I absolutely understand what you are saying. The only problem is that it takes GRRM 4-6 years to write each book... so if I had gotten into them sooner, I'm just be waiting more .
I'm excited for you for what you still have to read, especially the second book.
Once I'm done with A Dance with Dragons, I'm going to read Ghost Stories, the most recent Dresden book.
Then, my mom has been begging for me to read some book series called "conversations with God." No matter how many times I tell her that I'm an atheist, she still doesn't get it. "I just know you'll love this book, it reminds me of you." No... it sounds like a book based on a character I don't believe in, and it reminds you that you don't like the fact that I'm an atheist. Whatever, I'll deal with the pain.
Someone loaned me Conversations with God years ago. Don't feel bad about giving that one a miss.
I picked up a book about what I was ready to dismiss as another privileged white girl's account of her varied and super special eating disorders, but she is actually a decent writer, apart from constantly giving in to the impulse to name-drop her reading lists from college, like, get in line, honey.
Older Swplet's friend, who is two years older than older Swplet, left it here. It was called "Wasted" and I mistakenly thought it would be an account of drug addiction and alcoholism, which TBH are much more interesting to me than eating disorders. It's (relatively) free of self-pity and offered a few eye-openers about the clinical attitudes of that time (1998) toward eating disorders and womens' health in general. I'd like to think there's been some progress in the interim.
Okay here it is, not sure if others thought of this but I am well chuffed. Spoiler tags for good reason, only read if you have read all the books thus far or don't give a hoot.
Jon Snow is not Ned's bastard, he is the child of Lyanna and Rhaegar Targaryen. The three remaining Kingsguard are guarding her when Ned finds them in the Tower of Joy after Rhaegar supposedly "abducted" Lyanna, like some people think he was a villiain and abducted her (Robert) some think Rhaegar was a decent person (Barristan). Most seem to agree he was a decent and honorable person and that people use his mad Father as a cop out to explain what happened, like he was mad too. However, it seems to be more likely that he was in love with her after crowning her the Queen of Love and Beauty after the tourney at Harrenhal.
When Ned, Jory's dad, some others and Howland Reed face Arthur Dayne and the other kinsguard the kingsquard are slain, then finds Lyanna lying in blood. You don't know what happens next, Lyanna dies in a pool of blood and a promise is uttered to which you never know the full extent of (only that she wanted to be buried in Winterfell).
Ned returns home with a child claiming it to be his bastard, though never speaks of the mother.
I think Lyanna died in childbirth to Jon Snow, The Kingsquard were protecting him and Lyanna as their last duty to the rightful king since Rhaegar and Aerys were dead, knowing what would befall him should the truth come out, Ned adopts him as his bastard son.
The only person alive who knows the truth is the Crannogman Howland Reed who never appears or speaks about it, but I think it will be revealed at a later date.
I had that exact same thought, and 100% believe it to be correct.
It's also listed on A Song of Ice and Fire wiki as a main theory, I think Lyanna's words will be revealed in the next book, soon after it's revealed Snow isn't dead (or, comes back from the dead at least.
Has there been a mention of the colour of Snow's eyes in the books? I understand if there hasn't, as it'd be a huge giveaway if this theory is correct.
I finished the book as soon as I posted that, and have dodged forums like the pale mare (geek puns for the win) to prevent spoilers. But looking it up that seems to be the general consensus.
They are grey, but like most genetics aren't black hair in the mix likely to overpower the fairer Targaryen genes? In exaple, most of the Bratheon household have Targaryen blood in them, yet all have the dark and handsome features with blue eyes. I could pose why the Targaryens wed brother and sister as cross breeding resulted in no Vallyrian features and they were the recessive genes.
It would also explain Ashara's suicide (Daynes sister) not that she killed herself because she loved Ned and he was married, as a noble lady she was probably under the mind set that she wouldn't marry for love anyway. Instead she told Ned where Lyanna was after the fall of Storm's End and couldn't accept she was responsible for her brothers death.
Also read a cool theory that Howland Reed warged into Arthur Dayne, and that's how he saved Neds life, which I doubt probably just netted him or poisoned him but would be nifty.