Originally Posted by StrangePackage View Post
Where do whores go?

Duh.

Through the Hodor.
LMAO!!! Just fantastic.
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Old 07-25-2011, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Res
Those cliffhangers were not even resolved satisfactorily. Brienne shows up like Doc Brown and is like "Jaime, something has to be done about your kids". Ok not so much Back to the Future but its frustrating when you expect to deal with two books that are obviously a poorly edited single book and just feed "cliffhangers".
Too funny and so damn accurate.

A couple weeks have gone by and I'm still simply massively disappointed by this book. Way too long and nothing happened. Maybe instead of giving us the blow by blow by blow of Tyrion's, Quentyn's, and Aegon's travels, you fade to black and just have them arrive at their destinations? Boom, that's 400 pages off the top right there that can be used for actual events and interesting stuff. Dany is probably the most annoying and boring character in the the entire story and if I have to read any more dumbass chapters about her on the far side of the world, I'll probably just burn the book and move on. Get her to Westeros or kill her off...nobody gives a damn about Astaphor and Meereen and Qohor, etc etcc. I still think the Aegon/Jon Connington plotline is brutally unneccssary at this point. It would have been FANTASTIC if it occurred in Clash or Storm but waiting until Book 5 is just stupid.

As always, it was well written but nothing happened. It was marching and marching and sailing and sailing and then some more sailing with no real plot progression.
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Bonded to Brita

"We caught them in an alley on skid row in downtown Philly and brought them down with Uzi's and dogs. I beat the shit out of one of the guys for resisting arrest. After that, I went home, fried up some tofu with strawberry preserves and melon sticky rice, laid down on the couch with my snuggie and ate rose petals in sweet daisy wine sauce and watched Mamma Mia on DVD and then cried myself to sleep."

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