Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Seven Essential Fantasy Reads

Last week, The New Yorker published an article called Seven Essential Fantasy Reads. It contains a list of 7 books recommended for "a beginning fantasy reader ready to graduate to more serious (but not too serious) fare":
  • The Dragonbone Chair by Tad Williams
  • Anything (but particularly Tigana) by Guy Gavriel Kay
  • Wizard’s First Rule by Terry Goodkind
  • Assassin's Apprentice by Robin Hobb
  • The Scions Of Shannara by Terry Brooks
  • The Name Of The Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
  • Gardens Of The Moon by Steven Erikson
I like the list above however I have a few points to make:

Currently, I'm halfway through Gardens of the Moon and I believe that it would scare anyone new to the genre. So I would replace Gardens Of The Moon with George R. R. Martin's outstanding A Game Of Thrones.

Kay and Hobb are my favorite authors and Tigana is one of my all time favorites. However it is a long book. I have the impression that one of his shorter books, such as The Lions Of Al-Rassan, would be more appropriate.

My third and last point is about The Name Of The Wind. I absolutely loved the book however I would really hesitate in writing down Rothfuss' name instead of Joe Abercrombie's. I read The Name Of The Wind and Abercrombie's First Law Trilogy back to back. Even though their stories and their styles are different, for me, it certainly would not be easy to pick one over the other. Therefore, I would add another book to the list above: The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie.

By the way, Aidan Moher wrote an excellent blog entry about this list where he highlights some pretty valid points.

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