The sequel to George R.R. Martin's A Game of Thrones. This novel is fantasy for adults and the political intrigues set up in the first book only multiply. Several new players for the kingdom are introduced, as is the increased weight of magic upon the world, and each of the Stark children are dealt with in separate yet intertwining stories. I particularly enjoyed the stories of Arya, hiding as an orphan boy, and Jon Snow, adventuring beyond the Wall. The writing is perhaps slightly slower at times than the first book, but it picks up near the end and stays as intelligent and tense as ever. The cliffhangers at the end of the book are just as annoying as was the wait for this one - hopefully the sequel will be out soon.