3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The Lesser Half of a Very Good Book,
This review is from: A Storm of Swords: Part 1 Steel and Snow (Reissue) (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 3) (Paperback)
This may be 500+ pages but it genuinely is only one half of a book. From a page-per-penny perspective you're getting value for money but you'll have no choice but to get the second volume too. That being said, this is book 3 of a saga that will include at least 6 books (8 volumes) so, if you're reading this, you've presumably already accepted making that investment.
Value aside, the biggest effect of this being half a book is that the pacing is a bit off: we have the establishing acts of a story but not the pay-off. Where Clash of Kings had a slow-burning start, Song of Swords starts with a bang. Sadly, it doesn't keep it there and we slip away from grand-scale action. However, it is worth persevering: this may be cold and hard like Steel and Snow but the coming parts, Blood and Gold are suitably hot and fiery.
To be honest, some elements are suspect. Possibly-bloated size aside, Caitlyn and Rob Stark both act irrationally, behaving in a manner that suits the plot (creating trouble) rather than in a way that makes sense to their character and situation: Arya, meanwhile, seems stuck in a perpetual loop of escape and capture. It's no deal-breaker but in the absence of any tent-pole events, these minor points more circumspect.
Many will be tempted to leave the saga after this instalment but, as with half-way through Clash of Kings, stick with it and you'll get your reward in the end. Hold on until you've read Blood and Gold and make your decision then.