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Good epic fantasy recommendations


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Initial post: Jun 29, 2012 4:40:36 PM PDT
ssjenny1 says:
I recently reread The Hobbit and LOTR in anticipation of the upcoming movie, and I was looking for something similar. I would prefer a finished series and absolutely no urban fantasy (I'm so sick of vampires, witches, werewolves, angels, etc....time to get back to the elves/dwarfs/wizards and the like). I've read the Wheel of Time books up to book 8 where it just seemed to stall out for me. I loved the Drizzt novels by R.A. Salvatore and the Dragonlance Chronicles by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman. I want something with great world-building and a really good story. A touch of romance might be nice, but definitely nowhere near the main plot please. I'd rather not get any YA recommendations so no Harry Potter or Eragon type rec's. I don't mind Indie authors (and the price is usually great) but no self-promotion please.

Posted on Jun 29, 2012 5:22:53 PM PDT
If you don't mind indie authors, try Elfhunter: A Tale Of Alterra, The World That Is. I think the author has been taken up by a publisher.

Posted on Jun 29, 2012 6:00:12 PM PDT
vampreader says:
For a dollar on the kindle you could try Sons of Titan: Rise of the Bloodwraiths definitely not Y/A and a hint of Romance like you said.

Posted on Jun 29, 2012 6:16:53 PM PDT
I am reading Demonsouled. Maybe is not like LOTR but is entertaining.

Posted on Jun 29, 2012 6:35:47 PM PDT
Captain says:
The best and they're completed series:

The Malazan Book of the Fallen
The Deed of Paksenarrion (suggest you start here)
The Black Company
The King's Blades series

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 29, 2012 6:38:44 PM PDT
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In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 1:35:52 AM PDT
G. Wakeling says:
Teresa, Elfhunter looks great. I'm just coming to the end of a steampunk novel, the Emporer's edge, and am looking for something new. This might be ideal, thanks for sharing!

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 2:37:27 AM PDT
Edith says:
I recommend Rosalie Skinner's The Chronicles of Caleath. The first book in the series is up for free today.Exiled: Autumn's Peril-Book One (The Chronicles of Caleath)
It's rather sci-fy fantasy, but I found the combination absolutely charming. Four books in this series have been released so far.

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 7:01:18 AM PDT
Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series: Furies of Calderon (Codex Alera)

David Eddings' Belgariad series: The Belgariad, Vol. 1 (Books 1-3): Pawn of Prophecy, Queen of Sorcery, Magician's Gambit

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 8:32:17 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Jun 30, 2012 10:59:12 AM PDT]

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 12:11:25 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Jul 1, 2012 4:04:44 PM PDT]

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 12:16:11 PM PDT
WildHeart says:
"The Wheel of Time Series." Well established Robert Jordan / Sanderson novels. New . . . "The Legend of Heartstone: Sisterhood of Steel." Great freshman effort with book two out soon. Eddings "Malloreon / Belgariad" awesome.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 2:52:14 PM PDT
D. Joyce says:
Perhaps Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series? There is the prequel, Debt of Bones, and then a set of 10 books in the series, which I believe is a finished series as the last book was published in 2007.

Here's a brief synopsis: SERIES: In this epic fantasy series, Richard Cypher's simple life as a wood guide is forever changed when he is appointed Seeker of Truth by his grandfather Zed who is a wizard. Together with Cypher's life interest Kahlan Amnell they seek to protect their world from any oppressors and evil. THIS BOOK (prequel): A poor peasant named Abby seeks to win the aid of First Wizard Zedd to save her community.

Themes/appeal factors:
-intricately plotted
-strong sense of place
-violence
-richly detailed
-wizards, magic, battles, quests, good and evil, poor women, helpfulness in men

Review from Library Journal: Library Journal:
As the armies of Panis Rahl spread across the land, a young woman from a beleaguered town begs a boon from First Wizard Zedd, ignorant of the consequences of her request. This revised version of a novella that first appeared in the fantasy anthology Legends illuminates the period in history before the events of Goodkind's "Sword of Truth" series. The conflict between love and duty forms a central theme in this brief and touching tale of people caught up in events they cannot fully control. Keith Parkinson's pencil illustrations add a delicate touch to the story, highlighting key events in the narrative. Libraries wishing to complete their Goodkind collection will want this gracefully written story. --Jackie Cassada (Reviewed December 15, 2001) (Library Journal, vol 126, issue 20, p181)

Goodreads review snippet:
"Terry Goodkind is a superb author, and in my opinion, his "Sword of Truth" series is the best I have ever read. So good, in fact, that I have read the entire series three times in a row, back to back, non-stop. This series is *not* for children. The series covers many aspects of the dark side of humanity, in great detail, as the heroes try to overcome the evils in the world. Goodkind is not afraid to show his readers just what evil *really* is, that is, most often, people who perform acts of evil feel justified in their minds as to why they are doing so, if for illogical reasons, and will that those that oppose them are the evil ones. Goodkind shows his readers that the only way to overcome evil in ourselves and in the world is through use of Reason. The series is *not* light reading, but if one is not afraid to confront the reality of evil (even within ourselves), and how to really defeat evil, the one will find this series extremely rewarding.(less)"

I am a library student, planning on becoming a readers' advisory librarian in the next year, so I would really appreciate your honest feedback if you do check out this book/series: did it hit the mark? miss it entirely? etc.

Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 3:41:01 PM PDT
ssjenny1 says:
Captain,
The Deed of Paksenarrion is exactly the type of series I was looking for. Wish they came on Kindle, but looks worth ordering in paperback at any rate. Thanks for the rec!

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 3:56:24 PM PDT
Sandy says:
Please consider Dave Duncan's two related epic series. The first in the series is called A Man of his Word. Chock full of action, betrayal, sacrifices and a darned good love story with a moral notion rolled into one! The second is, A Handful of Men. A sequel that plays off the first story but has new characters that develop into plot carrying figures in their own right. Again great action and suspenseful tale-telling with the right amount of good and evil. Don't know why there are so few references to these storys as they are well witten and you hate to see them end. Duncan did this in two novels w/o a lag in the plotting or character development. Hope you enjoy!!

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 4:12:00 PM PDT
ssjenny1 says:
I've read Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth series (most of them at least) and thought it was alright. I'm considering the Brandon Sanderson series because I've heard such good things about how he finished out the WoT books (though I haven't gotten to them yet). Sandy, the regular reviews of A Man of his Word look good but the Editorial review by Publisher's Weekly is just awful. I wonder why they have such a negative opinion compared to the Amazon reviewers. I'll check out the first chapter.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 5:52:53 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 30, 2012 5:53:26 PM PDT
George R. R. Martin's series, A Song of Fire and Ice, which begins with A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1) and is currently in production as an HBO series, is good epic fantasy. A bit dark and gritty, and very much on the mature reader side, so keep that in mind. It's also not quite finished (the last novel, A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 5), took five years to come out). But counting that one, there are five novels out, quite long and detailed, with perhaps two more to follow, so you'll have quite a bit to get through before having to worry overmuch about that.

If you have not read them yet, one of my favorite series (which has been out for some time) begins with The Chronicles of Amber, Volume 1, a five volume series. There is a second five volume series, but some might say it's not quite so well done as the first set.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 6:01:34 PM PDT
G. says:
A WONDERFUL trilogy by Brent Weeks:
The Night Angel Trilogy description:
For Durzo Blint, assassination is an art-and he is the city's most accomplished artist.

For Azoth, survival is just the beginning. He was raised on the streets and knows an opportunity when he sees one-even when the risks are as high as working for someone like Durzo Blint.

Azoth must learn to navigate the assassins' world of dangerous politics and strange magics - and become the perfect killer.

The New York Times bestseller The Way of Shadows launched Brent Weeks' Night Angel Trilogy - one of the most successful fantasy series in recent years. Now, for the first time, get the complete story in one special edition boxed set.


Basically, I think this author is a George RR Martin in the making. This was a wonderful trilogy because it was so unique and like GRRM, there is no "character immunity". I highly recommend this trilogy.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 6:15:42 PM PDT
Um...I actually think Brent Weeks is quite a bit better than Martin. Don't get me wrong...Martin is excellent, but Weeks is better. Few authors can draw you in and immerse you into the world/story better than he can.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 9:04:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 30, 2012 9:05:11 PM PDT
D. Joyce, you are incorrect. The last book of the Sword of Truth series wasn't published in 2007. "The Omen Machine" was just released in August of 2011. And another book in the same world but before Richard and Kahlen "The First Confessor" is being self published in e-book form in just two more days, on July 2nd.

Posted on Jun 30, 2012 9:36:07 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 30, 2012 9:44:37 PM PDT
Larry says:
Actually good epic fantasy with Elves, Dwarves and wizards is exclusive to Tolkien. Don't care for vampires, werewolves, witches and or angels? Well, try these, the best of the best. A witch and several angels pop up now and again in Sandman, but are not central, don't let that put you off on of the great epics, ever.

Sandman - Neil Gaiman
The Books of the New Sun - Gene Wolfe
Bone - Jeff Smith
The Earthsea books - Ursula Le Guin
Gormenghast - Mervyn Peake
The Chrinicles of Narnia - C. S. Lewis
The Harry Potter series - J. K. Rowling

I edited the post to include the Potter, an inexcusable oversight; I believe it justifies the edit, a thing I normally frown on.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 30, 2012 9:42:23 PM PDT
Larry says:
I meant to ask, you enjoy wizards, but are sick of witches. I get Gandalf wasn't human, nevertheless it seems an inconsistency in need of explanation. It seems the only difference between wizard and witch is the difference between male and female.

Posted on Jul 1, 2012 3:53:45 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 1, 2012 3:57:51 AM PDT
The "Deed of Paksenarrion" series recommended by ssjenny is great, and is another Baen Books title. All three of the books are available in an inexpensive omnibus ebook edition direct from Baen: http://www.baenebooks.com/p-100-the-deed-of-paksenarrion.aspx . The price is only $6.00, or $2.00 per book.

Also, if you want to try the series before shelling out the $6.00, the first book "Sheepfarmer's Daughter" is available in its entirely in the Baen Free Library: http://www.baenebooks.com/c-1-free-library.aspx?SectionFilterID=78

This is another example of why I love Baen Books and recommend them to all fantasy/sci-fi fans.

Posted on Jul 1, 2012 4:15:17 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 1, 2012 4:24:32 AM PDT
While on the subject of Baen Books, another of their authors, David Weber, best known for his Honor Harrington military sci-fi series, has also written a pretty good fantasy series, the Bahzell/War God series, which is available in ebook format directly from Baen: http://www.baenebooks.com/c-50-war-god-series-by-david-weber.aspx . Two of the books in the series are available in the Free Library and the rest are priced at only $6.00 each. One of these is a double book.

Also, one of my favorite alternate history series, Lord Conrad, in also available from Baen. There are six books in the series and are offered in two omnibus editions, priced at $6.00 each, or $2.00 per book: http://www.baenebooks.com/s-44-leo-frankowski.aspx

And here's a complete list of all the Baen ebook series, fantasy and sci-fi, which includes both paid and free titles: http://www.baenebooks.com/c-9-books-by-series-list.aspx. I encourage you to check them out.

Again, paperback versions of these books can be ordered from Amazon but ebooks are only available directly from the publisher.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 1, 2012 8:26:37 AM PDT
ssjenny1 says:
It's not witches themselves that I don't like, and if I can find them in an epic fantasy setting I wouldn't mind. It's the urban fantasy type that I'm not looking for, which is why I listed them among vampires and the like.
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Discussion in:  Fantasy forum
Participants:  112
Total posts:  202
Initial post:  Jun 29, 2012
Latest post:  Mar 13, 2013

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