Time is out of joint. The summer of peace and plenty, ten years long, is drawing to a close, and the harsh, chill winter approaches like an angry beast. Two great leaders—Lord Eddard Stark and Robert Baratheon—who held sway over an age of enforced peace are dead...victims of royal treachery. Now, from the ancient citadel of Dragonstone to the forbidding shores of Winterfell, chaos reigns, as pretenders to the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms prepare to stake their claims through tempest, turmoil, and war.
As a prophecy of doom cuts across the sky—a comet the color of blood and flame—six factions struggle for control of a divided land. Eddard’s son Robb has declared himself King in the North. In the south, Joffrey, the heir apparent, rules in name only, victim of the scheming courtiers who teem over King’s Landing. Robert’s two brothers each seek their own dominion, while a disfavored house turns once more to conquest. And a continent away, an exiled queen, the Mother of Dragons, risks everything to lead her precious brood across a hard hot desert to win back the crown that is rightfully hers.
A Clash of Kings transports us into a magnificent, forgotten land of revelry and revenge, wizardry and wartime. It is a tale in which maidens cavort with madmen, brother plots against brother, and the dead rise to walk in the night. Here a princess masquerades as an orphan boy; a knight of the mind prepares a poison for a treacherous sorceress; and wild men descend from the Mountains of the Moon to ravage the countryside.
Against a backdrop of incest and fratricide, alchemy and murder, the price of glory may be measured in blood. And the spoils of victory may just go to the men and women possessed of the coldest steel...and the coldest hearts. For when rulers clash, all of the land feels the tremors.
Audacious, inventive, brilliantly imagined, A Clash of Kings is a novel of dazzling beauty and boundless enchantment—a tale of pure excitement you will never forget.
**Please Note: This Review may contain spoilers from Book 1 in the Song of Ice and Fire series, A Game of Thrones**
"A day will come when you think yourself safe and happy, and suddenly your joy will turn to ashes in your mouth, and you'll know the debt is paid."
After being left reeling by the end of A Game of Thrones I couldn't wait to get started on the second book in the Song of Ice and Fire series. I have to admit after finishing Book 1 I was shocked. George RR Martin certainly has some guts. It is highly courageous to kill of your main character at the end of book 1. I know I said that there isn't really a main character as we have so many but if you could name one main character from the first book Ned Stark is the name that comes to mind. I wasn't sure how I would feel about continuing the series without Ned but man this series is just so amazing and George RR Martin is so talented that there is no way you can't keep reading.
Following the death of two major characters in the war for the Iron Throne the other contenders are more motivated than ever to win the throne. With two kings in Westeros, Joffrey in the South and Robb in the North things are about to get more messy. Not forgetting Danerys as she continues her mission to get back to Westeros and take her throne. Only one thing is certain, you can trust no-one and not everyone is going to survive.
Clash of Kings was without a doubt a lot better than A Game of Thrones in my opinion. You are already in the world of Westeros so there isn't that super long-winded world building that you have in the first installment of the series. You are shot headlong straight into the action and storyline. A Clash of Kings is a phenomenal follow up to A Game of Thrones and you, as the reader, pays no mind to the fact that the book is 800+ pages you just can't stop reading because the storyline just completely takes you over.
I won't comment of specific characters like I do in my other reviews as it would make this review the length of a novel as there are just too many characters. What I will say is that the narrator does an incredible job of portraying them. He really gives Joffrey the evilness and brattiness that truly makes you hate him, gives Tyrion the humour and cheekiness that makes you love him and gives Danerys the emotion of just wanting to go home. Kudos to him... he does a fabulous job.
A Clash of Kings is exactly what you want in the next installment of this epic fantasy series. It makes you fall in love with your favourite characters *cough* Tyrion *cough* even more, makes you hate others even more than you thought possible. It has more action and bloodshed than thought possible and I loved every dramatic moment of it. Roll on Book 3.
"A good act does not wash out the bad, nor a bad act the good."