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Missing Old Friends

August 28, 2008

I’ve been musing on just why A Feast for Crows was disappointing compared to the other books in the Song of Ice and Fire series.

I realised it was because of the lack of familiar characters. As the story changes and grows, the characters have changed and gown too. Some have died, and their points of view replaced by others. One major achievement of A Storm of Swords was making Jaime a character to care about.

This fell down in A Feast for Crows. While it was important to have a character to let us readers know what was happening in the Iron Islands and Dorne, this wasn’t done. Instead each of those settings had three different point of view characters across the book, making it difficult to identify with any of them. The chapters simply read like out-of-place prologues. I feel it would have been better had Victarion and Arianna been chosen from the outset and stuck with throughout the book.

The other downside was the two familiar characters to come with us, Arya and Sansa, didn’t have a lot to do in the book. Arya’s chapters were few, and Sansa’s involvement was to show us just how clever Littlefinger is.

With no Jon, Bran, Danaerys Davos or Tyrion to cling to, the book seemed detached from the rest of the series.

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