Each chapter concentrates on the third person limited point of view of a single character; the book presents the perspective of eight main characters. Additionally, a minor character provides the prologue. Chapter headings indicate the perspective.
- Prologue: Will, a man of the Night's Watch.
- Lord Eddard "Ned" Stark, Warden of the North and Lord of Winterfell, Hand of the King.
- Lady Catelyn Stark, of House Tully, wife of Eddard Stark.
- Sansa Stark, elder daughter of Eddard and Catelyn Stark.
- Arya Stark, younger daughter of Eddard and Catelyn Stark.
- Bran Stark, second-youngest son of Eddard and Catelyn Stark.
- Jon Snow, illegitimate son of Eddard Stark.
- Tyrion Lannister, a dwarf, brother of the twins Queen Cersei and Jaime, son of Lord Tywin Lannister.
- Princess Daenerys Targaryen, Stormborn, the Princess of Dragonstone and heiress to the Targaryen throne after her older brother Viserys Targaryen.
In the later books certain viewpoint characters are added while others are removed.