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Thread: Stephen Palmer's Top 20...
March 19th, 2010, 08:27 AM #1
Stephen Palmer's Top 20...
As per the SF threads, here's my Top 20 for fantasy...
1. JRR Tolkien, The Lord Of The Rings/The Hobbit
2. Jack Vance, Lyonesse series
3. China Mieville, The Scar
4. Richard Adams, Watership Down
5. Peter Dickinson, The Weathermonger
6. Michael De Larrabeiti, The Borribles
7. Philip Pullman, Northern Lights series
8. Brian Stableford, The Empire Of Fear
9. Mervyn Peake, Gormenghast series
10. Kenneth Graham, The Wind In The Willows
11. Robin Hobb, Assassin series
12. M. John Harrison, The Pastel City
13. Robert Holdstock, Mythago Wood
14. Ian R. MacLeod, The Light Ages
15. Lewis Carroll, Alice In Wonderland
16. Ursula Le Guin, A Wizard Of Earthsea
17. Robert C. O’Brien, Mrs Frisby and the Rats Of Nimh
18. Neil Gaiman, American Gods
19. Steve Cockayne, Wanderers and Islanders series
20. T.H. White, The Once And Future King
March 19th, 2010, 10:47 AM #2
I like how you started with 1.-3.
I haven't read much fantasy so don't know about the others, except I didn't like Peake and Hobb, and particularly Pullman's last book in the series
my list would be something like
1. GRR Martin - A Storm of Swords
2. J Vance - The Eyes of the Overworld or Lyonesse
3. JRR Tolkien - The Lord of the Rings
4. CA Smith - Tales of Zothique
5. C Mieville - The Scar
6. RS Bakker - The Warrior-prophet
7. S Erikson - Memories of Ice
8. KE Wagner - Bloodstone
9. T Pratchett - Small Gods
10. RE Howard - The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian
11. RE Feist - Magician, Master
12. A Sapkowski - The Last Wish
13. J Abercrombie - Best Served Cold
14. M Moorcock - Stormbringer
15. L Dunsany - Time and the Gods
16. P Rothfuss - The Name of the Wind
17. R Zelazny - Corwin
18. GG Kay - The Lions of Al-Rassan
19. S Lynch - The Lies of Locke Lamora
20. J Butcher - Turn Coat
Last edited by mars; March 19th, 2010 at 11:53 AM.
March 19th, 2010, 11:24 AM #3
- Join Date
- Dec 2005
- Ada, MI, USA
I loved the Wanderers and Islanders series - such a pity it did not take off since at least the first two books are awesome - the third is a bit too apt and it seems as the author gave up a bit, but still overall a great unusual series though not quite a top 20.
Other than that it depends what you mean by fantasy since with the definition implied in the list which mixes genre fantasy with mainstream fantastic, I would head it with
1. Arabian Nights (translation R. Burton)
2. Master and Margarita by M. Bulgakov
3. The Odyssey
4. The Legends of Olympus (whatever compilation you care about)
5. JL Borges - various fiction
and except for the Scar I would not have anything else on my top 100 list
March 19th, 2010, 12:11 PM #4
- Join Date
- Sep 2005
I'll offer up today's list of 20, if for no other reason than to trumpet titles I truly admire:
JRR Tolkien, The Lord Of The Rings/The Hobbit
Mervyn Peake, Titus Groan
Richard Adams, Watership Down
Clark Ashton Smith, Zothique
Jonathan Carroll, The Land of Laughs
M. John Harrison, The Course of the Heart
Charles Finney, The Circus of Dr. Lao
Angela Carter, The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories
William Gay, Twilight
Ray Bradbury, The October Country
Ray Bradbury, Something Wicked This Way Comes
Peter Beagle, The Last Unicorn
Peter Beagle, The Rhinocerous Who Quoted Nietzsche
Fred Chappell, More Shapes than One
Arthur Machen, The Three Imposters
Robert Holdstock, Mythago Wood
Jorge Luis Borges, Ficciones
Ursula Le Guin, A Wizard Of Earthsea
John Collier, Fancies and Goodnights
Lord Dunsany, Beyond the Hills and Far Away
Including William Gay's novel is cheating a little: It's not overtly fantasy, but its structure and symbolism draw from fairytale and folklore.
The Lord Dunsany is a representative title. Dunsany's stories have been republished in so many mixes and matches, that most any collection will likely have some of his better works. Look for "The Fortress Unvanquishable, Save for Sacnoth" and "The Bureau d’Echange de Maux," in particular.
Of course, if I did this list tomorrow, I might add Jonathan Carroll's Bones of the Moon and Voices of Our Shadow, William Kotzwinkle's Fata Morgana, Fritz Leiber's Swords and Deviltry and Night's Black Agents and Our Lady of Darkness and You're All Alone, H. P. Lovecraft's The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath, ...
March 20th, 2010, 05:18 AM #5
Jeroen's Top 20 Fantasy
caveat: I have a lot of books to read, including lots of well-known classics, so if you think there are essential books missing from this list, consider it more an indication of my taste.
- JRR Tolkien - The Lord of the Rings
- Mervyn Peake - The Gormenghast Novels
- Gene Wolfe - The Book of the New Sun
- JRR Tolkien - The Silmarillion
- John Gardner - Grendel
- E.R. Eddison - The Worm Ouroboros
- Jack Vance - The Lyonesse Trilogy
- Lord Dunsany - The Sword of Welleran and Other Stories
- David Lindsay - A Voyage to Arcturus
- Lord Dunsany - The King of Elfland's Daughter
- Richard Adams - Watership Down
- Susanna Clarke - Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
- George R.R. Martin - A Song of Ice and Fire
- Peter S. Beagle - The Last Unicorn
- T.H. White - The Once and Future King
- JRR Tolkien - The Hobbit
- G.K. Chesterton - The Man Who Was Thursday
- Jack Vance - Tales of the Dying Earth
- J.K. Rowling - The Harry Potter series
- Oscar Wilde - Short Stories
March 20th, 2010, 10:25 AM #6
Here are my favorites:
Terry Goodkind The Sword of Truth series. Excellent characters and this will drive the haters mad.
Jennifer Fallon Second Sons trilogy. I love how the main character uses brains instead of magic.
George R.R.Martin Song of Ice and Fire series. Dark, gritty, and smart. Love his use of grey characters.
David Coe Winds of the Forelands series. Twists and turns galore.
Joe Abercrombie First law series. See Martin above.
Fiona McIntosh The Quickening series. Loved the plot twists.
Brent Weeks Night Angel trilogy. Can't wait to see his new book.
Scott Lynch Gentleman Bastard series. See Brent Weeks above.
Robert Redick Voyage of the Chartrand. Golden Compass for adults.
David Durham War With the Mein. Very complex and addictive.
Michael J.Sullivan Riyria series. Reminds me of Lynch's books.
Patrick Rothfuss Kingkiller series. Only one book so far but what a book.
Carol Berg anything. I think she is very under rated. Rai-Kirah is very dark.
Giles Carwyn and Todd Fahnestock Heartstone trilogy. Another dark gem.
John Marco Tyrants and Kings series.
J.V.Jones Sword of Shadows. It took some time but I am hooked now.
Greg Keyes Thorn and Bone series. Loved everything except the final book.
Terry Brooks Shanarra series. Very LOTR influenced but great reads.
Robin Hobb everything except Soldier Son trilogy will never let you down.
Fiona McIntosh Valisar trilogy will take you on turns that you never see coming. Her Percheron series is a keeper too.