Not too long ago, in an effort to fall asleep, I started thinking of fantastic fantasy authors in alphabetical order. It didn’t help me sleep, but I ended up with a pretty awesome list of fantasy authors I’d recommend (you can find that list here). Well, I’ve read some more pretty amazing fantasy since then, so the list has been begging to be updated. If there are favorites that you don’t see on this list, you might want to check my original list. If I’ve missed them completely, please tell me so I can add them to my never ending tbr. Enjoy!
A- The Last Smile in Sunder City by Luke Arnold. I fell in love with this book from the very beginning and I am happy to report that book two, Dead Man in a Ditch, continued the series magnificently. I can’t wait for book three!
B- The Three Dark Crows series by Kendare Blake. This series is delightfully dark. Kendare Blake isn’t all that nice to her characters and it makes for an enthralling series. I also really enjoyed Anna Dressed in Blood, which felt a little like an early episode of Supernatural (the TV show).
C- The Invisible Library series by Genevieve Cogman is so stinking entertaining! A little bit mystery, a little bit steampunk, with threads of urban fantasy thrown in for good measure. This series has some of the most unique use of magic in any fantasy I’ve read.
D- The Queens of Renthia series by Sarah Beth Durst. I devoured this series. The author had a new twist on the idea of nature spirits and I am so on board with what she came up with!
E- Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames. I first discovered this author in 2019, when I raced through this fantastic book. It’s about a group of has-been mercenaries who come out of retirement for one last adventure. It’s an adventure of epic proportions and I loved every moment of it.
F- Hollow Road by Dan Fitzgerald is an incredibly well-written book in a series that was unique and engrossing. I actually teared up at parts of book two, which is unusual for me.
G- Goblin by Eric Grissom, illustrated by Will Perkins. First of all, having a goblin as a main character is so cool! This graphic novel was enchanting and heartwarming. The story is beautifully told and the illustrations are incredible.
H- The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alex E. Harrow. Let me add in The Once and Future Witches, also by Alex E. Harrow. Basically, anything she writes is going to rock. I’ll stake my fantasy reader card on this fact.
The Ventifact Colossus by Dorian Hart, the first in the Heroes of Spira series. This has become one of my most recommended series. Perfect for fantasy newbies as well as seasoned readers, this series continues to fascinate and entertain.
I- The Shadow of What Was Lost by James Islington is fabulous. He’s such a confident writer, and I was immediately sucked into his world. This follows a small group of characters, my favorite being Caeden. I loved how complex Caeden was.
J- Redwall by Brian Jacques is an adorable fantasy geared toward younger readers. It features warrior mice, evil stoats, and berserker badgers. I would argue that every new-to-fantasy kid should read this book.
K- The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune is the sweetest book I’ve ever read that also includes the antichrist. I realize that probably paints a very odd picture of this cozy book, but to say that it feels like a hug in print is…yes, I probably should have led with that.
L- Kings and Daemons by Marcus Lee. The first in the Gifted and Cursed series, Kings and Daemons had that wonderful old-school fantasy feel that I love so very much.
M- The Night Circus and The Starless Sea (both standalone novels) by Erin Morgenstern are magical and immersive. The Night Circus became an instant favorite when I first read it in 2008 and it has stayed firmly in my “top five” list.
N-Douglas Niles. I enjoy pretty much any book he’s written. I wouldn’t group him with, say, Tolkien, but his books are just fun. Sometimes, a bit of fun is all that I need in a book. Look for his name among series such as Dragonlance and Forgotten Realms.
O- Hmmm…why can’t I think of any ‘O’ authors? What do you have for ‘o’?
P- Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce. Basically, anything by this author is going to be fantastic. I definitely suggest checking her books out.
Q- I’ve got nothing.
R- Jackaby by William Ritter. Mix Sherlock Holmes with a Doctor Who episode, set it in a gaslit setting and add a plethora of fantasy creatures and you’ve got the delight that is Jackaby. Incidentally, I also adore William Ritter’s middle grade fantasy series, Oddmire.
S- The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri is flipping incredible! I was basically useless while reading this book because when I didn’t have it shoved in front of my face I was talking about it, coming up with theories about what would happen next, and lamenting that the second book isn’t out yet.
Paladin Unbound by Jeffrey Speight is a wonderful book. I loved that classic D&D feel, although the books itself is not RPGLit. It is definitely one of my favorites from 2021.
Dragon Mage by M.L. Spencer (wow, there are a lot for ‘S’) is freaking amazing. After reading it, I’m planning to just automatically buy anything this author ever writes. If she were to publish a grocery list, I’d preorder it.
T- The Resurrectionist of Caligo by Wendy Trimboli and Alicia Zaloga was so much fun! A fantasy-mystery of the vaguely Victorian kind, the characters were well-developed and the story was clever. This book is just tons of fun.
U- I drew a blank on this letter.
V- The Withered King by Ricardo Victoria was a rip-roaring fantasy unlike any other. I especially liked the theme of redemption that was present in this book.
W- Anything by Margaret Weiss is good, but I’ll chuck in Soulforge, since I’m constantly going on about the Dragonlance Chronicles. Which are great, by the way. You should also make sure to read them. See what I did there? I’m pretty sneaky.
The Thousand Deaths of Ardor Benn by Tyler Whitesides is loads of fun. Ardor Benn is my favorite ruse artist extraordinaire and the story itself gallops along at a fantastic pace.
X- Nothing doing.
Y- Jane Yolen is the author of the Young Merlin trilogy, another one that I read at a younger age. It’s been quite a while since I’ve read anything other than her “How Does a Dinosaur” books (I have a toddler), but she’s one of those names that’s immediately recognizable in fantasy.
Well, I’ve got recommendations for most of the letters. What say you? What authors would you stick in each letter? Let me know!