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dragonmyst

Fantasy novels geared toward adult reading levels?

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So I am looking for some adult reading level books. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy books from most reading levels, but I would really like to expand my adult epic fantasy genre. I love epic fantasy, but have only been able to find a few from that genre in the adult reading level. I know there is more out there, it is just that the ones I find are mostly by chance at a garage sale. So are there any reccomendations out there? You don't have to worry about any content offending me, and my only suggestion is that I like dragons and epic quests best, though neither of those are required for them to be recommended.

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Fantasy is one of my favourite genres, so I'm going to list some of my favourites here.

 

Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson - The Wheel of Time series

This series consists of 14 long books. The writing is quite detailed, so if that's not your thing, this may not be the series for you. The first 11 books were written by Robert Jordan. When he passed away, his wife asked Brandon Sanderson to write the remaining 3 books based on Jordan's notes. These books are epic in scope, take place on a whole new world in which the main characters fight against the Dark One. There is magic in this series. Book 1 (called The Eye of the World) starts off with a couple of characters who live in a rural village being chased by creatures of the dark one, but that's just the beginning. It's one of my favourite all-time fantasy series.

 

Brandon Sanderson - Mistborn series or Elantris or Warbreaker or The Emperor's Soul..

I admit it, so far I've loved everything I've read by Brandon Sanderson so far (I haven't read all of his works yet). The man writes good adult epic fantasy books. The original Mistborn trilogy consists of Mistborn / The Final Empire (US vs UK title), The Well of Ascension and The Hero of Ages. The series involves magic (can you tell I always love having magic in a fantasy book?). Book 1 is sort of a heist novel, in which the characters plot to overtake the ruler of the country. There are a couple more books that take place 300ish years after the events in The Hero of Ages, namely The Alloy of Law, Shadows of Self and The Bands of Mourning (4th book forthcoming). Of these I've only read The Alloy of Law, which was good but it wasn't quite as good as Mistborn.

Elantris is Sanderson's debut novel and while it's not quite as good as Mistborn in my opinion, it's still pretty good. It also involves magic and it involves an ancient city. Warbreaker is great too. The Emperor's Soul is a novella, which I really liked also. It wouldn't be good not to mention The Stormlight Archives series, currently consisting of The Way of Kings and Words of Radiance. I haven't read these books yet, because this series is unfinished and I tend to leave unfinished series for last as I find it difficult to deal with cliffhangers. However I have heard amazing things about this series, so I definitely plan to read it. It's apparently planned to be a 10 book series (but I plan to start on it once I'm running low on other unread Sanderson books).

 

Trudi Canavan - The Black Magician Trilogy & The Traitor Spy Trilogy and The Age of the Five trilogy

Trudi Canavan has written 3 trilogies that I'd recommend (oh, and one prequel). The Black Magician Trilogy is her first trilogy, the first book is called The Magician's Guild. It's about a young woman who unexpectedly shows magical powers and then has to be trained in their use. The Traitor Spy Trilogy takes place a while after The Black Magician Trilogy and I would therefore recommend to not read it until you've read The Black Magician Trilogy. There is also a prequel to this world, The Magician's Apprentice, which is best read after you've read The Black Magician Trilogy in my opinion. The Age of the Five trilogy is set in a completely different world, in which there are gods and humans. A woman is chosen as a priestess. This series involves magic also. What I also really like about Trudi Canavan, is the strong female characters (that's not to say that the female character by other authors can't be strong).

 

David B. Coe - The Lontobyn Chronicles series

I quite liked this trilogy when I read it for the first time, it's the one that introduced me to the adult epic fantasy genre. However, I'm sure that qualitatively it's not as highly regarded as some of the other books I've mentioned. Anyway, the magic on this world involves a person being bound to a bird, which is kind of unique. I quite like this trilogy, which starts with Children of Amarid though I'm sure that is partially clouded by nostalgia.

 

James Clemens - The Banned and the Banished series

This 5 book series starts with Wit'ch Fire. It's about a young woman who it turns out has magical powers. The books feature several different characters (of different species also) on an epic quest. I really enjoyed these books when I first read them.

 

Terry Pratchett has written the Discworld series. These books are humourous (British humour), though if it's not your sort of humour you probably won't enjoy them as much. It's not neccessary to read the series in publishing order. The books feature a variety of characters. Some follow a wizard named Rincewind, some follow the City Watch, some follow the 3 witches, some follow Death (Death is a character in this world). There are also books that follow none of them but instead feature new characters. You can start at either first book of these different sub-series. I personally started with the first book Pratchett wrote in this series, called The Colour of Magic (which is a duology with the second book, The Light Fantastic) and loved that one, but there are others who say the first few books aren't the best. Mort is the first book in the books about Death (the character), that's a pretty good one too. The first book of the City Watch is Guards! Guards!. I think reading them in publication order worked best for me, but since they're all, except The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic, standalone stories with recurring characters, you could start at various places. The Discworld series also has a couple of books in it written more for children (Tiffany Aching), but most of the books are intended for adults.

 

Well, those are some of my favourites (I have more, if you want to hear more). I have read books with dragons in them, but those books are not my most favourites (naturally I had to narrow it down for this post haha). The series that most stands out that features dragons, for me, is Anne McCaffrey - The Dragonriders of Pern series (starting with Dragonflight), in which some of the characters ride dragons and fight the dangerous Thread which falls from the sky.

 

Other fantasy greats that I haven't read much by yet but that have received glowing reviews: Robin Hobb, Raymond E. Feist, David Eddings, Terry Brooks. I've heard especially good things of Robin Hobb and I look forward to finally read some books by her (it will happen! But my to-be-read pile is big).

 

There is also a subgenre within adult fantasy called grimdark. The books I've mentioned are high fantasy books, which is my favourite subgenre within adult fantasy books (featuring magic and quests and heroes). I'm less familiar with grimdark books as I haven't read a lot of them. They're generally darker and grittier, and have more violence, often featuring characters that aren't necessarily good / heroes.

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I think Naomi Norvik has written a series of books about dragons in the Napoleonic Wars, I think Temeraire is the first one?

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I have loved The Black Magician Trilogy and The Dragonriders of Pern series! I also like Terry Brooks. I will really have to check out all of your reccomendations.

Edited by dragonmyst

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Recently I have been reading a couple of epic fantasy authors:

 

Heath Pfaff - the hungering saga / chaos awakens / seventh

 

This is one of my favourites, he writes dark epic fantasies, where the protagonist isn't always a good person. In Chaos Awakens, the protagonist is an assassin, who was a mage when he was little but got exiled. In The Hungering Saga, the story revolves around engineered warriors, with the eyes of a fae like race and the limbs of a wolf or drake. Throughout the book the main character makes darker and darker decisions, and near the end you wonder if he is actually the good guy.

Pfaff is brilliant at describing scenes and battles however not so great at endings. In both trilogies he fails to properly wrap up the story and seems to rush the epilogue.

 

 

Next is Michael Scott Earle - The Destroyer

It follows a newly awakened war commander who cannot remember his past. In his time, elvens had enslaved humans and he was part of the revolution. After he is awakened, the elvens make another attempt on domination. WARNING: after the first book there is a lot of NSFW.

This series starts very strong, the main character is a great combination of scary powerful and a sarcastic ass. I think it was after the second book that it started going downhill, there were no new good battles, no scenes that make you feel emotional, but I am still reading it.

 

Other than that, if you have a kindle, I would recommend looking up Quest. It is a free compilation of 8 full length fantasies with pretty good authors.

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Robbin Hobb has a series of book beginning with The Farseer Trilogy that starts with Assassin's Aprentice, then The Tawny man trilogy then, Fitz and the Fool.

 

 

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