Reality is too harsh and less colourful so fantasy exists. We all love fantasy. We all fantasize about a perfect world, a perfect future that does not exist. In this article, we are going to read about the 15 most influential fantasy books of all time – that are certainly pleasing to the eyes but the struggle is in both reality and fantasy.
Most Influential Fantasy Books of All Time – 15 Books
- Peter Pan – J.M. Barrie
- The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe – C. S. Lewis
- The Lord of the Rings – J. R. R. Tolkien
- Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
- Dragonflight – Anne McCaffrey
- A Wizard of Earthsea – Ursula K. Le Guin
- The Princess Bride – William Goldman
- Howl’s Moving Castle – Diana Wynne Jones
- A Game of Thrones – George R. R. Martin
- Twilight – Stephenie Meyer
- Who Fears Death – Nnedi Okorafor
- A Court of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J. Maas
- The Fifth Season – N. K. Jemisin
- An Ember in the Ashes – Sabaa Tahir
- Circe – Madeline Miller
Peter Pan – J.M. Barrie
Peter Pan, the playful boy who refuses to grow up, lands in the proper middle-class home of the Darlings to look for his shadow. He becomes friends with Wendy, Michael and John and teaches them how to fly with a little support from fairy dust. Tinker Bell and Peter Pan whisk them off to the Never-land where they meet the Little Lost Boys, the Red Indians, Captain Hook, and pirates.
The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe – C. S. Lewis
There is a secret land frozen in eternal winter beyond the wardrobe door called Narnia. It is a magical country that is waiting to be set free. Lucy is the first person who gets to know about this secret door. At first, her brothers and sister do not believe her tale of visiting Narnia. But soon, Edmund, Peter and Susan step beyond the wardrobe door themselves. They find a nation that is is is buried under the evil spell of the White Witch. When they meet Aslan the lion, they realize that they are up for a great adventure and bravely joined the battle to set Narnia free.
The Lord of the Rings – J. R. R. Tolkien
During ancient times, the Rings of Power were designed by the Elven smiths, and Sauron forged the One Ring filling it with his power of being the Dark Lord so that he could rule over all the others. But, the One Ring was taken from Sauron and even though he searched Middle-Earth he still couldn’t find it. After years, by chance, it reached the hands of the hobbit called Bilbo Baggins. When the hobbit reached his eleventy-first birthday he vanished, leaving the Ruling Ring to his young cousin Frodo. What will happen next?
Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
After tumbling down the rabbit hole, Alice finds herself far away from home and reality in the absurd world called Wonderland. This book is pure magic for young kids. But, like most of the books that fall in the category of Children’s Literature, Alice and her Wonderland has some themes that make it a perfect read for grownups as well.
Dragonflight – Anne McCaffrey
According to the nobles of Benden Weyr, Lessa is just a tattered kitchen girl and nothing else. For most of her life, she has endured by serving those who deceived her father and took over his properties. Now, the time has arrived for Lessa to get rid of her disguise and accept her stolen birthright. But everything alters when she gets familiar with a queen dragon. They will create an inseparable bond. It will guard them when, for the very first time in centuries, Lessa will feel danger from an evil substance named Thread. Thread is a creature that falls like rain and ruins all that it touches. Now Lessa has to risk her own life along with her beloved dragon to protect the world.
A Wizard of Earthsea – Ursula K. Le Guin
A Wizard of Earthsea is about Ged. He is the greatest sorcerer in all of Earthsea. In his wild youth, Ged was called Sparrowhawk. Sparrowhawk is hungry for knowledge and power. He is messed up with long-held secrets. This story is about Ged’s testing – how he mastered the words of power, went beyond death’s threshold to re-establish the equilibrium, and how he tamed an ancient dragon.
The Princess Bride – William Goldman
When Goldman was a boy he loved to hear his father read The Princess Bride, a classic by S. Morgenstern. But, when he grew up he realized that his dad forgot to give a reaction to the boring parts of the story. So, he reconstructed the good parts that reached his ears to delight the grownups and the wise kids. I mean, everyone should read about what happens when the most gorgeous girl marries the most charming man and the man turns out to be nothing like one of her dreams?
Howl’s Moving Castle – Diana Wynne Jones
Sophie’s misfortune is that she is the eldest of three daughters. She is fated to fail wretchedly if she ever leaves home to seek after her destiny. But when she innocently attracts the anger of the Witch of the Waste, Sophie finds herself under a horrifying spell that alters her into an old lady. Her only opportunity at breaking it lies in the ever-moving castle: the Wizard Howl’s Castle. But will it be as easy as it seems with the Howl and the Witch?
A Game of Thrones – George R. R. Martin
A Game of Thrones follows several story arcs. The first major arc is about the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros through a trap of political battles among the dignified families either competing for the throne or for the freedom from whoever claims it. The second one concentrates on the final descendent of the realm’s overthrown ruling dynasty, which has been banished to Essos and is conspiring to come back and get back the throne. The third one is the Night’s Watch, a military order shielding the realm against dangers from beyond Westeros’ northern edge.
Twilight – Stephenie Meyer
This fantasy romance novel by Stephenie Meyer follows the life of Isabella Swan or Bella a human teenager who moves to Forks, Washington to be with her father. She finds herself getting attracted to a vampire who lives a normal life like a human – Edward Cullen. Her world will turn upside-down to be with Edward as he is a vampire and a similar thing will bother Edward – how to be with a mortal human.
Who Fears Death – Nnedi Okorafor
In a far future, post-nuclear holocaust Africa, genocide plagues a province. The Nuru decided to follow the Great Book and kill the Okeke. The only surviving member of the Okeke village is cruelly raped, and she escapes into the desert. She gives birth to a girl with hair and skin the colour of the sand and she knew that her daughter is not like everyone else. She named her Onyesonwu which means ‘who fears death?’ Onyesonwu discovers her magical destiny which is to end the genocide. The journey to fulfil the quest will compel her to struggle with nature, true love, history, culture, and eventually death.
A Court of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J. Maas
When 19-years-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a horrifying creature appears to insist on revenge. She is dragged to the magical world that she has only heard of, Feyre discovers that her captor, Tamlin is not a beast but one of the deadly immortal faeries who once controlled her world. As she adapts to this new place her feelings transform. But still, something is not correct in this land. An ancient, evil shadow is developing, and Feyre must find a way to put an end to it or doom Tamlin and his world forever.
The Fifth Season – N. K. Jemisin
Essun is living an ordinary life in a small town, one day she comes home to find out that her husband has killed their son and abducted their daughter. Since the empire whose innovations have been the base of civilization for years collapsed as the most number of citizens are killed to severe a madman’s vengeance. And lastly, across the heart of the vast continent known as Stillness, a huge red rift has been torn into Earth, spewing ashes that are enough to darken the sky for years or perhaps centuries. Now, what will Essun do to get to the brighter side?
An Ember in the Ashes – Sabaa Tahir
In the Martial Empire, those who do not vow their bodies and blood to risk for the Emperor the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of everything they hold is certain. In this cruel world that is inspired by ancient Rome, Laia resides with her older brother and grandparents. They do not challenge the empire, they know the consequence. But, when her brother is arrested for treachery, she is compelled to make a decision. In exchange for help to rescue her brother whom she sought from the rebels, she will threaten her existence to spy for them within the Empire’s greatest military academy. In the academy, she meets Elias, the finest soldier in the school. Elias wants to be free from this whole thing. Laia and Elias will realize that their fate is entangled and their decision will change the destiny of the Empire.
Circe – Madeline Miller
In the house of the sun-god Helios, the mightiest of Titans, a daughter is born – Circe. Circe is a strange child who is neither fiercely appealing like her mother nor powerful like her father. She turned to the world of mortals for companionship and realized she does have power. She has the power of witchcraft, which can alter rivals into monsters and threaten the gods themselves. Zeus being threatened banishes her to a deserted island where she sharpens her skill. She crosses paths with several of and most famous fighters in all of the mythology such as Daedalus and his son Icarus, Minotaur, Medea, and of course Odysseus. But, she must summon all her power to choose where she belongs.
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