Any reader of George R.R. Martin's fantasy saga knows that the books and HBO's hit show have diverged significantly as the seasons have gone by.

With each additional year, it seems like showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss grow increasingly bold in their adaptation, as they continually kill off characters still alive in the books and send other major characters on journeys nowhere to be found in Martin's source material...yet.

That trend continues in Game of Thrones season six. Though the show's radical past departures necessitate some changes from Martin's books, they are still noteworthy in that every change is a possible hint of what is to come in Martin's next book installment. Many of these characters find themselves in new scenarios, but just because some of these characters haven't yet reached their book destinations yet doesn't mean it won't happen at some point on the show.

One episode into season six, here are the three biggest book to show changes we've seen so far.

Spoilers for season premiere of Game of Thrones season six below! You have been warned!

Brienne Rescues Sansa and Theon

This change is fairly obvious for anybody who knows the Brienne arc in the books, namely that in Martin's novels Brienne is absolutely nowhere near Sansa or Theon. Heck, even Sansa isn't even near Theon. 

When we last see the Maid of Tarth, she is still in the Riverlands with Podrick, miles upon miles away from Winterfell where we see her in the show. It's there she meets a resurrected Catelyn Stark (now going by the title Lady Stoneheart). Zombie Catelyn isn't keen on Brienne working with the Lannisters, since Brienne previously swore an oath to serve the Starks. When we last read from Brienne's point of view in the books, she and Podrick are about to be executed.

However, it seems like Brienne strikes a deal with Lady Stoneheart to kill Jaime in exchange for their freedom. Jaime, who is also in the Riverlands tying up loose ends, seems like he is falling right into Catelyn's trap, but alas, Martin's next book isn't on store shelves yet.

Sansa isn't actually even in Winterfell in the books. She's still in the Eyrie. In the novels, Theon actually escapes Winterfell with Jeyne Poole, a fake-Arya that Ramsay marries in order to better secure the North. The two make their way to the camp of Stannis' army seeking shelter. Regardless of all the differences between the books and show, it's safe to say that Brienne and Podrick won't be coming to the rescue of Theon and Jeyne Poole in the books anytime soon. They're a little preoccupied.

Davos And The Night's Watch

In the books and the show, Davos isn't at the side of his king Stannis Baratheon. Both versions of the story have Stannis send Davos away before the major battle with the Bolton army. But depending on which version we're talking about, the character is sent to two vastly different places.

In the books, Davos is sent on a mission by Stannis to find the missing Stark children Bran and Rickon. His quest leads him to White Harbor, a major port city in the North and one that is ruled by a family that isn't a big fan of the Boltons or their allies the Freys.

The season six premiere also has Davos in the North, only now he's hanging out with the Night's Watch at Castle Black. In fact, it's Davos who discovers Jon's bloody corpse lying motionless in the snow. He and a few brothers in black loyal to Jon then board themselves up in a room (along with Ghost and Jon's body) to resist the hostile takeover of the watch by Allister Thorne. It's unclear if Davos will eventually set off for White Harbor to try and find Jon's younger brothers, but for now it looks like he has his hands full.

The Dorne Conspiracy

From the beginning, the show's version of Dorne has been much, much different from that of Martin's novels. That trend continues in season six for what turned out to be the most shocking moments during the premiere. Ellaria Sand, along with her daughters, murder the prince of Dorne and his heir in what appears to be a hostile takeover of Dorne.

This is far from anything that happens in the books. For starters, Princess Myrcella survives her assassination attempt in the books, which results in Arianne Martell and the Sand Snakes( including Ellaria) being arrested. Ellaria and her daughters are arrested in the show as well after a botched assassination attempt, only for Ellaria to kill Myrcella anyway after being released with a poisonous kiss. Jaime and Bronn are also never sent to Dorne to rescue Myrcella to begin with, but that's an entirely different story.

Both the show and book version of Ellaria accuse Prince Doran Martell of being weak and attemp to subvert him, but the show is now far different. The show attempts to blend elements of Ellaria with Arianne to form one character, but the results don't really work. As Arianne is the daughter of Doran in the books, the idea of outright murdering him never seems to cross her mind. That's not the case with Ellaria, who isn't actually related to the Martells but was the lover of Oberyn, Doran's brother. 

In the books Arianne and Doran appear to have reconciled, as she serves as Doran's ambassador to learn more about long hidden Targaryen prince. Doran in the books has long had a plan for Dorne to unite with the Targaryens, specifically Daenerys, in order to get revenge on the Lannisters and once again put Westeros under Targaryen rule. He has been playing the long game, making sure not to get involved in the War of Five Kings so that Dorne can hit the Lannisters while they are weak. He reveals all of this to Arianne in the books, showing that his inaction against the Lannisters is actually anything but.

The show addresses none of this. Doran is simply murdered by Ellaria for supposedly doing nothing. Was Doran actually scheming to help Dany on the show? Did he have some other plan Ellaria knew nothing about? Or was the show version of Doran exactly what Ellaria and the Sand Snakes accuse him of being?

It's possible the show will reveal that Doran actually was looking to take revenge of the Lannisters and that Ellaria's coup only serves to hurt their cause. But considering how vastly different the show version of the Dorne storyline has been thus far, we wouldn't count on it.

Each of these changes has some fascinating implications for the future, as Game of Thrones and Martin's book grow further and further apart. Still, some of these departures might not exactly be changes. Davos could still go to White Harbor and Brienne could still possibly meet up with Lady Stoneheart. If that's the case, showrunners will simply be rearranging events rather than outright omitting them. Nobody at this point knows for sure, which is exactly what HBO wants.

Image Credits: HBO

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