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  1. #1

    Looking for some High/Epic fantasy book series, with a strong romance sub-plot.

    Hello everyone, recently I've been lurking these forums trying to find some good book series to start working my way through, and I've decided to make my own post to see if I can find some series with all (or at least, most of) my preferences.

    Now, bear with me, I'm not making this post without reading any of the post before me. I went to the handy-dandy search function and picked out several threads similar to mine, but sadly, there was only about 4-6 threads that had any relation to what I was looking for, and I would like some more reccomendations.

    That being said, here are my preferences:

    -Hopefully, I would like the novels to be part of a series, at least a trilogy. My reasoning behind this is because larger book series usually allow for much more in-depth plots, and I don't like when the characters I come to love only have one book to their name.

    -I really do want a strong romance, but I do NOT want it to be the focus-point of the book. I need a strong plot to go with the romance, or I feel like there isn't much point to keep reading if I'm not going anywhere with the story.

    -I'm a sucker for magic, the "chosen one" cliches, and all that. I've really enjoyed the series like Sword of Truth, Wheel of Time, Mistborn, etc etc (Except I felt like the romance in WoT was a bit lacking, it was good and all but I felt like it wasn't developed enough.)

    -Cliches are perfectly fine, I haven't read enough fantasy to be annoyed with them yet.

    -Explicit scenes are fine, I'm even of the opinion that they add some more depth to the story. However, not required at all.

    That's about it for now, I'll edit if I forgot a point that I wanted to add.

    It would be much appreciated if you would include a short summary and a x/10 rating.
    Last edited by Olimious; July 13th, 2012 at 11:06 PM.

  2. #2
    Too many books to read... Siberian's Avatar
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    I'm sure the following have been mentioned more than once:

    Jacqueline Carey, Kushiel books (some BDSM, not too detailed, but the heroine is a courtesan who enjoys pain)

    Anne Bishop, The Dark Jewels books

    Codex Alera, by Jim Butcher - lots of romance but doesn't overshadow the story. I think it's very romantic, too. The lost heir theme is present but with a clever twist.

    Patricia McKillip, The Forgotten Beasts of Eld

    Poison Study, Maria Snyder

    Lilith Saintcrow, The Hedgewitch Queen

  3. #3
    Try Dragon Prince and Dragon Star, two related trilogies by Melanie Rawn. It has been a long time since I read these books so I wouldn't do them justice in a summary, but Wikipedia has a good article about them here. Rating them is difficult as well, because I've read a lot of books since that I like a lot better, but that is due in large part to personal taste, not the quality of the books necessarily. So let me just say that the books are well-written, the world (it is an alt-world setting) is fully realized and the main characters have depth and are interesting. Most importantly, the two series meet all of your criteria.

    Series...check
    Strong romance...check
    Romance not the focus...check
    Plenty of magic...check
    Some clichés...check
    Some semi-explicit stuff...check

  4. #4
    maybe farseer trilogy by robin hobb. though its probably more starcrossed lovers. the second trilogy [liveships] is probably more what you are looking for.

  5. #5
    bingley bingley beep kissmequick's Avatar
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    Curse of Chalion springs to mind, Bujold has romance in a quite a lot of her stuff, though it mostly doesn't overshadow the rest of teh plot. That one is one of her best imo. And check out Sharon Shinn, or for older stuff Chronicles of Morgaine by CJ CHerryh.

  6. #6
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    I would take a look at:

    The Indra series by Sherwood Smith
    The Twelve Houses by Sharon Shinn (and her Angelica series, which isn't so much high fantasy)
    Nine Kingdoms series by Lynne Kurland
    Deed of Paksnarrion and continuing series by Elizabeth Moon (not as much romance in the first three books, but you need to read those to get to the later books)
    Green Rider series by Kristin Britain
    Cast in series by Michelle Sagara
    Either of Lynne Flewling's series

    Happy Reading!

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by finnskeeper View Post
    I would take a look at:

    The Indra series by Sherwood Smith
    The Twelve Houses by Sharon Shinn (and her Angelica series, which isn't so much high fantasy)
    Nine Kingdoms series by Lynne Kurland
    Deed of Paksnarrion and continuing series by Elizabeth Moon (not as much romance in the first three books, but you need to read those to get to the later books)
    Green Rider series by Kristin Britain
    Cast in series by Michelle Sagara
    Either of Lynne Flewling's series

    Happy Reading!
    Great list! I have read everything on there but one, and I highly recommend them.

  8. #8
    Registered User Carlyle Clark's Avatar
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    Jennifer Roberson's Tiger & Del series.

  9. #9
    Hello everyone, just dropping in to say that I've been keeping a tab on this page, look at all the reccomendations. I'd like as many as I can get, I have a lot of free time. Now, lets look at some of these books:

    Kushiel's Legacy I read a bit of this series, but this isn't "epic" on the scale that I'm talking. I like my stores rich with magic and adventure, like the books I mentioned: SoT, WoT, Mistborn, etc etc

    Codex Alera I'm seriously thinking of trying this one, but after reading a couple of description and reviews, it says that the main character is actually pretty useless. Is this just at the start, because I cant handle books where the main character cant do much.

    Dark Jewels I managed to slug my way through the first book of this series, but this is a good of example of "too much focus on romance" for me. I ask for romance as a sub-plot (Best example SoT) and this book was laden with romance.

    Kingkiller Chronicles The most recent book series that I read, perfect example of what I want, if a bit light on the romance. People looking for things similar to me, try this out and you wont regret it.

    Farseer The first-person narrative really threw me off, might try to read it again, for now gonna stick to more-familiar writing styles. (Yes I know Kingkiller was first person also, but the two dozen or so pages I got through Farseer was just uncomfortable.)

    Don't worry though, I've looked at all the reccomendations, just giving you guys some information to refine the types of books you throw at me.

    Well, that's it for now, I appreciate all the reccomendations, keep 'em comin'.

    Thanks, will be posting again later.
    Last edited by Olimious; July 18th, 2012 at 05:27 PM.

  10. #10
    Analyze That
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    I recommend A Shadow in Summer by Daniel Abraham. It`s part of a series of 4 books, I think only the first one really has the amount of romance you`re looking for, but it is really well done.

    I love all the books, and recommend them all without hesitation, but just be aware the romance sub-plots in the first and to a slightly lesser extent, the second, aren`t carried through the whole series.

  11. #11
    Codex Alera I'm seriously thinking of trying this one, but after reading a couple of description and reviews, it says that the main character is actually pretty useless. Is this just at the start, because I cant handle books where the main character cant do much.


    thats complete and utter bull. it might be true in the first book and partially true in the second, but after that tavi is one of the most capable characters in the series. even if he can't furycraft his brains still allow him to not be useless. that said theres not much romance in it. there is some, but not a lot.

    I'd give more info but this is already edging way too close to the spoiler cliff.

  12. #12
    Seconding the Kushiel and Chalion books.

    Carol Berg is always reliable for excellent fantasy with strong romance elements. The romance doesn't usually come to the fore until the second book of the series, but there's always lots of groundwork in Book 1 as well. The Rai-Kirah trilogy is my personal favorite of her work, but the Bridge of D'Arnath series is probably of more interest from a romance angle.

    Martha Wells' Fall of Ile-Rien trilogy is great, as well. I've only read the first volume of her current series, but that's hitting some strong romance territory, too. (Her other work is standalones, but again, good romance.)
    Last edited by Jen526; July 20th, 2012 at 07:34 AM.

  13. #13
    Star Gawker ebusinesstutor's Avatar
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    Another vote for Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold. A great book and good series. Her Sharing Knife series is also good.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Olimious View Post
    Codex Alera I'm seriously thinking of trying this one, but after reading a couple of description and reviews, it says that the main character is actually pretty useless. Is this just at the start, because I cant handle books where the main character cant do much.
    Actually, one of the main points of the series, at least until the very end, is how much Tavi can do, despite not having magic of his own. If you need a main character who is magically powerful, then he does indeed fall short, but Tavi is extremely capable, despite his lack of magic. One might argue that's the whole point.

    Kingkiller Chronicles The most recent book series that I read, perfect example of what I want, if a bit light on the romance. People looking for things similar to me, try this out and you wont regret it.
    I'm amused you consider this series to be light on romance, though I suppose if you are looking at quantity of scenes as opposed to quality it makes sense.

    I'd second the recommendation of Dragon Prince by Melanie Rawn, though to be honest I wish I'd passed on Dragon Star.

    I would add to the list A Man of his Word which begins with The Magic Casement by Dave Duncan.

    Also, Once A Hero by Michael Stackpole would also fill all your criteria except for the fact that it's a stand-alone.

    A Wizard in Rhyme by Christopher Stasheff has both romance and adventure and the first few books are very good, though it gets repetitive after that.

    Also a bit D&D-flavored, but Rose of the Prophet by Weis and Hickman fits into your criteria as well.

  15. #15
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    Harbinger (Fate's Forsaken: Book One) by Shae Ford

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