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I'm looking for fantasy recs of books that are somewhat new, roughly no older than sometime within the last 3 years. That includes series as well --if it's long -running, then I probably already know about it : ) I've focused more on sci-fi, paranormal, urban fantasy, and alternate history books during the last couple of years, and I know there's some good fantasy out there that I've missed -- I'm just having trouble finding it!
I tend to like fantasy that is similar to Lynn Flewelling's Nightrunner series, The Curse of Challion by Lois McMaster Bujold, A Hero Born by Michael A. Stackpole, Cast in Shadow by Michelle Sagara, the Farseer trilogy by Robin Hobb. Though I love Stephen R. Donaldson's Thomas Covenant books, I really don't want anything that dark right now.
So what have I been missing lately? ~ Thanks, Marie
Why not try something from the World Fantasy Awards? Here’s the last few years …
Winner - Ysabel Guy Gavriel Kay (Viking Canada/Penguin Roc)
Territory Emma Bull (Tor)
Fangland John Marks (Penguin Press)
Gospel of the Knife Will Shetterly (Tor)
The Servants Michael Marshall Smith (Earthling Publications)
Winner - Inferno: New Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Ellen Datlow, Editor (Tor)
Five Strokes to Midnight Gary A. Braunbeck & Hank Schwaeble, Eds. (Haunted Pelican Press)
Wizards: Magical Tales From The Masters of Modern Fantasy Jack Dann & Gardner Dozois, Eds. (Berkley)
The Coyote Road: Trickster Tales Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling, Eds.(Viking)
Logorrhea: Good Words Make Good Stories John Klima, Editor (Bantam Spectra)
Winner - Soldier of Sidon, Gene Wolfe (Tor)
Lisey's Story, Stephen King (Scribner; Hodder & Stoughton)
The Privilege of the Sword, Ellen Kushner (Bantam Spectra; Small Beer Press)
The Lies of Locke Lamora, Scott Lynch (Gollancz; Bantam Spectra)
The Orphan's Tales: In the Night Garden, Catherynne M. Valente (Bantam Spectra)
Winner - Salon Fantastique, Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling, eds. (Thunder's Mouth)
Cross Plains Universe: Texans Celebrate Robert E. Howard, Scott A. Cupp & Joe R. Lansdale, eds.(MonkeyBrain and the Fandom Association of Central Texas)
Retro Pulp Tales, Joe R. Lansdale, ed. (Subterranean)
Twenty Epics, David Moles & Susan Marie Groppi, eds. (All-Star Stories)
Firebirds Rising, Sharyn November, ed. (Firebird)
Winner - Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore (Harvill; Knopf)
Hal Duncan, Vellum (Macmillan; Del Rey)
Bret Easton Ellis, Lunar Park (Knopf; Macmillan)
Graham Joyce, The Limits of Enchantment (Gollancz; Atria)
Patricia A. McKillip, Od Magic (Ace)
Paul Park, A Princess of Roumania (Tor)
Winner - The Fair Folk ed. Marvin Kaye (Science Fiction Book Club)
Weird Shadows Over Innsmouth ed. Stephen Jones (Fedogan & Bremer)
Polyphony 5 ed. Deborah Layne and Jay Lake (Wheatland Press)
Adventure Vol. 1 ed. Chris Roberson (MonkeyBrain Books)
Nova Scotia: New Scottish Speculative Fiction ed. Neil Williamson and Andrew J. Wilson (Crescent Books)
Winner - Susanna Clarke, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (Bloomsbury)
Stephen R. Donaldson, The Runes Of the Earth (Putnam; Gollancz)
China Miéville, Iron Council (Del Rey; Pan Macmillan UK)
Sean Stewart, Perfect Circle (Small Beer Press)
Gene Wolfe, The Wizard Knight (Tor, two volumes)
Winner - Acquainted With The Night ed. Barbara & Christopher Roden (Ash Tree Press)
Winner - Dark Matter: Reading The Bones ed. Sheree R. Thomas (Warner Aspect)
The Faery Reel: Tales from the Twilight Realm ed. Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling (Viking)
Polyphony 4 ed. Deborah Layne & Jay Lake (Wheatland Press)
The First Heroes: New Tales of the Bronze Age ed. Harry Turtledove & Noreen Doyle (Tor)
I haven't read anything by him -- just went and checked out the summary for Mistborn, and it looks pretty interesting. I know I've seen the cover before, but I've never picked it up :) Thanks for the rec, it's going on my list!
Last Edited on: 3/4/09 4:34 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Thanks for the ideas-- I've already looked up a few on Amazon. I tried Kushner's Privilege of the Sword sometime last year, and I could never get into it. I read over half the book before I gave it up. What did you think of it? I haven't read Swordspoint -- would it have made a difference if I had?
I plan on eventually reading Donaldson's Runes of the Earth, but rereading the first two trilogies will be a requirement for me, and I'm not quite up the sheer amount of dark, depressing reading material that encompasses yet : ) Loved them the first time around though.
Reading Swordspoint would make a difference in Kushner's book. Her world has very complicated political set up. While I love her books, they are not for everyone. They feel kinda like a dry witty chess game.
I'd also mention Scott Lynch's ongoing series, The Gentlemen Bastards Sequence. I've read The Lies of Locke Lamora, and thought it was really good. I've been meaning to get around to Red Seas Under Red Skies for quite a while, but haven't had the opportunity yet.
Debbie: I actually already have The Blade Itself by Abercrombie-- I picked it up for $.99 at the Salvation Army back in the summer thinking it was historical adventure ( and because the cover was cool : ). It's been languishing on a shelf since then. Thanks for the rec! I now have my book for the weekend : )
Jordan: I know The Lies of Locke Lamora was really acclaimed when if first came out, but from the summary it seemd more YA adventure than fantasy. How would you categorize it?
JB: I looked at the wiki article on Rothfuss -- the book looks interesting, but once I saw the t-shirt the author was wearing in his pic, I knew I had to try the book :)
Emily: Have you read the Foreigner seris by Cherryh? Your description of Kushner's world immediately made me think of this series -- it took me several tries spaced out over a few years to get past the first 50 pages of Foreigner, but once I did, I was completely sucked into the series.
I really appreciate all the recommendations! Thanks everyone!
Last Edited on: 3/5/09 11:29 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Nina Kiriki Hoffman really deserves to be more wide known. She is great. And leaves me with this nice happy feeling that there is hope and sun in the world. Rather surprising as she has tough subjects in her books such as child abuse survivors and siblings who fight really nasty. They have started to release her books as YA. While she kinda isn't, at least this makes the books easier to find. And they are really worth looking for.
I recently finished Brent Weeks' Night Angel Trilogy
Its new and wonderful!!!! Very fantasy, magic, hero (assasin), a bit shocking with too-real situations in the beginning....
very very good!
I think Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel's Legacy series is some of the best fantasy being written today. Each novel is an 800-page brick, and there is a fair amount of graphic sex, but it's essential to the plot (which is nicely convoluted), the world is incredibly well-realized, the politics and the action are written equally well, the characters are some of the best I've read, and the mythology is a fantastic mix of recognizable and new which actually manages to feel mythic. And if you've already read these, then keep in mind that a new book set in that world is due out at the end of June (Naamah's Kiss) and a completely new novel is due out next week featuring genetically engineered werewolves along the Texas border (Santa Olivia).
Also, Elizabeth Bear is an author that has kind of burst onto the scene this decade -- fifteen novels to her name so far, all over the map genre-wise. Her Jenny Casey novels are really good space opera, her Promethean Age novels are good urban fantasy/Fae Folk, New Amsterdam and Seven for a Secret are vampire mysteries, All the Windwracked stars takes place after Ragnarok, A Companion to Wolves (with Sarah Monette) is realistic animal companion fantasy, and she has some random stand-alones. I'm sure there's something in there you'll like. :)