Customer Reviews for

A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire #3)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

35 out of 38 people found this review helpful.

Great Book, Great Series

I'm almost out of breath after completing George RR Martin's "Storm of Swords", the third in his Fire and Ice series. Each chapter is like its own short story with its own little cliffhanger. Martin's characters are dramatic, melodramatic, genuine, realistic, and so bol...
I'm almost out of breath after completing George RR Martin's "Storm of Swords", the third in his Fire and Ice series. Each chapter is like its own short story with its own little cliffhanger. Martin's characters are dramatic, melodramatic, genuine, realistic, and so bold and colorfully drawn that I find myself thinking about them in between readings. After each book I've needed to take a little breather, but find myself drawn back to the stories and the characters' individual and interconnected dramas, desperate to find out what's happened next, while enjoying the immersion in Martin's world.

While some of Martin's characters are clear 'black hats', and some are 'white'...there's more 'gray' than anything else, which adds to the realism of the ever-changing qualities that the characters display. Some of the black hats start moving toward white, and some of the white drift towards the black. Like real life, few of Martin's story lines have true endings. Even when a character is killed, the ramifications are often far reaching and impact Martin's landscape across multiple books in the series.

One couldn't really get their arms around 'Storm of Swords' without having the background of the previous two books. The author doesn't pander to one looking for detailed background and reminders. He relies on the memories of the reader to connect the dots until Martin's good and ready to connect them outright.

This is the first book in the series that really takes a full leap into fantasy, whereas the first two were more medieval historical novels set in an otherworldly location. Martin introduces some of the evil that's been threatening from the north - Giants, Mammoths, Shadowcats, and the living dead. There's a sprinkle of magic from Melisandre and her Lord of the Light. And oh yeah, and the three dragons with their mother Daenerys, are threatening Westeros from the East.

What drives this series are the characters and storylines. And there are a lot of each. Martin chews through pages like a direwolf through a deer, but things are never dull, and the storylines never dry up. The final 300+ pages absolutely fly by. I'm not a fantasy reader. But I love this series. And book three is as solid, deep and satisfying as the previous two.

posted by JGolomb on May 16, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

9 out of 31 people found this review helpful.

Could this get any more depressing?

I innitially picked up this series because of the copious rewiews i read which mentioned how much better this series was than the book being reviewed. When I began reading however, there were so many characters, so many convoluted relationships between the characters, ...
I innitially picked up this series because of the copious rewiews i read which mentioned how much better this series was than the book being reviewed. When I began reading however, there were so many characters, so many convoluted relationships between the characters, and absolutely no need for most of the extranious and downright confusing information which Martin weaves into his story. I have always wondered what a book would be like if the heroes lost. If it was evil that was triumphant. After reading the first three books of this series, i can tell you that it is a failure. Not only is it maddening and disheartening, it is amazingly depressing. I must admit that there are points where one feels joy, and elation at the fortune of one of the villians, but all such moments are short-lived, as the plot invariably falls back to the downward spiral of death and destruction on the side of the heroes, and triumph on the side of the villians. In addition to the confusing characters and relationships contained whithing the books, Martin takes a rather simple approach to the presentation of the story. He only tells of one action at a time from one characters firsthand point of view, with sparse second and third-hand speculation by other characters. In short, it is a grand attempt at a tale of epic proportions, but it ends up as a depressing horror as all whom the reader comes to love, become separated from those who they love, and invariably end up in a 'Hell on Earth' or dead.

posted by Anonymous on August 2, 2007

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  • Posted May 16, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Great Book, Great Series

    I'm almost out of breath after completing George RR Martin's "Storm of Swords", the third in his Fire and Ice series. Each chapter is like its own short story with its own little cliffhanger. Martin's characters are dramatic, melodramatic, genuine, realistic, and so bold and colorfully drawn that I find myself thinking about them in between readings. After each book I've needed to take a little breather, but find myself drawn back to the stories and the characters' individual and interconnected dramas, desperate to find out what's happened next, while enjoying the immersion in Martin's world.

    While some of Martin's characters are clear 'black hats', and some are 'white'...there's more 'gray' than anything else, which adds to the realism of the ever-changing qualities that the characters display. Some of the black hats start moving toward white, and some of the white drift towards the black. Like real life, few of Martin's story lines have true endings. Even when a character is killed, the ramifications are often far reaching and impact Martin's landscape across multiple books in the series.

    One couldn't really get their arms around 'Storm of Swords' without having the background of the previous two books. The author doesn't pander to one looking for detailed background and reminders. He relies on the memories of the reader to connect the dots until Martin's good and ready to connect them outright.

    This is the first book in the series that really takes a full leap into fantasy, whereas the first two were more medieval historical novels set in an otherworldly location. Martin introduces some of the evil that's been threatening from the north - Giants, Mammoths, Shadowcats, and the living dead. There's a sprinkle of magic from Melisandre and her Lord of the Light. And oh yeah, and the three dragons with their mother Daenerys, are threatening Westeros from the East.

    What drives this series are the characters and storylines. And there are a lot of each. Martin chews through pages like a direwolf through a deer, but things are never dull, and the storylines never dry up. The final 300+ pages absolutely fly by. I'm not a fantasy reader. But I love this series. And book three is as solid, deep and satisfying as the previous two.

    35 out of 38 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2005

    More addictive than crack.

    Luckily for me, I came into the series really late, as in just this past summer. When my boyfriend dumped me, my sister practically shoved A Game of Thrones in my hand as a balm to get me over the worst of it. Better than drugs, more addictive than crack, I seriously couldn't put the book down. I let my dad drive my truck back from Atlanta just so I could continue reading it. Wonderfully intricate politics, characters that you can't decide to hate or love, lush settings, and, through it all, a master story teller plies his trade with expertise. You spend half your time wondering whether or not you should hate someone, never to be given a definate yes or no in most cases, strangely like real life here. The two characters I have been steadfast in my regard for are Arya and Sansha. Arya simply because she is a Stark and she is, by god, going to DO something about this mess (and I love strong tomboy characters). I loathe Sansha as strongly as I love Arya...anyone who gives up their wolf and turns their back on their family gets what they deserve...but I do feel sorry for her. She got caught in a web of her own making...but no one really deserves Jeoffrey. Love these books and I have made most of my friends read the series as well. We are now waiting anxiously for the new one even as we continue to argue the old ones.

    16 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 29, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    Excellent Read

    I loved reading this wonderful book! It is a story that keeps you entertained for hours.

    15 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2008

    Don't Miss this series!!

    tired of the same old, same old? good guy meets bad guy,.. good guy fights bad guy, good guy wins.. the end.. This series will turn and flip and spin you around. Who is good , who is bad? at what point do charecters cross the line. Main charecters, getting killed off! no.. but yeS!! every page is a nerve racking spine tingle suspense filled joy. This is not to say that it is a harsh book with no redeming qualites of love,hope, goodnes and light . not at all but if your tired of always knowing who will win and what will happen . Read this book P.S. Defiantly start with book one

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 27, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Wonderful!... so far

    Having read all of the first three books I have never been disappointed by the constant page turning action, heart-felt characters, and gripping plot. This is possibly the best Fantasy series in existence. The tragedy is that it is incomplete. Even though the books have been amazing thus far... I'm hesitant to move on to the next book while knowing it leads nowhere. I sincerely hope that George will one day bestow on us the final chapters of this truly epic story.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 1, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    loved it

    this is a good series with many characters that you want to follow to find out more of the story. I thoroughly enjoyed this book as well as the others in the series, and again cannot wait to read the next one.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2008

    Just Keeps Getting Better!

    George R.R. Martin has that talent of writing that keeps you on the edge. Some moments you have to resist skipping pages justg to see how something turns out. Other times you want to put the book down because you are dreading what might happen next. Amazing. I only wish other reviewers would STOP explaining the whole book and spoiling the book for new readers!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2012

    Good overall book

    This book was pretty sad and alot of drastic things that you don't expect. But, all in all it is a great book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2012

    He's so twisted....

    .....which is probably why i can't put his books down

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2007

    A fantastic series!

    'A Song of Ice and Fire' is one of my new favorite series. And 'A Storm of Swords' has so far been my favorite in the series. The character developments are phenomenal, and Martin really pulls out all the stops. The line between good vs. evil does not really exist in these books. There is so much more gray area. If you were interested in reading this series I certainly would recommend it, just be prepared for alot of detail and characters. I have to keep character tabs in mine so I can remember what happens to each character after their chapter ends (if you've read these books you know what I mean)! Definitely not for children/young adults.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2006

    Martin's book tells the story

    George Martin's book A Storm of Swords is one of the great fantasy books of literature. The story is excellently thought out and the plot is subversive. If there is a better fantasy book with a series I would like someone to show me it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2014

    Great!

    This series is amazing. One that is hard to put down withiut finishing.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 11, 2014

    Not bad

    Depressing. As expected.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2014

    From Chris

    Yeah! I just read 'em! I thought you were gonna post at 39 clues #7 but I guess not. I'm blocked out so go to Feast for Crows.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2014

    Good

    Book 2 is still justt as good as #1. I look forward to the third.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 12, 2014

    Hush

    *she shrugs and walks out.* 'Sorry, again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2014

    Read

    )---------(:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::>?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2014

    AOUTHR TO ALL!

    I wrote another chapter! A book called 'black ice' !

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2014

    READ

    All young scientists go to "science" result one.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2014

    Sworrd

    (==}=====----------->

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