The highly detailed and complex world of a Song of Ice and Fire has taken a break since the last title. In fact, George RR Martin has been in the process of writing the Winds of Winter for nearly a decade. That shows how long it takes this writer to finish off one of his books. With that said, it could highlight the need for some refreshers. If you watched the TV series, you will find that the books have infinitely more story to them and that they follow a different plot altogether after the fourth season.
You have three different key plots that develop right alongside each other, but you have up to eight point-of-view characters at any given time in the books. The prologue of the book first begins in 297 AC, but the rest of the stories start in 298 AC. You begin in Winterfell with Eddard Stark, the Warden of the North and the Lord of Winterfell. Eventually, the story progresses to King’s Landing where Ned Stark loses his head because of what he knew about Cersei Lannister. Littlefinger betrays him, and he loses his head.
Another key character throughout the books up until this point is Jon Snow. He first went to the wall at the urging of his uncle Benjen. Catelyn Stark, the wife of Ned Stark, is happy to see him gone because of how Jon Snow is competition to her other children’s power. Snow is a bastard from another woman of Ned’s, and she fears that he could one day rise up to take Winterfell, which is why she was happy to be rid of him.
The Red Wedding
Just when the Stark war against the Lannisters seem to be going well, a great betrayal by the Freys leaves King Robb Stark dead, Catelyn Stark dead and many others were killed. Eliminating these people from the Game of Thrones massively changes the events that follow. Now, the Lannisters have other players to contend with. The next battles come from Robert Baratheon’s brother Stannis. He attacks King’s Landing, but he finds himself sent back with his tail between his legs.
Death of King Joffrey
King Joffrey drinks poison at his own wedding and perishes, but no one misses him. In the books, no one has learned who poisoned him yet, but some of the suspects include Olenna Tyrell or perhaps even Margaery Tyrell, the betrothed.
The Mother of Dragons
Daenerys Targaryen, an exiled princess since Robert Baratheon overthrew her family, was given dragon’s eggs by the wealthy llyrio Mopatis at her wedding with Khal Drogo. Eventually, Khal dies in a raid from a wound that became infected. Daenerys tries to bring him back with Mirri Maz Duur’s blood magic, but when she brings him back, she find him a body without a soul. Because of this, she burns Mirri Maz Duur on a pyre with Khal Drogo, herself and the dragon’s eggs. This starts a new era as the dragons are born and Daenerys becomes known as the Mother of Dragons.
Mischief with Tyrion
No Game of Thrones catch-up is complete without Tyrion, the witty dwarf that always manages to barely survive by the whiskers on his chin. Tyrion comes up with many witty and memorable sayings that have made him a favorite in the Game of Thrones community. Because his mother died giving birth to him, Tywin Lannister has always hated him. In fact, you can feel the tension as something deeply palpable between them and a great power struggle ensues, but because Tyrion holds the Lannister name, Tywin still treats him with contemptible luxury.
Eventually, Tyrion gets blamed for the death of King Joffrey, and he chooses trial by combat. He chooses Oberyn Martell, the Red Viper of Dorne, as his champion up against the Mountain, but just when it looks like Tyrion might win, Oberyn Martell gets smashed and killed. However, he still manages to poison the Mountain who dies a slow and painful death.
Tyrion awaits his execution, but Jaime Lannister sneaks in and frees Tyrion despite Cersei’s wishes to end him because of his threat to her power. This ultimately culminates to Tyrion killing his father Tywin with a crossbow to the bowels, and he strangles the love of his life, Shay, a King’s Landing prostitute, that he had previously loved.
You have a lot to recap in this epic of tale, and that could be why many people have taken such a liking to “A Song of Ice and Fire.” In addition, you never know who will survive because George RR Martin has killed off entire families with one fell swoop of his pen. In particular, it tends to be your favorite characters. He draws up awesome characters and then kills them off before your eyes. No one knows when the Winds of Winter will get released, however, because George RR Martin has taken over a decade to write this book since his last one.