Thursday, July 14, 2011

Fantasyland

I long ago fell under the spell of J.R.R. Tolkien and his hobbits and so I was a prime candidate to enjoy J.K. Rowling's world of wizardry when it came along a few years ago.  I have read and liked all of her books and most of the movies based on them and now, like millions of fans around the world, I'm ready for the final movie which opens today in the United States.  I won't be waiting in line at midnight tonight though.  I'm too much in need of my beauty sleep for that.  No, I'll wait a few days and hope the pandemonium dies down a bit.

As a Tolkien and Rowling fan, you would think I would have heard of George R.R. Martin and his work, but I admit I had not until this year.  Then the HBO series "Game of Thrones" started.  My propensity to like fantasy kicked in, and I was quickly hooked.

Martin had written four books in his series about the fantasy world of Westeros and the HBO series was based on the first.  After just one episode, HBO realized that it had a hit on its hands and renewed the series for another season.  Most likely, we will have a few more seasons to enjoy this fantasyland.

The last book in the series had come out about six years ago, and finally, just this week, the fifth one,  A Dance With Dragons, has been published, just in time to boost sales for the summer for many ailing bookstores.  A George R.R. Martin book and a Harry Potter movie all in one week - the fantasy lover's cup runneth over!

The reviews that I have read of the new Martin book have all been glowing.  The word "masterpiece" has even been tossed around.  The reviews of "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2" have been mostly good, too.  Many pleasurable hours of reading and viewing lie ahead.

But before I can purchase and read A Dance With Dragons, I have to read the first four books, currently sitting in their box on my "to be read" shelf.  There are about twenty books ahead of them, but I may have to jump them ahead in the queue.  I've been suffering "Westeros Withdrawal" since the HBO series ended.

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