I came an excellent review of Game of Thrones by book reviewer Matt Hillard. The review is a great critique and gets to the core of what Game of Thrones is really about and what are the issues with it.
The predictions he made in 2010 are coming to fruit now in the HBO series:
When all is said and done, whoever is left standing in the ruins of Westeros will be swept aside by Daenerys and Jon Snow as they confront the evil out of the north, so isn’t this something of a waste of time?
Matt makes the case that GoT feels like a genius piece of work simply because George Martin does a great job at hiding what the real story is about. He just kills off characters who the reader mistakenly thinks are the main characters.
Initially, Eddard Stark and his son Robb seemed like central characters, yet with the benefit of hindsight even from a position only halfway through the series, it’s obvious they are bit players. In a typically sized fantasy novel, they’d have a page or two of screen time. In fact, the actual main characters of the story, like Daenerys, are just as bulletproof as any normal story’s protagonists.
His much later review of Dance of Dragons in 2011, goes in even more detail.
He correctly predicts in 2011 what we are seeing now in 2017.
What I was getting at, but not quite putting my finger on, was that although the political side of Game of Thrones seems to be about fighting the Lannister’s usurpation of the throne, the series is actually about restoring the Targaryen dynasty. In such a story, obviously it’s the Targaryens (Daenerys and Jon Snow) who are the protagonists.
He even delves into what is wrong with the series and why portions of it are boring, especially in the books:
However, any Targaryen restoration must wait until near the end of the series. In the meantime, the story creates tension principally through the separation of characters.
However, any Targaryen restoration must wait until near the end of the series. In the meantime, the story creates tension principally through the separation of characters. Daenerys is separated from Westeros, of course, but also the Stark children are separated from their mother and each other. The Starks all want to reunite, and because we like them we want to see them do it, so we feel tension until it happens. Well, it still hasn’t happened, and that in turn contributes to the feeling that the series is wandering aimlessly. This brings us back to the series’ unpredictability. The reader is waiting for these things to happen, yet other things happen instead. When the series works, it’s because these other things also capture our interest. When they don’t, the cost on the reading experience can be high.