Open to recommendations

Discussion in 'General Books' started by Mathius, Jun 6, 2014.

  1. Mathius

    Mathius Member

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    I used to devour fantasy novels on a regular basis. I would read a Robert Jordan book in a day and a half or so. But at some point in the last couple of years I just stopped reading. I think it came down to the fact that a lot of my favorite authors had closed up their series and I just didn't know where to go from there. About 4 1/2 years ago I moved also, and a lot of the libraries in this area don't have good fantasy sections, to the point where I stopped going to the library altogether.

    I think the best way to go about this is I will attempt to briefly list the majority of the authors I've read and go from there. I would have liked to leave a blurb about each author, but I feel like this post would get too large, so I will try to be brief. I definitely lean more towards fantasy than sci-fi and I tend to stay away from airships and boats. I prefer a good land based story I guess.

    I have been meaning to read George Martin's stuff... I read his first novel way back when I was in high school and not much of it stuck in my memory. I also feel like I should wait until the Game of Thrones series is done otherwise if I read the novels first, I will hate the series when I see what they change. Also, David Drake is another one who I read a book of his a long time ago, and never really got much further with it.

    Anyways, I've read most of Terry Brooks stuff, a few books by David Duncan, and the majority of David Eddings books, but not all as he tends to follow a formula leaving a lot of his books to feel the same.

    I've read all of Robert Jordan's books, as well as about 4 or 5 of Brandon Sanderson's books. The last one I tried to get into started on a sortof steampunk western type theme that I wasn't too into. I have read a great deal of Stephen King's stuff, and while he doesn't strictly lend himself to fantasy, his Dark Tower series did have a ton of fantasy elements that kept me interested. But no, in general, I don't care for him.

    I've read all of Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series, as well as Tad Williams Otherland and as well as that other series that starts with the Dragonbone Chair (I want to say, memory, sorrow, and thorn series?) I started to read his Shadowmarch series, but I got tired of waiting for the next book to come out and then lost track of where I was with it.

    I have read every Sarah Douglass book I could get my hands on, and loved them all, but I know I am missing some from the series with Maximus in it.

    I've read two different series by John Marco. I prefer the one with the Devil's Armor, Sword of Angels, and Eye of the Gods, but his other dystopian series that starts with The Jackal of Nar was pretty good as well. I have read the Ring, Sword, and Chalice series by Deborah Chester and loved it.

    I've read 4 books by C.S. Friedman and although they lean towards sci-fi quite a bit, I enjoyed her series that has Black Sun Rising, When True Night Falls, and Crown of Shadows. I finished the Madness Season, but while I found it entertaining, it's just not my cup of tea.

    I have read some of Piers Anthony's Adept series books. I tried to get into his Xanath series, but just never really got to it. His books are ok, but again very sci-fi.

    I've read quite a few Fred Saberhagen books, mostly from his Lost Swords series and a few from his masks of the Gods books.. I wouldn't say he's the best author in the world, but his books have an entertaining quality. I also understand he's written some books about vampires that I just have no interest in. But I have read all of Anne Rice's books I think, although I didn't care for some of them.

    There is another vampire series that I read although I can't recall the author or titles... IIRC it's about a half-vampire that travels with an albino and a wolf. I think they start as a vampire hunter sortof thing, but then it ends up being a search for her lineage. I think the author's name is Barbara something, but I just can't remember.

    I think I've read all the core Dragonlance books and part of the Deathgate cycle... I think there was another series by the same author that had a book called the Fire Sea, and one called the Elven Star or something like that? I only have 2 of those books, so I haven't read it all. I've also read quite a few Forgotten Realms books as well as some R.A. Salvadore stuff (I think I read all of the Red Shadow books.)

    Of course I've read LotR and the Hobbit. I've read bits of the Simarilion and Morgoth's Ring, but they tend to be dry if I try to read the thing from front to back. I've read Christopher Paolini's Inheritance series as well, and despite the critics, I enjoyed it. And yes, I've read all the Harry Potter books. They were quite good.

    I've read Ann Marston, Barbara Hambly, and Donita K. Paul and enjoyed most of them, although Paul's books are hard to follow as far as getting an idea of the world and geography, but then that might be because I might not have read them all. I've read 2 of Lawrence Watt's books and loved them, and I enjoy Terry Pratchet as a light read, although I understand he has alzheimers so he may not be writing much longer.

    I have heard people really praise Anne McCaffrey's books, but I tried reading one and just couldn't get into it. I might have to try another one at some point. I also would like to read the Recluce books by L.E. Moddesett, but I've tried to start them twice now and always come up finding them to be confusing for some reason.

    So hopefully this isn't too long a read, and I am anxious to see what you guys have in store.

    EDIT: Forgot to mention I've read almost all of Raymond E. Feist's books as well and enjoyed them immensely. I think the only one's I haven't read are the ones with Wurts as a co-author and a few of the newer ones that seem like back stories (Jimmy the Hand).
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2014
  2. Overread

    Overread Wolfing it up! Staff Member

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    I'm glad I'm not the only one who picked out select chapters in the Silmarillion - once you get past the rather dry opening there are some great stories, maybe not as well developed and detailed as Lord of the Rings is, but certainly some great fables in there!

    As for Anne McCaffry, I find her writing style to be older which can be a bit of a throw for a more modern reader; I'd say give her book another try or try one of her other series to get used to her writing voice. The Crystal Singer trilogy is worth a read!


    As for more suggestions I'd strongly suggest the following:
    Malazan Book of the Fallen by Steven Erikson - First book Gardens of the Moon - this is a big story spanning many books (completed as well so no waiting). It follows multiple characters over several major continents and even time spots. This can throw some people, but the famous and key characters cross over so its rather like getting a big chunk of the worlds history rather than following a select "hero" through the story.
    It's also got magic oozing from every corner - there are gods and dragons - magical swords - mighty warriors - mages - the undead etc....


    Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb - first book Assassin's Apprentice. Follow the life of Fitz as he grows up in this mythical world; told from the characters perspective you get to really get behind the characters mind and motives and Hobb does fantastic work crafting a lead character who - makes mistakes, battles, adventures and more. It's also got wolves in it so its a must have read!

    It forms part of a world she's made, following this series you can then go to the Liveship Traders, which differs in being multiple protagonist before jumping back to the lands of the Farseers and Fitz in the Tawnyman Trillogy. Then jump back to the liveships world again (I won't say the title it will spoil things sort of). The stories interconnect even though they happen far apart and you also get to meet the mysterious Fool.

    The Book of Jhereg by Steven Brust - a bit of a lighter read in these books which are the start of a long and continuing series. A single prota..... ok duel protagonist of Vlad Taltos and his familiar Loiosh.

    And finally you have to check out Temeraire by Naomi Novik, especially if you like the idea of taking Napoleonic Europe and adding dragons into the world! Great series of books (now completed) where you'll travel the globe and the pace of the war as it leaves it mark on the world and upon Laurence, Temeraire and his crew.
     
  3. Mathius

    Mathius Member

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    IIRC, I actually enjoyed Morgoth's Ring a bit more than the Simarillion because the writing was less dry. I always go back every few years and re-read Tolkien's stuff and I tend to forget how archaic a lot of his dialect is in his books. But then it was written a long time ago so... <shrug>

    Thank you for your suggestions, I will have to look into those. I'm not sure about that last one. I tend to stay away from realistic fiction stuff. I think it's because my brain uses fantasy novels as an escape to really immerse myself in it when I'm reading.
     
  4. Overread

    Overread Wolfing it up! Staff Member

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    I tend to avoid realistic fiction as well, especially when it is set in modern times (which is odd as Narnia was one of the biggest influences in my childhood when it came to developing a love of fantasy) - Temeraire is old-world enough that you can really set-aside the real elements. Naomi does a very good job of making that world very much her fantasy world and whilst you've some major historical people still around, the overall tone is very much fantasy. Give the first book a try though, I'd heartily recommend it.
     
  5. Firiath

    Firiath Halfling barbarian

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    I haven't even read half as many books and you two have, but I'm really into Anthony Ryan's A Raven's Shadow series. The second book in the series will be published in July, so at the moment there's only one (almost 600-page) novel to read, which is Blood Song. But I enjoyed it a lot, so I'd recommend looking into this.

    I also recently discovered Jeremy Hayes' Stonewood Trilogy, of which I've read the first book. It was enjoyable, not outstanding, but I was told the second book is much better than the first one, as it's been written 6 years after the first one, The Thieves of Stonewood. I'm still waiting for the second book to arrive, so I can't say much about it at the moment.
     
  6. herzog

    herzog Active Member

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    The Stephen Erikson series isn't complete without reading ...let's call it a companion series ... Ian Esslemonts books. The guys made a fantasy rpg in college and now all their novels are in the same world at the same time. The writing styles are so similar that i strongly suspect that if they are not co written that they are the same author.

    Neil Gaiman is fabulous. Neverwhere is his Finest in my opinion but you really can't go wrong with any of his boooks.

    Harry Turtledove writes alternate history stuff mostly but his series that starts with Into the Darkness (they all mention darkness in their titles) is a fantasy version of ww2 and it's sweet.

    There ya go.
     
  7. Overread

    Overread Wolfing it up! Staff Member

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    herzog - I was under the Impression that Malazan Book of the Fallen series was a complete single entity - the other support books basically start to become like Tolkiens works in addition to Lord of Rings - additional stories that add depth or might explore new stories within the world, but which are not required to enjoy and have a full experience from the core series.
     
  8. Mathius

    Mathius Member

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    And he's married to Amanda Palmer. Not the prettiest woman in the world, but her personality is inspiring. I wish I looked at life as she did. Much of her music is quite good as well.
     
  9. ~Elladan~

    ~Elladan~ A Elbereth Gilthoniel

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    I would also recommend Erikson's Malazan although I found it took a while to get into it!

    What about some of Trudi Canavan's or Guy Gavriel Kay's series? I particularly like Kay's stuff.
     
  10. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

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  11. Overread

    Overread Wolfing it up! Staff Member

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    Trudi Canavan - I liked her first Magician style story. Possibly boarderline young-adult, but I found it readable and enjoyable. I also liked how she went into more depth and creativity with how magic was handled and used in her world.
    I found her second series very hard to get into (I think I've got the first book still unfinished somewhere).
     
  12. Mathius

    Mathius Member

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    I actually read those. I didn't even remember until you mentioned them. Good books.
     
  13. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

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  14. Mathius

    Mathius Member

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    Those I haven't read, but I did read one book by Gammel I think with someone named Wayland in it? I think it was called Wayfinder, but don't quote me on that? I remember it was a good book. I got the impression it was more towards the end of Wayland's... "career" we'll say? I was sure there had to be other books before it.
     
  15. JIM

    JIM zombie Turncoat

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