I decided a while back that when I have read a series to wait until I've completed it to review them on here. Sometimes that works out when the series is already fully written and released. Sometimes it's not and in those cases I'll just review the new ones as they come out. I mentioned a while back that I read the first three books in George R.R. Martin's series A Song of Ice and Fire. If you want my review of those first three books, click here.
I will stand by my initial review saying that book three is when everything started to get really good. I loved almost every page of A Storm of Swords, but for the rest of the series that can't be said. Don't get me wrong, this is a fantastic series. But, when each of your books is at least 800 pages...there's going to be some dragging.
I will say that A Feast for Crows wasn't as good as the third book, but it still was far superior to the first two books. However, the last 100-200 pages makes up for some of the snoozing throughout. I was fully prepared to give this one three stars until the last minute plot twists. I was very pleased with those twists, in case you can't tell. Four stars.
And now A Dance with Dragons? This one is right on par with A Feast for Crows. However, I was glad to read that finally...FINALLY...we were seeing the dragons take a bigger part in the overall story. Martin's been alluding to how big of a role they'll play in this series and again, finally, we're there! Four stars for this one as well.
OK, so Martin mixed things up a little bit with books four and five. When you've finished book four you'll realize this. Because there are so many characters and the books are already so long, it was virtually impossible to keep up with every single character and scene while still sticking to his 800ish page published product. So, while reading A Feast for Crows you're wondering occasionally "what about this character" and "what about that character?" Book five, A Dance with Dragons, catches you up on the other half of these characters until you're about three-quarters of the way through. Then, you're pretty much caught up and up-to-date on everyone.
This series was initially planned to be a trilogy...considering the fact that I just finished the fifth book, that didn't really work out now did it? From what I've read online recently, it appears that Martin is planning to wrap things up by book seven. So, two more. I'm curious to see if he'll write books six and seven similar to four and five, as I've outline above. Regardless, I can't wait for six to come out! Hopefully I won't forget what's happened by the time I finally get around to reading it...simply because the storyline is so complex and detailed. I would definitely recommend this entire series thus far, but just be prepared for the complexity and character load.