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Mwm

Best historical fiction for HUGE ASOIAF fan...

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With certain qualifications as I am only halfway through and it is not that exciting for us used to more modern pacing, although there is plenty of slaughter, battle and fateful passion, but it is interesting and the fantasy-like colorful exotism, decadence and wanton cruelty could have served as an inspiration for quite a bit of Essos (although I doubt that GRRM has read it), Gustave Flaubert: Salammbô. (Sometimes spelled with one m only and no circumflex.)

The real historical background is a war between Carthage and her own former mercenaries (who were not paid properly and thus turned against their former employer) after their defeat in the first war against Rome. The title character is not historical, though (a daughter or the historical Hamilkar Barka and thus would have been an older sister of Hannibal).

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Regarding fantasy inspired by roughly the same period of GOT -- I'd forgotten Mary Gentle's Ash: A Secret History.  It's as gritty as one get -- in comparison with Ash, Arya's character looks like dress-up.

A Secret History (in 1999), Carthage Ascendant, Wild Machines, and Lost Burgundy (all in 2000.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ash:_A_Secret_History

 

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Brilliant writer, Gentle. Her 1610: A Sundial in a Grave is also terrific. Ilario is a bit slighter but fun as well, and ties into Ash.

 

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5 hours ago, Ran said:

Brilliant writer, Gentle. Her 1610: A Sundial in a Grave is also terrific. Ilario is a bit slighter but fun as well, and ties into Ash.

 

Thanks!  I haven't read 1610, and I should check it out.

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