A Dance with Dragons is the fifth installment of a seven part series written by George R.R. Martin. To try and sum up the plot and review A Dance with Dragons on its own would be too hard for many reasons.
First, because the series isn’t finished yet. Therefore, it’s hard to review just one book in a series that has not tied up all the loose ends and completed all the story lines. Especially when that series is A Song of Ice and Fire and there are more story lines to follow than J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings.
Second, to try and bring anyone up to speed after more than 4,700 pages of character development and plot advancement is a disservice to the story itself. There are too many intricacies in the who, what, when, where and why categories to even begin to explain what is going on in each part of the world.
Third, if someone is reading or planning on reading the books, I do not want to spoil the story. It is a beautifully crafted story with so much vivid detail and plot twists. Pop culture has already ruined many of these “surprises,” but there is more depth Game of Thrones cannot even touch. If you have the time (and stamina) to pick up the books, I would highly recommend it; you will not be disappointed.
Fourth, if you are not the reading type but are compelled by a very complex story and even more complex characters, I would recommend watching the HBO series Game of Thrones (be warned, it is on HBO for a reason). It stays true to the plot line of the novels (although I am sure diehard fans would argue otherwise) and allows those with considerably less time time on their hands to get a glimpse into the world of Westeros and connect with the characters readers have grown to love for years.
I will say A Dance with Dragons was my favorite novel so far in the series. The previous one, A Feast for Crows, was quite dull and seemed to drag on and on. Granted, I am not the fastest reader, but the return of some of my favorite characters in this novel encouraged a faster pace and more enjoyable read.
But now, like all the other fans, I must play the waiting game until George R.R. Martin is ready to release the sixth book The Winds of Winter. It has been a fantastic series up until this point and I only hope Martin writes quickly enough to bring a satisfying end so many desire.
Because winter is coming.