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History of Westeros • View topic - Good one-off fantasy novels?

Good one-off fantasy novels?

Fantasy, sci-fi, historical, non-fiction, whatever you've been reading lately!

Good one-off fantasy novels?

Postby Phoenix » Tue Jul 01, 2014 11:49 pm

Can anyone recommend good one-off fantasy novels? I'm keen to delve into the genre more, but so many of the good books come in series. It makes sense, since if an author has gone through all the effort of world-building then they probably want to explore more of the universe they've created; however, I usually feel compelled to read the full series, and there just isn't enough time in the world! I'm also constantly torn between starting a new series or completing an old one - I'm sure book anxiety must be a thing, when you're trying to decide which book to read next and you get overwhelmed at all the amazing books on offer >.<

Any ideas welcome!
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Re: Good one-off fantasy novels?

Postby Azizal » Wed Dec 10, 2014 3:44 pm

Lord of Light is awesome, that comes to mind right away.

So is GRRM's Dying of the Light, (sci fi).

If you like historical fiction I have a ton more recommendations. :)
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Re: Good one-off fantasy novels?

Postby Phoenix » Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:47 pm

Fan: "Why do you keep killing off all the characters I love?!"
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Re: Good one-off fantasy novels?

Postby GrumpyTree » Mon Apr 27, 2015 5:43 pm

Just finished reading Banewreaker and Godslayer by Jacqueline Carey.It's Published as two books but was meant to be one. It's a "sort of" Lord of the Rings tribute written from the "villians" perspective. Very interesting and beautiful writing. I will always love LOTR but after reading so much GRRM you really start to wonder what's going on in the "bad guys" head.
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Re: Good one-off fantasy novels?

Postby Azizal » Sat May 09, 2015 1:26 am

Sharon Kay Penman's A Sunne in Splendour is excellent on its own and because it covers the Wars of the Roses which have inspired many things in ASOIAF. She's written quite a few other historical fiction novels that are solid (and some historical mysteries which I have not read).

I like Pride of Carthage a lot because it has shifting POV's and tells the story really well. It loses a few points for historical liberties being taken, but there aren't too many. I read it on GRRM's recommendation, which he listed on his site before Feast was published. It is the Second Punic War, and Hannibal is one of the POV's. However, so is a fairly ordinary soldier, a Numidian horseman, a camp follower, etc.

I am enjoying The Accursed Kings series, also recommended by GRRM. Really great intrigue. Setting is France right after the Templars are put down. Starts with the reign of Phillip the Fair.

Gates of Fire is an amazing telling of the Battle of Thermopylae, so the same story told by the movie 300, but far more realistic and gritty and historically accurate.

My favorite historical fiction author may be Mary Renault. She mostly wrote ancient Greek and Alexandrian era material. Last of the Wine is set during the Peloponnesian War and has Socrates, Plato, Alcibiades, Lysander and other famous people of that era. The King Must Die is genius, told from the POV of Theseus. She tells the story in a realistic manner in a way that shows how myths would've developed. Writing historical fiction set in a pre-literate era is a tall order but she completely pulls it off, and wrote a solid sequel too.
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Re: Good one-off fantasy novels?

Postby CryHavoc » Mon Jun 01, 2015 9:55 pm

I just started The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro. I'm really enjoying it so far. It's (gasp!) only 317 pages long.
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