After hours in the chair Sam’s back was stiff as a board, and his legs were half asleep. He knew he was not quick enough to catch the mouse, but it might be he could squash it. By his elbow rested a massive leather-bound copy of Annals of the Black Centaur, Septon Jorquen’s exhaustively detailed account of the nine years that Orbert Caswell had served as Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch. There was a page for each day of his term, every one of which seemed to begin, “Lord Orbert rose at dawn and moved his bowels,” except for the last, which said, “Lord Orbert was found to have died during the night.”
There are spoilers as usual.
So I’ve learnt by now if you’re in the prologue you won’t live long enough to make it into the actual book, say hello and goodbye to Pate.
After the clearing of the decks we have new perspectives for book five. The prophet, Aeron Greyjoy as he deals with Euron Crows Eye claim the iron Isles, while Hotah is the captain of the guard for the Dornish prince, who is being pressed to go to war with the Lannisters following his brothers death.
Meanwhile Cersei strives to fill the vacuum following her fathers death while going slightly mad and imagining Tyrion behind every corner. Jaime disentangles himself from her while er, well nothing much happens really for half the book. The Dornish rebellion is extremely short lived, Euron sends his brother across the sea to capture the Dragon princess (we all know who that is) while Brienne is on a task to find Sansa Stark, although Arya will do, but she’s in Braavos and pops up now and again as she trains in the house of black and white.
Samwell has been packed from the wall to go to old town to train as a Maester and he has Gilly in tow with a baby, in a nice touch, he runs across Arya in Braavos. Although these characters have no knowledge of each other, it was a rare moment of interaction between two people who we follow throughout.
Jaime escapes Kings Landing as he seeks to cleanse himself of his twin, and he eventually ends up at Riverrun where he manages to avoid breaking his promise to Catelyn about taking up arms against the Tullys. Speaking of Catelyn, she has taken the life from the dead Dondarrion and is now leading the outlaws, eventually condemning Brienne to death because she had roamed across half of Westeros trying to find a girl that only 2 people know the whereabouts of (one of which is the girl herself) and because she had a nice sword. The girl is of course Sansa, although she is now Alayne, and helping Littlefinger rule the Vale.
Most of the action centres around Cersei though, as she drinks and plots to try and get rid of Margaery yet keep the loyalty of her father. By the end of the book she has revealed a destiny told her by a fortune teller, but more importantly, closed the noose around the queen’s neck, only to find herself entangled in the rope as well.
Martin puts a note in at the end of this book, and explains that book five will pick up on what’s been going on elsewhere while he has focused on Kings Landing. While I can’t say A Feast For Crows captivated me in the same was as the previous books, it seems almost bare plot wise compared to the previous books, it easily relies on Martin’s sumptuous and intricately detailed prose, that makes the pages drift by.
Jaime read it in the window seat, bathed in the light of that cold white morning. Qyburn’s words were terse and to the point, Cersei’s fevered and fervent. Come at once, she said. Help me. Save me. I need you now as I have never needed you before. I love you. I love you. I love you. Come at once.
Vyman was hovering by the door, waiting, and Jaime sensed that Peck was watching too. “Does my lord wish to answer?” the maester asked, after a long silence.
A snowflake landed on the letter. As it melted, the ink began to blur. Jaime rolled the parchment up again, as tight as one hand would allow, and handed it to Peck. “No,” he said. “Put this in the fire.”