This story is a first for me; I both listened to the audiobook and read the ebook interchangeably.
The audiobook is narrated by Roy Dotrice who does an amazing job performing all of the characters in this novel.
This is not normally a book I would read; I consider this to be ‘hard fantasy’ and my tastes lean more towards ‘humorous fantasy’ or ‘light fantasy,’ I think the last hard fantasy book I read was a Terry Brooks something or other back when I went to a friends house every weekend to play Dungeons and Dragons (actually that sounds kind of fun, hmmm.)
But, I enjoyed the HBO series on TV, so much so that I subscribed to HBO just to watch it, so I decided to give the book a try. I expected the book to differ greatly from the TV show, or vice versa, but I am amazed at how closely the two followed each other. The audiobook is almost 34 hours long and the TV series is less than 10 hours long but somehow they have fit everything that I consider significant into the show.
It was very interesting to go from listening to the book to reading the book. The transition was not always smooth. It was not easy to find my place when going from one format to the other, but the audiobook is truly unabridged so I was always able to find my spot and continue the story. I find that it is not always polite to wear headphones, but reading from an ereader is understandable, while at times reading from an eraeder is not appropriate but headphones are fine. By switching back and forth I was able to listen and read while driving, at the grocery store, in restaurants, at friends houses, while shopping, in bed, in a bathtub, in an airport, and on airplanes. How else am I to get all of these books read?
From the publisher:
In a time long forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons off balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. As the cold returns, sinister forces are massing beyond the protective wall of the kingdom of Winterfell. To the south, the king’s powers are failing, with his most trusted advisor mysteriously dead and enemies emerging from the throne’s shadow. At the center of the conflict, the Starks of Winterfell hold the key: a reluctant Lord Eddard is summoned to serve as the king’s new Hand, an appointment that threatens to sunder both family and kingdom. In this land of extremes, plots and counterplots, soldiers and sorcerers, each side fights to win the deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones.
©1996 George R.R. Martin, (P)2003 Books On Tape, Inc., published in arrangement with Random House Audio Group,a division of Random House, Inc.
I rate this book, both audiobook and ebook an 8 out of 10. If I could only have one version I would choose the audiobook and the wonderful narration of Roy Dotrice.