- "In the Summer Isles they worship a fertility goddess with sixteen teats."
In the booksEdit
In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, the Summer Islands are amongst the southern-most explored parts of the world. People from the Summer Islands are dark-skinned and tend to wear colorful clothes. They are famed as skilled archers, using powerful bows that outrange similar weapons from Westeros. Their boats are swift and well-crewed. Summer Islander merchants can be found in most ports from Oldtown and King's Landing to Qarth and Asshai.
In the novels, a Summer Islander prince named Jalabhar Xho has taken up residence in the Red Keep for the past several years. He repeatedly asked King Robert Baratheon for military aid in retaking his princedom, the Red Flower Vale, but has been repeatedly turned down. Robert kept him around because the idea of invading the Summer Islands intrigued him. Jalabhar Xho has not yet appeared in the television series.
Other minor characters in the books that hail from the Summer Islands are Chataya, a madame, and her daughter, a prostitute named Alayaya. During his tenure as acting Hand of the King, Tyrion pretends to visit Alayaya while having secret encounters with Shae instead, and Cersei has Alayaya arrested to spite Tyrion. This last development is fulfilled by Ros in the TV show.
The Lands of Ice and Fire (a companion map collection for the novels) reveals that the Summer Islands lie due south of the Narrow Sea and are a chain of islands located along a northwest-to-southeast axis. The tip of the northern-most island is at the same latitude as the southern-most coastline of Valyria, and at the same longitude as Tyrosh on the west coast of Essos. The southernmost islands are located slightly further south than Naath or Basilisk Point (on the mainland of Sothoryos), and roughly at the same longitude as the Orange Shore (just west of Volantis). Visible on the maps are three large islands and several smaller ones, but it is possible the chain extends further south than the edge of the map. The island chain as a whole is still roughly equidistant between Westeros, Sothoryos, as well as the Free Cities and Valyrian Peninsula in Essos. The island of Naath, to the east, is the closest other land to the Summer Islands. The area of the Summer Islands as a whole is roughly similar in size to that of the Valyrian Peninsula.
According to The Lands of Ice and Fire, the major islands are named, north to south, as Walano, Omboru and Jhala. The Smiling Sea divides Walano and Omboru, whilst the Indigo Straits divide Omboru from Jhala. The largest city of the Summer Islands, Lotus Port, is located on Walano. The towns of Last Lament and Tall Trees Town are also located on Walano. The settled valleys of Red Flower Vale and Sweet Lotus Vale are located on Omboru, along with the city of Ebonhead. Koj and the Isle of Birds are amongst the numerous smaller islands.
It is notable that the maps for the TV series do not show the Summer Islands, though they should just about be visible. Whether this means the TV show maps are simply incomplete or the location of the maps for the TV series differs from the books is unknown.