What are your favorite fantasy novels… for grownups?

We had a lot of fun a few weeks back considering what the best fantasy novels for young readers might be.

That prompted this question from a reader named Melissa:

I really enjoyed your recommendations for “what to read after Narnia” with your kiddos. We are loving DiCamillo!

Do you have a similar list for adults? I’ve read The Lords of the Rings, Harry Potter, and your books, and I would love to know what else is worth reading. I’ve looked on your site and haven’t found a recommended books section, but maybe I overlooked it.

Well, Melissa, here’s what springs immediately to mind:

  • Watership Down – Richard Adams
  • Winter’s Tale – Mark Helprin
  • The Gormenghast Novels – Mervyn Peake
  • The Book of Atrix Wolf – Patricia McKillip
  • Dune – Frank Herbert
  • The Sparrow – Mary Doria Russell
  • Momo – Michael Ende
  • Sailing to Sarantium, and the sequel Lord of Emperors - Guy Gavriel Kay
  • Sabriel – Garth Nix
  • Sunshine, and Deerskin - Robin McKinley

That’s my hasty, off-the-top-of-my-head response. I’m sure I’ll revise it soon.

And of course, I’m rather fond of books called Auralia’s Colors and Cyndere’s Midnight, for some reason. :)

I’m sure this is going to open the floodgates, so brace yourself for the recommendations about to appear in the Comments. (I’ll bet it takes about, oh, ten minutes for the name George R. R. Martin to pop up….)


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About Jeffrey Overstreet

Jeffrey Overstreet departed the Patheos network in order to escape click-bait advertisements that were offending him and his readers. He will re-launch Looking Closer at lookingcloser.org soon. He is the author of The Auralia Thread, a four-volume fantasy series that begins with Auralia's Colors, and a memoir of "dangerous moviegoing" called Through a Screen Darkly. He teaches creative writing and film studies; speaks internationally about art and faith; served as Writer-in-Residence at Covenant College; and is employed by Seattle Pacific University as a project manager, copyeditor, and writer.