So this year I'm re-reading all of George RR Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire (which, when I piled all the books in my arms, I realized should be retitled A Dirge of Back Pain and Eye Strain). I've been meaning to do this for a while, and I figure with A Dance with Dragons sitting on my shelf still un-read, it's time to take the whole series on again. A big reason for this is the long time it took Martin to get this last book out; it's been so long that I simply don't remember a lot of the finer details of the series, so I think I might miss out on something if I don't do the refresher work. I remember reading A Game of Thrones for the first time way back when we'd first moved into our very first apartment in Buffalo, which would have been late 2000, so it's nearly twelve years since I read that one; a similar period. Wow, this series has been going on for a long time!
I'm reading Game of Thrones right now, actually, and just last night passed the halfway mark. As readable as these books are -- the first two, at least -- they're so long that reaching halfway feels like an accomplishment. These are the kinds of books where you sit down, read fifty or sixty pages, and not really feel all that much closer to the end. It takes a lot of reading before the part of the book in my right hand starts to feel noticeably smaller, you know?
I will, of course, post thoughts on each book as I finish them. It's interesting to me right now, though, that my favorite characters are still my favorite characters, and also that a few characters I didn't like so much the first time through are more palatable now, which I suppose is partly because I have some idea of where their respective stories are going. I'm also keenly interested to see how my impressions of the books stand up: my recollection is that there is a distinct diminishing of returns with each successive novel; Game is great, Clash is really good, Storm starts to verge on the reading equivalent of sensory overload, and Feast is pretty much of a slog. Is this the way of it? We'll find out!
Oh, and I'm not re-reading all this straight through. No, I'll be alternating these books with something else each time. I really don't want to spend that long of an uninterrupted time in Westeros. That way, madness lies! But anyway, that's what's happening. Winter is coming; dark wings, dark words; A Lannister always pays his debts; yada yada yada!