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Topic: So Ive never read Paranormal....

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Subject: So Ive never read Paranormal....
Date Posted: 4/17/2013 12:05 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2011
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What would you say would be the best series to start with? I have mostly read young adult, horror and historical fiction. But I really want to branch out.


Any suggestions?

Date Posted: 4/17/2013 1:00 PM ET
Member Since: 2/11/2011
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It depends on what you might be interested in reading bout in this genre.  Are you interested in faery, vampires, witches, angels/demons, shapeshifters, assasins, trolls, etc?

Date Posted: 4/17/2013 4:38 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
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There is a general divide in paranormal fiction between "paranormal romance" where the focus is on 2 people meeting and falling in love, set in a larger story with paranormal elements, and "urban fantasy" where the focus is on the paranormal plotline (there may or may not be romantic elements to the story) but it's more concept or plot driven.

There are really great series that fall into both areas of paranormal ... if you tell us some things that you have read and liked, we can probably pick out some things that you could try and see if you like!

A few ideas ... if you liked Harry Potter, for example, then you will probably like "The Dresden Files" series by Jim Butcher, it's an adult series about a loner wizard who practices magic out in the real world. That falls into urban fantasy, there is no particular romatic focus to the books.

You might like the "Morganville Vampire" series by Rachel Caine, it's more YA, but a lot of adults read that series too. Also more in the urban fantasy line than the romance line.

If you liked Twilight, you might also like the "Sookie Stackhouse" series by Charlaine Harris. They have a more romantic focus than the 2 series I mentioned previously, but there is still plenty of paranormal plotline to focus on too.

Those are pretty basic series that a lot of people enjoy.

And, I will tell you right now that the best vampire book ever written is "Sunshine" by Robin McKinley. I highly, highly recommend it.

Last Edited on: 4/17/13 4:45 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 4/18/2013 1:09 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
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Sunshine!  Oh yes!  

That said, how much humor, romance, sex, violence, or horror you were looking for would really influence what I recommend. 

The horror fans have been talking about Rhiannon Frater.  (Too hard core for my tastes.)

I loved the humor of Gail Carriger's Soulless.

Last Edited on: 4/18/13 1:14 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/18/2013 12:57 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2010
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A few more suggestions

Ilona Andrews either series Kate Daniels or The Edge. The Edges series has more romance.  Kelley Armstrong Women of the Otherworld. Patricia Briggs has 2 different series. Oh and Nicole Peeler. Love them All.

I've never read Sunshine but I think I might like.

Last Edited on: 4/18/13 12:59 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/18/2013 4:39 PM ET
Member Since: 10/11/2007
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Rhiannon Frater is awesome :)

Date Posted: 4/18/2013 8:31 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2011
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WOW! Thanks. i like twilight, Harry potter, I have watched the True Blood series but ive heard the books are very different.

I like funny and romance. I like fantasty with action, So really i like everything. LOL


I have heard about the dresden files and I have a friend who told me to read them. i just thought they were more geared to men.


Im not real sure what kind of paranormal i like best yet. But Im intrigued by the thought of books about Faery> Jamie what books do you recommend for that?>

Date Posted: 4/18/2013 10:16 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
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Dresden is more urban fantasy, less romance, than many of the books in paranormal. So many men are more comfortable with it. But the series is great, definitely not limited to guys!

Another big series that I love is the Mercy books by Patricia Briggs. Fairies AND werewolves.

Date Posted: 4/18/2013 11:53 PM ET
Member Since: 2/20/2007
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"Sunshine" is wonderful (and if you like fantasy, read the rest of Robin McKinley's books too).

I second most of the books people just mentioned, and also Kim Harrison (the Hollows series), Kelley Armstrong, Laura Anne Gilman (the Retrievers and the connected Paranormal Scene Investigators series). The Dresden Files are good but the writing isn't the greatest in the first few - it gets better.

Date Posted: 4/19/2013 1:07 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,237
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But Im intrigued by the thought of books about Faery> Jamie what books do you recommend for that?>

I'm not Jamie, but there is a great series by Seanan McGuire (the October Daye series) that is quite popular. Great writing, and all about the Fae.

The Dresden Files are not just for guys, any more than Harry Potter is only for boys. They might not be the most literary books out there, but the world building is great, there is a lot of action, Harry is a great hero, so lots to like about the series.

Date Posted: 4/19/2013 12:01 PM ET
Member Since: 2/11/2011
Posts: 3,088
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Faeries: I second the October Daye Series.  Also: Meredith Gentry by Laurell K Hamilton (Anita Blake is bad) and the MacKayla Lane series by Karen Marie Moning.  Richelle Meads four book Dark Swan series.

Other Authors are as follows with creatures you will see in books:

Sherrilyn Kenyon: Dark Hunter: mythology Gods, Vampires, shifters

Jennifer Estep: Elemental Assasin series

Karen Chance: Cassandra Palmer series is about a clairvoyant, but it has vampires.

Kaylana Craft and Kim Harrison have good witch series. 

Keri Arthur: Riley Jenson series (half vampire/half werewolf) and her new series is good.

JR Ward: Vampires

Kresley Cole: vampires, fey, shifters, valkrie, gods

Gena Showalter: Demons/Greek Gods

Patricia Briggs: Coyote shifter.  First series I ever read in paranormal genre.  GREAT BOOKS! Haven't read last few in series.  Plan on rereading because havent read in years.

Nalini Singh: psychic/shifters

Rachel Vincent: Stray series (cat shifter)

Chloe Neill: Vampires

Carrie Vaughn: Kitty series--werewolf

Faith Hunter---skinwalker

Shelly Laurenston: Shifter

Cynthia Eden: Shifters and Angels

Alexandra Ivy: shifters and vampires and demons

Larissa Ione: apocalyse/demons

Lynn Viehl: vampires


Others series I havent read but I plan to read due to good reviews:

Jennifer Ashley, Darynda Jones, Ilona Andrews, Laura Anne Gilman, DD Barant, Shannon K Butcher (jim butcher's wife),

There is also some young adult authors I can recommend.  Let me know.



Date Posted: 4/19/2013 12:54 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,237
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If you like funny ... probably the best ones I've read in a while are the Charley Davidson series (starts with "First Grave on the Right") by Darynda Jones .... really funny and there is some romance too.

Date Posted: 4/20/2013 12:54 AM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2011
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Wow Yall are so awesome! Thank you so much!!

Sara_ Thank you I think i will read the Dresden files!


Jamie_ I would love to know your recomedations for YA! I actually read that genre most of the time. But ive been wanting to branch out.

BTW your list is going to be SOO helpful to me. Thank you!!

Date Posted: 4/20/2013 9:21 PM ET
Member Since: 3/21/2010
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May I also suggest if you just want to stick your toes into Paranormal Romace that is in a genre you read (historical romace) you may want to look into Hanna Howells Wherlock/Vaughn series.  They have a very subtle paranormality to them that is a good start IMO.  You could do what I did and just dive head long in.  I started with Christina Dodd's Walker series (I dont like her historicals but I do like her paranormal).  Then I went to Gena Showalter's Lords of the Underworld (goodness I cant wait for Kain's book).  I couldn't get into Vampires for the longest time then I tried the BDB series by JR Ward (she also does an angel series that is very dark) and my goodness if you like your hero's damages you will be in love with these boys.


Only YA that I have really read (besides the Twilight series) is the City of Bones (well that series minus City of Lost Souls because I was reading something else and have to get it from the Library again). 

I also wanted to recomend Charley Davison Series if you want a good laugh while reading.  They are great reads.


ETA: I am also thankful to this thread because that list is a godsend imo.

Last Edited on: 4/20/13 9:31 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/22/2013 12:00 AM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
Posts: 2,953
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My favorite funny paranormal romances are by Shelly Laurenston. I also like Patricia Briggs. Both of these authors write shapeshifters.

Oh and Darynda Jones books are great - starts with First Grave on the Left (I think that's what it is called)

Last Edited on: 4/22/13 12:01 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/23/2013 1:37 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2010
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I trend toward Urban Fantasy, so the Dresden Files are at the top of the list.  Also like Simon R. Green; Nightside, Secret History and Ghostfinders series.


Date Posted: 4/23/2013 7:19 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2011
Posts: 28
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What are you thoughts on the Sookie Stackhouse series?

Also someone told me today that i have to J R Ward....any thoughts on the dark lover series?

Date Posted: 4/24/2013 9:28 AM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2007
Posts: 1,334
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 I love the Sookie series.  I just read that the latest one coming out in May will be the last. 

Date Posted: 4/24/2013 12:56 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
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The Sookie books are quick reads, with lots of action and a love triangle in them. I got annoyed at Charlaine Harris because Sookie was always getting beaten up in every single book. It started to bother me after a while. But besides that, they are entertaining reads.
Date Posted: 4/24/2013 4:09 PM ET
Member Since: 5/21/2008
Posts: 1,228
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Great list/thread! Add me to those who recommend the Charley Davidson and Dresden files series.  CIty of Bones has been mentioned, too, and is one of my favorites.  Movie coming out this summer.  Morganville Vampires are favorites, too, that I've hooked several people on.

For YA, here are a few others I really enjoyed:

Darynda Jones, Darklighter Series - starts with Death and the Girl Next Door

Rachel Vincent, Soul Screamers series - starts with My Soul to Take

Melissa Marr, Wicked Lovely series (Fae) - starts with Wicked Lovely

Kelly Armstrong, the Gathering trilogy - starts with The Gathering

Jennifer Estep, Mythos Academy series - starts with Touch of Frost

Tate Hallaway, Vampire Princess of St. Paul trilogy - starts with Almost to Die For

Jeri Smith-Ready, Shade trilogy - starts with Shade

If you're looking for light, funny paranormal my absolute favorite is the Demon Hunting Soccer Mom series by Julie Kenner, starting with Carpe Demon.  She's on my keeper shelf.  Other series are:

The Accidental Werewolf series

Broken Heart, Oklahoma series

Accidental Demon Slayer series

Katie McAlister has several series

And not as light, but the White Trash Zombie series is good, too.

You're gonna have so much fun finding all these new authors!

Date Posted: 4/25/2013 11:57 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2011
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WOW Erin....Thanks for that list!! This is really turning out to be a GREAT thread!

Date Posted: 4/26/2013 1:18 PM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
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Just popped in to see if you found anything you liked.

Date Posted: 4/26/2013 3:12 PM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 13,991
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Another terrific urban/contemporary book that involves the Fae is "Carousel Tides," can't recall the author.

Also a book called "Except the Queen," another contemporary fantasy with strong Fae influence.

I loved the Sookie books for a while, but kinda got tired of Sookie, who turned into a bit of a priss, and I prefer more Fae and less vamp, and less romance. Some is OK, but as a secondary element.

 There's a similar book out by an author named Suzanne Johnson, who's done two books "River Road" was the newest, which I thought was fabulous, and "Royal Street," which I have not read yet but have requested. The covers look like real cheesy romances, but they are definitely not. Kinda like Sookie, but with many more "unreal" characters, and a more realistic heroine.

Date Posted: 4/26/2013 5:28 PM ET
Member Since: 3/21/2010
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Thank you to those who recomended Sunshine.  It was a great read!!  Now i have book 1 of the dresden files to read.

Date Posted: 4/29/2013 1:57 PM ET
Member Since: 4/2/2011
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I just read Sunshine! IT WAS SO AWESOME!!

My next book is In the accidental werewolve series by Dakota Cassidy