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The Lands of Ice and Fire (A Game of Thrones): Maps from King's Landing to Across the Narrow Sea
Attention Science Fiction Fans
Man vs. machine, humans vs. aliens, paranormal activities – discover the best of science fiction with these collectible books. Learn More.
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About the Author
George R. R. Martin is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of many novels, including the acclaimed series A Song of Ice and Fire—A Game of Thrones, A Clash of Kings, A Storm of Swords, A Feast for Crows, and A Dance with Dragons. As a writer-producer, he has worked on The Twilight Zone, Beauty and the Beast, and various feature films and pilots that were never made. He lives with the lovely Parris in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Jonathan Roberts grew up in a old farmhouse between a ruined castle and a Bronze Age fort, so lands of the imagination were never far away. These days Roberts illustrates maps of real and imaginary worlds for a wide range of clients, from brides looking for an unusual wedding map to Wizards of the Coast and IDW comics for the many lands of Dungeons and Dragons. Along with his own illustration work for books and games, Roberts has curated New York gallery shows of maps by illustrators around the world.
Top customer reviews
I'm a bit of a map nut, having ran a website for hand-drawn maps for a fantasy MMO, and had those maps printed in various guides as well as creating my own ebook. I also get into collecting and reading about maps and mapping techniques.
First, this is not a map book, but a collection of poster-sized maps that each focus on an interesting area of the world. They have individual cities like Braavos and King's Reach, but also a map of the entire known world and other large sections (like the whole of Dothraki). I was expecting a book, and was honestly a little disappointed since I was hoping for essentially a reference manual so I could keep track of things while reading.
That said, the maps themselves are great. They're printed on fairly heavy paper, and printed quite well, folding out to probably 3' x 2' (just a guess). The colors are well chosen to give you a good sense of the subtle changes in terrain, but simple and muted enough to keep the map focused on locations, kind of like a good National Geographic map. You can really see this in the "Beyond the Wall" map, because it's hard to make snowy terrain and large tracts of forest look interesting, but the maps manages exactly that (although it looks less cold than I expected it to). The inking is very well done as well, with lots of detail that is really obvious on the complicated city maps, but no less detailed on the broad geography maps even if it's more subtle. On the city maps it's pretty apparent that they were put together on a computer, with copy/pasting of hand-inked templates, but it doesn't look any worse for that (actually probably better than it would look otherwise if the poor guy had to hand draw hundreds/thousands of nearly identical roofs). Also acid-free paper.
My only real criticism is with the container that the maps come in. From the outside it's promising, with a very thick hard cover that holds them like a book that will sit comfortably on your bookshelf or in a stack. When you open it, though, it's not as good. The maps are split into two groups that are each placed within a cardboard sleeve inside each cover, with the maps near the spine held in place by some elastic cords. The first thing that happened after viewing the maps was that they got slightly thicker, and immediately didn't want to fit back into the sleeves without some tricky maneuvering to avoid bending the edges of the maps. Also, although it's hard to describe, the sleeve back is glued onto the inside of the cover, which leaves a cardboard edge there that will catch the back of any maps you try and slide in. They should have covered that with a piece of paper, which is what I'll probably have to do. Lastly, the elastic cords are mostly useless, and slip off on their own with minimal movement, and could easily bend the maps badly where they hold. Luckily the sleeves are tight enough that the maps aren't going to go anywhere and I just left them unattached.
While I probably would have been happier with a spiral-bound reference book of well-printed maps, this book is still very well worth having and great in its own right.
EDIT: After some use, the comments about paper in the other reviews became really apparent. I've unfolded a couple of them a few times now, and because the paper is so thick (normally a good thing), the numerous folds make it difficult to open without causing bends in the paper. The other, more significant, issue is that all of the maps have a fold that puts the map itself on the outside when folded (hope that makes sense, folded "backwards"). This not only means that the map itself will get scuffed with regular usage because it's on the outside of the folded map, but worse that the map along that crease rapidly breaks down causing a white line to appear, most apparent where there are dark colors (like water or trees). This is especially true at the 4-way intersections, and those will probably become holes in time. If they'd folded them all with the back on the outside this wouldn't be a huge problem except with heavy use. I debated trying to reverse the fold, however the paper is so thick that I think that will make it worse because the paper will not want to fold that way.
So, if you plan to post them on your wall more-or-less permanently, or otherwise store them open (like in a big map drawer - who has that?), or simply never open them, then these maps will remain in good shape. Otherwise expect that they'll have unsightly lines appear along the creases if you open them frequently. I wish that they'd included a CD of them digitally, or otherwise made that purchasable, because then I could actually reference them on my iPad while reading the books.
I would have given this 5 stars, but my only issue is that I thought this was a "book of maps", like an atlas where everything is bound. Instead this is actually a bunch of maps that are unbound. You open up the cover, the maps come out and your unfolding these big paper maps. Personally I would have preferred them to be bound, its less messy that way and you don't have to worry about folding them right to get them back in the cover. Plus you look kinda strange reading A Dance with Dragons with a bunch of maps surrounding you.
Overall this is a good companion for die hard fans of the Ice and Fire series
5 stars for the beautiful well drawn maps that are perfect for Song of Ice and Fire readers. -1 Star for the annoying packaging that is really just a book cover with sleeves that hold in the maps. I could hardly call this a book at all, more of a poster collection.
Beware if you haven't read the books and are avoiding TV show spoilers there is a map that shows the paths that the main characters take through the world, and those may spoil a few things for future seasons.