It took me a looong time to get through this. A loooooong time. The only thing that really motivated me to carry on reading it (after stopping for a few months) was that I'm lending the other books in the series to one of my friends, and he was up to the second half of A Storm of Swords, so I wanted to finish reading this so I could lend it to him.
See, the thing is... I had heard before that this was boring. In comparison to the other books in the series, that is. That it was just people travelling to various places and plotting and stuff. To be fair, I get what people are saying as nothing really major happens (especially not compared to storm of swords!), but I forgot that I actually enjoy those bits of the books as much as the more action packed stuff (sometimes more?). So, I don't really know what I was thinking.
I also managed to forget in my break from reading this that it only featured half of the characters, so when I got to the end I was thinking, ahhh, what happened to (insert character name here)??? Did they die and I just forgot about it??? Then, at the end there's a note from George R. R. Martin saying "So I guess you're wondering whats going on with the other characters eh?" (Not a direct quote). And then I went, OH YEAH! Hehe.
It gets a bit spoilery from here on in so if you plan to read this at some point... don't read any further! Unless you like spoilers?
So my thoughts about this book...
No Tyrion? No Daenerys? No Jon? No Davos? And stuff from Cersei's point of view? Pfft! I don't care what Cersei thinks about anything! Hehe. Ah well. Apart from wishing that her chapters would end, I enjoyed the rest of the book! I REALLY hope that that isn't the end for Brienne, as I really like her...
All in all, it's definitely the weakest book of the series (so far!), but that isn't to say that it's bad in any way. I am kind of sick of the way that women are treated in the books though.. like, I get that that's just the way that that world works, but it doesn't have to be pointed out so much! It just makes me sad for all of the female characters.
..I already started reading A Dance with Dragons... the first few chapters, are like... Tyrion!!! Daenerys!!! Jon!! Woooo!!! I'm enjoying it so far :D