Best Fantasy Series of All Time

Well, here we are! The votes have been compiled and we now have our list. Instead of just doing a Top 5 and include the 5 runner-ups, I've decided to compile a Top 15. Acting thus, we have a broader range of series, giving readers an idea of the diversity of people's tastes.

Nearly 80 different fantasy series or sagas were submitted. As I did with the last poll, every first place vote was worth 5 points, each second place vote was worth 4 points, and so on. The final number of points determined each series' position.

Again, I would like to thanks the usual suspects: wotmania.com, shadowmarch.com, hallofworlds.net, worldsoffantasy.net, robinhobb.com, kevinswatch.com, brightweavings.com, as well as a number of other internet fantasy communities. You are the ones who bring all the fun into this!;-)

So here is our little list. Once more, I encourage people to comment, keeping in mind that this list is based on our votes!:-)

BEST FANTASY SERIES OF ALL TIME

1- Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien
2- A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin
3- The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan
4- The Farseer/The Tawny Man by Robin Hobb
5- Memory, Sorrow and Thorn by Tad Williams
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6- Malazan Books of the Fallen by Steven Erikson
7- The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant by Stephen R. Donaldson
8- The Riftwar Saga by Raymond E. Feist
9- The Second Chronicles of Thomas Covenant by Stephen R. Donaldson
10- Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling
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11- The Dark Tower by Stephen King
12- Discworld by Terry Pratchett
13- The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolf
14- The Belgariad by David Eddings
15- The Sarantine Mosaic by Guy Gavriel Kay / The Liveship Traders by Robin Hobb / The Fionavar Tapestry by Guy Gavriel Kay

Personally, I find it quite surprising and interesting to find Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire at number 2, given the fact that this author only has 3 yarns under his belt pertaining to this series. I'm not saying it doesn't deserve to be ranked this high. Martin and Hobb are loved by readers lurking on every message board, which explains their high rankings. Once more, only Tolkien had more votes than they did.

Erikson's position is also surprising. But it may also be an indication that this writer might be the next big thing to hit the fantasy genre.

I have to admit that I did not expect to see Harry Potter in the Top 10. But again, it shows how J. K. Rowling's tale transcends the genres and age groups! And that is a very good thing, for readers of all ages!

Some honorable mentions for series which did not make the list: Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin, The Coldfire Trilogy by C. S. Friedman, The Dragonlance Chronicles by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman, Mordant's Need by Stephen R. Donaldson, and the Shannara saga by Terry Brooks.

In the same vein, here is an interesting link to a list of 101 things to read in the science fiction and Fantasy genres. Copy and paste this one in your browser: http://www.fantasybookspot.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=471

11 commentaires:

danlo said...

I'm happy to see that 3 works of Stephen R. Donaldson were considered, but Jordan topping them? Gods I need another beer!

Marc Dalesandro said...

Heh! I'm with you, Danlo!

shaza said...

I'm glad to see Gene Wolfe up there.

And Erikson, climbing up!

Anonymous said...

Where's Goodkind's Sword of Truth? Surely it should be included.

Anonymous said...

Song of fire and ice IS sweet, I can't put it down. The bit at the end of Game of Thrones with Daenerys? Whoa! Soooo cool.

Anonymous said...

Goodkind's "epic" series was a serious disappointment in my opinion. Way too much detail in the explanation of how magic works and way too much dialogue about whats right and wrong. The first book is great, and it gets steadily worse from there. The final chapter (which I know was released after this was posted) was especially terrible. It felt as though Goodkind just woke up one day and decided to wrap it all up within a hundred pages, terrible ending to a potentially great series.

mikel said...

Malazan world co-creator Ian Cameron Esslemont deserves more than a mention. While the latest couple of books by Erikson have been a drag(details details!), ICE has put back some of the pace and action into the series. It also helps that some of the more engaging characters in the series are the creations of ICE. I just hope the authors remember that it was the craziness that had readers like me hooked in the first place.

Anonymous said...

Song of Ice and Fire is great, To the other anonymous, this is my oppinion, but the sword of truth is worth mentioning,Books 1-3 were good, Book 1 being spectacular, however it is a different take on a fantasy series. Obviously driven by highly political beliefs and I too admit the obvious attack on communism (Jagang and the Order) is way overplayed, but still the detail of the book alongside some of the best if not the best supporting cast is great. Good list though.

Anonymous said...

Mistborn. Brandon Sanderson is the best up and coming fantasy writer.

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Anonymous said...

I would most certainly recommend The Black Company as an excellent series to try. It's a military fantasy involving morally ambiguous characters who work in a mercenary outfit. It's gritty, down to earth, and told in a wonderfully dry, humorous way by the narrator.