When the Slacker first heard of this man's labour of love (or hate - I'm inclined to think hate) from a cousin, he was intrigued but hesitant. Much as he loved fantasy, to commit to a series that ran into as many pages as the five books so far written of A Song of Ice and Fire comprise was a daunting task.
But then came the TV series and so good was it (the first season indisputably so) that the books were taken up for reading. Then followed sleepless nights of 'just one more chapter' that ended when dawn broke, then followed red-eyed, drowsy office meetings where the Slacker thought how wonderful it would be if he had the Valyrian great sword Ice and could lop off a few heads, then followed bus journeys where the Slacker wished he could just ride a dragon over traffic, then followed sitting at the wheel of the Slacker's pride and joy, his Tata Nano - wishing he could set the Unsullied on the two-wheeler driving population of Mumbai that seemed determined to die under his wheels.
For ASOIAF is a monumental work, with details so intricate that the co-incidences are more wonderful than the design, where every line has the potential for sub-text, where an impotent wish of Sansa's in the first book is realised by Jon Snow in the fifth, where reality, fantasy, brutality and hope culminate in a stew that's so delicious it can be eaten (or re-read) often, and each time a new flavour found.
So thank you, George. But do remember, time is passing, and...well...you have a lot of loose ends to tie up.
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