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Hello,

 

I am looking for a new fantasy novel (or series) to read, and I would appreciate any recommendations that you all can give me. First, some background:

 

I really haven't read all that many books in the fantasy genre. In high school, I read the first two Dragonlance trilogies by Weis & Hickman, which I enjoyed very much at the time. I also read the Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander, and I remember that I especially loved the last book, The High King. And I read the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (which I think are excellent in some ways, and flawed in other ways).

 

In high school, I also read the "Myth" books by Robert Asprin, which started out good, but went downhill around book 5 or 6 or so. I read Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen Donaldson, which I didn't like at all, and Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly, which I thought was just pretty good.

 

At some point (maybe during college?), I tried reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, but I stopped about halfway through the first book of LOTR. I just didn't understand what was so great about those books. Maybe I should give them another chance, since I know that just about everyone says they are classics. (However, I didn't really like the LOTR movies either, so maybe I truly wouldn't like the books.)

 

Then, near the end of my time in college (around 1995), I began reading The Wheel of Time, which I loved. After college, I read each new WoT book when it came out, and I recently re-read the entire series (up to book 12), and then read book 13 for the first time.

 

Anyway, that's just about the extent of my reading in the fantasy genre, and really I have read almost nothing in that genre since college, with the major exception of The Wheel of Time. So I am sure that there is a lot of great fantasy that I haven't read.

 

Based on what I have read about various fantasy authors and books here and there on the internet, and also based on browsing around at my local bookstore, I have considered possibly reading something by one or more of the following authors:

  • Terry Brooks
  • Terry Pratchett
  • Patrick Rothfuss
  • George R. R. Martin
  • Raymond Feist
  • Tim Powers

Here are some of the things that I am looking for in a fantasy book:

  • The magic should be "white magic" (i.e., a natural part of the world) rather than "black magic" (e.g., spells and incantations).
  • I want the world to feel real, not dream-like or two-dimensional. (The world of The Wheel of Time is a perfect example of a fantasy world that feels very real.)
  • I don't want anything R-rated -- no sex scenes or graphic descriptions of violence. I say this partly because I just don't want to read that stuff, and partly because I know that if these books sit on my bookshelf, my kids may pull them out and read them some day. (I have no major complaints about The Wheel of Time in terms of sex and violence, but anything that goes beyond where The Wheel of Time goes on these topics, I would rather avoid.)
  • I don't mind if the individual book or books are long. But I don't want to start reading another series anywhere near the length of the Wheel of Time (i.e., 14 very long books!), nor do I want to start reading a series that is not yet finished. A trilogy that is already completed would be just about right.
  • I want a series where the difference between good and evil is truly recognized -- where it is clear that values such as loyalty, mercy, honor, love of family, courage, etc. are to be strived for. But that doesn't mean that the good guys have to be 100% good, 100% of the time (because that wouldn't be very realistic).

Now, I have no idea whether or not the authors on the first list above fulfill all of the things I'm looking for on the second list above, but I'm hoping that maybe some of you can give me some good recommendations, either from my list of authors or not.

 

Thanks for taking the time to read all this, and thanks in advance for any recommendations.

 

You might want to try The Sword of Truth series. It is series is finished (there are some books written after the series, but they are not essential to the main story) and it is very similiar to WoT (some say he ripped off most of his ideas from WoT). It was a good read for me.

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Jim Butcher writes entertaining books. Dresden Files and Codex Alera. They are not overly complicated (but there's mystery, suspense and twists during the story), and there's a lot of action. Some violence, but it's not particularly dark. I like his books.

 

I've just bought all of Bakker's books, so I hope they are good.

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I've just bought all of Bakker's books, so I hope they are good.

 

As good as it gets in fantasy from a writing perspective. His work is excellent and at the top of the class. Now as for being dark...it can make Martin look like a Sunday cartoon at times.

Edited by Suttree

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Hello,

 

I am looking for a new fantasy novel (or series) to read, and I would appreciate any recommendations that you all can give me. First, some background:

 

I really haven't read all that many books in the fantasy genre. In high school, I read the first two Dragonlance trilogies by Weis & Hickman, which I enjoyed very much at the time. I also read the Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander, and I remember that I especially loved the last book, The High King. And I read the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (which I think are excellent in some ways, and flawed in other ways).

 

In high school, I also read the "Myth" books by Robert Asprin, which started out good, but went downhill around book 5 or 6 or so. I read Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen Donaldson, which I didn't like at all, and Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly, which I thought was just pretty good.

 

At some point (maybe during college?), I tried reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, but I stopped about halfway through the first book of LOTR. I just didn't understand what was so great about those books. Maybe I should give them another chance, since I know that just about everyone says they are classics. (However, I didn't really like the LOTR movies either, so maybe I truly wouldn't like the books.)

 

Then, near the end of my time in college (around 1995), I began reading The Wheel of Time, which I loved. After college, I read each new WoT book when it came out, and I recently re-read the entire series (up to book 12), and then read book 13 for the first time.

 

Anyway, that's just about the extent of my reading in the fantasy genre, and really I have read almost nothing in that genre since college, with the major exception of The Wheel of Time. So I am sure that there is a lot of great fantasy that I haven't read.

 

Based on what I have read about various fantasy authors and books here and there on the internet, and also based on browsing around at my local bookstore, I have considered possibly reading something by one or more of the following authors:

  • Terry Brooks
  • Terry Pratchett
  • Patrick Rothfuss
  • George R. R. Martin
  • Raymond Feist
  • Tim Powers

Here are some of the things that I am looking for in a fantasy book:

  • The magic should be "white magic" (i.e., a natural part of the world) rather than "black magic" (e.g., spells and incantations).
  • I want the world to feel real, not dream-like or two-dimensional. (The world of The Wheel of Time is a perfect example of a fantasy world that feels very real.)
  • I don't want anything R-rated -- no sex scenes or graphic descriptions of violence. I say this partly because I just don't want to read that stuff, and partly because I know that if these books sit on my bookshelf, my kids may pull them out and read them some day. (I have no major complaints about The Wheel of Time in terms of sex and violence, but anything that goes beyond where The Wheel of Time goes on these topics, I would rather avoid.)
  • I don't mind if the individual book or books are long. But I don't want to start reading another series anywhere near the length of the Wheel of Time (i.e., 14 very long books!), nor do I want to start reading a series that is not yet finished. A trilogy that is already completed would be just about right.
  • I want a series where the difference between good and evil is truly recognized -- where it is clear that values such as loyalty, mercy, honor, love of family, courage, etc. are to be strived for. But that doesn't mean that the good guys have to be 100% good, 100% of the time (because that wouldn't be very realistic).

Now, I have no idea whether or not the authors on the first list above fulfill all of the things I'm looking for on the second list above, but I'm hoping that maybe some of you can give me some good recommendations, either from my list of authors or not.

 

Thanks for taking the time to read all this, and thanks in advance for any recommendations.

 

 

Hey Paul H,

You probably want to stay away from Sword of Truth Series. Lots of rape and twisted stuff.

 

Based on your specifications and books you've liked thus far, here's some oldschool stuff you might like:

Check out the author Stephen R. Lawhead

His Dragon King Trilogy, Song of Albion, and Empyrion Saga seem right up your alley.

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@ roocifer, good taste in profile picture ;)

 

I have one thing to suggest in regards to the Shannara series by Terry Brooks. Sure the first book may be alike to LotR in a lot of ways, it doesn't change the fact that its a good story. But mainly, I'd say that Terry Brooks really finds himself after that point. the 2nd and 3rd books (elfstones, and wishsong of shannara, respectively) are amazing. and he went on to write a set of 4, 2 more trilogies, and a prequel to his first book. And then there's his Word & the Void trilogy, which are amazing, and he has since wrote 5 books connecting that trilogy to the world of Shannara. There is a load of great fantasy there, and though there's a lot of books, they're not all 1 continuous story like The Sword of Truth, or WoT, etc.etc.

 

the first 3 are separate works, involving 3 separate generations of the characters' family. the next set of 4 is a set, and a whole bunch of trilogies that don't take that much time to read. they're not so big as tSoT or WoT either.

 

worth at least 1 read-through. just my opinion, and i'm sticking to it :)

whatever you decide, welcome to the world of Fantasy books, and happy reading!

 

ps. Terry Brooks' Word & the Void, and also Shannara series fit your criteria.

Edited by EmperorMayhem

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Hello,

 

I am looking for a new fantasy novel (or series) to read, and I would appreciate any recommendations that you all can give me. First, some background:

 

I really haven't read all that many books in the fantasy genre. In high school, I read the first two Dragonlance trilogies by Weis & Hickman, which I enjoyed very much at the time. I also read the Chronicles of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander, and I remember that I especially loved the last book, The High King. And I read the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (which I think are excellent in some ways, and flawed in other ways).

 

In high school, I also read the "Myth" books by Robert Asprin, which started out good, but went downhill around book 5 or 6 or so. I read Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen Donaldson, which I didn't like at all, and Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly, which I thought was just pretty good.

 

At some point (maybe during college?), I tried reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, but I stopped about halfway through the first book of LOTR. I just didn't understand what was so great about those books. Maybe I should give them another chance, since I know that just about everyone says they are classics. (However, I didn't really like the LOTR movies either, so maybe I truly wouldn't like the books.)

 

Then, near the end of my time in college (around 1995), I began reading The Wheel of Time, which I loved. After college, I read each new WoT book when it came out, and I recently re-read the entire series (up to book 12), and then read book 13 for the first time.

 

Anyway, that's just about the extent of my reading in the fantasy genre, and really I have read almost nothing in that genre since college, with the major exception of The Wheel of Time. So I am sure that there is a lot of great fantasy that I haven't read.

 

Based on what I have read about various fantasy authors and books here and there on the internet, and also based on browsing around at my local bookstore, I have considered possibly reading something by one or more of the following authors:

  • Terry Brooks
  • Terry Pratchett
  • Patrick Rothfuss
  • George R. R. Martin
  • Raymond Feist
  • Tim Powers

Here are some of the things that I am looking for in a fantasy book:

  • The magic should be "white magic" (i.e., a natural part of the world) rather than "black magic" (e.g., spells and incantations).
  • I want the world to feel real, not dream-like or two-dimensional. (The world of The Wheel of Time is a perfect example of a fantasy world that feels very real.)
  • I don't want anything R-rated -- no sex scenes or graphic descriptions of violence. I say this partly because I just don't want to read that stuff, and partly because I know that if these books sit on my bookshelf, my kids may pull them out and read them some day. (I have no major complaints about The Wheel of Time in terms of sex and violence, but anything that goes beyond where The Wheel of Time goes on these topics, I would rather avoid.)
  • I don't mind if the individual book or books are long. But I don't want to start reading another series anywhere near the length of the Wheel of Time (i.e., 14 very long books!), nor do I want to start reading a series that is not yet finished. A trilogy that is already completed would be just about right.
  • I want a series where the difference between good and evil is truly recognized -- where it is clear that values such as loyalty, mercy, honor, love of family, courage, etc. are to be strived for. But that doesn't mean that the good guys have to be 100% good, 100% of the time (because that wouldn't be very realistic).

Now, I have no idea whether or not the authors on the first list above fulfill all of the things I'm looking for on the second list above, but I'm hoping that maybe some of you can give me some good recommendations, either from my list of authors or not.

 

Thanks for taking the time to read all this, and thanks in advance for any recommendations.

Okay so, I'm going to reiterate a couple of things that previous posters said as well as add my two cents.

 

Firstly, Goodkind and Martin have the most sickeningly realistic violent and/or sexual scenes in any fiction I've ever read, and while Goodkind's characters' morals are pretty black and white (which completely reflect Ayn Rand's objectivism, ick), Martin's are extremely realistic and all operate on their own moral frequencies. That's not to say that you shouldn't at least check out both series at some point. I found the first trilogy in the Sword of Truth series had a lot to offer, even if dark and depressing at times, but don't read beyond that point (if you make it to the evil chicken, you've made it too far). Whereas, A Song of Ice and Fire (which I agree sounds backwards) doesn't have much "good and evil" to offer, every character is a potential pro or antagonist, even if Martin does make every male in the series seem to be inherently misogynist.

 

Glen Cook and Steven Erickson are also really violent and "dark", but once again, they have a lot to offer if you can make it past those elements. They're also completely original in my opinion, or at least Glen Cook is, whereas Erickson sort of ripped him off... :)

 

Patrick Rothfuss is definitely not R, not too overly dark, and an incredibly engaging read. However, the second book contains quite a bit of sexual content. Kind of like if someone rewrote Harry Potter to be epic fantasy and well, just a lot more entertaining.

 

I agree with EmperorMayhem about Terry Brooks, while the older books (Sword of Shannara, First King of Shannara, etc.) are pretty huge Tolkien rip offs, he really developed a lot more originality in later books. My dad gave me Isle Witch when I was in 7th grade, and it immediately captivated my attention. That trilogy and the trilogy immediately following are excellent. However, the first book in the Genesis of Shannara is one of the worst books I've ever read.

 

Jim Butcher is definitely not as dark as Goodkind, but he also has some graphic scenes that I could do without. He deserves mention and should at least be checked out.

 

Terry Pratchett isn't fantasy the way you're familiar with probably. Discworld is kind of a huge inside joke for people familiar with fantasy novels, or at least that's how I interpret it. Anyhow, he's an excellent writer and comes extremely recommended. His books are also typically short and they're not in a series, even if they have some of the same characters/geography. The Color of Magic, Mort, and The Thief of Time are my personal favorites.

 

Raymond E. Feist is amazing. The Riftwar Saga is incredible and worth reading and rereading. Not too lengthy, not R-rated, pretty clear definitions of good and evil. Great books with some interesting scenarios. Also started the series at a young age, so it's adolescent approved for sure.

 

Ursula Le Guin's Wizard of Earthsea seems like it meets your criteria.

 

But if I were to pick two that I think you should put on your to-read list, it would be R.A. Salvatore's Dark Elf Trilogy, and really anything Sanderson has written. It sounds like you're not too enthusiastic about Mistborn, so maybe you should check out Way of Kings, which I really think is going to be the only epic fantasy series that ever competes with WoT. Also, Sanderson's magic systems are amazing and complex and add so much to his story/worldbuilding. Seriously, I can't possibly recommend it enough.

Edited by coltonxvx

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Hello i work in a job that requires me to listen to my ipod while i work so i listen to audio book series. I just finished my 3rd listen through of WOT ive also listened to twilight, mistborn and harry potter (multiple times). (also the start of song of ice and fire but got bored by the lack of magic it reminds me alot of elaynes succession without the other added extras of WOT so ill just watch the tv series)

 

Im trying to decide on my next series to listen to so i want your thoughts on the series The coldfire trilogy, Malazan book of the fallen and the sword of truth series and maybe the Belrigard.

 

My preference is epic fantasy with heavy magic and plot twists (virtually everything good about WOT) or if you think there is other series besides the ones above worth listening to i would appreciate your help. Thanks :)

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Jim Butcher - Codex Alera would be my first suggestion based on your description. 6 books with lots of magic (everyone in the world can use magic) and a good plot.

 

Malazan series - Lots of crazy magic in it, epic fantasy. A few problems with it, IMO, but a good read.

 

Mistborn - Brandon Sanderson. Magic and such, quick and lots of plot twists. (Also any of Brandon's other books as well)

 

Riftwar Saga - Raymond E. Feist - your typical epic fantasy with magic and such, but has enough of a story and mystery to keep it interesting. (After this trilogy, there are various other series' in the same world, the quality varies though)

 

David Eddings - The belgariad for a start, it is high fantasy with lots of magical mystery etc.. Continues with a second series the Mallorean, then he has written other similar series'.

 

They are the most magic-oriented series I could recommend based on what you want. Be warned, some of these are not as complex as WoT and not really the epitome of literature, they are, however, high fantasy with your magic etc...

 

 

Edit: In regards to the series you mentioned, I would suggest Malazan would be the best out of those. Sword of Truth is a uncertain one, after having read the WoT, there is a lot of hate for it, but also a lot of appreciation, its a 50/50 if you would like it. Personally wouldn't recommend it, however it does fit the bill well, and you may find it great.

Edited by Barid Bel Medar

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thanks alot ill check out malazan. While i do like magic like one power in fantasy i love plot twists to go with it. Snape in harry potter, verin in WOT etc

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Thanks very much to everyone who has responded to my request for book recommendations; your recommendations have been very helpful. I have read all the responses, even though I haven't posted here in a while.

 

Taking everyone's recommendations into account, I think that Patrick Rothfuss's Name of the Wind is going near the top of my list, though I am still debating whether to wait until the third book in the trilogy has been released, so that I could read all three books back-to-back.

 

I also was looking at my copies of Tolkein's books, and I am considering giving Lord of the Rings another chance. (I think I read all of the Hobbitt and half of the first book of LotR before losing interest many years ago.)

 

Okay so, I'm going to reiterate a couple of things that previous posters said as well as add my two cents.

 

Firstly, Goodkind and Martin have the most sickeningly realistic violent and/or sexual scenes in any fiction I've ever read, and while Goodkind's characters' morals are pretty black and white (which completely reflect Ayn Rand's objectivism, ick), Martin's are extremely realistic and all operate on their own moral frequencies. That's not to say that you shouldn't at least check out both series at some point. I found the first trilogy in the Sword of Truth series had a lot to offer, even if dark and depressing at times, but don't read beyond that point (if you make it to the evil chicken, you've made it too far). Whereas, A Song of Ice and Fire (which I agree sounds backwards) doesn't have much "good and evil" to offer, every character is a potential pro or antagonist, even if Martin does make every male in the series seem to be inherently misogynist.

 

I appreciate this information. It sounds like I should probably stay away from GRRM. I had never seriously considered Terry Goodkind's books, because I have heard so many negative comments about his books from WoT fans. (I gather that many WoT fans think than Goodkind's books are a blatant rip-off of the Wheel of Time.)

 

Jim Butcher is definitely not as dark as Goodkind, but he also has some graphic scenes that I could do without. He deserves mention and should at least be checked out.

 

His books do look interesting. Can the first novel in each of his series (Dresden Files and Codex Alera) be appreciated as a stand-alone story, or are they more like WoT where you have one big story spanning multiple books?

 

Terry Pratchett isn't fantasy the way you're familiar with probably. Discworld is kind of a huge inside joke for people familiar with fantasy novels, or at least that's how I interpret it. Anyhow, he's an excellent writer and comes extremely recommended. His books are also typically short and they're not in a series, even if they have some of the same characters/geography. The Color of Magic, Mort, and The Thief of Time are my personal favorites.

 

I think I may check out Colour of Magic from my local library and see if I like it.

 

Raymond E. Feist is amazing. The Riftwar Saga is incredible and worth reading and rereading. Not too lengthy, not R-rated, pretty clear definitions of good and evil. Great books with some interesting scenarios. Also started the series at a young age, so it's adolescent approved for sure.

 

I'll keep those books in mind -- thanks.

 

But if I were to pick two that I think you should put on your to-read list, it would be R.A. Salvatore's Dark Elf Trilogy, and really anything Sanderson has written. It sounds like you're not too enthusiastic about Mistborn, so maybe you should check out Way of Kings, which I really think is going to be the only epic fantasy series that ever competes with WoT. Also, Sanderson's magic systems are amazing and complex and add so much to his story/worldbuilding. Seriously, I can't possibly recommend it enough.

 

I don't know anything about Salvatore, except that I have seen the cover of one of his books at some point, and it gave me the impression that the book would probably be very generic and unoriginal. But as they say, you can't judge a book by its cover. :-)

 

As for Sanderson, to be blunt, I just don't like the way he writes. He has great ideas, and I am thrilled and immensely grateful that he is finishing the Wheel of Time, but I just don't like his prose, at all. (I commented a bit on this in point #5 of this post.) I do read his blog and his Twitter updates, and he seems like a great guy, and I wish him all the best. I just don't have much interest in reading his work outside the Wheel of Time, based on his writing style. Also, I wouldn't want to start on the Way of Kings now anyway, because I don't want to have to wait ten years or more for the ten-book series to be complete.

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Thanks very much to everyone who has responded to my request for book recommendations; your recommendations have been very helpful. I have read all the responses, even though I haven't posted here in a while.

 

Taking everyone's recommendations into account, I think that Patrick Rothfuss's Name of the Wind is going near the top of my list, though I am still debating whether to wait until the third book in the trilogy has been released, so that I could read all three books back-to-back.

 

I also was looking at my copies of Tolkein's books, and I am considering giving Lord of the Rings another chance. (I think I read all of the Hobbitt and half of the first book of LotR before losing interest many years ago.)

 

Okay so, I'm going to reiterate a couple of things that previous posters said as well as add my two cents.

 

Firstly, Goodkind and Martin have the most sickeningly realistic violent and/or sexual scenes in any fiction I've ever read, and while Goodkind's characters' morals are pretty black and white (which completely reflect Ayn Rand's objectivism, ick), Martin's are extremely realistic and all operate on their own moral frequencies. That's not to say that you shouldn't at least check out both series at some point. I found the first trilogy in the Sword of Truth series had a lot to offer, even if dark and depressing at times, but don't read beyond that point (if you make it to the evil chicken, you've made it too far). Whereas, A Song of Ice and Fire (which I agree sounds backwards) doesn't have much "good and evil" to offer, every character is a potential pro or antagonist, even if Martin does make every male in the series seem to be inherently misogynist.

 

I appreciate this information. It sounds like I should probably stay away from GRRM. I had never seriously considered Terry Goodkind's books, because I have heard so many negative comments about his books from WoT fans. (I gather that many WoT fans think than Goodkind's books are a blatant rip-off of the Wheel of Time.)

 

Jim Butcher is definitely not as dark as Goodkind, but he also has some graphic scenes that I could do without. He deserves mention and should at least be checked out.

 

His books do look interesting. Can the first novel in each of his series (Dresden Files and Codex Alera) be appreciated as a stand-alone story, or are they more like WoT where you have one big story spanning multiple books?

 

Terry Pratchett isn't fantasy the way you're familiar with probably. Discworld is kind of a huge inside joke for people familiar with fantasy novels, or at least that's how I interpret it. Anyhow, he's an excellent writer and comes extremely recommended. His books are also typically short and they're not in a series, even if they have some of the same characters/geography. The Color of Magic, Mort, and The Thief of Time are my personal favorites.

 

I think I may check out Colour of Magic from my local library and see if I like it.

 

Raymond E. Feist is amazing. The Riftwar Saga is incredible and worth reading and rereading. Not too lengthy, not R-rated, pretty clear definitions of good and evil. Great books with some interesting scenarios. Also started the series at a young age, so it's adolescent approved for sure.

 

I'll keep those books in mind -- thanks.

 

But if I were to pick two that I think you should put on your to-read list, it would be R.A. Salvatore's Dark Elf Trilogy, and really anything Sanderson has written. It sounds like you're not too enthusiastic about Mistborn, so maybe you should check out Way of Kings, which I really think is going to be the only epic fantasy series that ever competes with WoT. Also, Sanderson's magic systems are amazing and complex and add so much to his story/worldbuilding. Seriously, I can't possibly recommend it enough.

 

I don't know anything about Salvatore, except that I have seen the cover of one of his books at some point, and it gave me the impression that the book would probably be very generic and unoriginal. But as they say, you can't judge a book by its cover. :-)

 

As for Sanderson, to be blunt, I just don't like the way he writes. He has great ideas, and I am thrilled and immensely grateful that he is finishing the Wheel of Time, but I just don't like his prose, at all. (I commented a bit on this in point #5 of this post.) I do read his blog and his Twitter updates, and he seems like a great guy, and I wish him all the best. I just don't have much interest in reading his work outside the Wheel of Time, based on his writing style. Also, I wouldn't want to start on the Way of Kings now anyway, because I don't want to have to wait ten years or more for the ten-book series to be complete.

 

If I were you I would jump into Name of the Wind. It meets all the criteria and is an excellent series. Rothfuss is one of the most talented young writers out. I forget, did you say you liked Robin Hobb? You might enjoy her as well, she is a strong writer and fits what you enjoy.

 

Def stay away from Goodkind. It's a blatant WoT rip off and the guy is a total kook. Martin is far better although as others said you would struggle with content at times.

 

In terms of Salvatore I guess it depends on what you like. I tried a few in my early teens and even back then it came across as generic hack n slash with poor prose. This is the type of fantasy you have to read down to. I would venture to guess its a step up from the other D&D marketing materials but that isn't saying much.

 

With Sanderson I totally agree. Unfortunately I haven't seen much growth from the first Mistborn book. He seems like he has stalled as an author after that solid debut.

Edited by Suttree

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The first seven books of Goodkind's Sword of Truth are between okay to good, even if it has a remarkable number of parallels to WoT and often ends with excessive deux ex machina and cheese. They manage to hold up despite that. All of the books after that I just can't recommend. The novels become incredibly preachy and redundant, often repeating the same information over and over again.

 

I recommend just one book by Sanderson if you're unsure: Mistborn. It's not a terribly long book, and it can manage to stand on its own if you don't want to read the rest of the trilogy (which was pretty much entirely written even before the first book of the series was ever published). Sanderson's prose works a bit better within his own novels, though it may take a few chapters to get into it.

 

I definitely recommend Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire.

Edited by Agitel

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I haven't read much fantasy but started with Terry Brooks, Shannara books at the age of 12 and loved them, them moved on to Tolkein and saw what Brooks was trying to do,

 

After that I moved straight into Raymond E Feist's, Riftwar. while buying one of Feists books I was given the 'The blue promo of 'The eye of the world' free and that was that.

 

I have read everything from Feist as my fall back books while waiting for each new WoT book to come out.

 

But it will soon be time to find something new and from reading here I think I'll start the Sword of Truth in Feb next year :) and then onto Sanderson.

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As for Butchers Dresden Files and Codex Alera, Codex Alera is a straight fantasy series where you need to read it in order. Dresden Files build upon one another so it's highly advisable to read them in order.

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Thanks very much to everyone who has responded to my request for book recommendations; your recommendations have been very helpful. I have read all the responses, even though I haven't posted here in a while.

 

Taking everyone's recommendations into account, I think that Patrick Rothfuss's Name of the Wind is going near the top of my list, though I am still debating whether to wait until the third book in the trilogy has been released, so that I could read all three books back-to-back.

 

I also was looking at my copies of Tolkein's books, and I am considering giving Lord of the Rings another chance. (I think I read all of the Hobbitt and half of the first book of LotR before losing interest many years ago.)

 

Okay so, I'm going to reiterate a couple of things that previous posters said as well as add my two cents.

 

Firstly, Goodkind and Martin have the most sickeningly realistic violent and/or sexual scenes in any fiction I've ever read, and while Goodkind's characters' morals are pretty black and white (which completely reflect Ayn Rand's objectivism, ick), Martin's are extremely realistic and all operate on their own moral frequencies. That's not to say that you shouldn't at least check out both series at some point. I found the first trilogy in the Sword of Truth series had a lot to offer, even if dark and depressing at times, but don't read beyond that point (if you make it to the evil chicken, you've made it too far). Whereas, A Song of Ice and Fire (which I agree sounds backwards) doesn't have much "good and evil" to offer, every character is a potential pro or antagonist, even if Martin does make every male in the series seem to be inherently misogynist.

 

I appreciate this information. It sounds like I should probably stay away from GRRM. I had never seriously considered Terry Goodkind's books, because I have heard so many negative comments about his books from WoT fans. (I gather that many WoT fans think than Goodkind's books are a blatant rip-off of the Wheel of Time.)

 

Jim Butcher is definitely not as dark as Goodkind, but he also has some graphic scenes that I could do without. He deserves mention and should at least be checked out.

 

His books do look interesting. Can the first novel in each of his series (Dresden Files and Codex Alera) be appreciated as a stand-alone story, or are they more like WoT where you have one big story spanning multiple books?

 

Terry Pratchett isn't fantasy the way you're familiar with probably. Discworld is kind of a huge inside joke for people familiar with fantasy novels, or at least that's how I interpret it. Anyhow, he's an excellent writer and comes extremely recommended. His books are also typically short and they're not in a series, even if they have some of the same characters/geography. The Color of Magic, Mort, and The Thief of Time are my personal favorites.

 

I think I may check out Colour of Magic from my local library and see if I like it.

 

Raymond E. Feist is amazing. The Riftwar Saga is incredible and worth reading and rereading. Not too lengthy, not R-rated, pretty clear definitions of good and evil. Great books with some interesting scenarios. Also started the series at a young age, so it's adolescent approved for sure.

 

I'll keep those books in mind -- thanks.

 

But if I were to pick two that I think you should put on your to-read list, it would be R.A. Salvatore's Dark Elf Trilogy, and really anything Sanderson has written. It sounds like you're not too enthusiastic about Mistborn, so maybe you should check out Way of Kings, which I really think is going to be the only epic fantasy series that ever competes with WoT. Also, Sanderson's magic systems are amazing and complex and add so much to his story/worldbuilding. Seriously, I can't possibly recommend it enough.

 

I don't know anything about Salvatore, except that I have seen the cover of one of his books at some point, and it gave me the impression that the book would probably be very generic and unoriginal. But as they say, you can't judge a book by its cover. :-)

 

As for Sanderson, to be blunt, I just don't like the way he writes. He has great ideas, and I am thrilled and immensely grateful that he is finishing the Wheel of Time, but I just don't like his prose, at all. (I commented a bit on this in point #5 of this post.) I do read his blog and his Twitter updates, and he seems like a great guy, and I wish him all the best. I just don't have much interest in reading his work outside the Wheel of Time, based on his writing style. Also, I wouldn't want to start on the Way of Kings now anyway, because I don't want to have to wait ten years or more for the ten-book series to be complete.

 

Codex is a series of books that build on each other and although the first story does end, there's a very obvious lead in to the second , etc. They're all pretty short (esp for fantasy) and he's finished the series, so you wouldn't have to wait for the end. The first few Dresden books do work as stand alone books, although they'll make more sense read in order. As the series progresses the moral questions become slightly more blurred, so I'll leave it to your judgement if it sounds like something you'd be interested in.

 

Feist's Magician is another book that can be read as a stand-alone book, although I may be in the minority on this. As a stand-alone book I think it's brilliant, but I lose interest the more books of his that I've read, although some of the follow-ups are brilliant (Serpent War Saga being one of them). Although there is a shared world and I have no doubt that there are links between the series and shout outs and stuff for the uber fans, those books do work as stand alone stories.

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I just thought I'd add some additional perspectives:

 

Rothfuss: Depending on your definition of "sex" in books, you may need to avoid the Kingkiller Chronicles, because in the second book there is some. It's not graphic, or distasteful (possibly a bit Mary Sue, but that's actually the nature of the whole series). There's also a disturbing violent scene in the second book. Aside from those, the books are great reads.

 

Butcher: I thought the first two Dresden books were awful. I've heard they get better, but I wasn't able to get over some of the poor writing. The plots were ok, but I remember distinctly when I had to put the series down - I believe the line was something akin to 'my outlook was beginning to look as bleak as the national economy'. I haven't read Codex Alara, so I can't comment on that.

 

Pratchett: I think that Terry Pratchett is the greatest writer living. His books are amazing, but there's a distinct difference between his earlier and later works. He certainly starts out writing parodies of fantasy in general, but there is an eventual progression to some amazing books that satirize modern society through a fantasy lens. The Discworld books aren't a series per say (excepting the first two perhaps) but the books do have a sort of chronological order, and there are sets of characters and books if you like a particular set of characters more than another.

 

Sanderson: I've liked all of his stuff, the Mistborn trilogy is really solid, and Elantris and Warbreaker are good (but not as). But the Way of Kings I think is WoT level good. Sanderson has a different writing style to Jordan (obviously) but it works really well in his own world. The prologue and the first chapter are good, but maybe not the best way to get you into the story properly - that said if you can get through those (or skip them until later), its one of the best books I've read.

 

Abercromie: I saw some people recommend the First Law trilogy. And those books are fun reads, though if I remember correctly there's at least one explicit sex scene and a lot of violence.

 

Goodkind: For sure doesn't fix the sex and violence part of your requirements. And the books aren't that great besides.

 

Martin: I love the Song of Fire and Ice, but it probably doesn't fit your requirements.

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Here are some of my favorites

Wheel of Time Robert Jordan

Belgariad/Mallorean series David Eddings

Sword of truth series Terry Goodkind

Game of thrones George Martin

Incarnations of immortality Piers Anthony

Magic of recluse series L.E. Modesitt jr

Pendragon cycle Stephen Lawhead

Hobbit/lord of rings Tolkein

The once and future king White

Mission earth L Ron Hubbard

 

I've loved reading series of books ever since I read the hobbit and The Lord of Rings trilogy. I know I've read some more but these stick out in my head for some reason or another. Once the last installment of the Wheel of time series comes and goes I will b looking to get into another series. Any suggestions are welcome. Thanks

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What about the Ranger's Apprentice Series by John Flanagan, or the Hood Series by Stephen Lawhead?

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@ Kari, the Hood series was the last series I've read. After reading the Pendragon cycle (I've always loved Arthurian legend) I decided to read Lawhead a bit more and plan to continue to read in the future. I'll have to check out John Flanagan at some point. Honestly I've never heard of him. Thanks.

 

@stitched, thanks for the letting me know about Rebecca Bradley. She is another author I am not familiar with.

 

Ive been trying to find series that have already been completed. Waiting for the Wheel of Time, Game of thrones, and the Runelords to be completed has been a little frustrating but ill just wait and see. Thanks

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Here are a couple of my recent favorites Thom, in order of preference.

 

R. Scott Bakker

Prince of Nothing & Aspect Emperor Series

http://en.wikipedia....ince_of_Nothing

http://en.wikipedia...._Aspect-Emperor

 

Patrick Rothfuss

The Kingkiller Chronicle

http://en.wikipedia....iller_Chronicle

 

Scott Lynch

The Gentelmen Bastard Sequence

http://en.wikipedia....astard_Sequence

 

All three are excellant. Bakker is my favorite fantasy author at the moment. Excellant prose, world building and phenomenal characterization. He has a Masters in Philosophy and mulls over weighty themes in his books. The cool thing is it works both people who love traditional fantasy and those who think they may have out grown the genre. Just to warn you it can be dark at times.

Edited by Suttree

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These are all good choices, listed above...I'd also add "The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant," by Stephen Donaldson. Fantastic series...pretty heavy on the archaic language and philosophical/theological debate, but plenty of good action too. Very good for snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. Also, ironically, waiting for its final book to be published--"The Last Dark", due possibly in 2013. Donaldson takes a very long time to write each one, but the wait is always worth it...the final count will be ten books, and unless I miss my guess, he's been writing it since the late seventies or early eighties. Glad to be around as the end approaches!

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Thanks Suttree. I'll check them out

 

Time walker, I forgot about those. I think I read like six of those a long time ago. Can't believe I forgot those and that he is still going. Have to check them also

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Imager by L E Modesitt

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

Way of kings by Brandon Sanderson

Morcyth Saga by Brian S. Pratt

Spinward Fringe by Randolph Landoe

Foundation by Isaac Asimov

In fact anything by Asimov

Enders Game by Orson Scott card

Tom Clancy's books are ok

Inheritance by Christopher Paolini

Black Prisim by Brent Weeks

A wizard of Earthsea by ursula le guin

I'll add more if I think of any

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