Fantasy Reads You Shouldn’t Miss

If you find yourself lost in the doldrums of endless re-reads of such fantasy book classics like Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, then I’ve got a couple of suggestions to snap you out of your funk.  Not that there is anything wrong with multiple reads of those series because I’ve done it too, but if you are a lover of fantasy writing then there is some great stuff out there you shouldn’t miss. This is by no means of comprehensive list because I haven’t read everything that’s out there either.  It should help get you started though.

The Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson:

This guy is magnificent.  He certainly knows how to craft an epic tale and an intriguing world and magic system.  There are 8+ metals that can be manipulated in various ways, a different power for each metal. A Mistborn has access to all of them while a Misting only has access to one of them.  For example, swallowing Pewter increases physical abilities, or using Tin heightens the senses. The bad guy has already won when we open the story.  His reign of terror has been for a thousand years.  A girl who grew up on the streets learns that she is a Mistborn and helps a team of thieves, Mistings, another Mistborn, and an army of rebels to help fight against him.  Along the way she will find love in an unlikely place.  It is from one of the nobility of one of the Great Houses.  These people are only thought to uphold the doctrine of the evil Lord Ruler.

I am barely even scratching the surface of entire story for all three books, but let me say that the end of the last book will not let you down.  It has one of the most satisfying and unpredictable conclusions I’ve ever read.  That’s no exaggeration!

A Song of Fire and Ice by George R. R. Martin

This is also known to the general public as The Game of Thrones series.  The level of detail that Martin has used to create his world his astounding and a little overwhelming at times, but it is a gripping book/series.  There isn’t much magic that takes place here.  It’s mostly about politics, intrigue, war, and impending doom of the coming winter.  Seasons last for multiple years and we are nearly the end of a 9 year summer as the series opens.  This means that a harsh winter is ahead and with it comes strange creatures and occurrences from beyond the end of the world.  The first book puts that mostly on the back burner and deals with the entanglements with Houses or families.  The noble and honorable House Stark, who lord over the North, and the plotting Lannisters of Casterly Rock in the South take center stage as they and other Great Houses try to keep the Seven Kingdoms from going to war.

This series alone will keep one busy for a while.  There are five books out now, and there will be seven in the end.  The average length for the five books is close to a thousand pages, so grab a comfy chair and get cracking.  I haven’t even made it through all of them yet and I’ve read them awhile and if you’re not into adult content in your books then be wary, but once you start  you’ll find they flow really well and are not difficult reads.  You’ll find yourself at the end sooner than you expected.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan

Since this isn’t a comprehensive list, I thought I’d throw in a young adult fantasy for all of you looking for something along those lines.  This is a fun series of five books that is complete so you can pound all the way through it if you want.  A boy finds out he is a demigod (son of a Greek god and a human) and is invited to go to a camp in the wilderness to be around others like him and learn to use his new abilities.  It takes place in modern-day and has a somewhat similar premise to that of Harry Potter, but not too much.  It strikes out on its own by not taking itself as serious and inserting more modern-day humor and wit of a teenager in with the elements of Greek mythology.  While the overall story and world elements that stretch over the five books has enough depth to engage any reader, it is certainly not as complicated as Potter.  So if you want something a bit less heavy and an easy, relatively short series look no further.

So go out there and enjoy some new fantasy!


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