Rejoice, Game of Thrones fans — George R.R. Martin’s new book has finally arrived. Of course, we’re referring to Fire & Blood, which will hit store shelves on Tuesday, delving into the history of the Targaryens in Westeros.
Oh, you probably thought we were referring to the long-awaited Winds of Winter, the next installment in Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, didn’t you? No, no, as it turns out, Martin is reportedly holed up in a secluded location to try and finish that one. For book six, at least, the wait continues.
You can check out this earlier post of ours, meanwhile, which includes an excerpt from Fire & Blood about Queen Alysanne Targaryen and a trip to the North she made more than 200 years before the events laid out in Game of Thrones. In the excerpt, she meets lord Alaric Stark of Winterfell, who growls at one point about winter coming.
Per a review from The Independent, the new book is meant as a history of the Targaryen kings, from Aegon the Conqueror to Aegon III. “Fire and Blood — which takes its title from the noble family’s house words — take place 300 years before those in the Song of Ice and Fire series. Unlike those books, Fire and Blood is written as an in-universe account (purportedly) by the Archmaester Gyldayn of the Citadel, in a style that Martin’s publisher describes as possessing the ‘scope and grandeur of Gibbon’s The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire’.”
That review goes on to describe the book as perfect for GoT fans who love obsessing over minutiae. “And it’s fun to see the ancestors of other popular characters — from the Starks to the Lannisters — turn up along the way.” The book’s more than 700 pages, however, make it feel like you’re at times slogging through a homework assignment, the review adds.
This is one example of a slew of new content from Martin that will be materializing soon. Besides Winds of Winter, there’s also the final season of GoT premiering on HBO in April. Martin is also working with HBO on a GoT prequel series. And beyond that, Hulu is developing multiple series based on Wild Cards, a book series edited by Martin.