George R.R. Martin released his latest addition to the A Song of Ice and Fire saga on November 20, 2018, months ahead of the final season of Game of Thrones. Although it's definitely not the book most people were waiting for - the ever-delayed The Winds of Winter - fans will have to make do with deciphering the secrets from Fire and Blood for now.
The first in a two-part retelling of Targaryen history, the tome reads like an in-universe historical text, which means any spoilers will apply to the past dynasties of Westeros rather than the events during and after A Game of Thrones. Of course, this is George R.R. Martin we’re talking about, so one should still expect to find plenty of clues, hints, and foreshadowing about the main series contained inside, woven through the meticulously detailed history of the Targaryens in Westeros.
It Seems To Reveal The Source Of Daenerys’s Dragon Eggs
One of the most significant pieces of information contained within the pages of Martin's new book is what appears to be the origin of Daenerys Targaryen’s three dragon eggs. The valuable items are gifted to Daenerys by Illyrio Mopatis, but where he got them from remained shrouded in mystery until Fire dropped some heavy hints.
The book talks about one Lady Elissa Farman, who took three dragon eggs from Queen Rhaena Targaryen and used them to fund an escape to Essos more than 200 years before Daenerys was even born.
The eggs certainly match the description of Dany's, and they end up in the possession of a sealord in Pentos, the hometown of Illyrio Mopatis. As King Jaehaerys accurately predicts when they go missing, “Some spicemonger in Pentos will find himself possessed of three very costly stones."
Dragons Aren’t Supposed To Be Able To Pass The Wall
One memorable historical event mentioned in Fire seems to directly contradict the plot of HBO's Game of Thrones by suggesting dragons can’t fly beyond the Wall - at least, according to the attempts of “Good Queen” Alysanne Targaryen.
As she recalls:
Thrice I flew Silverwing high above Castle Black, and thrice I tried to take her north beyond the Wall, but every time she veered back south again and refused to go. Never before has she refused to take me where I wished to go. I laughed about it when I came down again, so the black brothers would not realize anything was amiss, but it troubled me then and it troubles me still.
This means Daenerys’s daring dragon-aided rescue of Jon Snow and company will likely not occur in the books as it did in the television adaptation, and the slaying and resurrection of Viserion will probably happen farther south.
There’s A Seriously Gruesome Precedent For The Red Wedding
Most fans of Game of Thrones have the events of the Red Wedding burned into their memories, and it turns out the tragic nuptials have a truly horrific precedent in the annals of Westerosi history. Fire recounts an act of Dornish rebellion against the conquests of the first King Aegon, in which:
Wyl of Wyl, the Widow-lover, arrived uninvited at the wedding of Ser Jon Caffren, heir to Fawnton, to Alys Oakheart, daughter to the Lord of Old Oak. Admitted through a postern gate by a treacherous servant, the Wyl attackers slew Lord Oakheart and most of the wedding guests, then made the bride look on as they [maimed] her husband. Afterward they took turns [assaulting] Lady Alys and her handmaids, then carried them off and sold them to a Myrish slaver.
Aegon The Conqueror Had A Vision That Inspired His Conquest Of Westeros
It’s well-known that the Targaryens fled Valyria to build a new home off the coast of Westeros thanks to the accurate prediction of Valyria’s doom by Daenys the Dreamer. Fire drops some hints that Aegon the Conqueror’s subsequent conquest of Westeros was also the result of some sort of vision - perhaps of events as far ahead as when the main plot of Game of Thrones takes place.
Martin seemed to admit as much in a promotional interview. He told Esquire:
There is a lot of speculation that in some sense he saw what was coming 300 years later, and wanted to unify the Seven Kingdoms to be better prepared for the threat that he eventually saw coming from the north - the threat that we are dealing with in A Song of Ice and Fire.
A Prophecy Foretold The Coming Of Robert Baratheon
Hugh Hammer was an illegitimate Targaryen that flew the dragon Vermithor in the historical Dance of the Dragons and made a play for the Iron Throne. Fire mentions a prophecy that Hugh thought concerned his own destiny but instead foretold the future events of Robert’s Rebellion.
The prophecy supposedly read, “When the hammer shall fall upon the dragon, a new king shall arise, and none shall stand before him,” which doesn’t really apply to Hugh Hammer. But it absolutely describes the manner in which Robert Baratheon won the Iron Throne: by driving his war hammer into the chest of Rhaegar Targaryen.
Rhaegar And Lyanna Weren’t The First Targaryen-Stark Couple
Fire tells of a romance between Prince Jacaerys Velaryon, son of Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen, and one Saera Snow, a “Wolf Girl” and likely illegitimate Stark. Jacaerys flies a dragon to the North to visit Saera and weds her in front of a heart tree in the Winterfell godswood.
This matters for two reasons. First, it sets a precedent for the future affair between Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark - and the romance between their child, Jon Snow, and sister, Daenerys Targaryen. It also gives a little more ammunition to those A Song of Ice and Fire theorists who believe a dragon (or its eggs) wait hidden underneath Winterfell.