At one point I was willing to give this novel four stars (the writing is very good) and ignore the rest of the series. The plot was dragging. Then the storm hit and I was shocked. From then, the story improved and now I'm hooked for the next installment. In other words, "A Storm of Swords" was a roller coaster ride. Lots of surprises, heartache, satisfaction, and downright eeriness. Feels like I'm married to it now. Enjoy!