A Song of Ice and Fire

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A Song of Ice and Fire is a series of epic fantasy novels by American novelist and screenwriter George R. R. Martin. Martin began writing the series in 1991 and the first volume was published in 1996. Originally planned as a trilogy, the series now consists of four published volumes with three more planned. There are also three prequel novellas available, with several more planned, and a series of novellas consisting of excerpts of the main novels. One of these excerpt novellas has won a Hugo Award. The series has been translated into more than twenty languages[1] and the fourth volume reached the top of the New York Times bestseller lists upon its release.[2] Overall, the series has sold more than 3.5 million copies in the USA[3] and more than 7 million worldwide.[4]

The story of A Song of Ice and Fire takes place in a fictional world, primarily upon a continent called Westeros but also on a large landmass to the east, known as Essos.[5] Most of the characters are human but as the series progresses other races are introduced, such as the cold and menacing Others from the far North and fire-breathing dragons from the East, both races thought to be extinct by the people of the story. There are three principal storylines in the series: the chronicling of a dynastic civil war for control of Westeros between several competing families; the rising threat of the Others who dwell beyond an immense wall of ice that forms Westeros' northern border; and the ambition of Daenerys Targaryen, the exiled daughter of a king who was murdered in another civil war fifteen years previously, to return to Westeros and claim her rightful throne. As the series progresses, all three storylines become increasingly interwoven and dependent on each other.

The series is told in the limited third-person through the eyes of a number of point of view characters. By the end of the fourth volume, there have been seventeen such characters with multiple chapters and eight who only have one chapter apiece.

The growing popularity of the series led to it being optioned by HBO for development of a television adaptation, named Game of Thrones.[6] A pilot episode was produced in 2009 and a series commitment for nine further episodes was made in March 2010.[7]

There are board[8] and role-playing games[9] based on the books available, as well as a collection of artwork based on and inspired by the series.[10] The French video game company, Cyanide, has announced that they have partnered with Martin to create a video game adaption of the books, entitled A Game of Thrones: Genesis.[11]

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