So, an update on ASoIaF, as of book 2: I still love it.
I really like the universe.
I like the Wall. I like wargs, and the wildlings, and the wights. I like the ten-year summers and the fears of winter. I like the talking white ravens and the direwolves and the dragons. I like Valyrian swords and the dragon-bone daggers and the poison-proof bejewelled chokers. I like Winterfell and Storm’s End and the Dragonstone.
I like the maesters and the Pyromancers Guild and the improving-wizards. I like the black brotherhood, and the sers, and the Kingsguard. I like the Lord of Light and the Great Sept and the Godswood. I even like the three-eyed crow and the wolf dreams and the green dreams, and dream-centic fate-narratives can tick me off pretty quick.
I like the I like the illegitimate children, and the child-brides and the in-bred dragon dynasties – or rather I hate them, but I love that Martin has grounded and spaced his universe with real historical models, and isn’t forcing modern predicates onto it. I like the sypathetic villains and the cold decisions of the heroes.
I like the switching narratives and the timeskips between them. I like the well-trained, but still-blindspot-bearing ten year olds. I like the ongoing mysteries and the bewildering, game-changing tragedies. I like the different fears each character has and the certainties that that particular fear will end the world as it is known.
Yes, this particular volume did strike more of a Wheel of Time chord than the first – implications of former fallen civilisations, of magics long lost beginning to work again with the advent of dragons being reborn, -cool!- and some glimpses of bdsm -mmm,ok-. Overall, yes – good stuff.