The Seven Kingdoms, with all their scheming inhabitants, returns to our screens this month for season five of Game of Thrones. It may only be a week away (more or less) but if you can't wait even that long for a glimpse of Westeros, you can check out the newly released excerpt from George R. R. Martin's upcoming book "The Winds of Winter".
It's been more than three years since the last installment "A Dance With Dragons" was published in 2011, and fans have been growing impatient to find out what happens next. The new excerpt (which you can read here), focuses on Sansa...aka Alayne. This Stark sister has become progressively stronger and more manipulative, and it's amazing to see her coming in to her own as a power player (with a very different kind of strength than her sister Arya).
While the show has started to diverge from the books, I'm sure that we can look forward to an increasingly cunning and self-possessed Sansa in the new season, as this development of her character is a major part of the show. I'm thrilled to see fans coming around to Sansa, who seemed like such a weak woman in the first season. Seeing her reveal a very different, quiet strength that revolves around courtesy and manipulation is phenomenal, and a kind of "strong woman" that I would like to see more of on screen.
Of course, with the extent of the deviations from the source material that we are starting to see in the show, this new chapter (and Alayne's cunning) may not be an element that comes to the series, but I have a feeling we'll see it. It's no secret that the showrunners know how the series will end, and I have little doubt that Alayne/Sansa is going to remain a key player in the game.
However, seeing the Winds of Winter on screen is still a few years off (I'm guessing four, with the next two books split into two seasons), even if we see the exact scene painted by the new chapter, it won't be for quite some time. Still, as a fan of the books and the show, I'll take anything I can get!
Game of Thrones returns April 12th