A Dance with Dragons
The latest in the epic series A Song of Ice and Fire by Award Winning American Author George R.R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons is the second half of the narration that was started in the book that precedes it, A Feast for Crows. It was just recently published by Voyager Books in the United Kingdom and Bantam Spectra in the United States on July 21, 2011.
As the War of the Five Kings is coming to a complete close, Stannis Baratheon finds himself in the North with Jon Snow, attempting to consolidate his army and make another attempt to take the Iron Throne. He proclaims himself King of the North but holds a tenuous position as the Lannisters proclaim Roose Bolton, one of their loyalists, as Marshall of the North carrying their authority. Stannis as a response wishes to march to Winterfell to confront this army in order to solidify his control of the northern border of the realm.
Meanwhile, Jon Snow, as the Lord Commander of the Night’s watch is trying to prepare for his own war as the threat of the mystical Others continues to loom. He has managed to make peace with the wildlings in the hope that greater number would make a difference His problems, are slightly made more complicated as there are those who wish him harm from within his brotherhood. Eventually, he is betrayed, stabbed and left for dead.
A surprise entry in the plot is revealed as Tyrion Lannister’s travels to get him as far away from the clutches of his sister Cersei bring him to Pentos where he finds out that Varys and Illyrio have kept safe and hidden Prince Aegon Targaryen, the son of Rhaegar Targaryen, whom Robert Baratheon slew in his rebellion against the Mad King Aerys, with the intention of reinstating him in the Iron Throne as the true ruler of the Seven Kingdoms.
On another area of the East, Daenerys Targaryen has settled and conquered the city of Mereen where she tries to battle her own insurrections and assassination plots. She eventually leaves the city with the help of her dragons and settles back to Dothraki territory. At Kings Landing, Tommen in seated in the Iron Throne and tries to fix his army with the help of Kevan Lannister. A twist in the plot occurs when Varys shows his true colors and murders Kevan Lannister and Gran Maester Pycelle in order to complete his plot to restore Aegon Targaryen to the throne.
A Dance with Dragons book is a refreshing change of pace as fans of the series are once again welcoming the return of their beloved characters Tyrion Lannister, Jon Snow, Daenerys Targaryen, who has been markedly absent in the previous book. In this part of the story, George R.R. Martin plays to his strengths as he develops simultaneous plots with excellent characterization that he is extremely known for. A Dance of Dragons rightly marks the end of the civil war and ushers in a new era as the House Targaryen makes a more prominent and substantial appearance and is becoming a considerable threat to the realm. Furthermore, many of the noted characters who were considered the power players in the Kingdom have passed, and a new breed of leads took their place.