George R. R. Martin’s second book in the A Game of Thrones series is called A Clash of Kings. John Snow and Ghost went north of the wall with some of the Night’s Watch, including Sam Tarly, to find his Uncle Benjen. They haven’t found him yet, at least in this book, though they find a lot of other interesting things. They meet a really disgusting man than marries every daughter he has (19 of them). The son’s he sacrifices to the others. Eventually John and Ghost leave the main troop with Halfhand to see what Mance Rayder is up to. Mance Rayder is a born wilder, or free man, that abandoned the Night’s Watch. Eventually Ghost finds his wildlings practicing their fighting techniques, and his giants riding wooly mammoths. It seems he is not the king of the wildlings in the same sense that Robb or Joffrey are king. The wildlings have a mind of their own and are more democratic. They are marching to the wall when John yields to the wildlings. He was commanded to yield by Halfhand, who he also had to kill to be accepted by the wildlings. John has a dream where he can see through Ghost’s eyes, and John sees the mammoths, giants, and training wildlings.
Arya is still at Harrenhal, but convinced Jaqen H’ghar (my favorite character) to help her free some of Robb’s north men from the dungeons. They had been captured in battle. With the help of the other two she had saved in the fire, they set the men free and give them weapons. They take over Harrenhal, and Roose Bolton becomes the Lord of Harrenhal. Arya doesn’t trust him though, or any of the others (except Gentry who she told in the first book) with her true identity. It was a smart move. She asks if he will take her with him when he leaves Harrenhal, and he says no. She realizes she has to do something. The gods spoke to her through the trees in the godswood, they told her to be brave and strong like she said she would. They told her the lone wolf dies, but the pack survives. She decides to leave and take Gentry and Hot Pie with her. Jaqen H’ghar changed his look into someone else, and gave Arya a magic coin. He told her if she ever needed him to give that coin to a Braavosi and say two magic words, which she repeats along with her list of people to kill. Nymeria did not show up in this book, but I imagine she will reappear soon
Sansa is still in King’s Landing, held hostage by the Queen and King Joffrey. Stannis marches to King’s Landing after killing Renly, and also sends his fleet of ships. Tyrion was ready for them though. He set all kinds of traps and used magic wildfire, and that massive chain he had made. Sansa waited in the palace with the queen while the fighting ensued. Joffrey came out to battle with his uncle, but only with guards. His mother was not happy, but I can’t blame her for that. She eventually ordered some guards to bring him inside, and things started to fall apart. Tyrion was awesome though, he actually led the battle against Stannis’ men. Lord Tywin came to finish off Stanis’ men. It seems Stannis survived. Joffrey agreed to marry someone Lady Margaery Tyrell, sister of Ser Loras, and betrothed to King Renly. The Hound fled the fighting because of all the fire, he was afraid, naturally. However, he was deeply ashamed and vanished. He appeared in Sansa’s room and tried to get her to come with him, he said he would protect her and nobody would ever hurt her again. Being an idiot, she did not go with him. Instead she is waiting for Ser Dontos to save her. I have no idea why. One of the knights tried to kill Tyrion, and he managed to get out of the way but he was severely injured. They though the was dead, he took a sword to the face, and had other injuries. Pod the squire saved him. He thinks his sister gave the order to kill him. His father took over position as the Hand, and they took Tyrion out of the Tower of the Hand. So in a way he’s homeless. He at least woke up, and started giving out commands. It seems nobody took notice of his heroic battle scenes.
Daenerys was in that city and trying to get an army together. Instead she found trouble, but her people were well fed and rested. She met a bunch of people that tried to get her to give them her dragons. She went to some “pureborns” who let her talk but didn’t really listen to her. She bribed some of them, but it did no good. Then she went to some sorcerers that were undying and asked them for help. They just wanted to feed off of her, though they showed her some visions. Drogon ended up killing them all. So much for their immortality. After that a lot of people in the city wanted her dead, so they tried to find some ships and decide where to go. Finally they met two men that were sent by Ser Ilyrio. He hired three ships to get her back to him, sending word about what was going on in Westeros. He said the people of Westeros need her.
Theon Greyjoy decided to disobey his father’s commands and take over Winterfell since Robb was off warring. He held everyone captive, and seemed to think they should be grateful to him for not allowing his men to beat them to death and rape all the girls (even though they did rape one girl so badly she could barely walk). Bran, Rickon, Hodor, Osha, Meera, and Jorjen escaped their captors and set Shaggy and Summer free. Bran can get into Summer’s head when he needs to. Theon searched for them for a full day, and then said he knew where they were. He killed two children and put their heads on spikes, thinking they were Bran and Rickon. He also had two wolves’ heads. Ser Rodrik came back to take over Winterfell, but they put a noose around his daughter’s neck to keep them back. Just when Maester Luwin convinced him to take the black and yeild, Reek Bolton showed up and usurped Theon. He killed everyone. Bran, Rickon and the others were down in the crypt hiding. They saw Maester Luwin just before he died. Then they split up. Osha took Rickon and Shaggydog one direction and Hodor with the other children and Summer went north. Jorjen said that’s the path they had to take. I imagine they are going to find John and Ghost.
The book is well over 600 pages, so this is just a cursory summation. I can tell you I am hooked on the series, and really enjoy the books. Each book seems to be better than the last, granted this is only the second book. What I’m saying is, I highly recommend them. Happy reading!