Over the past holiday weekend I enjoyed unexpected access to HBO on-demand, and managed to watch the first three episodes of Game Of Thrones season four. Needless to say, I was instantly reminded not only how much I love this show, but also the epic George R. R. Martin series that spawned it. I feel like re-reading the whole series, but I also feel like it might be more productive to seek out something new to fill the void until Mr. Martin gets that sixth book out to us.
While I have recommended it before here in this space, I want to plug our Novelist database again. A lot of the titles I am going to mention below came from a Game Of Thrones read-alike search on Novelist. While I am not searching for carbon copies of Mr. Martin’s epic, I would like to at least match the tone of his series–gritty fantasy or even historical fiction with plenty of compelling characters.
The Name Of The Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. The first book of the Kingkiller Chronicles, descriptions indicate this book possesses the necessary grittiness of Martin’s work, but with a good deal more magic. It also utilizes different point-of-view characters to tell the story, much like Mr. Martin does in his books. Mr. Rothfuss and this series has been recommended to me before, so that encourages me as well. Also encouraging is that the second book, The Wise Man’s Fear is also out and in our collection. The next installment, The Slow Regard Of Silent Things, seems to be due in October of this year, so if I do really enjoy it, I’ve picked a good time to start reading.
The Iron King by Maurice Druon. Brought to us from France by the same outfit who publishes Mr. Martin’s books, it’s no coincidence why the cover of this historical novel has a similar livery to the Song Of Ice And Fire series. Mr. Druon’s epic tale of the rule of the Iron King, Philip the Fair of France served as Martin’s inspiration for Game Of Thrones. A cast of flawed and fascinating characters populates this epic tale of ambition, violence and revenge.
Legions Of Fire by David Drake. I have long been a fan of Mr. Drake’s sci-fi writing, but I have only read his shorter fantasy fiction, so this one would be a first for me. Set in a fantastic analog of the Roman Empire, Legions is the first book in a quartet of novels in the author’s Books Of The Elements series. Out Of The Waters marks the second title in the series, and the fact CLP also has it on the shelves makes this one another enticing option on my list!
The Desert Of Souls by Howard A. Jones. Part of another series, this book could prove a good example of the sort of serendipitous meandering that results when using Novelist. I found this title after plowing through a few of the database’s sidebars of suggested titles. Set in 8th century Baghdad, this quasi-historical novel contains some interesting fantastic elements, and is followed up by The Bones Of The Old Ones.
A few minutes poking around in Novelist gave me quite a few options to plan my next few weeks and months of reading!
I would also be much obliged for other title suggestions. Thanks!