A Hot Cup at the Last Station is a tale of lost love, ghost trains, and finding your way back to living, set in an old train depot turned coffee shop in a Minneapolis suburb. When the ghost of Christine Larson reaches out across the veil to her friends Mandy and Chad, what will be the price of forgiveness, and will Mandy and Chad be willing to pay? This story appeared at Tower of Light Fantasy. By Moonlight, an urban fantasy tale set in Minneapolis, follows Selma, a blind, middle aged magician as she tries to protect a new friend and potential lover from her half-fae brother.
Fast Gliding Down the Rails is a short horror story set on the defunct Minnesota Zephyr dinner train. When the aging tourist train decides to avoid being decommissioned by slipping through time and traveling forever, how will the passengers on the cursed train survive? Frozen Moment appeared in the anthology Deadly Encounters.
When Audrey finds the dead body of teenage runaway and unthinkingly snaps a photograph with her smart phone, she sets herself on a path a haunting and revenge. This story was nominated for the James B. Baker Award in short fiction. Over the Bridge , an urban fantasy set in Minneapolis and St. Paul, is the happy tale of a snarky Goth-girl, a snarly Unseelie, a dead body, and the Mississippi River.
It appeared online at The Harrow in July Protect and Serve tells the story of Constable George Wellner, who protects the citizens of Morningside, Minnesota, whether they are space aliens, vampires, or other fantastic creatures. This piece appeared online in June in Bewildering Tales. Rainfall set in the intersection between Minneapolis and the faerie realm, was published online in the February issue of Deep Magic.
When the voice of a dying boy speaks into his mind, James must overcome his own grief to help the boy understand what is happening to him. This story appears in the Summer issue of Golden Visions Magazine. Weaving Threads was published online in Drops of Crimson in June This urban fantasy story tell the tale of a young Minneapolis girl who feels trapped in the desperate life she leads and the storytelling spider who helps her see her way to freedom.
His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman. But as Lyra attempts to liberate the multiverse from theological rule, His Dark Materials pulls off a monumental accomplishment: enchantment and provocation in equal turn. The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss. And along with the strange and lyrical novella, The Slow Regard of Silent Things , there are no other books I would recommend more to someone wanting to dip their toe into fantasy waters.
The Lord of the Rings by J. Every location the Fellowship encountered possessed a rich history and language, showcasing songs and poetry and mythology that always spoke of more beyond the page.
But it was the four simple hobbits, bravely facing a world far larger and darker than their home in the Shire, that made every strange encounter relatable. Fighting orcs and spiders and worse, there was a nobility inverse to their size and a struggle between good and evil that resonates 62 years later.
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Despite its magical school setting, the series owed more to the wonder of C. Each book cares a little more deeply about its characters, who face the same struggles for meaning and purpose that the rest of us do. Malazan Book of the Fallen by Steven Erikson. The action spans continents, dimensions and, oh yeah, millennia. Robust, intriguing systems of magic? Two or three. Add to this a fresh takes on elves, the undead, shapeshifters and dragons as well as the introduction of some new entries for the fantasy menagerie , along with a number of jaw-dropping battles over the course of the series, and you have an epic story that will leave even the most jaded fantasy reader awestruck.
Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. The second series takes place years later, focusing on best friends living during an Industrial Revolution-like era. Sanderson plans to write two more series one in a modern, urban setting, the other in a futuristic, sci-fi setting , ensuring that Mistborn will appeal to readers of multiple genres. With a rich history and an original magic system that flourishes alongside the characters, Mistborn proves to be a landmark addition to the fantasy realm.
Kylar exists within a gritty world where greed and elemental magic exist in equal measure. Thrust into a conflict of world-shattering significance, he must choose between tranquility or violence to protect the life he knows.
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Weeks weaves realistic characters and a creative magic system into a narrative of epic scope, delivering a compelling trilogy that deserves its place among the best stories in fantasy. The Pendragon Cycle by Stephen R. First Book in the Series: Taliesin Description: While you might be tempted to pass on yet another take on the legend of King Arthur, this one is arguably the best. With extensive research to back him up, Stephen R. Lawhead takes on the infamous legend and transforms it into a fascinating story that could have happened. Arthur does not show up until book three, but the journey to get there is what makes this six-book series so engaging.
In a genre overcrowded with Arthurian books and movies, this one is worth the read.
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The Realm of the Elderlings by Robin Hobb. The interwoven stories found in the Realm of the Elderlings novels prove that Hobb can successfully build a rich fantasy world while simultaneously exploring the daily lives of beloved characters. Redwall by Brian Jacques. But stories following the brave residents of Redwall Abbey and Mossflower Woods are the kind of YA fiction that mesmerizes readers of all ages.
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Published in non-linear order, the series takes place in a familiar medieval world inhabited by various anthropomorphic animals. The danger feels threatening enough to lend high stakes to the battle of good and evil. Shannara by Terry Brooks. This fantasy tale encompasses 10 stories, with each story averaging a trilogy of books. The books are linked together by a family that manifests a magic user or two every few generations, a mysterious druid order and a tree that holds back hoards of demons. Your only question is whether to read the books in the order they were written or to tackle them in chronological order, since Terry Brooks wrote as many stories preceding The Sword of Shannara as those that follow.
There are so many different players on the chessboard, struggling for either power, survival or revenge, that the fifth volume could only deal with half of its key characters. But all of the religions, customs and histories of the seven kingdoms of Westeros and the free cities to the east still fit together as they jostle for position.
Science fiction. Fantasy. The universe. And related subjects.
Martin has been criticized for killing off his characters, but the brutality of this Machiavellian, patriarchal society only serves to make us care more deeply about the innocent and afflicted underdogs of the realm. The Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson. First Book in the Series: The Way of Kings Description: Brandon Sanderson is a masterfully technical worldbuilder, and the magic in his books follows a precise logic that gives it natural boundaries. But his greater gift is with character. The danger of fantasy literature is that its inhabitants can be so far removed from our world as to be completely unrelatable.
The Sword of Truth by Terry Goodkind.
Temeraire by Naomi Novik. What makes this series so engaging is the effort Novik has put into creating the society of dragons. Dragons range in size and skillset, hailing from different cultures and proving that humans are not the only sentient race. Part fantasy and part alternative history, the Temeraire series promises to captivate you.