Fire and Blood, the first book in George R. R. Martin’s two-part prequel series, provides an in-depth look at the history of the Targaryen Dynasty. Written in the style of a political history book, Martin lays out the defining events in the first three ruling generations of House Targaryen, set three centuries before Martin’s Game of Thrones series.
Aegon Targaryen, a young and ambitious dragonlord, sets out to conquer the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. With the help of his sisters, Aegon is able to overtake and unify all of Westeros. His coronation marks the birth of the Targaryen Dynasty. Aegon’s sons follow in his footsteps, successfully ruling over the unified kingdom. The novel continues with the rule of Jaehaerys I Targaryen, one of the greatest monarchs of the Targaryen Dynasty. Jaehaerys I deals with an untimely tragedy that ends the life of his beloved daughter while a second rebellious daughter is forced into exile. Following the successful reign of Jaehaerys I, the kingdom is plunged into civil war as Rhaenyra Targaryen challenges her stepbrother Aegon for the throne in the Dance of Dragons. The novel ends with the first few years of the reign of Aegon III. Entwined in the history of House Targaryen are the stories of other prominent Westeros families such as House Lannister and House Baratheon as well as the stories of notable characters such as Elissa Farman who brazenly steals three dragon eggs from the powerful Targaryen family to fund her exploration to the far corners of the world.
Told in a political history style, Martin has turned Westeros into a vivid and adventurous world. The colorful characters have been expertly developed through anecdotal descriptions and stories. In addition, the characters are complex, with unique personalities and notable backstories. Much of the content of this book are the battles and challenges faced by the Targaryen’s, which beautifully set up future events in the world of Westeros. The tale is told through a third person point of view with Martin’s signature descriptive writing and creativity, further enhancing the historical retelling of the beginning of the Targaryen Dynasty.
An epic political history full of action and scandal weaves elements of fiction and fantasy to create the world of Westeros and the powerful Targaryen Dynasty in George R. R. Martin’s impressive Fire and Blood. With a five out five star rating for its impeccable details and complex characters, Fire and Blood is a must read for fans of Martin’s Game of Thrones series.