I'm reading A Game of Thrones by George R. R. R. R. R. R. Martin currently after deciding that, if I am to continue teaching a slipstream fiction class at the Loft, I probably should be versed in the most famous/best selling fantasy novel in the last several decades. Also, I found a copy of it lying around my friend's house when I was dog sitting for him and I'll borrow anything that's not nailed down from the place.
I've been worried a long time that the novel would be unreadable, given its immense popularity, but after 200 pages I'm happy to report that Martin is a decent nuts and bolts writer with only a few obvious, jaw-clenching slips:
"'That was a grievous error, Lord Snow,' he said at last in the acid tones of an enemy."
But I suppose this is no time for subtlety. Bad things are brewing! Or, I suppose they are brewing, since two hundred pages has only hinted at some creepies appearing to the north and a big wedding to the south (the wedding actually alarmed me more-there's nothing worse than a long wedding). Mostly, so far, characters have been introducing themselves to each other, many many characters, and now that the northern Starks are visiting the south we're being treated to all manner of courtly wit, snide like jokings that, sadly, remind me of being trapped in one long Renaissance Festival conversation-not just with the paid Ren Fest employees, either, but the droogs that show up every day to hang around in costume garb without even getting paid for it.
But that said, I do like the imp Tyrion and how he hates everybody-I suppose the short lad reminds me of myself, when I'm surrounded by hipsters in skinny jeans typing away on their electronic devices. Grab a sword, hipster! Let me see thou mettle!
Oh no. I'm starting to think and talk in Medieval-ish...
Send me a steed, my lady! And a suit of the finest boiled leather!