George R.R. Martin, the author behind the novels that Game of Thrones is based on, announced on Wednesday that the next installment will not be published in 2018.
The sad news came in a post on martin's official website, where he also confirmed that another fictional history of Westeros is on the way. Martin promoted Fire & Blood Volume 1, an account of the Targaryen kings in his fantasy world written from the perspective of Archmaester Gyldayn. The book will be out on Nov. 20 from Bantam Spectra and HarperCollins Voyager, according to Martin.
In the process of announcing the new book, Martin broke a lot of hearts by confirming that another year would pass without The Winds of Winter hitting shelves. The highly anticipated sixth novel in Martin's series has been delayed for seven years now, and unfortunately, fans now have to accept that it will be eight.
"No, winter is not coming… not in 2018, at least," the 69-year-old author wrote. You’re going to have to keep waiting for THE WINDS OF WINTER."
Martin's acclaimed series of novels, A Song of Ice and Fire, inspired the HBO series Game of Thrones, which was named after the first book. A Game of Thrones was published in 1996, and while the show has kept relatively close to the books' original story, it has now completely passed the plot line on the page. Martin and the showrunners have confirmed that the series will have a completely different ending that the books, so suspense remains for both fandoms.
The most recent novel in Martin's series was A Dance With Dragons, published in 2011. The book ended -- SPOILERS! -- with Jon Snow's death at the hands of the Night's Watch. That's a long time to hang from narrative cliff, as any die-hard book fan can attest.
Still, Martin's Fire & Blood series is a decent consolation prize for fans. Martin released a book called The World of Ice and Fire in 2014, co-authored by Elio M. Garcia Jr. and Linda Antonsson. The illustrated book offers a detailed overview of the fictional world of Westeros, Esos, Sothoros and beyond. It details the political, geographical and mystical past of Martin's version of Earth, and fans have extracted many clues about the main plot.2comments
Based on Martin's post on Wednesday, Fire & Blood will be an even more granular examination of that history.
"These histories began a few years back as a series of sidebars intended for THE WORLD OF ICE & FIRE, our huge illustrated concordance, but I got carried away (as I tend to do) and before long the sidebars got so long they were threatening to overwhelm the entire book, so we pulled them out of that volume… and saved them for this one," Martin explained.