George RR Martin Says The Winds of Winter Won't Be Released This Year

While the northern hemisphere of the world prepares for the warmth of Summer's imminent arrival, those who have been waiting on the fictional Winter in Westeros will be sorely disappointed to learn they won't be getting it this year. George R.R. Martin's slow-coming A Song of Ice and Fire series — from which the hugely popular HBO series Game of Thrones is adapted — won't get its next linear book, The Winds of Winter, until at 2019, at the earliest.

Martin wrote on his blog that readers will not be getting the next book in the series because he's taken time out to write another book chronicling the history of Westeros. Fire & Blood is finished and set to release November 20, 2018. Martin wrote on his blog, "This is the book that I used to jokingly refer to as the GRRMarillion," referring to J.R.R. Tolkien's The Silmarillion, which serves as a historical background to his Middle Earth books.

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This means that fans who enjoy jumping into the minutia of Martin's world of Westeros, Essos, and Sothoryos will have plenty to occupy them until The Winds of Winter is finished and published. Likewise, fans of the HBO series who want to start speculating about the Game of Thrones prequel TV shows in the works are sure to dive into the book looking for clues as to what may be used in the new shows.

Martin writes that Fire & Blood is "not a novel...(Though there are enough stories here for twenty novels. Battles, bloodshed, betrayals, love, lust, horror, religious wars, politics, incest, historical revisionism, all the fun stuff)." Just what his readers love most.

None of these developments is likely to affect the final season of Game of Thrones, which is currently filming and slated to return in 2019. The show — whose writers conferred with Martin about how the book series ends — recently wrapped filming their largest battle scene ever.

Game of Thrones Season 8 will air in 2019. No official release date has been given.

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