Would you believe that I finished a book?
I am hard pressed to believe it myself.
Last night I finished A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin. I know, I know, I'm a few years behind.
I enjoyed it immensely.
I like how the story turns. Every big "bang" in the story is something that makes me think in Role Playing Game terms, as a DM, and each bang makes me consider how the author is steering the story TOWARD conflict, which is obviously important in both games and in books. Games and books about heroes sitting around in a happy peaceful land are typically un-exciting.
I like how Martin pulls no punches and doesn't hesitate to kill characters. This serves to more fully invest me in the story. I'm a big fan of (my perception of) grim and gritty - when people hack at each other with pointy metal things, bad stuff is bound to happen. It also speaks to motivation, I find myself never having eye rolling moments like when watching movies, muttering at the screen to the bad guy "will you please just kill him (the hero) already?!?!"
The Black Company by Glen Cook, followed by the second George R. R. Martin book.