A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George R.R. Martin

  • Title: A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms
  • Author: George R.R. Martin
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Series: Yes, this is a collection of short stories and also acts as a prequel to A Song of Ice and Fire.
  • Would recommend to: fans of Arthurian legend or medieval novels, fans of A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones.
  • Available in library?: No

Reviewed By Joel Duggan

A Knight of thA Knight of the Seven Kingdomse Seven Kingdoms is a collection of three short stories. They are written by George R.R. Martin, who also wrote A Song of Ice and Fire and they are set one hundred years before the events of the first book, Game of Thrones. They are aimed at a wider audience than A Song of Ice and Fire, as there is nowhere near as much violence or graphic content and it’s more of a traditional fantasy series.

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms features the three short stories The Hedge Knight, The Sworn Sword and The Mystery Knight. They all follow the knight, Ser Duncan the Tall (referred to as Dunk) and his squire, the young Prince Aegon V Targaryen (referred to as Egg). They travel through a Westeros that is recovering from a rebellion that has divided the realm’s loyalties. A puppet sits on the Iron Throne, with all the true power resting in his advisor Brynden Bloodraven, an albino who is said to use dark magic. This political turmoil acts as a backdrop to the adventures of Dunk and Egg, but unlike Game of Thrones, it doesn’t take centre stage.

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms lacks A Song of Ice and Fire’s ambition and scope, but it more than makes up for it with its simplicity and charm. The two main characters, Dunk and Egg, follow the book’s theme of simplicity. Dunk is a young man who is naïve, yet honest and honourable and Egg is a boy with a tendency to cause mischief and get in trouble. Their interactions are always fun to read and you can see the relationship between knight and squire grow as the book progresses. They are the only two recurring characters, but the one-off characters are also interesting. I also liked how the book showed historical moments that link to A Song of Ice and Fire, particularly the scene with the Fossoways. The book is illustrated and Gary Gianni did a great job with the drawings. They really complement and add to the novel.

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms was a light, fun read. When George Martin finishes A Song of Ice and Fire, I would definitely like to see more of these shorts. It’s different from the main series, but still manages to tell an excellent story. If you like medieval-type novels about knights or Arthurian-esque novels, I would recommend this book to you.

For information on George R.R. Martin and his other works, his website can be found here.

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