Well, it’s here. 6 years waiting since A FEAST FOR CROWS and 11 years waiting to find out what happens to certain fan-favourite characters who didn’t show up in AFFC. How many cups of coffee, false alarms, GRRM hints, fan grumbles about the wait, winter and summer solstices was that? A lot.
Did I grumble? Yeah I did a bit. Not as much as some fans, but I admit I still did a bit. It’s tough to have to wait so long for a story that is one of your favourites.
I’m a little put out as to Toronto bookstores (mainly Chapters/Indigo) not having done a midnight release party for the book. Considering the HBO show, the fact that the other 4 books are all back in the NYT Bestseller top ten again, and the wait we’ve all had for this one. It would seem to me that the treatment that HARRY POTTER, TWILIGHT and MOCKINGJAY got at the Toronto stores with midnight release parties would not have been remiss. In fact, many stores across the US and UK did that very thing with fans all getting together and chit chatting and generally having a good time on the eve of the new volume’s release. For some reason Chapters/Indigo decided that it was not a good idea, though I can’t be certain why. Then again, I should be thankful that the book was even stocked on the shelves yesterday considering the chain’s history of not having books out on the shelves on release day, or not even having some in stock. I digress.
I’ve only cracked into the prologue and the first couple of chapters so far, but even that much feels like visiting with a long lost friend and I can’t help but smile.
So, I had some scotch and travelled back to North Westeros and across the Narrow Sea and found that the magic in GRRM’s writing is as alive as ever.
The book is a behemoth. Nearly 1000 pages hardcover! The dust jacket is gorgeous and the best of the revamped covers, including lovely embossing and foil stamping. The maps are also amazing, as we get not only maps of North and South Westeros, but also a close up of all the Watch Castles on the wall, one of (The Free Cities) Pentos, Braavos ect. across the Narrow Sea, and even one that shows Mereen and old Valyria (in ruins of course).
I’ll be dropping a proper review after I finish, so stay tuned for that. I assume Chris will also have his own review once he finishes as well so expect two viewpoints when those come down.
So, I assume that a lot of our readers are reading this book right now, or planning on it. Any rituals, or reading habits that you are instituting for this one, or will it be like every other book? I am personally having at least a glass of scotch every time I sit down with it at home, but that’s the Scotsman in me coming out. How about everyone else?