Orthogonal Thought | Random musings from the creator of Cooking For Engineers and Lead Architect of Fanpop





Books - The Hedge Knight

Posted 29 May, 2007 at 2:17am by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Books)

The Hedge Knight by George R. R. Martin takes place in the same world as his hugely popular A Song of Ice and Fire series. Specifically, the events in the book focus in on a tournament set in Ashford (somewhat near Highgarden in the south of Westeros) about 90 years prior to A Song of Ice and Fire. The events follow a Dunk, hedge knight (a knight not sworn to a lord who is so poor that he is said to sleep in the hedges), who decides to enter a tournament in the hopes to win just one round in order to get a little money to survive.

Along the way, Dunk meets an eager (and petulant) young boy named Egg (his head is shaved) who agrees to be Dunk's squire. The two of them watch the tourney unfold and get entangled in a plot that Dunk, in his simple minded honesty and chivalrousness, is unable to untangle himself from. Even though the book (I listened to the audio book which clocked in around 3.5 to 4 hours) is fairly short (especially given George R. R. Martin's incredible ability to write extremely long books that captivate the imagination), Martin manages to insert a couple twists that he is so good at. The tale is satisfying yet melancholy and is a great read for those not yet initiated into any of the books dealing with the Seven Kingdoms. For those readers waiting for A Dance with Dragons, the Hedge Knight provides a glimpse at characters that have been referred to in passing in both A Storm of Swords and A Feast for Crows. Discovering how this tale fits into the history of Westeros actually provided me with even greater pleasure than the story itself and added to my longing for George R. R. Martin to provide the next installment in the series.

This book is now most widely available as a graphic novel, but the original text is available as part of Legends: Stories By The Masters of Modern Fantasy. There are many versions of this book available on Amazon.com but this link is the one that actually has all the stories in the Legends anthology including The Hedge Knight.

What I'm reading: Shardick by Richard Adams (1976 Mass Market Paperback), Vegetables from The Culinary Institute of America (Hardcover), Empire by Orson Scott Card (Audio), and The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, Book 3) by Philip Pullman (Audio).

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