Just wondering if anyone else is reading or has read the series. I'm working my way through it right now (no spoilers here).
I had put off reading it because of its reputation for being dark, bloody, and brutal -- that just seems like a bad choice when you're already feeling physically and emotionally wrecked -- but it's actually been surprisingly good for my attitude.
Something terrible (or worse than terrible) happens to every character throughout the series, and it's easy to quickly lump them into one of two groups: the whiners and the people who solve their own problems and get on with their lives. I've definitely always been a whiner, and my diagnosis certainly hasn't helped that, so when I see how unattractive and counterproductive that trait is in the characters, it's been a kick in the pants for me.
The people you most appreciate (and those who survive) are the ones who force themselves to make tough decisions, who find trustworthy people to help them, and who do hard, thankless things without complaining. When I'm moping because I'm tired from treatment and I want to call in sick to work, it helps to think about a character who survived by eating rats and pigeons without feeling sorry for herself. Or when my port gets accessed for blood draws, I'm just grateful that leeching is no longer a common medical practice.
Like I said, these books are brutal -- they're full of grisly wounds, torture, murder, and rape -- so I feel like I have a screw loose when I say that they've been a positive influence on my outlook. I'm curious to hear the opinions of other readers who have been put through some rough crap in their own lives.