This is my second post for Wordery, which you can also view here: https://wordery.com/blog/a-knight-of-the-seven-kingdoms-56b8a40183f36
I’m going to start with a confession. I’ve only read the first two Game of Thrones books. Not out of lack of interest, just because I’ve been scrounging them from various friends. I’m working on it. Being a poor University student, spending £50 on the entire collection of Game of Thrones books sounded incredibly daunting, but then fate decided that I should come across the prequel novellas in a stunningly illustrated edition called The Knight of the Seven Kingdoms.
Speaking of fate and destiny, this set of novellas tell the tale of Dunk, the tall hedge knight who lacks experience but looks threatening, and his squire and companion who is secretly in line to the Iron Throne: Egg.
I didn’t really have expectations for this book, maybe because I had read some of his works and it was a pretty safe choice. The good news is, these aren’t the only three prequel novels! If you are like me and have read these for the first time in this collective edition, you can buy the rest once you’ve grown emotionally attached to the characters! Also, if you have already read them before and own them, you can get this edition and marvel at the illustrations! I mean, who doesn’t have a weakness for pretty hardbacks? I highly recommend you ease your way in with these prequels. People are often intimidated by the size of the Game of Thrones books and struggle, and maybe even give up on them. Dunk is also a much more endearing character, with flaws that we can relate to (to some extent, I can barely pick up a sword let alone wield one), whereas in the main series it’s really hard to find someone likeable that doesn’t die a few chapters later.
Furthermore, you need no prior knowledge about Game of Thrones to read this, and you don’t get any spoilers for the main series. Despite this, you do see tiny hints of the series creeping through. Having watched all 5 seasons of the show, I appreciated the little references, which is one of the perks of writing the prequels after having established the main storyline. If you have already read some of his works, the writing style is familiar but the take is new, fresh and exciting. It may not be as gripping as the main series, and it’s a lot less dramatic, but maybe it’s a good thing that he hasn’t killed off everyone left right and centre. However, you don’t lose track of characters, and it’s a lot easier to find likeable characters that don’t die a few chapters later. We get a chance to see more development, and I assume there will be a lot more to come when I read the rest of the collection.
Finishing books is always poignant to me. I’d just finished my German exam when I finished this book and was waiting to return to class, and as I was reading the last few pages, totally immersed, I forgot I was sitting on the floor in the corridor of the languages department. Three people asked if I was okay. Long story short: If you’re waiting for the next series of Game of Thrones like me, then you’ve found a good book to bide your time.