I’m a big fan of the A Song of Ice and Fire books, the epic fantasy novels by George R. R. Martin, and I hope the next one will be released soon.
There has been (and continues to be) a lot of discussion about influences and I have two more ideas to throw into the mix. I cannot guarantee that George is even aware of them but they seem relevant and they’ve not been mentioned anywhere else that I can find.
- In the early 19th century, Germans (then Prussians) were encouraged to give their gold jewellery to the government in exchange for really bleak, intricate black iron jewellery. This was to finance the country’s involvement in the Napoleonic Wars and often bore the slogan ‘Gold gab ich für Eisen’ (I gave gold for iron). Do you think this inspired ‘paying the iron price’?
- There is a character called Walter Bray in Nicholas Nickleby by Charles Dickens. He’s an unpleasant man ready to sell off his child to increase his own power and wealth. Does anyone else see any similarities with Walder Frey?
What do you think?
Fancy reading A Song of Ice and Fire? If you’re not sure, start with the first one – A Game of Thrones – although I reckon you’ll get hooked pretty quickly. If you’ve watched the TV show, Season 1 is very similar to this first novel but the stories start to diverge in later novels/seasons.
Want to try giving Nicholas Nickleby a go? Amazon can help you there too. If you’re on Audible, I’d recommend the (free) version read by Kobna Holdbrook-Smith. It’s really, really good (and free!).
(Unless otherwise stated, I get a small commission if you buy through one of these links)