Getting Away From It All: Favorite Fantasy Series

  • Thieves World, by many
  • A wonderful series. Thieves World is a collection of short stories by various authors, all set in the same city. The characters of one author interact with those of the others, so whether they are viewed as good or bad depends on which author is writing. I just read on Lynn Abbey's home page that they are going to continue this series... and Feist is going to write one of the stories!
  • The Riftwar Saga by Raymond Feist
  • I like all of his books, but I think the original series was the best. I think Feist does an excellent job of developing the "great epic", the all consuming war against good and evil, and the importance of the actions of a handful of people in helping the good guys win. The characters are also very interesting. I was lucky enough to be in Seattle when he visited Elliot Bay Book Company.
  • The Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien
  • This is probably on most people's fantasy lists...
  • The Gaurdians of the Flame by Joel Rosenberg
  • This is a very interesting and well written series, IMHO. I've enjoyed every addition to the series. The characters are very interesting and unique. Feist and Rosenberg are working together on a book set in Midkemia, which I am really looking forward to.
  • The Warlord of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • This might not technically be fantasy, but I don't know if I would call it pure Science Fiction either. Not the best literature in the world, but the imagination behind the stories is incredible.
Author Comments: 

I have to admit that I haven't read much more fantasy, at least lately. I just wait for these authors to release new books. I have read DragonLance, Xanth, and some other series when I was much younger. But, these days, fantasy is something I read when I want a break from the other things I'm interested in and don't feel like spending all my reading time on the genre.

The only fantasy series I've read in recent years is Terry Pratchett's Discworld series (the Watch books in particular). But many moons ago (and who knows how I'd feel about them now), I remember loving the Shannara books by Terry Brooks, the Myth books by Robert Lynn Asprin, and The Belgariad by David Eddings.

And I'm willing to admit to loving The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis and the Fafhrd & Grey Mouser series by Fritz Lieber without any "I was alot younger then" qualifications.

I tried reading one of the Shannara books when I was younger, but I just couldn't get into it. It was way too dense for me. I think I felt that one series like that (Tolkien) was enough.

I think that for me, I grew out of both DragonLance and Xanth, but the others I listed are ones that I continue to enjoy.

Also, in case you are interested, Thieves World was editted by Asprin, and is basically an anthology of short stories by several authors that takes place in the same setting (same city), but they use different characters. It is maybe more "adult" fantasy, in that there are more sexual situations and never any clear good or bad guys (especially when, for one author, a character is a good guy and, for the next, a bad guy).