Anyone else think GoT is a bit crap?

(24 Posts)
annatha Fri 29-May-15 23:05:39

I am a finisher, so I dutifully ploughed my way through the entire bloody series and I was left feeling like I'd missed something. What is all the fuss about? I felt like a lot of the sex and gore was added in haphazardly just to cause a stir and there were too many characters to really get invested in. And I know the series isn't finished yet, but (without spoiling it for anyone) the last book brought absolutely no closure for me. I've watched the first season of the TV show and it just seemed like a dumbed down, sexed up version of the books.

DH and my friends think I'm mental for not liking it. Tell me I'm not alone?

NadiaWadia Sat 30-May-15 05:30:42

No, I don't like them much either, although I have been watching the TV series. A friend passed on the series of books to us (she couldn't get into them either), and I have read one or two in a half-hearted, skipping pages kind of way, but soon I think they will be passed on again (maybe to Oxfam!)

The TV show is fairly enjoyable (although far too much gore, like you say,) and also unnecessary frequent female nudity and gratuitous rape scenes, which apparently weren't all in the books. It is a bit disturbing really, but looks fantastic, and has some great actors, my favourite characters are Tyrion and Danaerys (sp?).

But I find in the books as well there is excessive cruelty, not just rape of female characters, but so many horrible things happening to innocent/good people (eg the baker's son, was it, in book one?). I find it quite depressing. I know George RR Martin would say that worse things go on in the real world (and yes, sadly they probably do, outside the Western bubble but that doesn't mean that I want to read about it all the time!), and that he is reflecting how society was in the Middle Ages. However the savagery in the books is relentless and you get the distinct impression that he is revelling in it. I find him a bit creepy, TBH.

Also, if you are going to invent a fantasy world, please make it slightly original, a bit different from Earth. A pastiche medieval society (with added dragons) has been done so many times before, and gets a bit tedious, really.

I find it irritating that he includes things that actually exist in the real world, or historically, and makes up his own terms for them which are not that different to the real words. For instance he has 'sellswords' (mercenaries) FFS why bother? - just call them mercenaries, already. And why are all the knights called 'Ser' something, eg Ser Loras? It means the same, is pronounced the same, so what is wrong with using 'Sir'? Just daft.

Similarly, many of his character names are just slightly skewed versions of real names, eg 'Eddard' (Edward, I suppose) 'Margaery' (Margery/Marjorie), 'Tommen' (Thomas?) etc. etc. Completely pointless, either have the creativity to invent truly original names, or stick to the normal spellings, FGS.

Not a fan really. Can you tell? grin

I am impressed that you pushed on through the whole grim saga, though!

faintlyoptimistic Sat 30-May-15 06:02:42

What Nadia said to the letter!

I've just finished watching the first series.

AllThePrettySeahorses Sat 30-May-15 06:27:54

Yeah, what Nadia said grin.

I read the first 3 books years ago and honestly couldn't get what the fuss was about. I found them unrelentingly grim and not that well written, especially compared to the plethora of other books with similar backgrounds published around the same time. Shame, really, because I remember enjoying his earlier novel Fevre Dream

Hygge Sun 31-May-15 12:31:14

I've been enjoying them but have just finished the Feast For Crows one and felt like it could have been left out of the series entirely and we wouldn't have missed anything.

The most important events could have taken place in a couple of chapters in other books and we'd still know exactly what was going on.

The series as a whole does feel a bit repetitive in places to me, like the story is being dragged out more than necessary. For example: Arya is lost, someone finds Arya, Arya is lost again, someone finds Arya, Arya escapes, Arya is discovered, Arya is alone, Arya finds a companion...

I don't mind the similar names thing though. Books where they have a completely made up language get on my nerves. "Falloola was swoofelling along the mipmap when she clocked the Higbolooka hiphapping on the far woomoohay." That's not from a real book but it's basically how I felt when I first picked up the Clockwork Orange. grin

This was alright for me in GoT, different enough to feel otherworldly, similar enough that I wasn't thinking "what the hell are they talking about?" all the time.

prorsum Sun 31-May-15 12:33:57

Yep.

Trills Sun 31-May-15 12:35:34

No book can appeal to everyone.

I thought The Goldfinch was booooooring.

Trills Sun 31-May-15 12:38:02

Books where they have a completely made up language get on my nerves.

Hygge did you read Cloud Atlas? My least-favourite part of that was Sloosha's Crosing or whatever it's called (the last/middle one).

GrouchyKiwi Sun 31-May-15 12:42:52

I have tried and failed to read the first one three times, basically for the reasons Nadia wrote.

Hygge Sun 31-May-15 12:58:59

I haven't read it Trills, I had been warned by someone who knows my reading habits well that I would probably not get along with it.

Trills Sun 31-May-15 13:08:24

There are 6 different bits on 6 different styles, it's only that one that does the annyoing thing.

expatinscotland Sun 31-May-15 13:10:42

I haven't seen anything other than clips of the series, but have read the series. YANBU. I hear the series has gone in a different direction from the books now, too.

CitrineRaindropPhoenix Sun 31-May-15 13:52:41

YANBU. I started skipping bits and now it just feels so padded it pisses me off.

While I know medieval society was pretty grim, it really steps it up a few levels eg the whole skinning thing, lots of gratuitous peasant torture etc ( which I don't think did particularly happen because peasants were needed up work!)

And why Dany is still sitting a castle worrying about what to do after 5 volumes? Just decide already!

PourquoiTuGachesTaVie Sun 31-May-15 13:55:14

Of course there was no closure - the series isn't finished yet.

CitrineRaindropPhoenix Sun 31-May-15 14:19:28

I know the series hasn't finished.

None of the characters really progress much through the books after vol 2. They all have incidental adventures around the edges of the story with the occasional death of a main character to make it more interesting e.g Bran and the stag.

I'm reading the Harry Potter books with DD at the moment and it's the same sort of thing - as the writer got more famous, the editing really dropped off.

expatinscotland Sun 31-May-15 14:34:00

'And why Dany is still sitting a castle worrying about what to do after 5 volumes? Just decide already!'

She does that a lot! To the point of boredom. Until she gets on Drogon and rides off, she just hems and haws and ultimately it's Quentin Martell who acts by setting Rhaegal and Viserion free. Her nephew is more decisive than she is.

I've only read the first two, and only read the second because a friend begged me to.

I thought they were really over-long and clunkily written. I don't mind the names, or even the violence tbh, but I do object to poor quality writing - especially when the writer is clearly dragging out the series for the point of dragging it out and selling more books, rather than for any particular narrative purpose. About 75% of it is just padding - stripped back and culled, they might be worth reading.

annatha Sun 31-May-15 18:40:58

Nadia You sum it up perfectly! I'm glad others agree that they are badly written. I mentioned this to DH and a few friends who are obsessed with the series and they claim it's just because I don't usually read fantasy novels, which is true but I'm quite open minded in what I read and repetitiveness would put me off any genre.

I read the whole series in the hope that they'd get better!

I also find George RR Martin a bit creepy too. Yes, sex and violence are part of the story but THAT much sex and violence? I really had trouble with the baby's head being smashed against a wall (and the amount of times he goes on about it) and the sex/rape/masturbation scenes involving Dany, who in the book is about 14 years old.

PlainHunting Sun 31-May-15 18:46:09

What nadia said

Book 1 was enough for me (and I skim the second half of that ). Life is far too short.

DEATHcameforSirPterry Thu 04-Jun-15 00:17:18

As AllthePrettySeahorses said, I loved Fevre Dream and as I read mostly sci fi and fantasy I pounced eagerly on his new fantasy novel but found it dull, depressing and unrelentingly grim. I struggled through the next couple of books hoping that they would get better but they just got more turgidly over-written into the bargain so gave them up as a bad job.

I've not bothered with the TV series at all.

Cooroo Mon 08-Jun-15 07:14:53

Loved them, not great literature but thoroughly enjoyable read. Wouldn't expect everyone to like them though. I'm impressed by your staying power - that's a heck of a lot of reading when you're not enjoying it!

Zakken Sun 14-Jun-15 13:05:11

His writing is very uneven, isn't it. There are some terrific passages with wonderful descriptive phrases, but also very clunky bits.

I don't read very fast nowadays so was a bit reluctant to take on this series, but it grabbed me and I finished it much quicker than I expected. I did read AFFC and ADWD as an interleaved narrative though, rather than consecutively. I found a chapter order and downloadable version.

I like the odd language quirks, the "Ser"s and the sellswords and the "much and more"s. It's not overdone, but it's enough to remind the reader that it's not our world.

holmessweetholmes Sun 14-Jun-15 13:30:39

I agree. Poorly written, and the sex and violence feels very gratuitous and deliberately overdone. Gave up reading after the second book. I actually like the tv series much better than the books.

WanderWomble Wed 24-Jun-15 00:16:53

I keep dropping into it and reading bits, then getting bored.

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