I’ve always appreciated the fact that George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire novels are accompanied by maps (largely because I can be super OCD about trying to figure out where the action in a story is occurring, and to say that ASOIAF is a ”sprawling” adventure would be a major understatement). Still, as much as I’ve appreciated those little black and white maps, the thought that Martin’s world deserved a grander treatment has never been too far away. Well, today that grander treatment has been realized with the release of The Lands of Ice and Fire, a folio containing twelve large, full-color fold-out maps illuminating the farthest corners of Martin’s signature setting. Each map is fully authorized by the author, and illustrated by mapmaker and artist Jonathan Roberts.
I had a sneak peek at this collection when I was at San Diego Comic Con, and what little I saw gave me fleeting thoughts of spiriting away an early copy…not that I could have: It was behind lock and key in a glass display case! I can’t begin to tell you the number of Martin fans who practically begged for a copy. You could see the lust in their eyes!
The lucky people who find a copy of this collection at their local book store will have maps of the following: The known world, the west, central Essos, the east, Westeros, the land beyond the wall, the Free Cities, Slaver’s Bay, the Dothraki Sea, King’s Landing, Braavos, and a map that tracks the journeys of the series’ protagonists. I can’t wait for HBO’s A Game of Thrones to return so I can follow the action on my own set of maps.
The decision to buy this collection should be an easy one for any ASOIAF reader. The hard part will be deciding whether to leave them in their folio or to frame them!