Everyone knows that literature is a not so secret hiding place to put the truth. That’s what makes it so great.
What you might not know is that the truth is literally sitting in front of our eyes with so many books, but no one ever stops to think about what it might really mean or why the author decided to write it in the first place.
I pointed this out last week with my post on The Lord of the Rings allegories, and this week we’re going to take a look at another popular series: A Game of Thrones.
This book parallels medieval history with the epic description of the “fictitious” War of Five Kings.
What Is The War Of Five Kings In Game Of Thrones? A Short Guide
In the “A Song of Ice and Fire” book series, more popularly known today as the “Game of Thrones” series, the War of the Five Kings is waged. There are some colorful characters involved in this war who send the plot hurtling towards a final ending that no one expects.
The five kings involved are brothers Stannis and Renly Baratheon, their nephew Joffrey, Robb Stark and Balon Greyjoy.The war in itself is three separate conflicts: the battle between the Baratheons for the Iron Throne, the independence of the northern kingdoms of Westeros, particularly Winterfell which is headed by the Starks, and the independence of the Greyjoys and the Iron Islands.
The reason the war is being fought is that Robert Baratheon, who sat on the Iron throne that unites the many lordships of Westeros, died under strange circumstances. As a result, his eldest son Joffrey was set to take the throne until rumors flew that Joffrey was the incestuous son of the Queen Cersei and her brother Jaime Lannister. Joffrey’s uncle and Robert’s brother Stannis laid claim to the throne.
Not to be outdone, younger brother Renly claimed the thone as well. In the turmoil surrounding Robert’s death, his trusted adviser Ned Stark was put to death. Ned’s son Robb then declared independence from the throne, calling himself King of the North. Taking this opportunity to assert his own power, Balon Greyjoy joined the fray by declaring himself the King of the Iron Islands.
All the parties involved had no interest in working with each other, and the entire kingdom was plunged into peril as a result. No one is quite sure when the war will end and who will ultimately end up on the Iron Throne and rule Westoros.
Does that sound familiar? Think War of the Roses, the medieval battle between English elite as they vied for the crown and control over different regions of the kingdom, resulting eventually in the push for more democratic motions and the signing of the Magna Carta.
The question is: what is George RR Martin really trying to tell us?
You can get the full scoop by visiting A Game of Thrones Audiobook, which has offers to A Clash of Kings, where the bulk of the War of Five Kings occurs, as well as the most recent title in the series, A Dance with Dragons, which picks back up on the end of the war as Danerys gains powers in the East and Stannis continues to fight his way down from the North!