A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1)
George R. R. Martin
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NOW THE ACCLAIMED HBO SERIES GAME OF THRONES
From a master of contemporary fantasy comes the first novel of a landmark series unlike any you’ve ever read before. With A Game of Thrones, George R. R. Martin has launched a genuine masterpiece, bringing together the best the genre has to offer. Mystery, intrigue, romance, and adventure fill the pages of this magnificent saga, the first volume in an epic series sure to delight fantasy fans everywhere.
A GAME OF THRONES
A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE: BOOK ONE
Long ago, in a time forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons out of balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister forces are massing beyond the kingdom’s protective Wall. To the south, the king’s powers are failing—his most trusted adviser dead under mysterious circumstances and his enemies emerging from the shadows of the throne. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the frozen land they were born to. Now Lord Eddard Stark is reluctantly summoned to serve as the king’s new Hand, an appointment that threatens to sunder not only his family but the kingdom itself.
Sweeping from a harsh land of cold to a summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, A Game of Thrones tells a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens. Here an enigmatic band of warriors bear swords of no human metal; a tribe of fierce wildlings carry men off into madness; a cruel young dragon prince barters his sister to win back his throne; a child is lost in the twilight between life and death; and a determined woman undertakes a treacherous journey to protect all she holds dear. Amid plots and counter-plots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, allies and enemies, the fate of the Starks hangs perilously in the balance, as each side endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.
Unparalleled in scope and execution, A Game of Thrones is one of those rare reading experiences that catch you up from the opening pages, won’t let you go until the end, and leave you yearning for more.
From the Hardcover edition.
his head, caught it, tossed it again. Even across the room, where Catelyn sat, the wink of gold was unmistakable. A freerider in a faded blue cloak lurched to his feet. “You’re welcome to my room, m’lord.” “Now there’s a clever man,” Lannister said as he sent the coin spinning across the room. The freerider snatched it from the air. “And a nimble one to boot.” The dwarf turned back to Masha Heddle. “You will be able to manage food, I trust?” “Anything you like, m’lord, anything at all,” the
anyone cared to count. Ned was desperately pleased that Robert had not taken part. That night at the feast, Eddard Stark was more hopeful than he had been in a great while. Robert was in high good humor, the Lannisters were nowhere to be seen, and even his daughters were behaving. Jory brought Arya down to join them, and Sansa spoke to her sister pleasantly. “The tournament was magnificent,” she sighed. “You should have come. How was your dancing?” “I’m sore all over,” Arya reported happily,
daggers. “Good,” the old man said as the tension in the common room ebbed palpably, “excellent.” Tyrion recognized the gruff voice; Winterfells master-at-arms, shorn of his whiskers. Scarlet-tinged spittle flew from the fat innkeep’s mouth as she begged of Catelyn Stark, “Don’t kill him here!” “Don’t kill him anywhere,” Tyrion urged. “Take him somewheres else, no blood here, m’lady, I wants no high lordlin’s quarrels.” “We are taking him back to Winterfell,” she said, and Tyrion thought,
involve yourselves?” He took out his knife and whittled some thin strips of bark off one of the sticks he’d gathered, to serve as kindling. “Well, why do sellswords do anything? For gold. You were thinking Lady Catelyn would reward you for your help, perhaps even take you into her service. Here, that should do, I hope. Do you have a flint?” Bronn slid two fingers into the pouch at his belt and tossed down a flint. Tyrion caught it in the air. “My thanks,” he said. “The thing is, you did not
few short words and a smear of blood. How small the difference between victory and defeat, between life and death. He drew out a fresh sheet of paper and dipped his quill in the inkpot. To His Grace, Stannis of the House Baratheon, he wrote. By the time you receive this letter, your brother Robert, our King these past fifteen years, will be dead. He was savaged by a boar whilst hunting in the kingswood … The letters seemed to writhe and twist on the paper as his hand trailed to a stop. Lord