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  1. Yeah, nah. The context of that first quote is that they are heading from Castle Black North to the Godswood grove on the other side of the wall to say their vows. The bit where the lack of walls is first mentioned is AGoT, Ch.19 Jon III, in his 'the wall was like that' reverie between being chewed out by Donal Noye and chatted to by Tyrion. Later, the walls, gates, and lack thereof to the South, East, and West of the forts on the wall are mentioned in ASoS,Ch.55 Jon VII. Firstly he remembers what Benjen told him in a historical retrospective, then Jon surveys the new makeshift wall on the south side of Castle Black from a military angle.
  2. Probably just a misspelling in my edition, this one: (ASoS, Ch.78 Samwell V) Most likely meant to be upjumped.
  3. (AGoT, Ch.48 Jon VI) Well, straight off the bat, that sounds suspiciously like Castle Black does have at least one gate. And then there is: (AGoT, Ch.52 Jon VII) And (ACoK, Ch.43 Jon V) Qhorin also knows the wall is full of gates Mance could pass through: (ACoK, Ch.43 Jon V) Sam only knows one gate: (ASoS, Ch.46 Samwell III) Although, you would think, whether it is called Queensgate or Snowgate, (or even, for that matter, Rimegate) the name of that fort would be a strong hint to lettered man like Sam, even if the ignorant Wildlings are (ASoS, Ch.48 Jon VI) Although Jon and the wildlings agree with Sam that Castle Black is the only way through (ASoS, Ch.48 Jon VI) Bran has never spent a sleepless night studying the history of the wall, or attempting to defend it against a wildling horde, but in marked contrast to Sam and Jon, he knows (ASoS, Ch.56 Bran IV) Bran also knows (ASoS,Ch.56 Bran IV) even though it turned out as Coldhands said and Jojen dreamed (ASoS, Ch.56 Bran IV) One has to wonder how Jon Snow knows less than Bran. He has heard Old Nan's tales of it longer than Bran (ASoS, Ch.56 Bran IV) No other character seems to share Jon's first opinion that Castle Black doesn't really have a gate. (ASoS, Ch.64 Jon VIII) GRRM seems to have given up on the idea, and instead of denying it really is a gate,finally gives us a detailed description of it. (ASoS, Ch.64 Jon VIII) And making a stirring last-stand set piece from it (ASoS, Ch.64 Jon VIII) with a moving after-piece (ASoS, Ch.64 Jon VIII) After which, Jon steps out of denial and starts to tacitly admit that every holdfast along the wall does in fact have a gate of some kind (ASoS, Ch.78 Samwell V, Jon telling Sam) Towards the end, Jon admits the gate exists openly (ADwD, Ch.58 Jon XII) Talking about time , Bryndon Rivers, who was a man of the Night's Watch as well as the last greenseer, strongly implies that the Black Gate has the potential to open to a different time: (ADwD, Ch.33 Bran III)
  4. I'd suggest you start with a library copy of A Game of Thrones. If your local public library is anything like mine, there are plenty of copies, and no huge demand for them at the moment. Hold off on the quality leather-bound edition, because there is a low probability that Winds and Dream will be published in leather-bound singles of the same size, colour, quality. When the song is sung, there is a high probability that there will be a quality leather-bound edition of the complete set. That is the time to buy the version that is too nice to read at the breakfast table. Game is the book that is most like the show, it will give you a deeper appreciation of what they were trying to achieve in season one. From the start there is a lot that is hard to convey on the screen, a lot of subtle changes (for example, the scene that starts the show, the rangers riding through the tunnel to the north side of the Wall, gives the viewer an idea of the scale of the Wall, but also gives the impression that the wildlings they are tracking are considerably less than nine days ride from the wall, and is still smaller than the one in the books). You then have plenty of time to decide whether or not you want to borrow Clash from your local library, whether you'd rather Yara or Asha. Then you can read Storm and see if Styr's ears really do ruin the whole show, when you watch it frame-by-frame. By that stage you might find you need cheap paperback editions (the more recent the better) so you can make notes in books and put postits in the pages, the better to contribute to the "Wow I never Noticed That" thread. Or a 5-in-1 ebook version, like I did when my wrists started swelling from holding those doorstoppers up to my face for a month non-stop. Ebooks can talk to you while you are driving and in the shower, and they are easy to quote from, and not hard to annotate. You have picked a good time to read all the books, enough time to read them all and still have enough time to read them all again, closely, before Winds is released. When you do the close read you will understand why we still call people who have only seen the show unsullied, even though the show has passed the books now. You are not too late to experience the waiting for the ultimate (and maybe penultimate) book, and when you finally have the opportunity to buy a complete leather-bound version of the series, you will not have sacrificed the unique experience of being one of the first readers - the ones that had all those wild speculations, before everyone knew how they ended. It might spoil you for the last series of the show, though. Actually, I think if I was in your position, I'd hold off on reading the books until after the next season of the show had started. Read the first books while watching the last series of the show. That way the hype about J=R+L is augmented. And there is a fair chance your box-set will soon be augmented with a copy of Winds of Winter, when all the details are still fresh in your blown mind.
  5. GRRM is usually good with the phases of the moon, tides, etc. Enough for us to know that there is one moon and it works exactly like the one we are familiar with does. Enough for us to use his moons as a guide to the passage of time. (ADwD, Ch.04 Bran I) Dawn is more than six hours away, as the moon is a waxing crescent. (ie. it rose in the morning, and becomes visible towards dusk, when the light of the sun grows low enough, and sets less than half way through the night - the thinner the crescent, the sooner after dusk.) Given it is autumn, and they are in the far north, probably more like eight hours until the dawn. The further north, the longer after the equinox, the further away dawn will be. Although, Bran notes the dusk seems to come sooner every day, indicating that they are still very near the autumnal equinox (or would be, if their sun worked the way ours does). At the time Coldhands was excusing his fire, the moon had either not even set, or only just set. I guess he doesn't wear a watch.
  6. 4 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

    Erhm... you quoted me but I didn't say that.

    Really sorry, have given the correct attribution. Thanks for the heads up.

    1. kissdbyfire


      No worries whatsoever. Just wanted to make it clear that I hadn't said that. After all, I've been proposing for urs that if there's a secret entrance, Bran is possibly the only one who will know about it. :)


  7. (AGoT, Ch.08 Bran II) TreeBran knows, RavenBran knows
  8. I'm thinking Winterfell PoV, could be TreeBran, and RavenBran. Or could be Melisandre, reading the flames, or some kind of Palantir-like device she keeps on Mance, her magical monkey. (ETA: Or maybe Ned, resurrected from Bones, gets himself a new point of view) I don't have much faith in GRRM keeping any 'no more PoV' promise (did he actually make one? Can you quote him from any particular date or source for me?). After Feast he announced something to the effect that he was going to only add one or two new PoV's a book from now on, then added four (not counting Pate and Varamyr) to A Dance with Dragons. Admittedly Quentyn keeled over almost as soon as he had seen Volantis, Astapor, and Zahrina's. JonCon is dying slowly of greyscale, but given he and Barry are both battle commanders and therefore naturally liable to die suddenly, adding greyscale is like giving him a reason to hang back and survive when he should have gone over the top with Aegon. Melisandre seems to be securely with us, surrounded by supporters, spying her assassins in the flames the moment the notion comes into their heads, but whelping Stannis's daemon baby and spying on Bran and BR take a physical toll on her body, and if she tries that trick she did on Orell's eagle on the wrong raven, she might implode. If ever there was a character destined to be Nissa Nissa, she is it. So I suppose it is possible that all the new PoV's in Dance, are dead by the end of Winds. The natural corollary is that Winds must have a Dothraki hoard of new characters, that no point of view will enjoy more than two chapters in that hundred chapter opus, and that fully half will be brand new characters. I've got a vague uneasy feeling I read something on his blog in the last year that was suspiciously positive about new characters, too - something like it was limiting to see the world from just one point of view, and how he needs points of view to converge so he can do what he does best - kill the 'main' character. As it is, we have Sam and Pate converging on Oldtown; Brienne, Jaime, Catelyn converging in the Riverlands; Theon and Asha approaching Winterfell with Stannis; Davos and Melisandre both seem to be heading in an Eastwatcherly direction; Arianne and JonCon seem destined to join forces against Cersei; Sansa is poised to head either across the bite to White Harbour or down to Dragonstone or Kingslanding, or even Storm's End, depending on how Baelish wants to play her. Arya too could return to Eastwatch, White Harbour, or the Crownlands, but could as easily slip on a ship to Qarth, or Tolos, or to Ib on the Shivering seas. Or she could just stay in Braavos picking up moves and stray bits of gossip until the Winds of Winter freeze her solid, I guess. That only leaves Victarion, probably Aeron, surely Marwyn (communicating via glass candle to Sam and friends), and Dany scooting across their various seas to commune with Tyrion and Barristan in Meereen. After the wars and the Long Night, it might be necessary to introduce new points of view just to have someone we know left to dream of spring.
  9. Aeron Damphair pisses all over that. For much longer than most men can.
  10. Not only that: while he is at Winterfell Jaime goes twinsies with Cersei in green (AGoT, Ch.09 Tyrion I) Both Bran and Eddard note that Ser Boros and Ser Meryn wear white at Winterfell. Maybe Jaime is going undercover for the occasion. Or in mufti because he is on leave. Bran notes (AGoT, Ch.Ch.08 Bran II)
  11. Great point.
  12. Ned and Dany. Yes, I'd skip the war of the five kings, and the red wedding, and all of Feast. (One person's cloud is another's silver lining). And I'd miss everything to do with White Walkers, which is kind of the whole point of everything else. But I would have most of the story of A Game of Thrones - probably enough to stand as a narrative in it's own right. Which is odd because these two are the ones with the least idea of what is going down in A Game of Thrones.
  13. And giants. I mean, we have Eddard Stark musing (AGoT, Ch.30 Eddard VII) The word 'giant' never seriously occurs to him. I suppose he never met Shagga. But he has seen the Greatjon and the Smalljon. Giants are just in Old Nan's stories. He is very dismissive of Old Nan's stories, even though his Brother is head ranger, has gone as far beyond the wall as any man. And they are forever discussing their plans to fight Mance Raydar and re-populate the Gift. If Eddard never suspects, you would think Benjen might clue him in. It makes me wonder how well Benjen knew the North, and what else the Southrons dismiss as perfectly normal. Sometimes I think he puts lines like "Kevan Lannister had a strong suspicion of just who this Ser Robert really was beneath that gleaming white armor." (ADwD, Epilogue) just to invite a "No shit Sherlock" from the reader.
  14. Two for Tyrion (ASoS, Ch.77 Tyrion XI) shouldn't that be Lester? Lum wins death, and all bets are off. * (AGoT, Ch.42 Tyrion VI) The words are in the Common tongue. Catelyn comprehends the meaning, even before she hears them (ACoK, Ch.55 Catelyn VII)
  15. (ACoK, Ch.23 Jon III)