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View Full Version : Top 3 fantasy books/series, your opinion?



Redpieper
2007-11-18, 10:38 PM
Hello and welcome to the thread, I was wondering what the best fantasy novels you have ever read are.
A top 3 as the title suggests, mine is:

1: Magician/War of the rift? (I have it in dutch, so I do not know what is called in english). First book that really got me into fantasy, It just grabbed me right from the start and didn't let go till the end. I don't like the newest series that much though.
2: Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, do I need to explain? The main protagonist is a bitter man that you'd love to hate, yet he develops into something much more. I have only read the first trilogy though :smallfrown:
3: The Death Gate Cycle, like the first books more then the last ones though.

So what is your top 3?

PS: Lord of the Rings ain't on there, because while very good I notice that I do not like to read it again that much.

BlackStaticWolf
2007-11-18, 11:13 PM
A Song of Ice and Fire
Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever
His Dark Materials


Those are my top three.

Honorable mentions have to go to (in no particular order)


Lord of the Rings. I don't care for Tolkien's prose personally, but he did basically invent what most people thing of when they think fantasy.
Naomi Novik's Temeraire series because, while the story isn't really the most sophisticated out there, the books are all monstrously fun to read.
The Dragonlance Chronicles and Legends trilogies. These were the first fantasy novels I ever read. Everyone has to give props to whatever gave them their start.
The Deathgate Cycle. Like the Temeraire series, they're not that sophisticated, but they're fun.
RA Salvatore's two Demon Wars trilogies. Fun reading... and given the obvious parallels between Elbryan and a certain dark elf who shall remain nameless because I can't remember where the apostrophe goes, the fact that the villains right hand man killed him did surprise me.
Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn series. An interesting underlying concept. Plus, allomancy and feruchemy are unique systems of magic with every well defined rules that the author adheres to religiously.

factotum
2007-11-19, 03:09 AM
1. The Lord of the Rings. Predictable, maybe, but I have read that book (well, technically BOOKS, but you know what I mean) at least a dozen times and never tire of it.
2. David Eddings' Belgariad. He had a much better grasp on character when he was writing that--most of the characters became 2D wisecracking templates in the Malloreon and later works.
3. "Tigana" by Guy Gavriel Kay. It's superbly written and the setting (based on Italy) is a little out of the ordinary for a fantasy work.

Setra
2007-11-19, 03:12 AM
My favorites are...

1. Dragonlance
2. Forgotten Realms
3. Obsidian Trilogy

Nerd-o-rama
2007-11-19, 03:13 AM
1. Discworld
2. The Belgariad/Malloreon cycle, although frankly this may be due to nostalgia
3. Discworld

Hm. Either I should diversify my fantasy reading, or Terry Pratchett should write faster.

averagejoe
2007-11-19, 03:58 AM
In no particular order:

Tolkien
A Wizard of Earthsea

For the third one I was thinking of putting A Song of Fire and Ice, but, as good as Martin is, he isn't really in the same class as those two.

I'll honorably mention Pratchett, because he is full of goodness, but it tends to be fantasy-as-a-thinly-veiled-parody-of-the-modern-world, and I'm not sure how much that counts.

Construct
2007-11-19, 04:31 AM
1. Discworld by Terry Pratchett
2. Thraxas by Martin Scott
3. Um...ah...er...*looks embarassed*

Tengu
2007-11-19, 06:03 AM
1. Discworld
2. The Witcher or Narrenturm (a cookie if you're not from Poland and know what am I talking about)
3. Earthsea

Burgo McSock
2007-11-19, 06:28 AM
1. The Riftwar Saga by Raymond E. Feist
2. Discworld by Terry Prattchet
3. Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman

Rare Pink Leech
2007-11-19, 09:35 AM
1) The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan
2) The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
3) Tough choice. Probably His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman.

Another prime candidate for third place was the X-Wing series by Michael A. Stackpole an Aaron Allston, although I suspect nostalgia has a lot to do with it. I know it's not in a traditional swords 'n' sorcery fantasy setting, but I've always considered Star Wars to be firmly in the realm of fantasy.

Also, I put The Hobbit instead of The Lord of the Rings because I read The Hobbit more often, since I can actually read it in a short amount of time, and I don't need to push myself through slow parts.

Smeik
2007-11-19, 10:00 AM
1. Memory, Sorrow and Thorn by Tad Williams
2. Discworld
3. Zamonia Books by Walter Moers(cookie for everyone who knows it and isn't from germany)

Honorable mentions to "Lord of the Rings" and the Otherland Series also by Tad Williams.
Oh, and the also German Ulldart and Zwerge Series, both by Markus Heitz.

Prophaniti
2007-11-19, 10:28 AM
1. A Song of Ice and Fire - I've never read a series as thoroughly engaging and frustratingly hardline with the 'good-guys don't always win' approach. It's compelling and infuriating at the same time.

2. any Forgotten Realms book - but espesially those by R.A. Salvatore and Ed Greenwood, excellent authors who really make my favorite D&D setting come to life.

3. The Wheel of Time - I'd have to say this one if only because I've re-read it more than any other series I've ever picked up. I usually restart it every time a new one comes out so the characters and plot are fresh in my mind. Let's face it, it's a long series and when you read as much as I do, little details get forgotten or blurred in the memory.

yoshi927
2007-11-19, 10:54 AM
1. His Dark Materials. Brilliant theology, awesome title, good characters, unpredictable plotline, what's not to like? If only the movie didn't ruin it. :smallbiggrin:

2. Assassin trilogy. Almost hit first place, but not quite.

3. Can't decide between Soldier Son trilogy, or Song of Ice and Fire.


I liked Wheel of Time, but I quit on Crossroads, because it bored me out of my seat. I've been meaning to cliffnotes that one and move on.

Winterwind
2007-11-19, 11:02 AM
1. The Song of Ice and Fire, by George R. R. Martin
2. The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever, by Stephen Donaldson
3. Memory, Sorrow and Thorn, by Tad Williams

Honorary mention of the immediately following candidates:
The Fionavar Tapestry, by Guy Gavriel Kay
Earthsea, by Ursula K. LeGuin
The Belgariad, by David Eddings

I specifically do not include Tolkien, not because I don't like his books - I love them - but because they had so much of an impact on my outlook on fantasy that I feel they are... different. Out of this contest. I read the Lord of the Rings when I was seven for the first time and read it more than once a year throughout my childhood - I'm sure I've read the entire trilogy something about 15 times - and they are a too elementary part of my thinking to be evaluated.

I also do not include Terry Pratchett's Discworld, because I consider it comedy and satire which coincidentally has chosen the guise of fantasy, rather than fantasy itself.


2. The Witcher or Narrenturm (a cookie if you're not from Poland and know what am I talking about)I am not living in Poland, does that count? :smalltongue:

Attilargh
2007-11-19, 11:02 AM
A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin. A smart and refreshingly different take on fantasy literature.
Discworld by Terry Pratchett. Is funny, and has an ape. Everything is better with apes.
Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay. Another a bit different piece of fantasy literature. I guess I have a thing for politics.

Tengu
2007-11-19, 05:32 PM
I am not living in Poland, does that count? :smalltongue:

It almost counts, so you receive an almost cookie.
http://media.twango.com/m1/large/0017/0ca9abaa9dc64e96888bc19d3018c8cf.jpg

Daze
2007-11-19, 05:44 PM
1) A song of Ice & Fire George RR Martin
2) Lord of the Rings & The Hobbit JRR Tolkien
3) Conan of Cimmeria (compiled chronicles) (Conan the Barbarian) Robert E Howard

All great reads...

dehro
2007-11-19, 05:56 PM
1) LOTR, because liking Fantasy and not liking Tolkien sounds a bit like liking to swim but not liking to get wet.
2)the discworld series..because...well... pratchett... what else is there to say?
3) ronja the robber's daughter...well...that's memory lane for you... it goes down the strangest of alleys... brilliant work by Lindgren anyway. I still own a copy of it....on a par with "how to become king"...

Rigel Cyrosea
2007-11-19, 06:02 PM
1) The Belegariad, by David Eddings
2) Discworld, by Terry Pratchett
3) The Dark Tower, by Stephen King

The last one's a bit of a stretch to call it fantasy, but it was just so ... epic. Moreso even than LOTR.

Honourable Mentions

A Song of Ice and Fire - It's a little too historical, rather than fantastical for my taste, but still a great series. I'm also only halfway through, so that may affect be affecting my choice.

LOTR - For obvious reasons.

Winterwind
2007-11-19, 06:08 PM
It almost counts, so you receive an almost cookie.
http://media.twango.com/m1/large/0017/0ca9abaa9dc64e96888bc19d3018c8cf.jpgOooh! That makes me almost happy! :smallsmile:

(Hilarious picture :smallbiggrin: )


A Song of Ice and Fire - It's a little too historical, rather than fantastical for my taste, but still a great series. I'm also only halfway through, so that may affect be affecting my choice.If you were anything else than halfway through, I would start stalking you now, in order to steal your timemachine and be finally able to finish reading the series myself. :smalltongue:

Sneak
2007-11-19, 06:11 PM
1. Discworld
2. A Song of Ice and Fire

Or possibly

1. A Song of Ice and Fire
2. Discworld

And
3...hmm. Tough. I'll come back to this one. >_<

Turcano
2007-11-19, 06:13 PM
My three favorite fantasy authors are Tolkien, Pratchett, and Martin; I can't really rank them.

Emperor Tippy
2007-11-19, 06:14 PM
1) The Riftwar Saga by Raymond E. Feist
-Actually I like the entire world he has created, not just the riftwar saga part.
2) A Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martin
3)The Dragon Knight series by Gordon R. Dickson
-Only problem is he died before he finished the series and a lot of the earlier books in the series are out of print (he wrote real slowly)

To make it on that list it had to be a book or series that I still remembered yet liked rereading. I have a phenomenal memory and virtually never re watch TV shows or movies and almost never reread books. So anything that gets reread or re watched is in my top 10 if not higher.

JabberwockySupafly
2007-11-19, 06:22 PM
This is surprisingly tough. Most of my favourite books aren't really classed as
Fantasy, I read a lot of odd stuff like Eco, Joyce, Wilde, etc.

My 3 would probably be, also in no particular order:

American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Good Omens by Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett
Reaper Man by Terry Pratchett (Yes, I can choose one specific Discworld book :D )

Semidi
2007-11-19, 06:30 PM
1. The Dark Tower - Stephen King. I'm calling it fantasy and there's nothing you can do about it.
2. Alice In Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass - Lewis Carroll. Yes it's fantasy. No there's nothing you can do about this one either.
3. Dresden Files - Jim Butcher. The last one may not be the best, but I found them to be extremely enjoyable in a cotton candy sort of way.

Rigel Cyrosea
2007-11-19, 08:10 PM
1. The Dark Tower - Stephen King. I'm calling it fantasy and there's nothing you can do about it.
2. Alice In Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass - Lewis Carroll. Yes it's fantasy. No there's nothing you can do about this one either.
3. Dresden Files - Jim Butcher. The last one may not be the best, but I found them to be extremely enjoyable in a cotton candy sort of way.
I loved the Dresden files (and the Dark Tower). The only reason they aren't on my list is that I didn't consider them "fantasy" enough.

smellie_hippie
2007-11-19, 09:59 PM
1. Tolkien.

2. Memory, Sorrow and Thorn.

3. Dune.

I may catch flack from the last one, but I liked the entire series.

Honorable mention...

The Chronicles of Amber by Zelazney... in fact just about anything by Zelazney.

Winterwind
2007-11-19, 10:09 PM
3. Dune.

I may catch flack from the last one, but I liked the entire series.Well, I, for one, actually agree (though I should probably re-read the last two books some time - when I read them way back then, I think I... did not entirely get them.
But, while I can see how one could justify The Dark Tower being fantasy (barely), as some people did before, I think Dune is 100% in the science fiction regime.

RandomLogic
2007-11-20, 01:22 AM
I haven't read much of the fantasy genre recently but so far my favorite has to be:

1. Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind. Some of the best books I have ever read.

2. Gotrek & Felix series based on the Warhammer game. I read these when I was a little younger, but they were actually pretty slick books imho. And they make my list because its the only other good fantasy series I have read!

Although not fantasy:

3. Dune. I loved the prequel series but haven't yet read through the originals. However, I finally picked up the entire set and it is next on my list of books to read.

xanaphia
2007-11-20, 01:36 AM
3. Zamonia Books by Walter Moers(cookie for everyone who knows it and isn't from germany)


OMG, I thought no-one knew of them but me!
Yay!
Oh, and I'm not German.


In order
1. Darkness series by Harry Turtledove
2. Discworld
3. His Dark Materials

Vella_Malachite
2007-11-20, 04:35 AM
Top 3? More like top 50!

I read a lot. I read a lot of fiction. Prepare for a rant. Well, you asked:smalltongue:. Feel free to skip this. These are in no particular order. It would be impossible to rank them, and impossible to only choose 3.

The Discworld series are the funniest books ever. No need to state the author. Particular favourites are Going Postal, Mort, Maskerade, Carpe Jugulum and most of the ones with either Susan or the Watch. Ponder Stibbons is my favourite wizard. I feel his pain.:smalltongue:

I am just reading 'First King of Shannara' by Terry Brooks. Good. I like the character development, although it is a little slow, and he takes too much time in places with less action and doesn't draw out suspenseful scenes enough.

'The Saga of Darren Shan' by Darren Shan. Funny in places, new, different, elements of horror, but you get the feeling he was running out of ideas in the fourth trilogy. Great twists, but the ending was a bit blah. Similar for his 'Demonata' chronicles, but I haven't finished reading those, so I can't comment on the ending.

The Isavalta Trilogy by Sarah Zettel are good, they get very twisted and political, but they are awesome and deserve mention. Preferred Bridget before 'The Firebird's Vengeance", though.:smallannoyed:

The Bitterbynde Trilogy by Celia Dart-Thornton. Good storyline, crappy ending, and too much imagery. She took 2 pages to explain a banquet setting before the meal started. Her Crowthistle Chronicles were inferior, I believe. She killed everyone off in both of the first books, didn't tell us about the invulnerable man's only weakness until after he'd been stabbed by it, then did the whole "Boo hoo, she died...but wait! She isn't dead at all!!" thing.:smallmad:

'The Dream Merchant' by Isobel Hoving. Fantastic read. Good to just relax and reread and enjoy the story. Great characters, not afraid to mortally injure the main character. Bit of a moral at the end, but not too obvious.

'The Belgariad' and 'The Malloreon' by David Eddings. Good if you don't want to think too hard constantly, but complex and philosophical nonetheless. The characters were better in 'The Belgariad', I agree.

Garth Nix is good. I got tired of his 'Keys to the Kingdom' series by 'Drowned Wednesday', but I quite enjoyed 'Shade's Children' for all that it was so cliche. But 'Shade's Children' is actually probably sci-fi.

'The Edge Chronicles' has earned a dear and eternal place in my heart. It may be more simple than others, but it has many loveable characters, awesome critters and the pictures are just so darn cool!!:smallbiggrin:

The Hythrun Chronicles were funny, excellently written, complicated and politically orientated, and fantastic books, if a little...disturbing...at times. Sort of the 'do I really need to know that?' disturbing, but a great series.:smallbiggrin:

Honorable mentions to many books by Douglas Addams, the Artemis Fowl series by Eoin Colfer, also 'The Supernaturalists' and 'Half Moon Investigations' by the same author (Eoin Colfer), for being excellent, although they were more science-fiction.

In case you were wondering, yes, I do reread books, a fact my parents are infinitely grateful for, as constantly supplying new books for my ravenous maw would be costly and time-consuming.:smalltongue: :smallredface:

dehro
2007-11-20, 05:03 AM
OMG, I thought no-one knew of them but me!
Yay!
Oh, and I'm not German.


me neither, and I absolutely lurv them to pieces...
but then, to single out 3 books or series is an act of cruelty against the so many other good or simply significant ones...

VariaVespasa
2007-11-20, 05:30 AM
1. Discworld
2. The Belgariad/Malloreon cycle, although frankly this may be due to nostalgia
3. Discworld

Hm. Either I should diversify my fantasy reading, or Terry Pratchett should write faster.

Faster? He's already one of the fastest in the business! But, yes, it would be nice... :)

Fay Graydon
2007-11-20, 05:57 AM
ooooohhh.
hard topic. but for me:
1) The Farseer Trilogy (By Robin Hobb, I've just moved onto the Tawny Man books)
2) Belgariad and Malloreon books, (David and Leigh Eddings)
3) Discworld books (I've met Terry Pratchett, he's a great guy)

Catskin
2007-11-20, 07:50 AM
interesting thread.

in no particular order:

His Dark Materials
Dragonlance: Chronicles

*these are both trilogies for young adults, i'd say, and i read chronicles as a kid, but i've re-read it since and it's still a lot of fun*

path of least resistance: Lord of the Rings for #3

Dune, Wheel of Time, and Earthsea could easily replace any of my choices. Mary Stewart's Merlin trilogy (+1) and the Chronicles of Chrestomanci by Diana Wynne Jones deserve special mention too.

Animefunkmaster
2007-11-20, 08:28 AM
I am a fan of:

Record of Lodoss War (They made a really silly Anime Based off of it, but the books are much better)
The Dragon Riders of Pern Series
Lord of the Bling Bling (Who doesn't like Tolkien?)

preserver3
2007-11-20, 08:52 AM
1. Conan Series, primarily the Ron Howard books, not the more pulpy ones, though some of those are great.

2. The Elenium; and I know some will cry sacrilege, but in three books Sparhawk and his companions seem more well rounded than in all 12 books of the Belgariad, Mallorean, Polgara, belgarath series. Let's just leave the Tamuli off the list though.

3. 1632 series... while there are some weaknesses here and there, Eric Flint's tales of West Virginia in the 30 years war is pretty fun.

Honorable mentions include Merovingian Nights by C. J. Cherryh
Lyonesse and the Black Pearl by Jack Vance (a better read than Dying Earth)
Alvin Maker Series by Orson Scott Card

thorgrim29
2007-11-20, 09:18 AM
I'd say..... Song of Ice and Fire, Forgotten realms (especially Salvatore and Greenwood), Gothrek and Felix

Extremely different books, but I like 'em all.

yoshi927
2007-11-20, 09:20 AM
ooooohhh.
hard topic. but for me:
1) The Farseer Trilogy (By Robin Hobb, I've just moved onto the Tawny Man books)Sweet, thought I was alone.

Telonius
2007-11-20, 12:13 PM
My three favorite Fantasy series ...

1. The Harrekh series, by me. Currently in production. :smallbiggrin:
2. The Earthsea series by Ursula LeGuin.
3. The Dark is Rising sequence by Susan Cooper.

Honorable Mention:
Lord of the Rings, Tolkien.
The Conan stories, Robert Howard.

Dishonorable Mention:
The Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis.
The Wheel of Time, Robert Jordan.

"Does this count as a fantasy series?" Mention:
The Dark Tower, Stephen King
The Book of the New Sun, Gene Wolfe
Dune, Frank Herbert

Smeik
2007-11-20, 01:07 PM
OMG, I thought no-one knew of them but me!
Yay!
Oh, and I'm not German.


Great! Have a cookie. A person who knows... :smallbiggrin:




3) ronja the robber's daughter...well...that's memory lane for you... it goes down the strangest of alleys... brilliant work by Lindgren anyway. I still own a copy of it....on a par with "how to become king"...

I didn't include the books of Lindgren as fantasy, but now that you mention it, Brothers Lionheart and Mio, min Mio would actually take also a place on my list...

Emrylon
2007-11-20, 02:09 PM
Difficult choice...

I really like terry Brookes' Sharnara series but there are quite a few of them not quiter sure which is my favourite series.

DiscWorld

The Wit'ch Fire series, I forget who they are by

*nearly goes to book shelf to check...realises chair is too comfy*

Daze
2007-11-20, 02:55 PM
Gene Wolf's Long Sun, New Sun, etc... series deserves a mention too.

The Dune books were a fine read also, just stay away from the movie... dear god that was awful.

RandomLogic
2007-11-20, 02:59 PM
That Song of Ice and Fire series sounds pretty cool. I'll have to pick that one up.

But no one else for the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind? I thought it was pretty slick. I'd recommend picking it up. Also, he just released the last book in the series/storyline so its complete and ends. In case you are worried about that.

The original Dune movie was pretty bad, but the miniseries by Sci-Fi I think were terrific. I haven't read those books recently so I can't comment on how true to the book they were, but they were most definitely excellent.

tetsubo
2007-11-20, 03:21 PM
In no praticular order:

Black Company by Glen Cook
Tales of the Malazan Book of the Fallen by Stephen Erickson
Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martain

sun_tzu
2007-11-20, 05:22 PM
1)Song of Ice and Fire. Easily my favorite.
2)Dark Elf trilogy. Ended the three books really fast.
3)Chronicles of Narnia. C.S. Lewis once said that in his opinion, a children's story that adults couldn't enjoy was a poor children's story. Based on that, I'd say Lewis wrote awesome children's stories.

GimliFett
2007-11-20, 05:40 PM
Outside of THE TRILOGY:
1. The Coldfire Trilogy, by C.S. Friedman. Nice blend of Sci-Fi/Fantasy and Horror.
2. The Fionavar Tapestry, by Guy Gavrial Kay. Awesome Arthurian myth combined with many other myths.
3. The Dark Tower, by Stephen King. Excepting one book, amongst the best King has ever written, incorporating the mythologies of his other stories.

Honorable Mention:
The Gap Cycle, by Stephen R. Donaldson.
The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, by Stephen R. Donaldson.
The Runelords, by David Farland.
Memory, Sorrow and Thorn, by Tad Williams.
The Gandalara Cycle, by Randall Garrett and Vicki Ann Heydron.


But no one else for the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind? I thought it was pretty slick. I'd recommend picking it up. Also, he just released the last book in the series/storyline so its complete and ends. In case you are worried about that.

I loved the first three, then (sort of like the Wheel of Time) it started dragging and getting bogged down by its own immensity (is that a word?).

RandomLogic
2007-11-20, 08:15 PM
I loved the first three, then (sort of like the Wheel of Time) it started dragging and getting bogged down by its own immensity (is that a word?).

The first two are excellent, 3rd wasn't the best, the 4th is pretty good, I disliked the 5th, the 6th was effin awesome and often considered the best book, 7/8 are okay, then 9/10/11 are also excellent.

I'd consider finishing the series if I were you :smallbiggrin:

I understand what you are saying though, Wheel of Time for me also go boring and there wasn't enough going on for me to justify reading them. SoT for me kept the action going and I actually loved the characters and how much more real they felt compared to other books so I kept reading.

Leather_Book_Wizard
2007-11-21, 11:20 PM
American Gods
Hogfather
Dragonlance Legends

Zweee
2007-11-27, 01:11 PM
1. The Sevenwaters trilogy by Juliet Marrelier

The first book, Daughter of the Forest, is the best. I'm not sure if most poeple would call it fantasy because most of it is fairly real. But it does have Fair Folk and men turning into swans so...I dunno.
2. The Obernewtyn Chronicles by Isobelle Carmody

Another great series. Once again this series could loosly be defined as Fantasy.
3. Artemis Fowl

Love these books.

GimliFett
2007-11-27, 01:14 PM
DOH! I dunno how I forgot to list these amongst honorable mentions:

The Deryni series by Katherine Kurtz
and
The Saga of Recluce by L.E. Modesitt, Jr.

bugsysservant
2007-11-27, 01:31 PM
Let's see...
In no particular order
1. Wheel of Time Yes its long. Yes the last book may be terrible with his son writing it (or great. Who knows?) But I love it.
2. The Silmarillion Personally, I prefer it to LoTR. If I didn't LoTR would definitely be on the list.
3. Discworld 'Nuff said.

Honorable mentions (authors): Terry Brooks, David Eddings, Raymond E. Feist, Garth Nix and probably a few more I can't think of right now.

I'm actually rather surprised to see so many references of the Dark Materials series. Personally, I couldn't stand it, its just one religious jab after another. I'm not religious, but I still say it should have been above that. Maybe if it hadn't been for that, I would have enjoyed them, but still...

Arioch
2007-11-27, 02:23 PM
1) Discworld - I own all the books bar Witches Abroad, and my birthday is conveniently about a week after he releases the new book in the UK each year, so I always get a hardback copy before almost anyone else.

2) The Old Kingdom trilogy. Seriously, these are amazing. Enough horror to be cool without being over-the-top, a well-developed world (well, a well-developed country, at least) and the scope for many more stories. I just wish Garth Nix would write them! The Keys to the Kingdom are good, but they're getting samey and are not in the same league.

3) Ooh, a hard one. I read almost exclusively fantasy, so I have a lot to choose from. I'll go with the Edge Chronicles, but that's just 'cause I'm reading them at the moment. They may be children's books, but they're very well-written and illustrated.

Dr. Bath
2007-11-27, 02:30 PM
1) Discworld series by Terry Pratchett
2) The Hobbit by JRR Tolkein
3) The 13 and a half lives of Captain Bluebear by Walter Moers.

I want to read some of the other Moers books, but I can't find any in Britain. I'll if I can sponge some off a friend of mine, who has a few.....

....
2007-11-27, 03:08 PM
1. The Dark Tower
2. Discworld
3. Sabriel

Mr. Friendly
2007-11-27, 03:20 PM
Tied for 1 and 2: A Song of Fire and Ice and the R.A. Salvatore Drizzt++ cycle of books. (Including ancillary books that may not include Drizzt, but were spawned by his adventures. I'm looking at you Artemis!)

3rd... Ummm... The Hobbit? I always liked The Hobbit more than LotR.

Indon
2007-11-27, 03:54 PM
-The Chronicles of Amber, by Roger Zelazny. A magnificently written cosmology in a fantasy environment tinged with just enough science fiction content to make it interesting. The characters are well-detailed and much of the books read like a well-written mystery with their intrigue. The ghostwritten books, they aren't that bad at least.

-The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, by Stephen R. Donaldson, 'cause it's awesome.

-The, uh, Chronicles... of Alvin Maker, by Orson Scott Card. While it may technically be alternate history, I feel it definitely qualifies as fantasy, and of the highest quality.


I'm big on Chronicles, apparently. I'm purposefully abstaining from writing any 'honorable mentions', because I don't want to spend that much time writing the post.
<.<
>.>
Landover.

Stormzen
2007-11-27, 04:20 PM
1.Discworld
2.Dragonlance
3. Uh... Discworld?

Honorable mention goes to the first Harry Potter book, since it's the first fantasy I read. If only I didn't hate the rest of the books.

I also have the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy and the Silmarrillon(sp?) and the Hobbit. I've resisted reading them so far , but...

You know what? I can't think of why I haven't read them. So sue me.

....
2007-11-27, 05:06 PM
You know what? I can't think of why I haven't read them. So sue me.

I can give you some reasons if you want.

Ozymandias
2007-11-27, 05:20 PM
1.)Discworld
2.)Earthsea, probably
3.)Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit

I'm not exactly original, am I? I did like some old books, like Romance of the Three Kingdoms and Le Morte D'Arthur, but I'm not sure they qualify.


The first two are excellent, 3rd wasn't the best, the 4th is pretty good, I disliked the 5th, the 6th was effin awesome and often considered the best book, 7/8 are okay, then 9/10/11 are also excellent.


The first few were okay. I hated some of the more recent ones (e.g. the one which demonizes communism to an absurd and unfair extent, or the one which calls pacifism weak and stupid). Seriously, if you're going to write Ayn Rand in a magical setting do that from the outset, don't switch midway through the series. Also, the protagonist is unrealistically competent at almost all junctures and is kind of an ass.

thestarvingpoet
2007-11-27, 05:42 PM
In no praticular order:

Black Company by Glen Cook
Tales of the Malazan Book of the Fallen by Stephen Erickson
Song of Ice and Fire by George RR Martain

Huzzah, someone said Steven Erikson! His Malazan Book of the Fallen is definitely my top pick.

I also really love Roger Zelazny's Amber series.

There are too many good books/series to really pick only three, but I've been enjoying Garth Nix recently so we'll put him for now.

thorgrim29
2007-11-27, 06:25 PM
Yea.... sword of truth..... I personnaly think he should have stopped at the first book. Wizards first rule: Awesome. But then it downgrades, Richard becomes too much of a Mary Sue, Kahlan goes from brave person to effin badass naked war general to plot device, the whole: Fellowship of order=communism=greater threat then the devil becomes a bit too much. I stopped reading it after Chainfire, might pick up the last book, or not. Oh and I personnaly disliked the Whell of Time after a couple of volumes, but man are THWOT and TSOT similar or what? Sisters=Aes Sedai down to the Dark Ajah, war wizard=male gifted, you can learn magic but it wont be as good as if you have it naturally, the character comes from a backwater place but eeevillll finds him here too and he embarks on a at first glance simple quest that degenerates into being a hero of prophecy and saving the world, and again, and again, then fighting against a foreign threath the did'nt exis a couple of volumes ago, etc, etc, etc.......

Indon
2007-11-28, 11:25 AM
Oh and I personnaly disliked the Whell of Time after a couple of volumes, but man are THWOT and TSOT similar or what?

Wheel of time has like, five times the ensemble size that The Sword of Truth does.

If WoT were to be made into a movie, it would be a shonen anime. If TSoT were made into a movie, it would be a (probably bad) action movie.

A Rainy Knight
2007-11-28, 04:35 PM
My top 3, so far:

-Belgariad/Malloreon
-Lord of the Rings
-Wheel of Time

In that order, probably.

Otto-Sieve
2007-11-28, 06:04 PM
1. A song of Ice and Fire
2. Forgotten Realms
3. Harry Potter ( so kill me)

Honorable mention: 4. LotR. Great story, practically launched the genre, but he's a so-so writer and it gets boring sometimes. But overall great.

VetMichael
2007-11-28, 07:03 PM
Woo Hoo! I get to be the resident iconclast! First, my books:

1) Ethshar series by Lawrence Watt Evans - Particularly The Misenchanted Sword (http://www.amazon.com/Misenchanted-Sword-Lawrence-Watt-Evans/dp/1587152827/ref=pd_bbs_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1196295102&sr=8-2) which has to be my all time FAVORITE book. The premise is awesome, the conclusion is fun, and the realities of the downside of uber-magic and centuries-long war are wonderfully rendered.

2) Temeraire series by Naomi Novik - Some might call it alternate history (If they ignored the whole dragon thing). Mostly because it takes fantasy well beyond the realm of cloaks, armor and enchanted swords/rings/toothbrushes.

3) Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit by some British linguist whose name escapes me - if someone could help me out on this, that'd be great [/sarcasm]. Mostly because he set the stage upon which 99.9% of the authors out there play upon, blazed the path that 99.99% of the authors out there have since beaten into a four-lane highway, and because his works were the basis for at least one Led Zepplin song

Now, three books/series I started out liking but got sick of/tired of/bored with...

1) Wheel of Time by that Jordan guy - At first it was going to be five books, no seven! no eleven! no, I'll write some prequels and pump out a book (Path of Daggers) in which absolutely NOTHING happens. Oh, and then I'll go ahead and die without finishing the series nor leaving notes for the ghost writers to finish the series with. Okay, so I may be a little harsh on ol' Bob there, but I can only take so many 800+ page books in a series before my love turns to hate.

2) Drizz't series by R.A. - heck, if you don't know who he is by now, why are you even HERE??? - I loved the Crystal shard, and the fact that he introduced a sympathetic Dark Elf character who was stoic, solitary, and yet still needing company and society. However he opened the frickin' floodgates of Drizz't wanna-bes in every AD&D campaign I have ever seen (which Rich so expertly skewered) AND the "series" seems as endless as the one mentioned above, only more disjointed - Okay, we GET it; Drizz't is hated by his race, hunted to the ends of the earth, etc....Bored, moving on

3) Pern series - Ugh! What's next? The Dragon Waxers of Pern? the "riveting" tale of the often overlooked cadre of dragon maintenance workers who keep the dragons looking spiffy for their cover art? :smallsigh:

Book series I won't touch with a ten meter cattle prod (at least, not anymore):

1) anything with the words "Forgotten Realms" on them - I have and love Spellfire, but that's the only one that has survived the periodic purges of my library that accompany my moves hither and yon.

2) anything with the words "Dragonlance" on them - I have the Legend of Huma, but, again, that's the only one that.....(see above)

3) The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher - cheese-tastic to the very end, and yes I read Fool Moon and Storm Front (the TV series is little better, mostly because of the interaction between Harry and Bob, though Murphy stinks up the whole joint)

Annarrkkii
2007-11-28, 07:27 PM
In no particular order.

Bartimaeus Trilogy, by Johnathan Stroud. Sure, they're a little childlike, and sure I haven't read them in a while, but I adore the characters and the premise that Stroud creates. Especially Bartimaeus himself.

Wheel of Time. Robert Jordan does such a brilliant job of creating a detailed and credible fantasy world. Sure, it can get tedious at parts, but it's still really rich stuff.

Coldfire Trilogy. By CS Friedman. Good stuff, interesting characters. Shallow and action-oriented at times, but the Neocount is one of my favorite characters in sci-fi/fantasy literature. Ever.

Dragon Riders of Pern. McCaffery does a creative work integrating science into fantasy, blending sci-fi and fantasy in a fun and entertaining fashion.

Discworld. Pratchett is one of the most talented humorists and authors alive right now.

I also find the Inheritance trilogy, by Paolini, to be amusing. Sure, it's bland and unoriginal, but the events are exciting. While he is guilty of ripping Tolkien (and others) on many counts, I find that his writing is more easily accessible. and more fun than many more accomplished authors. It is, simply, fun. Though not really rereadable.

On the up-and-coming, Rothfuss's Kingkiller Chronicles look real promising, if the creativity of The Name of the Wind is anything to go by.

On other occasions, I've enjoyed Dune and the Lord of the Rings, among many others. I look forward to sampling the legendary work of Mervin Peak at some point in the future, as well as A Song of Ice and Fire.

Tee hee, and from a youngling, I did so love the Redwall books. All six trillion and forty seven of them.

Weezer
2007-11-28, 08:42 PM
my favorites in no particular order are:

The Lord of the Rings-Tolkien My first true fantasy outside of Redwall that I read and I keep rereading it so that must say something.
A Song of Ice and Fire-Martin I've only read the first 4, but up to now they have an unique plot, engaging characters and a ability to kill off the good guys that was refreshing.
Belgariad-Eddings I liked the character, the plot was fresh to me when I first read it. It was one of the first adult level books that I read.
Kingkiller Cronicles-Rothfuss, the series isn't competed yet but it has a lot of promise.

Redpieper
2007-11-29, 09:58 AM
I'm surprised so many people like Wheel of Time, I have one (second hand off the library) and I found I couldn't get past the first 50 pages or so, but perhaps I should read them in order....

Edit: Hurray halfling in the playground :smallsmile:

Runolfr
2007-11-29, 10:26 AM
My favorites are actually fairly modern.

The Deed of Paksenarrion
The Annals of the Black Company
Oath of Swords, The War Gods Own, Windriders' Oath

Not that I'm knocking Lord of the Rings, mind you, I just don't pick it up and re-read the whole thing as often.

philippos
2007-11-29, 10:38 AM
Discworld and then I would just pick three series from within?

CityWatch
Witches
Rincewind/UU

most other series I like the first book of enough to read more but eventually put down. I will finish Wheel of Time and Song of Ice and Fire, eventually, I'm sure, but most others I found the sequals annoying.

philippos
2007-11-29, 10:42 AM
Discworld and then I would just pick three series from within?

CityWatch
Witches
Rincewind/UU

most other series I like the first book of enough to read more but eventually put down. I will finish Wheel of Time and Song of Ice and Fire, eventually, I'm sure, but most others I found the sequals annoying.

Surdej
2007-11-29, 04:37 PM
Tough one:

1: Wheel Of Time - great character build.
2: Discworld - Great Humor
3: Crown of stars - Just great!

Sir_Norbert
2007-11-29, 05:23 PM
Tee hee, and from a youngling, I did so love the Redwall books. All six trillion and forty seven of them.
The better ones were still coming out when I was the right age for them, so I loved them. After around book nine I feel the quality went severely downhill, and I don't think that's just a result of me growing older -- I can still re-read the early ones with pleasure.

But, on topic, my favourite fantasy books/series are easy to decide on, because (heretical, I know) I don't actually read that much fantasy. *erects asbestos shield to ward off incoming flames*

1. Lord of the Rings
2. A Song of Ice and Fire (I might like this better than LotR but it's hard to judge when the series is incomplete)
3. The Abhorsen Trilogy

I'd like to give an honourable mention to Gormenghast but I felt the TV adaptation was better than the book :)

Kitya
2007-11-30, 02:29 PM
My top three series... that's kinda tough... ok.. in no particular order

1. Discworld... which has been mentioned numerous times already

2. The Valdemar Series by Mercedes Lackey. I adore all of the trilogies in that series.

3. This is going back a bit, but, The M.Y.T.H. series ... except for the last one.. it got kind of dumb. But the first few books were pure genius! I think Robert Aspirin wrote them... I don't own them... :smallfrown: my dad does. So I don't get to read them anymore now that I'm all grown up and married and stuffs.

Honorable Mentions: Ender and Shadow books, EarthSea series, and out of Anne McCaffrey's many many series, Pern (my favorite is actually Dolphins of Pern... I sympathize with Readis about having a mom that doesn't know how to let you grow up), The Powers that Be, Crystal Singer, and the B&B ships.

And, this one is more sci-fi than fantasy... but it's an amazing Series... The Radiant Warrior Series by Leo Frankowski. We are actually having to re-buy the entire series since the paperbacks we own are well.. falling apart. Oh.. but Conrad's Search for Rubber can probably be skipped.. it's OK.. but.. not the best in the series. Any engineer types out there will adore this series!

Telonius
2007-11-30, 04:03 PM
3. This is going back a bit, but, The M.Y.T.H. series ... except for the last one.. it got kind of dumb. But the first few books were pure genius! I think Robert Aspirin wrote them... I don't own them... :smallfrown: my dad does. So I don't get to read them anymore now that I'm all grown up and married and stuffs.



He's actually been writing a few new MYTH books recently with a co-author. The new cover art is done by the Foglios (same as who do Girl Genius). Apparently Aspirin got into some sort of knife fight with the IRS about royalties for a few years, which is why he stopped writing for awhile.

Shadowdweller
2007-12-01, 05:06 AM
1) Lord of the Rings by Tolkien
2) Song of Ice and Fire by Geore R. R. Martin
(Ever-popular, and well deserving both)

3) Lyonesse Trilogy by Jack Vance: Excellent characters. What magic in D&D aspires to be.

Honorable Mentions:
* New Crobuzon "chronicles" by China Mieville: More Steampunk based on magic than true fantasy, nevertheless a wonderful melange of the bizarre. Great storylines.

* The Black Company by Glen Cook (First 3-4 books anyhow): A world of terrifying magic told from the perspective of mundane soldier.

* The Bitterbynde Book by Cecilia Dart-Thornton: Great story and characters, vivid descriptions, fantastic prose.

Satyr
2007-12-01, 07:58 AM
1. Midnightz's children by Sir Salman Rushdie. Yes, it's very modern. And phantastic realism at best. But I love it.
2. Baudolino by Umberto Ecco. Think of a fantasy world based upon the "travel reports" of Herodot told by a medieval liar who claims to have assassinated king Barbarossa... it's more a historical novel, but it becomes rather weird sometimes.
3. The song of ice and fire is great. I have rarely enjoyed a popular apporaching book that much.

But, my taste is probably very bad. I haven't understand why everyone seems to like the lord of the rings that much. I was very annoyed by the extremely flat and onedimensional characters (The only exception is probably Gollum) and the rather childish black/white painting of morality.

Fin
2007-12-01, 10:12 AM
1. Salvatore's Forgotten Realms Work
2. LOTR
3. Terry Brookings Sword Of Shannara

Kitya
2007-12-01, 02:34 PM
He's actually been writing a few new MYTH books recently with a co-author. The new cover art is done by the Foglios (same as who do Girl Genius). Apparently Aspirin got into some sort of knife fight with the IRS about royalties for a few years, which is why he stopped writing for awhile.

*gasps* there's MORE MYTH books?!!!!! YAAAY!! *puts them all on my christmas wish list*

Masonity
2007-12-01, 03:14 PM
1) Steven Erikson's The Malazan Book of the Fallen. Probably book 3 (Memories of Ice) for the no.1 spot. Wasn't over keen on Esslemont's first book in the cycle, it started dull but improved hugely towards the end. Return of the Crimson Guard may actually end up equaling Erikson's main cycle if the previews are anything to go by though!
2) Neil Gaiman's American Gods. Shadow4thewin.
3) Discworld. Except the City Watch books. wasn't sold on those.

valadil
2007-12-01, 10:45 PM
1. Song of Ice and Fire
2. Vorkosigan Saga (it's a very close second)
3. Dark Tower tied with Scott Lynch's Gentleman Bastard Sequence

Lord Iames Osari
2007-12-02, 12:18 AM
Hmmm....
Discworld series
Boundary's Fall series by Bret Funk
Lord Darcy series

doliest
2007-12-02, 12:25 AM
1.The book of three(Honestly, I can't even remember the plot anymore, but it was what got me INTO fantasy, when I checked it out of a libaray, I'd probably be spending my time playing baseball right now if I had never read it.)
2.Deltora Quest
3.Hobbit(I have to say, in my opinion LOTR sucked, but I loved hobbit....maybe it's cause gollum is so loveable in hobbit.)

Lord Rocket
2007-12-02, 01:19 AM
1. Conan Series, primarily the Ron Howard books, not the more pulpy ones, though some of those are great.

What do you mean by the 'more pulpy ones'? Only Howard's stuff was published in the pulps, which would technically make it the pulpiest of all.

Anyway, in no particular order:

Conan, Robert E. Howard
King Kull, Robert E. Howard
Solomon Kane, Robert E. Howard

Who is my favourite author? Can you guess? I doubt it!

Anyway, Howard aside:

Gormenghast Trilogy (well, the first two books - dude was pretty out of it when he wrote the third), Mervyn Peake
Book of the New Sun, Gene Wolfe
The Dying Earth, Jack Vance
Zothique/Xiccarph/other Science Fantasy stuff by Clark Ashton Smith
Elric, Hawkmoon, Erekose (can't decide which I prefer - they're all so good) by Michael Moorcock

And here's one which I don't think has been mentioned yet (shame!), but which I heartily recommend:
The Anvil of Ice, Michael Scot Rohan
Very interesting series based on Finnish mythology. The hero is a variation on Volund - a heroic blacksmith. Top stuff.

bladedSmoke
2007-12-02, 05:37 AM
1) Discworld by Terry Pratchett. Nuff said.
2) LOTR, by JRR Tolkein. Nuff said.
3) The Elenium/Tamuli books, featuring Sparhawk, by David Eddings. Not the most original or groundbreaking books ever, I'll admit, but good solid fun, and great characters.

Honourable mentions to the following, who are only slightly below the above in terms of how much I enjoyed them:

Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke, the Abhorsen Trilogy by Garth Nix, His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman, Harry Potter by JK Rowling, the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher, and the Bartimaeus Trilogy by Jonathan Stroud.

mangosta71
2008-07-31, 01:05 AM
The first Forgotten Realms books I ever read (first fantasy books, for that matter) were the Moonshae Isles trilogy, so I have a certain fondness for them. I've read them a couple more times over the years, but I currently have no idea where they are.

Wheel of Time is great. Well, the ending of book 7 always feels rushed to me, then 8-10 are only ok-good instead of great, but he really got the ball back up with book 11.

I absolutely love Glen Cook's writing, especially Chronicles of the Black Company (the first three books of the series).

I also enjoy Tad Williams, Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman, Neal Stephenson, R.A. Salvatore, Michael A. Stackpole.... Too many to list here.

Jayngfet
2008-07-31, 01:13 AM
1. The old kingdom
2. The hobbit
3. Faerie wars

Silver medals:

1. Artemis fowl.
2. The first war of the spider queen(what other 5? (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/DisContinuity/DisContinuity?from=Main.DisContinuity))

Recaiden
2008-07-31, 01:21 AM
1) The Riftwar Saga by Raymond E. Feist
-Actually I like the entire world he has created, not just the riftwar saga part.

To make it on that list it had to be a book or series that I still remembered yet liked rereading.

Yeah, my main problem with the Riftwar universe is Why is it always Pantathians?

1. Riftwar Saga
2. His Dark Materials
3. I don't read a lot of fantasy, and i guess the 3rd has to be the Dark Elf Trilogy by Salvatore.

Dhavaer
2008-07-31, 01:33 AM
Discworld, Terry Pratchett
The Old Kingdom, Garth Nix
The Obernewtyn Chronicles, Isobelle Carmody

Honourable mentions:
The Malazan Book of the Fallen, Steven Eriksson
Second Apocalypse, R Scott Bakker
A Trial of Blood and Steel, Joel Shepherd

Eerie
2008-07-31, 01:58 AM
2. The Witcher or Narrenturm (a cookie if you're not from Poland and know what am I talking about)


Sapkowski is more popular in Russia than in Poland, so you fail. :smallbiggrin:

Kojiro Kakita
2008-07-31, 02:13 AM
A Song of Ice and Fire
Dresden File
Riftwar Saga

Cespenar
2008-07-31, 11:58 AM
Discworld, Death Gate, and Elenium/Tamuli. Though I must say that I haven't read A Song of Ice and Fire and Wheel of Time series yet.