Monday, October 24, 2011

Innocent Traitor by Alison Weir

In her first historical novel, popular royal biographer Alison Weir cunningly places the short-lived Lady Jane Grey (1537-54) at the heart of a fiction with haunting similitude. Real personages, including Henry VIII, Prince Edward, and the ill-fated Anne Boleyn, people this tale of religious strife and court intrigues. An auspicious fiction debut.






I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I am not sure if was because it was audio, but I got to know each character so well. Each chapter was from a different persons point of view, which had a different narrator. I liked that, though some voices were close to others. I was distracted a bunch of times by some swallowing, but not enough to take away from the story.

My heart ached for Jane and what happened to here. My first HF by Alsion Weir (and I guess her debut fiction book) and I will definitely be reading/listening to more.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Game of Thrones by George RR Martin

Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
Paperback, 694 pages
Published February 22nd 2011 by Bantam

From the cover:

Here is the first volume in George R. R. Martin's magnificent cycle of novels that includes A Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords. As a whole, this series comprises a genuine masterpiece of modern fantasy, bringing together the best the genre has to offer. Magic, mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fill these pages and transport us to a world unlike any we have ever experienced. Already hailed as a classic, George R. R. Martin's stunning series is destined to stand as one of the great achievements of imaginative fiction.

A GAME OF THRONES

Long ago, in a time forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons out of balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom's protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens.

Here an enigmatic band of warriors bear swords of no human metal; a tribe of fierce wildlings carry men off into madness; a cruel young dragon prince barters his sister to win back his throne; and a determined woman undertakes the most treacherous of journeys. Amid plots and counterplots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.

My Thoughts:

My son The Illiterate Scribe, has been after me to read this book for a while now. Fantasy is not my favorite genre these days, Historical Fiction is. I didn't jump when he said read (I am remembering The Wheel of Time, huge books, intense plots, a huge pile of characters plus lots and lots of fantasy). But when I saw Kate Quinn (Mistress of Rome author) gush about this series, well what could I say, if Kate (Historical Fiction author) loved it, comparing it to the War of the Roses, well then I would give it a try.

I have to say that I am glad that I did. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. There were quite a few names that I will never remember and at some points wondered which side they were on. But all in all it was a great read. I loved the chapter names (each a character rather then a number), I got to know each of the main characters, I have my favorites and those I dislike too. What really impressed me was how the storyline just seemed to flow smoothly, I didn't find anything that was disjointed or distracting either. I didn't always like the way the story went, but could see the reasons why things happened.

I am almost finished the HBO series now. I really felt they did a great job of casting the characters, they matched the personalities nicely and I can't wait to read the next book so that I can watch Season 2 as it is televised.

*****