What To Read Next, Based On Your Favorite 'Game of Thrones' Character

by Charlotte Ahlin
Helen Sloan/HBO

If there's one thing that everyone can agree upon when it comes to Game of Thrones, it's that Game of Thrones has a lot of characters—and that's before you even get into all the characters in A Song of Ice and Fire (we miss you, Lady Stoneheart). Part of the brilliance of George R.R. Martin's novels is that every character, no matter how minor, has their own distinct personality, allegiances, and (presumably) reading tastes. So, while you're waiting for The Winds of Winter or season eight of the TV show, here's what to read next, based on your favorite character from Game of Thrones.

Of course, if we went down the full roster of every single GOT character who's ever existed, we'd be here all day. So if your favorite character is Jorah Mormont, Stannis Baratheon, or Roose Bolton, I can't really help you here, and also you should reconsider all of your life choices (Jorah apologists and Snape apologists are the same people, and I will have none of it). But if you're looking for a new read that draws inspiration from your favorite Stark, Lannister, Targaryen, or other major player in GOT, then there are plenty of books out there for you:


Jon Snow

Jon Snow is everyone's favorite bastard, despite the huge reveal that's he's... not so much a bastard, after all. Loyal and honest and a tad naive, Jon Snow can be a bit of a lone wolf, right down to his ability to warg into his actual wolf, Ghost (in the books, anyway). That's why Jon would love Jack London's White Fang: the story of a half dog, half wolf, who is the lone survivor of his family. Poor White Fang must learn to kill or be killed in the harsh North, caught between the worlds of the wild and the world of men. He's totally the Jon Snow of dogs, including those big, sad, puppy eyes.

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Arya Stark

When we meet Arya, she's just a little girl with dreams of being a warrior like her big brothers. But her "warrior" training takes a somewhat dark turn when she winds up as a Faceless Man, an assassin who's not allowed an identity of her own. She'd probably relate to Katsa from Graceling, a girl who's been killing with her bare hands since the age of eight. Katsa has the "Grace" of killing, but she's about to learn the truth behind her ability, as well as a dark secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms... Arya can definitely relate.

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Tyrion Lannister

Tyrion is probably the most well-read of Martin's characters. If he had his pick of modern literature, you just know he'd be that guy at the bar reading Infinite Jest and drunkenly hitting on college students (but like, in a charming way?). But if we have to pick just one book for the youngest Lannister sibling, it's got to be Memories of My Melancholy Whores by Gabriel García Márquez. It's the clever, upsetting, gorgeously written story of an old man realizing that there might be more to life than loveless sex with exploited prostitutes, and Tyrion had better read this before he becomes a bitter old man himself.

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Sansa Stark

Much like her sister, Sansa starts off as a sweet kid with big dreams, except that Sansa wants to be a princess and marry a handsome prince! It... doesn't work out great for her. There are so many books that mirror Sansa's transformation from cutesy Disney princess to traumatized, manipulative queen of deception, but let's just go with the ultimate story of a "nice girl" gone mastermind: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.

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Petyr Baelish

Seriously? Littlefinger is your favorite character? What do you like most about him, his utterly self-serving motivations or his creepy attraction to underage Sansa? OK, so if you love to hate Littlefinger and his machinations, you should head straight to the source and pick up The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli. No one does utilization of political power in the western world like Machiavelli does utilization of political power in the western world.

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Bran Stark

All of the Stark kids are having one hell of a childhood (at least, the ones who are still alive) but only Bran has to deal with being pushed out of window, becoming a tree, and having ultimate knowledge of all time and space. Bran's collection of powers and abilities and prophetic dreams are so creepy, strange, and otherworldly, that the only thing to do is sit down with The Raven and Other Poems by Edgar Allan Poe, and hope that that Three Eyed Raven isn't watching you.

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Margaery Tyrell

Poor TV Margaery is already long gone, but she's still chugging along in the books (for now, anyway). The Tyrells have perfected the whole "look like the flower but be the serpent under it" philosophy, and Margaery is gunning for that iron throne. She's going to be the sweet, smiling queen, no matter who (or how young) the king is. She'd probably relate to the titular character in Philippa Gregory's The White Queen, a young woman of great beauty and greater ambition.

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Brienne of Tarth

Arya may be headed down a weird spiritual assassin cult route, but Brienne is a good old fashioned knight in shining armor who just so happens to be a woman. One of the few characters who's managed to hang on to her noble ideals this far into the series, Brienne would surely admire the work of fellow warrior woman Tamora Pierce. Alanna might be Pierce's best known lady knight series, but Brienne's M.O. fits better with Protector of the Small.

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Cersei Lannister

Cersei Lannister is your classic wine mom turned evil queen, and she's even more fun than Littlefinger when it comes to plotting her way to the top. The real Cersei Lannister read is probably Macbeth, since she is simultaneously Lady M (hot, angry, her kids are dead) and Mackers himself (ambitious, obsessed with prophecies, afraid of witches). But... I'm going to go with that ol' incest classic, Flowers in the Attic, for some truly dysfunctional family drama.

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Jaime Lannister

Jaime may not be quite as evil as his sister or as witty as his brother, but he does get one of the more complicated character arcs on Game of Thrones. He goes from arrogant, cruel Kingslayer to depressed one-handed man to almost kind of a good guy who still has the hots for his sister. If you want a military-minded fantasy read about another warrior with a complex arc, then try Kingslayer for a different story of killing kings.

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Daenerys Targaryen

If Dany had time to read between plotting her next invasion and inadvertently wrecking the global economy, she'd probably be reading something practical like How to Train Your Dragon. But if you're looking for a slightly more grown up, adventurous read about dragons and the women who ride them, try visiting Anne McCaffrey's legendary land of Pern, where dragonriders may be the only ones who can save humanity from extinction. The Dragonriders of Pern and Dragonflight could practically be set in Old Valyria (except, you know, minus all the slavery), and Dany would surely be jealous of how well these dragonriders get along with their dragons:

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