Monday, January 13, 2014

Paula Review Beyond The Wall

 Published 2012 by BenBella Books, Inc. 
How I got it: got an ARC copy of it from the publisher at BEA last year
My rating: 3.5 stars

Disclaimer: this might be a short review and have some typos- because I have a very intrusive/insistent creature (a 3 year old corgi/german shepard) sitting here next to me and licking my hands and keyboard and computer while I'm trying to type.

This is the first time I've ever felt the need to read a companion book to a series. No matter how head over heels I am with a series- I've never actively gone out to find essays that delve further into the legend and lore of the series. I am usually of the mind set that sometimes fans reach too far and read too into things that the author never intended. With that being said- I finished the latest A Song of Ice and Fire book at the beginning of the year and I was in such a state of "I NEED MORE" that I was excited to remember that I had picked this up at the BEA last year.

First off if you are going to read this book- make sure you have finished all 5 of the currently released books! It reveals pretty much everything that could be considered a spoiler in the series. I had considered reading it right when I got it last year- and I would have been really bummed because there are a lot of Book 5 details in it.

My thoughts: There were a mix of essays I liked (an essay about how magic plays its part in Westeros) and essays that either weren't things I'm interested in (such as an essay about collecting the series and how much certain editions of the book are worth). There were also essays I just did not find compelling or agree with at all (one argued that rape or fear of rape plays an essential part in forming the lives of women in westeros- which just raised my hackles in all the wrong ways).

A few of the essays helped me form my own thoughts about characters and events in the series. However, I do not think that all of the essays in it are created equal. If your library has it and you need a little Westeros in your life- I think that this is a good book to read while waiting for the next installment.


  1. Not that I didn't enjoy your review, but I want to see a picture of your dog! What a unique combination. I have a German Shepherd, and my brother has a corgi....

  2. I am listening to ADWD now. I will have to check this one out after I finish it.

  3. I am glad you posted that we should read the five books that are out. I have only read three... and refuse to read anymore till the series is finished. PS I know how you feel with dogs around... my cats will hang around me and stare at me like creepers when they want to eat.

  4. I haven't read a book of essays about another book since one about Harry's been awhile! But I think this one might be something I should pick up after I'm finished with the 5 (currently about halfway through book four). There is so much detail and it's a setting rife for essays!


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