Thoughts on Future Readings: Fantasy Novels

Fantasy Books

Here is a (somewhat decent) picture of a sampling of the books in my constantly growing “to be read” pile. These are primarily fantasy novels, and also mostly the first of a longer series.

Right off the bat, I know Frank Herbert’s Dune is science fiction, but I decided to include that here being as I’ve been working on putting together his entire original run of Dune books before his son took things over. I believe I’ll revisit that in a future post. Additionally, I know A Knight of the Word isn’t the first book in that Terry Brooks series, but it’s all I have currently. I’m actually really interested to see how those books work into his Shanarra series.

As you can see, I also have a couple of Brandon Sanderson firsts in the pile (and arguably a third with the first Wheel of Time book present). I also have a few other bits of required reading for fantasy fans here: Donaldson, Eddings, Weis & Hickman, Goodkind, and Rothfuss. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit I have not already read some of these, but things are what they are.

Admittedly, I don’t know much about some of these books–The Briar King and Acacia both cropped up in the same bout of research that exposed me to Glen Cook’s Black Company books, so I’m remaining hopeful those may be equally enjoyable for me. I also don’t know much about A Song for Arbonne or The Wayfarer Redemption, but I stumbled across them both at reduced prices (the former marked down at a book store and the latter for sale at a combination coffee shop/used book shop). I trust I’ll also derive enjoyment from them. And I’m also looking forward to getting into that Warhammer collection that my lady snagged for me awhile back.

Here’s what I have for now. What do you all think of my growing pile of fantasy novels? I’m a big fan of The Black Company and A Song of Ice and Fire, and I’m not ashamed to admit I was a huge fan of R. A. Salvatore when I was younger. What are some of your favorite fantasy books? And which ones have you yet to read but mean to? Are any of them also in that picture above? Let me know in the comments below. Tweet me @quaintjeremy.

14 thoughts on “Thoughts on Future Readings: Fantasy Novels

  1. Pingback: Here’s something for you nite-owls. | Sourcerer

  2. Gosh, some of those books take me back, way back, to middle school when I started reading everything that wasn’t nailed down. Pawn of Prophecy is one of the best fantasy starter books I can recommend. Fantasy played straight, and tame enough I would let my nephew read it. Wayfarer Redemption is a completely different creature. If you are an experienced fantasy reader, check it out. You’ll never guess how it ends.

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    1. Thank you for the comment. 🙂 I’m definitely looking forward to reading these books, and it’s good to hear a couple of corroborating recommendations. I love fantasy but recognize I need to read more of it.

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  3. I can put in a good word for The Briar King! I am completely in love with The Waterborn by Greg Keyes. He does some really interesting things—I’ve read the Kingdoms of Thorn and Bone, but not for a while, and I seem to remember liking it a fair bit, albeit not as much as the Waterborn.

    In general, he does great things with character and shades of grey in storytelling—both in terms of the very much in vogue fuzzy morality and also in the idea of plot movement and change somewhat independent from character choice. I’d push you gently in that direction if only because I appreciate Keyes as a writer more than I think he’s generally appreciated.

    The only book from that set that I have anything against is the Terry Goodkind novel, mainly because his writings turn deeply political fairly quickly in a way that overpowers the story, which wasn’t exactly to my liking from the beginning. The first few books in the Sword of Truth didn’t bother me overmuch, even though they are much more manichean in worldview than I usually prefer, but for a 14-book series, it can be hard to get through 10 hefty books that come across as a high fantasy version Atlas Shrugged. It’s similar to, but with less initial value (from my perspective), than what happened with Cerebus.

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    1. Thank you for stopping by, James. Good to hear from you. 🙂 I’ll definitely weigh this when I decide which order to read these in. I’ve been very curious about The Briar King since stumbling across it, and you certainly help sell it. I’m willing to avoid Goodkind for now if need be. Heh.

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  4. This could easily be my to-read pile! I haven’t read A Song for Arbonne, but I’ll put in a plug for the author, Guy Gavriel Kay. His stuff is mostly historical fiction-fantasy and it’s lovely. I’ve been meaning to read more of his earlier work.

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  5. Tanja

    I have more books on my “to be read” pile than I can possibly mention (and it’s growing every year). I love the original Dune series, and Martin’s Game of Thrones (although I have some quibbles). I recently reread Patricia McKillip’s Riddle of Stars series and am very pleased to report that it is still as good as when I read it the first time. I’d also like to put in a nod to Deborah J. Ross’ Seven Petaled Shield series (book three is coming out this year). I recently read book one and am looking forward to two and three. I highly recommend both McKillip and Ross for their well-realized fantasy worlds and engaging characters.

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