View Full Version : Recommendations?

12-30-2012, 02:59 PM
Hey all,

I'm in the market for some new fantasy books to read. Some of my favorite authors are Robert Jordan (obviously), Brandon Sanderson, Elizabeth Haydon, and Patrick Rothfuss. Not a big fan of Goodkind.

I'd prefer to read a series that is finished or almost finished. After WoT, I don't feel like playing the waiting game anymore :P

I hear R. Scott Bakker is a pretty good author, and it looks like he gets books out pretty regularly, so I was thinking about reading his books.

Any other recommendations?


12-31-2012, 10:23 AM
Looks like you're heavy into Epic Fantasy, so going alphabetically through my book shelves (just the dead tree versions for now):

Stephen Donaldson - Thomas Covenant series (this is why I mentioned I was looking alphabetically, alot of people find the series to be... hard to read. The main character is an absolute anti-hero and it is often NOT pleasant to spend time in his head.) You might instead pick up the Mirror series to see if you like the writing style and then go back to Covenant (though the first Covenant trilogy is much much better.)

A lot of people really like Erikson, I've tried to read it several times and just can't get into the story. This is also really dark. At the same time, it's technically quite good, definitely epic in scope and, I understand, completed. (Though he has started a prequel series.)

Raymond Feist has several fun series. As with Eddings and Brooks (both of whom I skipped because I figure you've probably been there already) Feist is often an early gateway into fantasy.

CS Friedman's Coldfire trilogy is wonderful. Magister is looking interesting, but is not yet completed. (Though there is probably only one book left, so it's not as horrendous as waiting for some of the others.)

Robin Hobb - the Assassin series is so incredibly much fun. I also enjoyed the Fool series. I was never able to get into the Live ships series (even though they are all really the same series.)

Guy Gavriel Kay - The Fionavar Tapestry does a wonderful job of feeling completely epic in a rather small (comparatively) trilogy.

Katherine Kurtz - the Deryni series is fairly old and probably hard to get a hold of (though I think they are starting to release them on kindle)

Fred Saberhagen - The lost sword series. Definitely a fun series, but another one that is probably out of print.

I'm just going to assume that I don't need to mention Tolkein.

Janny Wurts - I actually really like the War of Light and Shadows series, even though I'm hopelessly behind and really should catch up.

Another idea, though - pick up the Legends series and read through the short stories to see what catches your attention. Silverburg did a fairly good job of finding different types of epic fantasy to include.

yks 6nnetu hing
01-02-2013, 08:59 AM
It depends a little on what you like, for political intrigue and worldbuilding, I'd recommend GRR Martin and Robin Hobb. Erikson is apparently good but I had trouble reading him.

if you're more into fast-paced action, then Trudy Canavan has 2 good series: The Black Magician world has one complete trilogy, one standalone and one not yet finished trilogy. The Age of the Five world is more complex world-building wise though; there's one trilogy set in that world.

Ian Irvine has a few sets which are an interesting combination of great worldbuilding and action but somewhat one-dimensional characters.

Tad Williams is ok, depens a little on which series you're reading. Otherland is excellent, the shadow-series is mediocre.

Classic stuff... I assume you've already read Tolkien? if not, I suggest watching the movies. A lot of people who come to Tolkien as established fantasy-fans have a hard time because the language feels old and the themes all seem "been there, done that" - because they were published in the 1950's and almost everyone's copied some ideas from Tolkien. Me, I love them. Love love love. But that's because they were the first Fantasy I ever read. Well, aside from the Tarzan books.

Have you read Anne MacCaffrey's Perth stories? they get a little repetitive and some of the social ideas are somewhat aged but they're great examples of the mixing of Fantasy and Sci-Fi, and the way Speculative Fiction has evolved since the 60's. The first book is called "Dragonflight"

Coincidentally published the same year (1968) is Ursula K. Le Guin's first book of the Earthsea quartet. Again, it's a relatively small book but oodles of fun.

Zelazny's Amber Chronicles are also a cool twist on modern/Fantasy.

01-02-2013, 10:41 AM
Have you read Anne MacCaffrey's Perth stories?
Nitpick: may be easier to find if you search for "Pern". :D

yks 6nnetu hing
01-02-2013, 03:22 PM
Nitpick: may be easier to find if you search for "Pern". :D

I blame the new year's giddiness

01-03-2013, 01:42 AM
Thanks for all the great recommendations. A friend recommended the Recluce series by Modesitt. Is it any good?

01-03-2013, 09:41 AM
Erikson is apparently good but I had trouble reading him.

Possibly one of the biggest understatements I've ever seen :D

And I have only one recommendation further to all the others - Pratchett.

01-03-2013, 04:19 PM
And I have only one recommendation further to all the others - Pratchett.

Yup. Pratchett is awesome. I'm currently reading "Guards! Guards!" for probably the millionth time.:D

01-03-2013, 05:45 PM
DO IT! Reading Pratchett was the very best decision I made in 2010. There are many, many books and there are all (more or less) stand-alones. You cant go wrong.

I would also strongly endorse anything by Guy Gavriel Kay. He has one trilogy (mentioned above), and one duology, as well as 6 stand-alone novels. All excellent.

yks 6nnetu hing
01-04-2013, 02:35 AM
Possibly one of the biggest understatements I've ever seen :D

Ok, I hate Eriksson with a passion. But there are a lot of people who enjoy his writing, and the reason why I dislike it so much has to do with style of writing. It's basically the same as me hating Mozart (which I do. his music gives me the creeps. it literally makes my skin crawl) but quite enjoying Beethoven. I can rationally understand why people would like Mozart or Eriksson, but they're... er... just not for me thankyouverymuch.

Back on topic, Pratchett is awesome, as is GGK. While not exactly Fantasy, you might enjoy Umberto Eco, though he can be a bit difficult to get into. He has a very specific way of writing. The Name of the Rose is a classic.

I recently started reading the Dark Tower series by Stephen King and I really quite like it. Which is surprising because I always stayed away from King because I normally don't like horror. Shows how wrong preconceptions can sometimes be!

01-04-2013, 10:49 PM
Maybe I read In the Name of the Rose too young. I don't recall a fantastical component, or it being especially good. I'll have to re-read!

yks 6nnetu hing
01-05-2013, 04:55 AM
Maybe I read In the Name of the Rose too young. I don't recall a fantastical component, or it being especially good. I'll have to re-read!

That's the thing. He's not a fantastical realist like Hermann Hesse but he does mystery in a way that makes you wonder about the fantastical element. Eco can also be absolutely hilarious and gross at the same time - there's a scene in Baudolino where a group of friends smoke some magical stuff, and then proceed to sew the head of a holy relic (one of the Wise Men, iirc) on again. which they broke previously. There's discussion on the acceptable colour of mold on a mummy....

Rand al'Fain
01-18-2013, 09:59 PM
More of an alternate history than fantasy series, try the Temeraire series by Naomi Novik. It takes place during the Napoleoonic War in Europe (well, it eventually expandsto the whole world), except it involves sentient dragons that vary by country and breed and ability and size. And basically a type of aircraft carrier, but designed for dragons.

Would also second the Earth-Sea Quartet. Short series, but pretty good.

03-06-2013, 07:04 AM
In regard to letters of recommendation, you definitely want to focus on quality over quantity. If many instances, less is more. So be very careful if you are attracted to submitting an extra letter of recommendation.

Good point, well made my friend.