Game of Thrones Pondering

I have just finished binge watching season 5 of Game of Thrones and it really got me thinking. You see the TV series has diverged from the books quite significantly in some story lines:

  1. The TV show has progressed further in the timeline than the books, so things happen on the show that haven’t happened in the books
  2. Some story lines, most notable Sansa Stark’s has changed considerably
  3. People have died in the show that haven’t died in the book

This fascinates me as an author because I now have to ask myself which is the true story? Is it George RR Martin’s books or is it the show? Is it likely that whichever you consume first becomes the ‘true’ story? If this is the case then the show will become the true story because it seems to be moving faster than Mr. Martin can write the books. But Mr. Martin knows where the story is going, knows how it is going to end, and was the creator for the whole tale, so shouldn’t his version be the true version? I really don’t know.

I’ve found myself questioning how I will read the next book when it comes out. I will admit that book 5 – A Dance with Dragons really annoyed me when it introduced new characters only to kill them off by the end of the book. I felt betrayed because I’d become invested in this character, tricked into thinking he was going to be important because he was new, and then felt like I’d wasted my time reading the chapters about him.

Also now that certain storylines in the books have been skipped in the TV series I’m thinking they are obviously not important to the final story. Will I bother reading them when the book comes out, or will I see the character’s chapter and skip it? The books are big enough as they are so maybe I can save myself some time (and heartache) by only reading the ‘important’ characters. There was another character introduced in book 5 that hasn’t appeared in the series and so I’m thinking he’s just a red herring. Can I be bothered to invest any time and emotion reading about him? Because that’s the thing about the whole series, you get invested in characters and nine times out of ten the ones you love die and are never avenged. For someone who writes romance with a happily-ever-after, this is hard to take and it’s exhausting.

I’m curious about your opinion. If you’ve read the books and watched the series, will you continue to read the books? Which do you think is the true story? Let me know in the comments below.