Fantasy novels worth reading as an adult?

Discussion in 'Entertainment, Culture, and Sports' started by dusty, Nov 26, 2008.

  1. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    Pratchett's Discworld series.

    +1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1!!!!!!!!! (Hey, there are a lot of them but I favor the ones featuring Death and the Night Watch)


    Or anything by Christopher Moore. Such as: The Stupidest Angel, or Lamb: The Gospel of Biff.
     


  2. Shakermaker

    Shakermaker Senior member

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    I personally love the Dragonlance "Chronicles" Trilogy by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. Then you can move on to the "Twins" trilogy which follows, as someone already suggested. Also, the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind is good as well.
     


  3. lawyerdad

    lawyerdad Senior member

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    Michael Moorcock's "Elric of Melnibone" series (6 books total, then some tangent ones featuring other characters like Hawkmoon, Corum etc)

    Whoa, junior high flashback!
     


  4. whiteslashasian

    whiteslashasian Senior member

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    Pratchett's Discworld series.

    Fantastic set of books. I love Pratchett's style and humour. +1 to the Death and Night Watch stories.

    The Song of Fire and Ice series....now that would be a looooong read. I don't think I could ever read all of the books straight through, I would need some long breaks with other more light hearted stories such as Discworld haha.
     


  5. Flambeur

    Flambeur Senior member

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    Haven't been into fantasy or scifi in a while, but I remember reading Peter F. Hamilton's The Night's Dawn Trilogy and it was one of the best, most adult series of that genre. Very thought out technology, lots of sex, very interesting story line, etc. 3000+ pages as well.
     


  6. Tangfastic

    Tangfastic Senior member

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    I loved fantasy as a kid, and recently made an effort to find some stuff I could actually read without cringing, I've had to give up a lot of books as they are so badly written.

    Some of these are Sci Fi, but I strongly recommend:

    Gene Wolf's book of the New Sun
    Anything by Philip K. Dick or William Gibson


    Some new / current authors in the genre - all well written and page turners:

    China Mieville's series starting with Perdido Street Station
    Scott Lynch's the Lies of Locke Lamora
    Joe Abercrombie's First Law series

    I've not read George R. Martin, but he seems to get universally praised, I'm going to try him soon myself.
     


  7. rdawson808

    rdawson808 Senior member

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    I like the History Monks.

    His and Neal Gaiman's Good Omens is another great one.

    As is Gaiman's Neverwhere.


    b
     


  8. rdawson808

    rdawson808 Senior member

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    There's an author named Barry Hughart who wrote a series of three books set in "an ancient China that never was." They are very fun reads.


    The first is Bridge of Birds, followed by Story of the Stone, and finally there is Eight Skilled Gentlemen.

    Oh, and I just checked Amazon.com and there was supposed to be a new omnibus edition out on Oct. 31. But it still says it's not yet out. Don't know what's up with that.

    b
     


  9. Zandros

    Zandros Senior member

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    I like the History Monks. His and Neal Gaiman's Good Omens is another great one. As is Gaiman's Neverwhere. b
    I would say American Gods is Gaiman's best work to date. As mentioned, the A Song of Ice and Fire series is a must-read. Steven Erikson's The Malazan Book of the Fallen series is highly recommended by a friend, but I haven't read it yet. My personal recommendation is Tad William's The War of the Flowers.
     


  10. NorCal

    NorCal Senior member

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    Michael Moorcock's "Elric of Melnibone" series (6 books total, then some tangent ones featuring other characters like Hawkmoon, Corum etc)
    + 1 on that, excellent for whiling away the hours. As is Harry Potter. I had a bit of an attitude about the series but once you get over it they are good escapist fun. I also would second the song of fire and ice series, not that great but again, escapist. Also check out the Wizard of Earthsea books. An classic in every sense. Lastly read H.P. Lovecraft. BTW, GetSmart Have you ever read the Corneliuls Chronicles, also by Moorcock? They're a bit fractured, but its basically Elric multiverse strangeness meets 1970's rocking London, pretty goofy really, but kind of stylish and fun.
     


  11. landho

    landho Senior member

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    The Golden Compass, Subtle Knife and Amber Spyglass weren't bad.

    The His Dark Materials trilogy is fantastic. The writing and the story are both great. Also worth noting that Pullman wrote this series as a corrective to the conservative ideas presented in Lord of the Rings and the Chronicles of Narnia.

    I personally love the Dragonlance "Chronicles" Trilogy by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. Then you can move on to the "Twins" trilogy which follows, as someone already suggested. Also, the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind is good as well.

    Read those countless times in my youth (although the second series is actually called Legends). Am very fond of them. If nothing else, fun and adventurous.

    The first five books of Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series is probably as good as contemporary traditional epic fantasy can get. Then the wheels fell off the series. Then he died.

    Roger Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber--the first five novels, which compose the Corwin cycle--are superlative. My highest recommendations. (The first five books are Nine Princes in Amber, Guns of Avalon, Sign of the Unicorn, The Hand of Oberon, and The Courts of Chaos. They are printed these days in a gigantic omnibus comprising ten novels.)

    T. H. White's The Once and Future King is at once hilarious and sad and awesome. A retelling of the traditional Arthurian myths. Disney's cartoon The Sword in the Stone is based on the first part of this book. (Was originally published in four volumes, now commonly available as one book.)

    Jonathan Lethem's Gun, with Occasional Music isn't really fantasy but rather soft science fiction or perhaps "science fantasy." Still great, though, a weird sci-fi noir featuring talking animals and copious amounts of drugs. Lethem has since won a MacArthur Grant and has been writing "serious" fiction of late.

    Likewise, Gentlemen of the Road by Michael Chabon is a nice excursion into genre. A little self-conscious, perhaps, in its evocation of generic elements (Chabon is a writer of literary fiction who loves genre rather than the other way around), but still very good, especially if you're familiar at all with the works of Moorcock (mentioned above) and especially Fritz Leiber. Originally published serially in the New York Times Magazine. Also, Yiddish Policemen's Union by Chabon is one of the best books written in the recent past; it's fantasy, but it may not be the kind of fantasy you're looking for.

    Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami is not only a bizarre and ingenious excursion into the world of imagination but also the best starting point for delving into Murakami's oeuvre.

    So much more, of course, but this is off the top of my head. Have a good winter!
     


  12. landho

    landho Senior member

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    As a footnote, the Elric books are long out of print. I managed to find the six books by scrounging around the mass-market paperback section in used-book stores. Should not be hard to find, but you will have to go to some effort to find them. The writing and the stories are strange, but from what I've read he cranked out the books in two weeks each (!). Chabon dedicated Gentlemen of the Road to Moorcock, and it's considered to be a landmark in fantastic fiction, given its singularly antiheroic themes. (Moorcock would follow this up more explicitly in his essay "Epic Pooh.")
     


  13. JohnRov

    JohnRov Well-Known Member

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    Gene Wolf's book of the New Sun
    Anything by Philip K. Dick or William Gibson


    I have to endorse these. Wolf is by far the best little-known fantasy author. It's not easy reading, but is on a level far above your average fare.

    George R.R. Martin is good, Jordan was good but that series should have been 5-6 books long.

    I don't think of Feist as adult reading, although it was good when I was younger.
     


  14. dusty

    dusty Senior member

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    Wow, thanks for all the suggestions guys. I'll bring this list with me to the library later. I was especially curious about Wheel of Time -- I know it's incredibly popular but I wanted to hear opinions from people who uh, don't read only fantasy novels.
     


  15. EnglishGent

    EnglishGent Senior member

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    I remember enjoying the books by David Eddings, but that was several years ago.
     


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