I just finished reading A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin.
First of all, I've changed my mind now about reading the books after watching the TV series. Initially, I thought it would be more fun to not spoil the surprises and events of the TV, through reading the books, but now I think there is just too much downside. There is quite a lot of detail left out of the TV series, and in some cases they've really simplified what was going on; in particular at the end of the TV series I was plain confused as to why the place was on fire. After reading, I now know, and have a much better idea. Further, I think I'll actually enjoy the TV more for knowing what the full story is, and just going for the ride. Also, I felt I had to wade through the book a little as I basically knew what was going on more than the author intended, so I think it was a little spoiled from that point of view.
Ah well. I now continue straight into A Storm of Swords before the new TV season starts in April.
As for the actual novel, other than the above, I did really enjoy it. The language is beautiful, the detail amazing, and the depth fulfilling. Tyrion shines in the book as he does on TV. Actually, I felt inspired to write something myself, I think its the language that gets me into an expansive and creative mood. No good can come of this.