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I have read a lot of books in my short time. I have loved and hated so many works throughout the years, I can’t begin to remember them all. Thank the Lord for Goodreads!
I read a lot of different genres, but fantasy is where my true love falls. Dungeons, dragons, princesses, fairies, and wizards are my cup of tea. I can’t imagine what life would be like if these things were real, but I love immersing myself in those worlds.
I see all kinds of lists of fantasy novels and series people should read. Some I agree with and some leave out core authors and novels that affected the genre and made it what it is today. So I wanted to shine some light on 15 writers with books that all fantasy readers should enjoy. From young adult to higher reading levels, all of these books have something for a true lover of fantasy.
Robin Mckinley is one of my favorite fairy tale authors. She primarily writes for young adults, but that hasn’t stopped me from loving her work. Beauty is the most perfect retelling you’ll ever read of Beauty and the Beast. It’s my number one.
Pegasus creates a bond between Pegasi and humans. If you want to dive into a world completely unlike our own, I recommend this read wholeheartedly. There’s supposed to be a sequel coming out, but the release date continues to be pushed back. This is a young adult book, but the writing can be difficult to read at times.
I came across this novel while browsing Barnes and Noble, and I think it is an excellent read for those looking for books that focus on dragons and their point of view. If you like books like Eragon and Seraphina, you’re going to enjoy this book. It’s well-written and doesn’t feel young-adult at all. It is part of a series, but I’ve heard it goes downhill very quickly. I can’t say as I haven’t read the others yet.
I have not read this trilogy, but pretty much everyone else has. I know it’s good. The movies are cool. Everything about it screams fantasy! Give it a read to be whisked away to Middle-earth where the battles between good and evil commence.
Ursula K. LeGuin is one of the most well-known fantasy writers of our time. The Earthsea Trilogy contains A Wizard of Earthsea; The Tombs of Atuan; and The Farthest Shore. However, she’s continued the series with Tehanu; Tales from Earthsea; and The Other Wind. I have only read the first three because I haven’t been able to access the last ones. Still, they are wonderful and intriguing. Perfect for any age.
This is a whimsical tale about two magicians and an ever-changing circus. It’s a bit of historical fiction, fantasy, and romance all tossed into one. It’s also for adults. I enjoyed it and I think you will too!
Christopher Paolini wrote Eragon when he was 15 years old. Now that I’m older, I see the flaws in his writing, but if you love stories of humans and dragons, this cycle is for you. Look past the abundance of words and poor writing to soak up the story. Plus, there’s rumors of a fifth book!
Tamora Pierce is another amazing fantasy author who specializes in young adult. I’ve read a couple of her other books, but “The Protector of the Small” series is my favorite. She usually has a heroine at the center of her stories, which is one of the reasons I love her so much. This is a great book for young girls who need encouragement to be strong and embrace the power of being a woman.
Another set of books about some badass ladies, the trilogy starts with A Great and Terrible Beauty. Gemma Doyle doesn’t know she has magical abilities, but as her world begins changing, she soon learns she must use her powers to save both sides of the spectrum.
I don’t think I need to embellish on these books. They’re wonderful. Everyone knows it. Any fantasy reader would love them.
I have not read this series, but I have heard amazing things about it. I don’t plan on reading it because it sounds like too much gore and unfortunate things happening, and I prefer not to fill my mind with that. But if you can look past that, the series is excellent, according to everyone. And you know how much everyone loves the Game of Thrones television series!
If you love adventure and like a good female protagonist, I recommend reading the Graceling Realm series. As of now, there are three books. They deal with some supernatural powers in the medieval days (my favorite).
I have never read these books, and that’s okay. I’ve seen all the movies and didn’t want to ruin them for myself, so I’ve steered clear of books. But if the books are better than the movies, then you should definitely dive into these for some serious fantasy action.
An interesting take on dragons, but definitely worth a read. A boy and dragon bond in the fighting ring, but they can’t technically speak to one another. They share mental pictures and mind colors. Yolen is a spectacular writer who helped define fantasy culture after Lewis and Tolkien.
George Macdonald is an exceptional writer, and while this book isn’t ridiculously fantastical, there are goblins who kidnap a little girl and take her into their tunnels. Of course, someone has to save her! It’s a good read.
Dragons and humans don’t mix in this land. A girl, Seraphina, works to bring the two races together. These are the newest books on the list, and I loved them. I couldn’t put them down. Each could stand alone, but it’s best if you read Seraphina first, then follow into the sequel.
Those are my recommendations for now. Get started on these and maybe I’ll be able to recommend more when you’re through! Have you read any of these? Let me know! I’d love to discuss!