The Winds of Winter release date hinted at by George RR Martin: 'I think it will be out this year'

'But hey, I thought the same thing last year'

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Fans have been waiting patiently for The Winds of Winter for over half a decade, George RR Martin having promised and failed to make numerous deadlines.

With that in mind, take Martin’s latest announcement with a grain of salt. Responding to a fan on his blog, the esteemed author revealed that - while the book has not yet been finished - we can expect bookstores around the world to be filled with the sixth instalment in the A Song Of Ice And Fire saga by the end of the year. 

“Not done yet, but I’ve made progress,” Martin wrote on Not A Blog. “But not as much as I hoped a year ago when I thought to be done by now. I think it will be out this year. (But hey, I thought the same thing last year.)”

The last update Martin gave on the book’s process was last January when he informed fans The Winds of Winter would not be finished before the sixth season of Game of Thrones hit HBO.

More recently, Martin spoke about the book’s content, saying: “There are a lot of dark chapters right now in the book that I’m writing. It is called The Winds of Winter, and I’ve been telling you for 20 years that winter was coming. 

“Winter is the time when things die, and cold and ice and darkness fill the world, so this is not going to be the happy feel-good that people may be hoping for. Some of the characters [are] in very dark places.

“In any story, the classic structure is, ‘Things get worse before they get better,’ so things are getting worse for a lot of people.”

Meanwhile, HBO has recently released the first footage from season seven of Game of Thrones, starring Jon Snow, Sansa Stark and The Girl Who Previously Had No Name, Arya.