Everyone knows the Game of Thrones theme song. It’s one of those indescribable pieces of music that anytime it plays your ears immediately perk up with recognition. The program that swept the nation, GoT managed to take the fantasy genre from DND nerd’s basements and into the mainstream conversation. Oh, and there’s apparently some books about it too.

Full disclosure, I’ve never actually read Jorge Martín’s books. But, between my superior knowledge of the tv show I binge watched a couple weeks ago and the reliable people at Game of Thrones Wikia, I’ve basically read them.

HBO created this magical show following a myriad of characters like bastard of the north John Snow, the groundbreakingly feminist Daenerys Targaryen played by Emilia Clarke, and up and coming child actress Bella Ramsey playing Bear Island ruler Lyanna Mormont. They’re probably all dead in the books too but who cares. It was fun while it lasted!

The network manages to take a tv show profiting entirely from online streaming and create visuals on par with many block buster movies. A massive interactive map that unfolds during the title song, giant mystical creatures animated to lifelike quality, every second of the show demonstrates masterful attention to detail. So I imagine in the book all you get is a bunch of lines that look like:

“Dany: Dracarys
Drogon: Rawrrrrrr
[blows fire]
Large group of extras: Mhysa!! Mhysa!!”

The announcement of the first novel broke ground as the first book series to be adapted from a show instead of the opposite. It’s also the first time the visual version is infinitely better, hence why I didn’t even pick up a copy of the series when it was in the clearance section of Half Priced Books. Even a large discount off a book already off selling value was asking a little too much.

According to answers.com, Season 1 is the same as the first book, so the only thing that really happens is that Ned Stark’s head gets chopped off. There’s no spoilers in this review btw because if you haven’t seen Game of Thrones at this point you’re just begging to have the show ruined for you.

Some of the season book highlights include:

-The grueling section where Dany is in labor for 20 hours and finally gives birth to triplet dragons
-There’s that king before Joffrey…Rufus? Randy? Ronald? Anyways Samwell Tarly kills him with his tusk
-Watching Drogon, the other one, and the other one grow up
-Cersei and Tyrion coming to terms with their alcoholism and attending their first AA meeting together
-blah blah John Snow the Night’s Watch blah blah
-Rickon learns the art of walking outside of a straight line and promptly forgets it

My rating would be 10/10 for this show that has hooked me in a way that none other has. I have spent more time watching, ruminating on, and talking with friends about Game of Thrones than any television show, and after an explosive season I cannot wait to see what the future holds for Westeros.

Oh, and I guess you can read the book too if you’re into that kind of thing.


Alex has an honorary doctorate from the Kim Dan Institute of Higher Learning in Book Reviews. He is also working on becoming ordained as a minister online.


One thought on “A Song of Lice and Friar: Game of Thrones Book 1

  1. This is one of my favorite reviews regarding this amazing series ever. I give it a 5/5. Personally, A Song of Lice and Friar is my favorite book in the Game of Thrones series. There’s something about Ned’s head getting chopped off that brings about a certain feeling of peace and serenity. The separation of the mind and the body finally coming to fruition. It’s my favorite s̶c̶e̶n̶e̶ few pages in the novel. Best regards to the author! I look forward to his new posts. Hopefully, in the form of a Haiku next time.


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