Sword, Sorcery, Likes, Dislikes and Recommendations
I thought Joe Abercrombie's trilogy ruled. I can't get into Song of Ice and Fire - I just can't stomach the Dothraki and I don't like his names, although I think Martin's Fevre Dream is perhaps the best vampire novel I've ever read. I love Robert Howard's Conan stories. I thought the tone of Rothfuss's Name of the Wind was too smug - Kvothe seemed like a dick - and so I didn't enjoy that. I love Moorcock's Elric saga. I think Fritz Lieber's Fafhrd & The Gray Mouser tales are the greatest fantasy stories ever written, bar none (and that includes LOTR, which I love and put at #2). I cannot abide any story with names like "Shadowborn" or "Kingkiller" in it. I think R Scott Bakker's Prince of Nothing trilogy was a masterwork of genius and the best fantasy work of the new(ish) millenium. I did not like Wizard's First Rule. I loved Curse of Chalion. I did not love Bitterwood. I thought Bernard Cornwell's Arthurian trilogy (Winter King etc) was amazing, and recommend it to fantasy fans though it is more of a dark-age adventure novel (and perhaps the best one ever written, along with Frans Bengtsson's The Long Ships and Michael Chabon's Gentlemen of the Road) . I loved Tanith Lee's Dreams of Dark and Light. I think Robert Jordan was overrated. I love Neil Gaiman. I loved the first four books of the Dark Tower series. I loved Lawhead's Pendragon Cycle. The works of Tim Powers - especially Anubis Gates, Drawing of the Dark, On Stranger Tides and Declare - I recommend wholeheartedly, especially to fans of high-quality, very literate fantasy. They are EXCELLENT. And Thomas Ligotti out-Lovecrafts Lovecraft, for anyone who likes their Weird weird and their horror profound.
So, I ask you, apart from Brandon Sanderson and Scott Lynch, what can you guys recommend?