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Old 03-03-2013, 04:35 PM   #31
AndrewH
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Tad Williams' Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn series, which begins with The Dragonbone Chair is great epic fantasy. Definitely the farmboy (kitchen boy in this case) becomes hero monomyth formula. Which isn't to say it's formulaic...

Barry Hughart's The Chronicles of Master Li and Number Ten Ox, which begins with Bridge of Birds is wonderful. Set in "an ancient China that never was", this trilogy (each book is stand-alone) is a cross between epic fantasy, detective story, mystery, and humour. The first book is truly exceptional, the next two aren't nearly as good as the first... they're merely great.

Guy Gavriel Kay's works are excellent (except Ysabel), one of the best fantasy writers in my opinion. However, I wouldn't say his novels are epic fantasy. Historical fantasy would probably be a better categorization. Wonderful books, nevertheless (except Ysabel). Tigana and A Song for Arbonne are probably my favourites, followed closely by Last Light of the Sun and Under Heaven.

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Old 03-03-2013, 05:21 PM   #32
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Have you tried Patrick Rothfuss yet? I really enjoyed The Name of the Wind and I've read people comparing the writing style to Robin Hobb's.
It's not bad, but Rothfuss is overrated.
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Old 03-03-2013, 05:31 PM   #33
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Terry Brooks Shannara series is quite good. It also includes the Word & Void series.

David Gemmell's The Drenai Saga is very good.
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Old 03-03-2013, 06:20 PM   #34
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I tend to avoid the Tolkien wannabes but I do like old school fantasies like Glory Road.
Mostly I like my fantasy on the light side with the ocassional Donaldson on the side.
Don't know about the ebook availability on these but I rather enjoyed:

L. Sprague DeCamp's fantasies, especially his Harold Shea romps. The Complete Enchanter is a good start.

Brian Daley's Coramonde duo.

Fritz Leiber's Fafhrd and the Mouser collections.
(I really really like Lean Times in Lanhkmar. A fantasy realm with a real economy. Conan never had to deal with an economic depression.)

Michael Moorcock's Eternal Champion cycle.

Roger Zelazny's Jack of Shadows and Madwand

Haven't read any yet but I've heard good things about Glen Cook's Black Company series.

In the portal fantasy sub-genre:

Gordon R. Dickson's Dragon Knight series.

Alan Dean Foster's Spellsinger Cycle

Christopher Stasheff's Wizard in Rhyme. Volumes 4 and 6 are a bit flat but the rest are a lot of fun. He does try to build in a "realistic" medieval mindset into that setting.

Rick Cook's Wiz Biz is a lot of fun, especially to the Unix aware. Starting with Wizard's Bane and moving to The Wizardy Compiled and the rest. Lots of programming in-jokes.

More adventure than fantasy but also a classic: Philip Jose Farmer's World of Tiers series.

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Old 03-03-2013, 06:21 PM   #35
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Daniel Abraham's The Long Price Quartet( A Shadow in Summer, A Betrayal in Winter, An Autumn War and The Price of Spring) is excellent. The books stand alone plotwise but since they contain spoilers for the earlier volumes.

And he is two books into a new series which has been compared to ASOFAI, The Dagger and the Coin.
http://www.avclub.com/articles/danie...ns-path,55223/
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:18 PM   #36
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Harry, might I suggest Silverlock by John Myers Myers? Your background in literary works would make it natural fit. Available as a e-book, no DRM.

It is a Fantasy/Literary take on A Pilgrim's Progress. And a good read...

(If i may quote the opening line - "If I had wanted to live, I would have died."

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Old 03-03-2013, 08:35 PM   #37
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The Borderlands series by Lorna Freeman is great. It's about a runaway farm boy turned soldier turned hero. The only problem is that there are only three books in the series and the author seems to have writer's block or other issues lately, so no clue if a fourth book is ever forthcoming. None of the books end in a cliffhanger, so you could read them all. But like other good books, you're left wanting more.

The Hurog duology by Patricia Briggs is pretty good too. It's about a lord's son, who was abused by his father, going off on a quest to regain his lands and prove his ability to rule after pretending to be an idiot for 10-15 years.

You might also want to try the Sword of Change books by Patricia Bray.

Oh, and if you like young adult, anything by Tamora Pierce. I recommend starting with Alanna: The First Adventure.

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Old 03-03-2013, 08:58 PM   #38
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I've only read The Last Light of the Sun and Tigana so far. Of those two, I'd start with Tigana. I liked Last Light too, but felt that Tigana was better. Plus it's more epic fantasy than Last Light, which is more historical fantasy.
Actually, the Kay books that I liked best was the Fionavar Tapestry trilogy. It definitely fits the current topic (High Fantasy) and was a very good series. After that I liked the Lions of Al-Rasan (his spin on El Cid) and the Sarantine Mosaic, which isn't high fantasy.
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Old 03-03-2013, 09:06 PM   #39
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Loved the Harald Shae stories by De Camp and Pratt. I don't know why I forgot the Brian Daley's series, definitely High Fantasy with a twist and one of my favorite books (also came out recently as e-books!) The black Company books are very good and they just came out in e-books about a month or two ago. Cook also has another series, the Dread Empire, which is very good. Both are fantasy, and possibly High Fantasy, but with a twist. All are available as ebooks now.

I like Gordan Dickson's Dragon Knight series (rather similar to the Harald Shae stories), but they aren't available as ebooks yet. I would buy them in a heart beat if they were.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:02 PM   #40
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Guy Gavriel Kay's works are excellent (except Ysabel), one of the best fantasy writers in my opinion. However, I wouldn't say his novels are epic fantasy. Historical fantasy would probably be a better categorization. Wonderful books, nevertheless (except Ysabel). Tigana and A Song for Arbonne are probably my favourites, followed closely by Last Light of the Sun and Under Heaven.
I tend to agree with this. I loved Tigana, but I wouldn't have called it epic fantasy for some reason. I tend to think of it as literary, but historical is possibly better. I haven't read any of his others to know how well they would fit.
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Old 03-04-2013, 03:20 AM   #41
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Can anyone recommend some good fantasy that I might not have read? My favourite type of fantasy is the "epic quest" type of book. I enjoy Tolkien (obviously!), Brandon Sanderson, David Eddings. Any recommendations to books in a similar style would be appreciated.

Thanks!
I recommend the 5 Gods series by Lois McMaster Bujold. The Curse of Chalion is the first book, followed by Paladin of Souls. The third book is The Hallowed Hunt, but its set in a different part of the countryside, in a period before. It was written third, and makes more sense after reading the other ones.

Lois writes other SF (for Baen), and her Sharing Knife quad is good, but I like Paladin of Souls best (of the fantasy.)
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Old 03-04-2013, 03:24 AM   #42
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Just registered to tell you. Steven Erikson's Malazan book of the fallen is a must read for a lover of epic fantasy. 10 volumes.
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Old 03-04-2013, 05:40 AM   #43
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Thanks for all the recommendations. All greatly appreciated!
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Old 03-04-2013, 06:13 AM   #44
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When I was trying to answer this question earlier, I turned around to see what was on my bookshelves. Then realised that's not going to work any more. Most of my books are now invisible.
That's exactly the problem with ebooks versus pbooks. I was lamenting recently how I can sit in my library, have my eyes roam across the spines of hundreds of books I have purchased and read and recall whether I enjoyed them, hated them, whatever, but with my ebooks -- out of sight, out of mind.

I think this is a major problem with ebooks. Usually, I read an ebook and when done, I delete it. I see no sense in keeping it "handy" because I am not going to reread it, especially with a TBR pile as large as mine.

And this problem bothered me enough that I have speculated on my blog about whether ebooks will be the demise of authorial greatness. I think that a significant part of an author's enahnced reputation comes about from readers seeing the author's name and book on a library shelf. When I bring visitors into my library, they scan the books and often reach for a book or two to take off the shelf and read the dust jacket and perhaps open. I've not been anywhere where someone wants to do the same (or does the same) with ebooks.

For any who are interested in my blog post on authorial greatness, here is the link: Are eBooks the Death Knell of Authorial Greatness?
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Old 03-04-2013, 06:57 AM   #45
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J. V. Jones http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._V._Jones has written two fantasy series, "The Book of Words" and "The Sword of Shadows" of which the second is more epic. Her stand-alone novel "The barbed coil" is also quite good. Oh and the author is female ;-)
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