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Old 10-10-2012, 11:07 AM   #1
ekster
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Looking for darker recommendations

Hi,

Looking at the classics with a happy ending thread reminded me that I love to delve into the darker and not so happy books from time to time-- and it seems the time is now!

While I prefer scifi and fantasy the most, any fiction is good as I'm not picky about genres. I read anything and everything that can be interesting. As for what's good? I'm not picky either. Just as long as it's not Twilight or Shades of Grey

I'm more interested in books or stories with conflicts where good doesn't exactly win, where there are heavy consequences for winning, or where there isn't a clear 'good vs evil' conflict, but more of one side vs another, both right in their own way. A complete absence of good and evil (in the tradition sense, like Lord of the Rings) is a bonus
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:34 AM   #2
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Don't know if this fits your wants, but Joe Abercrombie's First Law series is not your fun romp. Full of nasty characters (who sometimes show remarkable humanity), fools, bloody fights, betrayal, love and love lost.

The Blade Itself
Before They Are Hanged
Last Argument of Kings
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Old 10-10-2012, 11:51 AM   #3
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A great fantasy I just read it The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch. It's a very good read, and the main characters are thieves. Some humor but also plenty of grim and violent happenings, and not everyone necessarily makes it out alive.

Also check out Scandinavian crime, like Steig Larsson, Jo Nesbo, Anrnaldur Indridasson. Plenty of dark, existentialist brooding there. What does it say about me that I enjoy the genre tremendously?
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Old 10-10-2012, 12:56 PM   #4
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Well, there's lots in the Classics that don't necessarily have happy endings. *g* Off the top of my head, I'd recommend Frankenstein...then there's Virginia Woolf. They run the gamut but...I'm not sure they could be called your typical happy endings. The only one that comes to mind with a "happy" ending might be Night and Day. In fantasy have you ever read Stormbringer by Michael Moorcock? That one might be good. Anyway, that's just a few off the top of my head.
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Old 10-10-2012, 01:14 PM   #5
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Ohh, First Law is a good choice. Loved the Nine-finger character.

Much of Anne Rice's stuff doesn't do a strict "good and evil."
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Old 10-10-2012, 02:09 PM   #6
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Thanks for the suggestions so far.

I've added First Law and The Lies of Locke Lamora to my to read list. They sound very interesting.

And usuallee, it means nothing bad as I've always enjoyed Scandinavian books and films when it comes to this theme.

I'll also check out some of Virginia Woolf's books. For Frankenstein, I've read it a dozen times already. Great book! And I've also read most of Moorcock's books.

As for Anne Rice, I've liked her stories but I had trouble reading her books for some reason. Something about her writing style just doesn't appeal to me.
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Old 10-10-2012, 02:24 PM   #7
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Clive Barker's The Great and Secret Show.
Stephen R Donaldson's The Gap Cycle.
Dan Simmons' Joe Kurtz novels.

Last edited by DiapDealer; 10-10-2012 at 02:29 PM.
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:13 PM   #8
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If you are interested in Mystery/Thriller, try the Charlie Parker series by John Connolly.
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Old 10-10-2012, 03:51 PM   #9
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Not Scifi or Fantasy, but Mine by Robert McCammon is one of the darkest books I have ever read.

Last edited by ~Kate; 10-10-2012 at 06:06 PM.
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Old 10-10-2012, 04:26 PM   #10
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I forgot to suggest Charlie Huston. Most of his books don't divide the world into good/evil and he writes in several genres, from vampire to SF to crime.
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Old 10-10-2012, 08:35 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ekster View Post
While I prefer scifi and fantasy the most, any fiction is good as I'm not picky about genres.
.
.
.
I'm more interested in books or stories with conflicts where good doesn't exactly win, where there are heavy consequences for winning, or where there isn't a clear 'good vs evil' conflict, but more of one side vs another, both right in their own way. A complete absence of good and evil (in the tradition sense, like Lord of the Rings) is a bonus
You want dark?
Nasty characters? No clearcut good guys and bad guys?
Oh-kaay.
Tom Kratman's CALIPHATE is one dark and nasty cautionary tale.
http://www.baenebooks.com/chapters/1...1416555455.htm

Saberhagen's EMPIRE OF THE EAST might also meet your specs.

S.M. Stirling's DRAKAS series. MARCHING THROUGH GEORGIA. (White supremacist slaver versus Nazis. 'Nuff said!)

For a kinder gentler racist society, Stirling's CONQUISTADOR. (When the KKK-types are the good guys, the bad guys...)
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Old 10-10-2012, 08:57 PM   #12
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The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie might be good too. Here's the author's description:
Three men. One battle. No Heroes.

It is stand-alone although there are some cross-over characters with the First Law trilogy. I haven't read the First Law books yet, so I don't know if there are spoilers in The Heroes for those books, but the reviews I scanned don't indicate that there are.

One of the comments there also mentioned Glen Cook's "Black Company" books which look like they meet your criteria too. Again, I haven't read them, but have heard good things about them.
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:16 PM   #13
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It is stand-alone although there are some cross-over characters with the First Law trilogy. I haven't read the First Law books yet, so I don't know if there are spoilers in The Heroes for those books, but the reviews I scanned don't indicate that there are.
Haven't finished Heroes yet, but yes. It's has the same feeling as the First Law books.

No real spoilers. Shared somewhat minor characters from First Law. Definitely like what I've read so far. The story might make a bit more sense if you read the trilogy, but I think it's enjoyable by itself.

There's also Best Served Cold by Abercrombie that also shares the same world. Have a copy, but haven't started reading it yet.

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Old 10-10-2012, 09:26 PM   #14
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Cool The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher

The major story arc in Jim Butcher's series of novels, The Dresden Files sounds exactly like what you're looking for. There are presently thirteen of them with the fourteenth coming out next month.
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:27 PM   #15
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Quote:
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Not Scifi or Fantasy, but Mine by Robert McCammon is one of the darkest books I have ever read.
Oooh - thanks for that. I have Mine on my TBR pile, but "darkest books I have ever read" sounds like time for me to place it higher on the pile. Loves me some dark.
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