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What type of fantasy do you read?

Discussion in 'Sci-Fi, Fantasy, & Horror Books' started by Matthew, Sep 1, 2013.

  1. Matthew

    Matthew kickbox

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    I like Character driven stories where ordinary people get into extraordinary events. " Sword of Truth" comes to mind. "Wheel of Time" is another. You care what happens to the people.
     
  2. Sparhawk

    Sparhawk Active Member

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    The Wheel of Time books were good. I have read almost all of them, I tend not to stick to any one type of fantasy. If it has a good story and is not a boring non-fiction book, them I'm happy :p :-D
     
  3. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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    This is a very interesting question to me, as I grow older I'm finding that I'm getting very curmudgeony about what I read. Fantasy is my first love, but looking through my reading log I find that I've not been reading fantasy all that much now. Out of approx 40 books over the 12 months or so, only 4 would be what you'd call fantasy at first judgement, namely Swordpoint by Ellen Kushner, River of Stars by GGK, Among Others by Jo Walton and A Dance with Dragons by GRRM.

    I like sword and sorcery, having loved Jordan at the beginning. But I'm unsure if I would have the patience of it now, seeing that I disliked Feist, Eddings, Goodkind. Couldn't even finish Trudi Canavan.

    I prefer GRRM and GGK style fantasies. I don't dislike (but can't say I'm falling over myself, either) Erikson's Books of The Malazan, but I reached sorta halfway in Deadhouse Gates after, oh, about 3 years.

    I'm thinking of reaching back and reading more of the fantasy classics. John M Harrison, Wolfe, Leiber, Moorcock, Peake. I also have newer, apparently 'different' stuff like R Scott Bakker, Mieville, Rothfuss and Scott Lynch that I want to get to as well.
     
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  4. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    Hmm I have to admit to being remarkably fussy. As a first 'go to' choice fantasy is it for me. It used to be sci-fi but I find very little sci-fi being written these days that isn't dystopian and/or just horrible. I'm bored with dystopian futures, not only because very little new is said about them, but also because they represent such a defeatist and negative view of the world. I pick them up and think, yeah great virological/nuclear/ecological disaster annihilates the world, survivors are telepathic/primitive/advanced and need a hero to restore the world - BORING!!

    Not that all fantasy is all that great either. There is also a pervasive thread, like a bad stink, that runs through fantasy that is also a rather bleak outlook on life. I tend to stay away from those as well.

    I like Celtic / Arthurian fantasy but it has to be really good retelling of the stories. My favourites are still Susan Cooper, Mary Stewart and Marion Zimmer Bradley. I'm going to give Bernard Cornwall's Arthurian books a try when I get around to them. Wasn't overly impressed with Stephen Lawhead.

    Katherine Kerr's Deverry cycle is amongst the best Celtic series I have read. There was another, but I read it many years ago and can't remember the author or titles but it was about a Professor transported back in time to Wales and falls in with a bunch of druids and other assorted fellows. Much like Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series he traveled through standing stones.

    Other favourite fantasy authors are Daniel Fox - really excellent series based on the relationship between Taiwan and China but translated into epic fantasy. Sara Douglas' fantasy about Troy was just excellent. Phillip Pullman, Robin Hobb, George R..R. Martin, Roger Zelazny, Tolkien, Eddings, C.S. Lewis, Anne McCaffrey, Julian May, L. Modesitt Jnr, Fritz Leiber, Biran Jacques, Terry Pratchett, Terry Brooks, Terry Goodkind, Stephen Donaldson, and David Gemmell just to name a few.
     
  5. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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    If you haven't yet tried Guy Gavriel Kay (GGK), Meadow, you have to stop doing whatever you're doing right now and go get to him. Like pronto! I recommend Lions of Al-Rassan, but his more recent ones are good too, and seeing that you're a Chinese-ophile, then you should like them, since they are based on an alternate almost-China.

    Celtic, huh? Have you sampled Robert Holdstock? He's known for Mythago Wood (very strange book), but he has a more interesting younger Merlin book called Celtika. Set centuries before he meets Arthur, when he's doing his adventury things. I'm a little tentative around the Arthurian legend. The fatalistic ending is so bleak... I've been holding off on Once and Future King because of everything I already know of the ending. If you like Tolkien, and Arthurian lore, then GGK has a trilogy called the Fionavar Tapestry you might like.

    As for sci-fi, I find that I'm reading more of it than less. Almost to a point where I'm almost feeling like I'm being unfaithful to fantasy. :) I'm currently in the middle of a Cory Doctorow called For The Win, where gold-farmers of the world (gamers who mine in-game coins to sell for real cash) attempt to form a union. Very possible-future stuff. Interesting. Last year I did a madcap gobbling of the Bujold's Vorkosigan saga, and finished the entire sequence. Best (and funny!) space opera with plenty of smarts too.

    I will check out Daniel Fox.
     
  6. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    lol I have read some his books and "Under Heaven" is on my TBR list, but thanks. There are tons more authors I have read but I'd still be typing if I tried to list them all.
     
  7. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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    I kinda guessed that you're a grizzled fantasy veteran, since you mentioned that you loved fantasy. :)

    I just thought of another one for you. Because you like the Celts, GGK did a working on them called The Last Light of the Sun. Alternate history/world of Vikings and Anglo-Saxons.

    What's your absolute favourite fantasy book?
     
  8. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    I'd also recommend Eon and Eona by Allison Goodman as fantasy set in a Chinese milieu:

    Also Known As: Two Pearls of Wisdom, Eon: Rise of the Dragoneye, and Eon (All the same book just published with different publishers) Eon has been studying the ancient art of Dragon Magic for four years, hoping he'll be able to apprentice to one of the twelve energy dragons of good fortune. But he also has a dark secret. He is actually Eona, a sixteen-year-old girl who has been living a dangerous lie for the chance to become a Dragon-eye, the human link to an energy dragon's power. It is forbidden for females to practice the Dragon Magic and, if discovered, Eon faces a terrible death. After a dazzling sword ceremony, Eon's affinity with the twelve dragons catapults him into the treacherous world of the Imperial court, where he makes a powerful enemy, Lord Ido. As tension builds and Eon's desperate lie comes to light, readers won't be able to stop turning the pages.

    It's supposed to be YA but its got unexpected depth for a YA book and I honestly would not have a categorised it as such.

    Eona is the sequel.

    As for a favourite? How can you ask me to me to choose? :D
     
  9. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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    I am evil that way.
     
  10. Matthew

    Matthew kickbox

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    Anyone else find Urban Fantasy to be another disguise for Romance stories?
     
  11. Meadow337

    Meadow337 Former Moderator

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    It's too late and I'm too lazy to google it right now so what is urban fantasy?
     
  12. readsalot

    readsalot Member

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    I prefer YA fantasy. Icemark Chronicles by Stuart Hill comes to mind.

    Brandon Sanderson's got a lot of great books too. I enjoyed the Mistborn trilogy and the spinoff book written after that.

    I think that's more character driven stuff.
     
  13. Richard Falken

    Richard Falken Member

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    I like High Fantasy which defines new interesting worlds and describes evocative cosmological structures. Weiss and Hickman are a prime example.

    I like world shaking events. The country is being attacked by a silent secret army of spies and nobody can deal with the threat. An evil god of ancient times has been released from its prison and must be stopped before it regains full power. You get the idea.
     
  14. readsalot

    readsalot Member

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    What is the definition of High Fantasy? I've only read one Weiss and Hickman book (and it bored me...so I guess I'm not too much of a high fantasy fan)
     
  15. Richard Falken

    Richard Falken Member

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  16. direstraits

    direstraits Well-Known Member

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  17. Tonya1000

    Tonya1000 Member

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    I like some urban fantasy,Kim Harrison,I love Cassandra Clare's book series the mortal instruments,she always has such cliff hanger endings to her books,and leaves you hanging thinking what is going to happen in her next book,I can't wait until her new book comes out,for the continuing of the series.
     
  18. FrozenRed1

    FrozenRed1 New Member

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    I actually prefer Low Fantasy. I like just enough magic mixed in add some flare to the story, but not so much that the story ultimately becomes about the magic.
     
  19. Lory

    Lory New Member

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    I'm sorry for offtopic, but wow, I've never heard of so many subgenres. *gone googling*
     
  20. SpeculativeAuthor

    SpeculativeAuthor New Member

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    Good magic system that actually matters to the story.
     

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