Andorion

About to plunge into the world of ASoIaF - need advice

22 posts in this topic

I am a total beginner in this fantasy world. For quite some time I have wanted to get into it but I always held off as I was waiting for the series to be done. Recently I realised that my patience was at an end. I am now going to start both the books as well as seeing the show Game of Thrones. 

 

What I am confused about is which one to do first? Should I watch the show first then go into the books or vice versa?

 

I have been told that while the show starts off by sticking close to the books they diverge a lot later.

 

I would really love to have some advice from veterans of the series. 

 

This is my first post here. So if I posted this in the wrong place or made some other mistake, I would appreciate any corrections.

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I watched the show first because in my opinion the TV show is much easier to follow then the books. I also like to visualize the characters in my head while reading so the show helped me with that. 

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I also watched the show first, but I don't think it really matters. The advantage of watching the show first is that you already know the big characters, so you would be able to concentrate on the countless smaller characters as well when you read the books. I think if I would start over, I would read the books first, though.

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If you want to sound all hipster and cool, read the books first. What I did was I watched the first two episodes and than I was like, I have to read these books. But the books are big so I got inpatient and kinda watched and read at the same time. If I had to do it over again I would personally read the first book and than watch the first season and than read the second book and than the second season and so on. 

 

My advice is if you decide to read the books first is to keep track of characters. write down characters that are the important ones and a little but about them so that they will sink into your brain. I could write a quick character guide if you would like. Just the super basics. 

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If you want to sound all hipster and cool, read the books first. What I did was I watched the first two episodes and than I was like, I have to read these books. But the books are big so I got inpatient and kinda watched and read at the same time. If I had to do it over again I would personally read the first book and than watch the first season and than read the second book and than the second season and so on. 

 

My advice is if you decide to read the books first is to keep track of characters. write down characters that are the important ones and a little but about them so that they will sink into your brain. I could write a quick character guide if you would like. Just the super basics. 

 

This sounds interesting. I was considering adopting a 1 book, 1 season method. I could do that. Or I could see the first 2-3 seasons and then read the first 2-3 books together. I read fairly fast, and I have read big books with lots of PoVs before. 

 

So which method is better? 

That character guide would be awesome, thanks a lot for offering. I am staying clear of all wikis and stuff for fear of spoilers.

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This sounds interesting. I was considering adopting a 1 book, 1 season method. I could do that. Or I could see the first 2-3 seasons and then read the first 2-3 books together. I read fairly fast, and I have read big books with lots of PoVs before. 
 
So which method is better? 
That character guide would be awesome, thanks a lot for offering. I am staying clear of all wikis and stuff for fear of spoilers.

watch 1st 3 seasons, then read books, then next 2 seasons.

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Personally I would watch the first season, then read the first book etc. I know that's the opposite to most, I just felt I enjoyed the books more on my second read-through when I could properly picture characters/settings in my mind. Which in turn, allowed me to concentrate more on minor character and plots that I probably didn't pay as much attention to on my first read.

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I would watch season 1, read book 1 etc. up until book 3. As others have said, there is much more happening in the books than in the show, so having an idea about the major players comes in handy. Then I'd watch season 4 & 5 as it starts to divert from the books there (and I can't help thinking I would've liked season 5 better if I hadn't read the books first). And finally read book 4 & 5. You can consider reading them combined as described here:

http://boiledleather.com/post/25902554148/a-new-readerfriendly-combined-reading-order-for-a

I very much enjoyed reading them together, as you keep up with all the characters over time.

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I am a total beginner in this fantasy world. For quite some time I have wanted to get into it but I always held off as I was waiting for the series to be done. Recently I realised that my patience was at an end. I am now going to start both the books as well as seeing the show Game of Thrones. 

 

What I am confused about is which one to do first? Should I watch the show first then go into the books or vice versa?

 

I have been told that while the show starts off by sticking close to the books they diverge a lot later.

 

I would really love to have some advice from veterans of the series. 

 

This is my first post here. So if I posted this in the wrong place or made some other mistake, I would appreciate any corrections.

Read the books first. Reading books takes a lot of time. If you already knows how it's going to happen it'll eat away you motivation to read and it'll truly take VERY long to read through the series (It is 5890 pages long at the moment). TV and movies on the other hand are quickly watched through and you won't get bored of them just because you already know what's going to happen. You might be annoyed at some of the changes they make, but I've eventually come to like the changes as it makes the TV show less predictable to a me as a book reader. If you want to stay absolutely free of spoilers I'd recommend reading well ahead in the books as the TV series throws stuff around occasionally. Also, be sure to read all the books before watching season 5, as it contains stuff from books 4 and 5 both.

Edited by Esa1996

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This sounds interesting. I was considering adopting a 1 book, 1 season method. I could do that. Or I could see the first 2-3 seasons and then read the first 2-3 books together. I read fairly fast, and I have read big books with lots of PoVs before. 

 

So which method is better? 

That character guide would be awesome, thanks a lot for offering. I am staying clear of all wikis and stuff for fear of spoilers.

I'm throwing a wild guess and say that you have read Malazan :) If I'm right, and you had no problems with remembering the names in Malazan, you should do quite well with ASOIAF. There's more characters in ASOIAF (2303 according to some Redditor, but this includes the world book and all the prequels etc.) but far less POVs (Only 32, 24 of which are real POVs compared to Malazan's around 200 (I tried to count them once :D)).

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Read the books first. Reading books takes a lot of time. If you already knows how it's going to happen it'll eat away you motivation to read and it'll truly take VERY long to read through the series (It is 5890 pages long at the moment). TV and movies on the other hand are quickly watched through and you won't get bored of them just because you already know what's going to happen. You might be annoyed at some of the changes they make, but I've eventually come to like the changes as it makes the TV show less predictable to a me as a book reader. If you want to stay absolutely free of spoilers I'd recommend reading well ahead in the books as the TV series throws stuff around occasionally. Also, be sure to read all the books before watching season 5, as it contains stuff from books 4 and 5 both.

 

Actually for me its kind of the opposite. 5890 pages divided over 5 books comes to slightly less than 1200 pages per book. Thats doable. i read the 14 book Wheel of Time in less than 2 months. Books (unless badly written, and GRRM is not that) are things I am very comfortable with. Shows on the other hand...I understand each episode comes to around an hour right? Far more of a challenge. 

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I'm throwing a wild guess and say that you have read Malazan :) If I'm right, and you had no problems with remembering the names in Malazan, you should do quite well with ASOIAF. There's more characters in ASOIAF (2303 according to some Redditor, but this includes the world book and all the prequels etc.) but far less POVs (Only 32, 24 of which are real POVs compared to Malazan's around 200 (I tried to count them once :D)).

 

Yeah after Malazan, I am not really worried about length or complexity anymore. Its the book-show interaction thing that has me stumped. 

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Actually for me its kind of the opposite. 5890 pages divided over 5 books comes to slightly less than 1200 pages per book. Thats doable. i read the 14 book Wheel of Time in less than 2 months. Books (unless badly written, and GRRM is not that) are things I am very comfortable with. Shows on the other hand...I understand each episode comes to around an hour right? Far more of a challenge. 

Damn, you were faster than me :D Took me 79 days to read WoT and New Spring.

Episodes are around 50 minutes each I think on average, not quite a full 60.

On what corresponds with what if you want to read and watch simultaneously:

 

Book 1 = Season 1

Book 2 = Season 2

Book 3, 1st half = Season 3

Book 3, 2nd half = Season 4

Book 4 and 5 = Season 5

Season 5 is VERY different from the books. Some plot lines were completely cut though it is rumored that some of the cut plot lines will be in Season 6. Essentially, the further along in the series you go, the less clear it is which season corresponds to which book.

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Damn, you were faster than me :D Took me 79 days to read WoT and New Spring.

Episodes are around 50 minutes each I think on average, not quite a full 60.

On what corresponds with what if you want to read and watch simultaneously:

 

Book 1 = Season 1

Book 2 = Season 2

Book 3, 1st half = Season 3

Book 3, 2nd half = Season 4

Book 4 and 5 = Season 5

Season 5 is VERY different from the books. Some plot lines were completely cut though it is rumored that some of the cut plot lines will be in Season 6. Essentially, the further along in the series you go, the less clear it is which season corresponds to which book.

 

Ok so my schedule can be like Seasons 1+2, books 1+2 OR season1, book 1, season 2, book 2, THEN, seasons 3+4, book 3, season 5, books 4+5.

 

Is that good? With any luck I can start today. I am getting a bit impatient.

 

And 79 days is awesome. i was between things when I read WoT so I could basically read the whole day if I wanted to. 

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Ok so my schedule can be like Seasons 1+2, books 1+2 OR season1, book 1, season 2, book 2, THEN, seasons 3+4, book 3, season 5, books 4+5.

 

Is that good? With any luck I can start today. I am getting a bit impatient.

 

And 79 days is awesome. i was between things when I read WoT so I could basically read the whole day if I wanted to. 

That's good yes. Goes along well with the seasons matching the books as well as possible. 

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SO I have started watching, and I have seen the first episode. I have a couple of questions and I am sure I will have more as I progress. WHere should I post them? Here? Or should I start a new thread? 

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I read the series first a few years back, which was great. Then the tv series came out and I knew there would be slight differences but when I started reading for the second time, as said already, it was easier to picture the characters which in my opinion does make it more enjoyable!

Glad your away to dive into this world, you won't be disappointed!

But you'd probably be best starting a new thread over in the to series section I would think.

Edited by SerDaniel

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I know I'm almost a year late, but I'd recommend watching the show first, it's a bit easier to follow. Once you have basic understanding of the world, then read the books, they are way better than the show. They really go into the world more.

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6 hours ago, YoungGriffIsAegonBlackfyre said:

I know I'm almost a year late, but I'd recommend watching the show first, it's a bit easier to follow. Once you have basic understanding of the world, then read the books, they are way better than the show. They really go into the world more.

Thank you:D\

I did in fact watch the show first. Originally I had planned to alternate each season with a book, but after I read GoT, I realised that the books are so much better, and so in-depth, if I continued to read them, I might never watch the show again (not a big fan of tv shows in general, more of a reader). So I saw all 5 seasons and then read the books

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