The World of Ice & Fire, the encyclopedic fictional history of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, by Martin and the webmasters of Westeros.org, Elio Garcia and Linda Antonsson, officially goes on sale today (October 28).
Martin helped promote the book over the weekend at an event in Manhattan which Grantland’s Jason Concepcion attended and wrote a “We Went There” piece about. He sourly pointed out that this new book “is not the book that all his fans are waiting for.”
And when that book comes out, muses Concepcion —
The pressure to stick the landing, to arrange every word in just the right way, must now be incredible. And that’s without Martin’s fans wondering aloud if he’s going to die.
Despite being the one most involved, Martin seems to be the most phlegmatic about the outcome. He also seems to let off steam by engaging in the kind of tangential questions that come his way as one of the most fannish pros in history, something Concepcion reports but doesn’t fully grasp —
“Someone started an argument online recently; I got an email about it,” Martin explained, as a gorgeous illustration of Aegon the Conqueror riding Balerion was projected above him. “About if Drogon could beat Smaug.” Martin then goes on to explain that Drogon is too young a dragon, that Smaug can talk and therefore has “an intellectual advantage.” Anyone who complains about George not writing whenever he makes an appearance at a convention or an awards show, who wonders Internet sotto voce if he’s too fat to live and see the thing through, should also rail against whoever the fuck is emailing him Smaug vs. Drogon threads in hopes that he weighs in. Because he probably will.
Another set of collaborators, Brian and Wendy Froud, last month celebrated the release of their new book Brian Froud’s Faeries’ Tales, which follows in the footsteps of their earlier work, Trolls.
Humans throughout history have always had special relationships and bonds with faeries, whether loving and helpful or at times destructive. This new book explores that complex relationship and the liminal state between the human and faery world where interaction occurs.
Many of the stories are familiar to readers except here the “true” story is told by the faeries. An entertaining commercial shows some of the excellent visuals created for this volume.