'Game of Thrones': Will the book series stretch to eight novels?

George R.R. Martin's editor recently said that she 'begin[s] to wonder]' if Martin's story can be wrapped up in seven books. 

Helen Sloan/HBO/AP
'Game of Thrones' stars Charles Dance.

For some time now, the plan for the “Song of Ice and Fire” book series by George R.R. Martin – the books which are the basis for the HBO fantasy series “Game of Thrones” – has been to finish the story in seven books.

But will the series now extend to eight?

That’s the question many fans are asking after Martin’s editor Anne Groell participated in an interview with fans. When one inquired whether the author could finish the “Fire” story in seven books, Groell said, “I begin to wonder.”

In the interview, Groell said that the original plan had been for the series to be a trilogy, as so many fantasy chronicles are, but that soon changed.

“I remember when he called me, years and years back, to confess that his little trilogy was … well … no longer a trilogy. He predicted four books. I said Seven Books for Seven Kingdoms…. As I recently learned while editing ‘The World of Ice and Fire’ … there are really technically eight kingdoms. So, maybe eight books for Seven Kingdoms would be okay.”

As for a publication date for the much-anticipated sixth book in the series, “The Winds of Winter”? Groell said, “When I have a date, you will have a date.” A publication date has not been set for Martin’s planned seventh book either.

And will there be another after? Maybe better not to accept that eighth book as fact just yet – Martin’s UK publisher Jane Johnson told the Guardian that “only George knows how many books there will be in the series and he's not saying: indeed at this stage of the writing, with the many branching pathways of the characters' stories still to intersect, he may not know. As an editor I can say that it feels as if there's a lot to tie up in just two more novels – albeit very long novels – but if George continues to kill off characters in his usual ruthless fashion it could easily be over in the planned seven books!”

Fans will have to wait and see.

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