About the Book:
Dubbed the American Tolkien by Time magazine, #1 New York Timesbestselling author George R.R. Martin is a giant in the field of fantasy literature and one of the most exciting storytellers of our time. Now he delivers a rare treat for readers: a compendium of his shorter works, all collected into two stunning volumes, that offer fascinating insight into his journey from young writer to award-winning master.
Whether writing about werewolves, wizards, or outer space, George R.R. Martin is renowned for his versatility and expansive talent, highlighted in this dazzling collection. Included here, in Volume II, are acclaimed stories such as the World Fantasy Award-winner The Skin Trade; as well as the first novella in the Ice and Fire universe, The Hedge Knight;, plus two never-before-published screenplays. Featuring extensive author commentary, Dreamsongs, Volume II , is an invaluable chronicle of a writer at the height of his creativity and an unforgettable reading experience for fans old and new.
I am kind of torn on this book. There are a couple of great stories and the rest are all ok, nothing that really stands out as great. The Skin Trade (1988) novella is an excellent story, Thrilling plot and intriguing characters. I guess the real reason to get this book would be The Hedge Knight (1998) novella. This story is the beginning of The Tales of Dunk and Egg which is a series of fantasy novellas by GRRM, set in the world of his A Song of Ice and Fire novels. They relate the adventures of “Dunk” (the future commander of the Kingsguard, Ser Duncan the Tall) and “Egg” (the future king Aegon V Targaryen), some 90 years before the events of the novels. This was a fantastic little story. I enjoyed reading about events leading up to the ASOIAF series. As usual the worldbuilding and strong characters are here in this novella. I highly recommend this story, and the other two in this series. (The Sworn Sword, The Mystery Knight). If you are looking for something to read while waiting for more ASOIAF this will definitely do the trick.
Overall a good book. For hardcore GRRM fans this is a must, your average fantasy reader might want to pass and get some more familiar books of Martin’s.