The Best Fantasy Books

I’m real picky about my fantasy genre. I’m looking for a good mix of world building, character development, and all-around great story. I know that sounds like it could apply to just about any genre, but fantasy, to me, is even more subjective than horror. It can’t just be good. It needs to be damn good.

It's going to be a classic. Once you get past the flickity wickity of the magic, these stories by J.K. Rowling have an abundance of lessons for the young and old alike. I used to think that only books 3 through 7 were good, but each time I go back to the very beginning I am surprised at how much I am intrigued. I'm glad it's the book I chose in my children's lit class in college. Otherwise I would have continued refusing to follow the crowd on this popular pick.

Image of A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1)
Manufacturer: Bantam
Part Number:

I liked The Wheell of Time. I enjoyed The Sword of Truth, but so far, I am loving A Song of Ice and Fire. I'll add more books as I get to them, but this is fantasy without the obsession of mythical creatures that I feel sometimes distorts the storytelling. It's political deception, fantastic battle scenes, and cold calculation. I don't know what that says of my character, but give it a try. George R.R. Martin does not disappoint.

Image of Faith of the Fallen (Sword of Truth Book 6)
Manufacturer: Tor Books
Part Number:

The Sword of Truth series as a whole is worth reading from beginning to end, but if I had to pick the book that stands out for me, it would be Faith of the Fallen. Terry Goodkind gets a little preachy in the latter half of his writing, but Faith of the Fallen still maintains a good line between moral lessons and excellent fiction.

If you'd like to be notified of updates to this list, follow me on Twitter @ScribblingJoe or subscribe to the RSS. You may also use the form below to receive e-mail updates. Don't worry, no spam:

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner