Book Review: The Ice Dragon by George R.R. Martin

Friday 3 July 2015

The Ice Dragon
George R.R. Martin
Genre(s): Dragons, Fantasy, Young adult
Published: December 1st 2014
Pages: 128
Rating: 5 stars

In the world of A Song of Ice and Fire the ice dragon was a creature of legend and fear, for no man had ever tamed one. When it flew overhead, it left in its wake desolate cold and frozen land. But Adara was not afraid. For Adara was a winter child, born during the worst freeze that anyone, even the Old Ones, could remember. 

Adara could not remember the first time she had seen the ice dragon. It seemed that it had always been in her life, glimpsed from afar as she played in the frigid snow long after the other children had fled the cold. In her fourth year she touched it, and in her fifth year she rode upon its broad, chilled back for the first time. Then, in her seventh year, on a calm summer day, fiery dragons from the North swooped down upon the peaceful farm that was Adara's home. 

And only a winter child-and the ice dragon who loved her-could save her world from utter destruction.

Dragons, George R.R. Martin, and great illustrations? I was sold on this book before I ever picked it up. So sold, in fact, I never even checked the price of it before I decided I was going to buy it. I just had to have a copy in my hands.

Martin delivers, yet again, a fantastic story set in the richly detailed and immersive world of Westeros (a fact I did not know going in to this as I didn't read the blurb, but it makes it ten times as wonderful knowing it's set in the same world as Daenerys and Sansa and all my other favourites). As a fan of ASOIAF, I'll take anything I can get while waiting for the next book, and this was fantastic.

While I didn't really think it was connected to the main series, I liked that it was set in a familiar world as it made getting into it a lot easier, and I did feel like it gave a but more padding to the creation. If multiple stories can be spun from one idea, then it must be great. And the fact that this so heavily featured dragons - my favourite fantastical creatures, both in and out of Martin's world - made it that much more interesting to read.

The Ice Dragon is a good entry point to the world of Ice and Fire, even though there is no direct link between them, such as characters. It is an easy story to follow, made better by the stunning illustrations from Luis Royo, with depth to it that should be appreciated by all fantasy fans, young or old.

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