Anyone care to share some good fantasy books? Outside of the Tokien stuff and certain anime Im a bit of a neophyte to the genre.
Im really just looking to get something to draw inspiration from because sooner rather than later Im gonna have a turn at coming up with a campaign.
I am somewhat of a crusty Anon, and others are free to call my taste stanky if they wish, but I'd suggest the following:
The Last Unicorn
Karl Edgar Wagner's Kane (specifically the short story compilation "Night Winds")
Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser
The Thieftaker chronicles
The Prydain books
A Wizard of Oz (fight me, anons)
Sweet Silver Blues
Joe Abercrombie's First Law
Quintessence, David Walton
The First and Second Chronicles of Thomas Covenant
Fred Saberhagen's "Book of Swords" trilogy
Robert Silverberg's Night Wings
Clark Ashton Smith's Xothique stories.
Jack Vance's Dying earth.
Hawkmoon and Chronicles of Corum. Elric if you wanna be more grimderp.
Some old, some new, all good reads with various contributions any GM could profit from
>Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser
My friend and compatriot of African descent.
It's a really expansive genre. What sort of things do you like?
If you like Hindu kill 6 billion demons weirdness, try out LORD OF LIGHT.
If you like grim military campaigns, try out THE BLACK COMPANY or MALAZAN BOOK OF THE FALLEN.
For excessive world building and failed potential, there's THE WHEEL OF TIME.
If you're looking for new weird, PERDIDO STREET STATION is a mix of urban and the fantastic.
If you like more historical works, try out SOLDIER IN THE MIST.
Tell us what sort of things you like, whether that's in video games, movies, or whatever, and we'll be able to give you better recommendations.
The Nightrunner Series by Lynn Flewelling is my favorite. Books 1 and 2 are the best, but the others are enjoyable in different ways.
>It's a really expansive genre. What sort of things do you like?
Well Im open to a lot really and the broader my horizons can get the better.
Ill give those things you mentioned a shot.
Yeesh, Wheel of Time. Got about six books in before I realized I liked the Dark One more than I liked any of the protagonists.
Song of Fire and Ice is fun, unless reading about your favorite characters dying makes you feel bad.
seconding wheel of time for its worldbuilding, even if it's not your kinda world gotta admit it's really well thought
alright man, i get the heroes aren't the most likeable but how can you not enjoy reading
mat chapters after book three?
I'd like some fantasy books centered around werewolves, preferably ones that follow werewolf protags where they're being hunted down.
It was a disaster of a series that had some fantastic ideas but spiraled so utterly out of control that the author's brain thought amyloidosis would be preferable to fixing the clusterfuck that was his writing.
It could have been one of the best series of the genre. What it is is a disappointment, even to those of us who are fans.
Songs of Earth and Power by Greg Bear
Magic's Price series (if you can handle a homosexual protagonist - I'm no fan, but this is a well written series) by Mercedes Lackey
Tales from the Flat Earth by Tanith Lee
As much as I hate everything else he's written, David Eddings Elenium and Tamuli series were actually very good.
I can't believe nobody's posted it yet.
The Conan stories by Robert E Howard
These are all excellent choices.
The Craft Sequence by Max Gladstone
The Young Wizards series by Diane Duane (YA) - the last few books in the series aren't as good as the first ones; read up to Wizard's Dilemma and the companion books (Book of Night With Moon and To Visit the Queen).
The Lone Wolf books aren't actually reading books - they're gamebooks in a cross between Choose Your Own Adventure and an actual tabletop game, but the worldbuilding is pretty damn great. Take a look at The Magnamund Companion, at least - it's also conveniently online for free.
Dare you enter Piers Anthony's magical realm?
Good taste, but no mention of Amber? It may seem cliche, but its really fun to read. At least the first series. Corwin is such a fun protagonist.
In bits. You read a whole anthology at once, and it becomes a little too clear how much Rob E. Howard was churning that shit out. Read a story of his every now and again and it's thrilling adventure, though.
Also, do yourself a favor and read Abercrombie's First Law series. It scratches the same gritty fantasy itch that GRRM's Song of Ice and Fire does, but finishes in three books instead of taking fucking forever and diverging for three chapters to talk about teenagers fucking.
I don't think it's everyone's cup of tea but NotW and The Wise Man's Fear are both great books worth reading if you like fantasy. The characters are solid and interesting, if sometimes unlikeable, and both the world building and writing style are great.
I really just love the setting though. The idea of running a campaign set in and around the University, with all the comfyness of the locations in the town, heavy focus on petty rivalries and stuff between students and hints of hidden knowledge is great, though everyone would have to be really on board with the idea.
As a teen I thoroughly enjoyed "The Dragonbone Chair" trilogy by Ted Williams. I found it to be a great read, but holy shit it takes almost 13-15 chapters for anything to actually happen in the first book, then it's just gravy. If you can get past that point, it's a pretty good read.
I also enjoyed "The Deed of Paksenarrion" by Elizabeth Moon. I actually didn't realize there was more publications, so I may check out the rest. I found it to be a pretty good read.
Something where the main character starts off small, in worldly knowledge, views, and strength, and despite coming across strange beings, ancient heresies, silly people, villains with a frightening point, becoming stronger in either body, mind, spirit, and generally changing for the better from these encounters, don't actually become any bigger than what they started out as. They stay small, insignificant compared to these things as they learn from them, just working through what they were trying to do from the start. They change, they learn, but they have their mission and they will do it.
Although I'd prefer fantasy, I might just fuck off and go read some Lovecraft, since that's the closest thing I can imagine, in regards to themes. Oh, and the Hobbit. Middle Earth is ripe with things a little big for a little hobbit, though I was looking for something a couple shades darker. I also heard that the LOTR books were a bit too worldbuilding-geared for some people, and given the one time I touched up the book I read two pages of "On Hobbits" and shut it, I'm inclined to agree, but I realize I may have been putting my raw attitude toward skipping parts of the book ahead of my enjoyment and am willing to give it a second chance at Chapter One.
Seconding, rift wars series is pretty great.
The dwarves series is pretty good, gives dwarves actual character for once.
The inheritance cycle is ok if you don't mind sociopathic protagonists and blatant plagiarism, as long as it has dragons.
They are children's books but the Narnia series is a classic for good reasons.
Yeah, yeah, Strong Christian Overtones. Doesn't stop them being very creative in many areas and beautiful for inspiration (Aslan singing the world into existence has stuck with me for years)
Absolutely agree. I did the thing where I read the whole anthology and it just blurs together. Reading it piecemeal is a better way to go, imo.
Then do give Songs of Earth and Power by Greg Bear a read. The original publication was two books, The Infinity Concerto and The Serpent Mage.
What you describe is pretty much what happens to the main character.
Seconding. I haven't read it in a long while so I can't remember exactly what about it was good and what wasn't as good, but it's definitely a positive memory in my head. Interesting aesthetic as well.
In no particular order some of my favorites.
Malazan Book of the Fallen series (completed)
The Black Company series
Raven's Shadow series (completed)
Stormlight Archive series (only 2 books so far)
The Prince of Nothing series (completed)
Kingkiller Chronicles (2 books so far)
Dresden Files (I don't even know)
The Dark Tower (quick before it gets retconned to Roland being a black guy)
Pretty much all of fantasy by Joe Abercrombie
And lastly the hilarious and sometimes frighteningly insightful adventures of super angry, magical Objectivist Jesus and his harem of powerful women.
Matt is a fucking badass later on though, idk the series ends well later on I think, I'd like to state that the Seanchan will always be Asian idc if the Seanchan characters like Tuan are black.
Most works by Jack Vance would qualify: Tschai, Big Planet & Roboat, Cugel,...
On the same style of modern hero travelling to a fantasy setting, GLory Road by Heinlein is quite good.
Does anyone know if Ewilan's Quest has ever been translated into english, btw?
It's one of the rare excellent fantasy children books, so it's a great entry point, but I've been unable to find it in english so far.
>idc if the Seanchan characters like Tuan are black.
Skin the colour of fertile soil. That's sub-saharan Africa. The society on the other hand is the stereotypical far east orientalism fare cranked up to fantasy.
>The Last Unicorn
>Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser
>The First and Second Chronicles of Thomas Covenant
>One of the best fantasy movies ever
>Oh? And where were you twenty years ago, ten years ago? Where were you when I was new? When I was one of those innocent, young maidens you always come to? How dare you, how dare you come to me now, when I am this?
Amazing how /tg/ is better at giving reccomendations than /lt/ is.
>>44700157Some pretty good rccs already, but here's some more:
Brent Weeks Night Angel trilogy and his Lightbringer series.
Bradley P. Bealieu Lays of Anuskaya, the enidng is a little meh but it has great worldbuilding and a very russian feel.
Robin Hobb Farseer trilogy, has a pretty good take on what having an Animal Companion would be like.
Brian McClellan Powder mage trilogy, has a pretty nice system for magical guns side by side with regular magic.
Adrian Tchaikovsky Shadows of the Apt has a world without humans. Let me repeat wthout humans. All the races in it are human looking but insect based.
Some urban fantasy reccs too:
Jim Butcher Dresden Files. The best urban fantasy right now. The first two three books aren't all that good, but Butcher has the ability to make each book more and more awesome.
Charles Stross Laundry Files is good, but it's better if you know some basic of computer science.
Anton Strout Simon Canderous series and Benedict Jacka Alex Verus series are both good takes on how someone with information gathering powers can be badass in a world with monster and mages.
Ben Aaronovich Rivers of London series is cool and it shows some good police procedural scenes. Good for fans of cop shows.
Finally Simon R Green Nightside and Secret Histories are great at showing an Earth with a hidden world of magic, superscience and just general weirdness.
>"What's your dream book?"
>replies with a loose outline of Campbell's Hero's Journey
If you're seriously saying you can't find ONE book where this happens, you are not actually reading books.
I'll be echoing some suggestions already, but my top recommendations are:
-Dresden Files is a pretty phenomenal series. It's not groundbreaking, but the world's pretty interesting and the characters are damn good. He has a finished series, Codex of Alera, which is basically roman Avatar: TLA with werewolves, and just started a new series which looks to be a pretty nice foray into the Steampunk genre.
-Name of the Wind, absolutely. It's the best fantasy book to hit the market in a long time imo, and you can only benefit from reading it.
-Joe Abercrombie's The First Law is great if you're looking for something darker. In fact, if you're looking for a little grimdark with a fair dash of fantasy, anything by Abercrombie should suit you.
-If you're looking for something more historically minded, Naomi Novik's His Majesty's Dragon series is actually pretty solid. It's Napoleonic wars but instead of standard siege machines, dragons (with well thought-out changes to society as a result, mind you). It's a really good example of a worldbuilder going "It's like X, but with Y included" and making that feel believable.
>Joe Abercrombie's First Law
Mein Negro. I haven't got round to his Half A King series, I hear it's more for young adults.
For anyone else who likes that sort of low-fantasy, I'd recommend.
The Powder Mage trilogy by Brian McClellan
The Gentlemen Bastards series by Scott Lynch
I have straight up stolen stuff from Scott Lynch for my homebrew.
I really liked the three stand alone books he did afterwards too, especially The Heroes.
I really, really like his prose and the setting, especially the magic systems. A lot of people feel that Kvothe is a bit of a self insert Gary Sue, and on a couple of occasions he does skirt close to that, but I think people should give them a read and decide for themselves.
It does skirt the edge a few times, though.
Image contains Wise Man's Fear spoilers.
But in the Hero's Journey, the character becomes big enough to face these things. There's a reason I brought up Lovecraft. These things I'm thinking of are impossibly big. They're mountains, and though the hero may surpass these things through skill, they never become big enough to flatten the mountain. It might be because they know they can't tackle two things at once, it may be because they don't have the means to acquire the power to deal with it, and it may be any number of reasons, but the main thing is they don't think on that scale. They stay small. Despite accomplishing their goal, they hardly become any greater than what they always were, even in the perspective of their own small conflict. They walk home, walking past the remnants of what arm or leg or whatever unholy appendage of some greater thing or organization that got in their way, and return home, which has become little better than what it was on page one, showing that they only managed to maintain the status quo, rather than change the world.
More of a Nameless Wanderer's Journey, rather than a Hero's Journey.
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
A must read!
Brent Weeks' Lightbringer Series
if you hail from Germany (like me) try Dragonelves (Drachenelfen) by Bernard Hennen but i recommend to read The Elves (elfen) first.
all in all this will be about 20 books that should keep you busy anon.
Deep Secret by Diana Wynne Jones, also her Dalemark Quartet
The Dragonlance chronicles are really expansive and good (albeit some books are intended for a younger audience). They are definitely my favourite and I highly suggest reading them to anyone who likes fantasy. R.A
Salvatore is also really great, his universe is the "sister" universe of the Dragonlance universe
I'll second Night Angel, not so much Lightbringer (yet, I've not started book 3 yet). It's not the best fantasy I've ever read, but as something of a deconstruction of grimdark fantasy (the universe grows lighter and lighter as more magic is introduced to separate it from the low fantasy hellhole it is at the start) and a fun action series I quite like it.
Don't let the North America covers put you off, even the author hates them with a burning passion.
How about suggestions for a younger person? Say a fourteen year old girl who is getting in to fantasy?
I'd like to avoid anything too over the top creepy, explicit torture stuff things like that. I'd also like to avoid any explicit sex stuff.
More story than titillation, if you get me.
Any good suggestions?
This, OP. Boat Jedi Wizard Chronicles a best.
Can't go wrong with The Black Company...it has everything /tg/ likes. Protracted military campaigns...one hell of a waifu...grimdark out the wazoo.
Malazan Book of the Fallen is like the updated, better written cousin of TBC, and is probably my favorite fantasy series overall. Erikson's writing is pretty much unparalleled in the genre...and he is the undisputed master of the bromance.
Can't believe I didn't see it more but The Belgariad by David Eddings is amazing if you are looking for a Tolkien but not Tolkien feel.
I have to second the Dresden Files and Mistborn.
Some series I would recommend would be The Septimus Heap series, the first book is called Magyk.
The second would be the Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan stroud.
My girlfriend actually got me into Peter V. Brett's Demon Cycle.
The first book starts out a bit slow, but that's because it has a whole bunch of backstory and setting to explain. It gets to be pretty badass later, and has some excellent world building.
I would definitely suggest it.
>I also enjoyed "The Deed of Paksenarrion" by Elizabeth Moon
Bro, all the way.
In addition to that there is the books by Robin Hobb, the Farseer Trilogy for example.
And the Phoenix Guard by Steven Brust. It's a DnD version of the 3 musketeers, and its marvelous.
I read it about a decade ago. I enjoyed it at the time, but the first book is really disjointed compared to the rest of the series since the main protagonist doesn't show up until the middle of the book and seems almost like an antagonist.
I think the authors had one thing in mind but after they finished the first book they altered the plan, so we're left with that odd start.
Are we just including books or can we add graphic novels? Cause if so, BPRD; and Hellboy, and maybe Judge Dredd (yes it counts he's had to deal with magic before and a psychic evil ghost child from the future it's complicated).
I was surprised to see so many (mediocre) mentions but the worst of it for me was The Name of the Wind. It is riddled with marysue-ism and is pretty much your typical heroic fantasy in every shape and form.
I myself would second tasteful anons who recommended The Second Apocalypse by Bakker, Perdido Street Station and books by Abercrombie (not the first law trilogy but works that came after it).
Across the subgenres, some quick recs:
Night Angel trilogy by Brent Weeks(3 books, ended)
Oath of Empire series by Thomas Harlan(4 books, ended)
Codex Alera series by Jim Butcher(6 books, ended)
The Laundry series by Charles Stross(7 books, ongoing)
Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay(standalone)
Felix Castor series by Mike Carey(5 books,ended)
Craft Sequence by Max Gladstone(5 books, ongoing)
I'd describe it as a romance novel sooner than I'd describe it as a fantasy novel, but magic is integral and everpresent in its plot. I highly recommend The Night Circus, the rules are loose but the portrayal of magic in the writing is the best I've ever seen anywhere and I think it's a great reference for description in writing or in games.
I recommend the Garrett, P.I. series if you want pure fun value. It doesn't bring anything particularly new to the table, but the way Glen Cook meshes detective novels, high fantasy, and snark makes it fun to read. And the episodic style of the books makes it so you could easily rip a plot straight from them if you really wanted to.
Did you mean sold? Or was there something you didn't like about the series?
I'd probably have liked the series more if he had stuck with one or two protagonists per book, and had events in different books run concurrently, inatead of trying to force every book to be consecutive.
I've been looking too, best I've found is The Wolf's Hour, which is alt hist of ww2
I just reread it last year. It's got it's high points, like the tattooing magic runes & stuff, but it's pretty predictable high fantasy. I'd get it from the library for the first three before deciding to buy anything.
Agreed, all of Sanderson's work is pretty unique, and fun.
That series made me really want to play a campaign there. It'd probably work in FATE too.
Oh yes, Garth Nix's YA books are all a pretty fun read as well.
>Amazing how /tg/ is better at giving reccomendations than /lt/ is.
Honestly not even slightly surprising to me. /tg/ reads for pleasure, /lit/ reads for...i guess technique? They always seem sort of snobby about books to me.
Seconding this. I loved his Abhorsen books when I was younger. Can definitely recommend them.
Siobhan Quinn. Homeless drug addict turned Werewolf/Vampire hybrid acts as an agent for hire in a world that shares the Lovecraft Mythos. She generally gets the shit beaten out of her. The stories are Neo-Noir in tone.
They're not all black, as Seanchan is pretty much just another whole continent with a mix of races and peoples. Like most of the nations in WoT, it's not really just one thing either - it's got a lot of heavy Eastern undertones, but resembles a lot of medieval European empires as well. But really, the best way to describe Seanchan is that it is that it's got some main character-level plothax going on.
Not really stand alone books. They don't need to be read in order, I suppose, but there is a sort of timeline and development.
Favourite series of mine in Discworld would be the Watch books, though. Vimes is basically a paladin who falls in reverse, and it's brilliant.
Well, I listened to them on audiobook. They were about 9 hours each, if that gives you any indication. Combine the three together and I'd say you'd have your average GRRM doorstopper.
I'd recommend the Farseer trilogy by Robin Hobb, or if you're looking for something a little different, the Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson.
I absolutely loved the first two Witcher short stories collections. But right now I'm going through first novel, Blood of Elves, and it's pretty terrible. Please tell me it gets better. I just want to read about Geralt's comfy mundane adventures and occasional encounters with Yennefer like I did in the The Last Wish.
The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (Standalone.)
Brimstone Angels by Erin M Evans(5 books, Ongoing, planned for 6)
The Deeds of Paksenarrion by Elizabeth Moon (Trilogy, Ended)
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (7 Books, Ended). Pretty mainstream but if you got young ones to read to I recommend it.
The Night Angel Trilogy has been recommend several times and I'll recommend that too.
I've also heard lots of good things about The Emperor's Blades by Brain Staveley (the first of a Trilogy).