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As the second entry in this brutal yet breathtaking dark fantasy series, A Clash of King has already served its purpose in taking us one step further into this twisted, dismal game, where more blood will be spilled, and more life will be broken.
How should I start? There are just so many incredible moments in the story that I don’t know how to sum them up within one review. Everything’s just so intense, and Martin captures those moments so well. I can actually see myself in the scene, standing among the characters, experiencing the same thing they experience, not just someone reading everything through plain words written on paper.
I think this is the greatest thing about Martin’s writing style. He pays attention to the tiniest details, and makes sure that none of them is missing from the book. He can take up a page just to describe the characters’ clothes or the dishes getting served in a feast. By his beast, he tried to make them so realistic that you can see, hear, and smell them with your senses.
Some people think this is just a waste of time and he should use his talents on something else, such as the battles, the fights or any details related to the main plot. But I think those descriptive scenes are necessary.
In case you don’t know, emotions won’t reach their fullest unless you see that thing for yourself, and go through them on your own. I think Martin just wants us to actually join the characters, not just sit there and watch as things go by.
Now, the second book mainly serves as a bridge between the first and the last of the series, so there aren’t many intense situations.
Still, this doesn’t mean this is less attractive than the others. Rather than getting to witness the grave battle, you get to understand the characters’ feelings as they bear with the grim, harsh reality and learn how to cope with it.
I don’t know how whether Martin’s good with happy situations or not, but he sure is excellent in making people suffer. If you’ve already read A Game of Throne, you’ll know what I’m saying here.
And since this is a novel centers upon war and violence, almost everything about it is cruel and dreary, even depressing at some points. Battles take place, blood spills, people fall and never get up. I know that mercy or light-hearted moments won’t come, because this is a story of war, real war, not a book about justice against evil. But one way or another, I still expect them. I hope that somehow, there’s still a bit of light shining through all the darkness.
You know, many stories focus about how kindness might still survive in the most hopeless moment, but not Martin’s. His books always expose a naked truth, one that not many dare to accept.
And I don’t know whether I should love him or hate him for that.
A Clash of King is a really good novel. It captures many colors of the world, reflecting many sides of a human, and gives us a close picture of how a war is supposed to be like. It’s so graphic and descriptive that many things about it aren’t for the faint of heart.
Still, I like it. The world it creates might be cruel and dismal– but that is the truest nature of war. I just enjoy books that are realistic. They let me see things in a different light that other novels cannot offer.