Top 10 Science Fiction & Fantasy Series I Want To Start

I don’t normally follow The Broke and The Bookish’s Top 10 Tuesday meme because I doubt I’d be able to keep up with it (thank you, busy writing schedule and offline life). But after reading Anya’s list at On Starships and Dragonwings, I knew I should do my own Top 10 list of science fiction and fantasy series I want to start reading. So, here we go!

NOTE: There may be a slight trend toward the fantasy side of the spectrum. 😉

1. Susan Cooper’s The Dark Is Rising Sequence (YA Dark / Contemporary Fantasy)

Dark Is Rising boxset

I like to catch up on the classics as well as more recent books. Cooper’s The Dark Is Rising was written in the 1960s and 70s, which puts it up there in age with Ursula Le Guin’s earliest Earthsea novels. The first book in the sequence, Over Sea Under Stone, has been sitting on my shelf unread for… at least a couple years *lol* This article is serving as my reminder to dive into The Dark Is Rising soon. 

2. Sarah J. Maas’ Throne Of Glass Series (YA Epic Fantasy)

Throne of Glass cover

How did I just find about this series a few months ago, when the third book was released? *hangs her head in shame* Throne Of Glass (the first book and the series as a whole) sounds awesomely kick-ass, too. A lot of readers have dubbed it the YA version of George R.R. Martin’s Song Of Fire And Ice saga. It’s led by a female ex-assassin as the protagonist, and promises lots of action and romance. Unfortunately, the latter is the love triangle kind (which I’m getting tired of, to be honest), but I still put the Throne Of Glass on my Christmas list in hopes of reading it next year.

3. Marie Lu’s Legend Trilogy (YA Dystopian / Science Fiction)

Legend boxset

Wow. This is the only non-fantasy series on my list. (Looks like I need to broaden my sci-fi horizons some more…) Reviews I’ve read have called this trilogy the next Hunger Games and Divergent. Since I’ve enjoyed both of those series so far (done with THG, have yet to read Allegiant), I figured I should give this one a try. I recently bought the first book Legend and am going to try to fit it in over the winter.

4. Alison Goodman’s Eon and Eona (YA Asian-Inspired Fantasy)

Eon cover

If I fall in love with a book cover – especially a cover for a fantasy novel – chances are I’ll read the synopsis and then buy it. Alison Goodman’s Eon is a stunning example. Look at this fire-breathing beauty! I’m especially intrigued by the Asian influences and mythology. In fact, I’m so eager for Eon, I might not wait too long to read it. And if it delivers on all the awesomeness it promises, you can bet its sequel Eona will find its way to my bookshelf.

5. Rachel Hartman’s Seraphina and Shadow Scale (YA Fantasy)

Seraphina

OK, I admit this may be cheating, since Shadow Scale won’t be out until next March. However, Seraphina’s plot grabbed my attention as soon as I pulled the book from the shelf. A half-human, half-dragon heroine trying to protect her true identity – I can only imagine the challenges Seraphina will encounter as part of the story. I also adore that she’s a musician, and can’t wait to see what abilities she has in that field.

6. Lev Grossman’s Magicians Trilogy (Adult Contemporary Fantasy)

Magicians boxset

I’m starting to feel embarrassed by the number of recently released fantasy series I’m only just discovering. Lev Grossman’s Magicians trilogy is yet another one of those. It starts off with The Magicians, where modern-day magician student Quentin attends the prestigious Brakebills Academy to learn more about craft. After graduation, Quentin and his friends discover that a land they’d read about in children books does in fact exist – and needs their help. I sense the air of a dark psychological thriller with fantastical elements and complex, flawed characters when I read the synopsis and reviews. It definitely sets this series apart from other fantasy sagas, and I hope it turns out to be as fascinating as it sounds.

7. Terry Goodkind’s Sword Of Truth Series (Adult Epic Fantasy)

Sword of Truth

Talk about some serious catching up to do. Terry Goodkind has been building his Sword of Truth series since 1994. It’s now 14 books strong (yikes!). Most of the books follow lovers Richard Cypher and Kahlan Amnell and the wizard Zedd Zorander as they confront various evil forces that seek to take over their homeland. I prefer to start with the first book of a series. But when I couldn’t find Wizard’s First Rule on a Cape Cod daytrip over the summer, I settled with the second book Stone Of Tears instead. Hopefully I won’t be too confused when I finally get around to it. I’ll just have to keep in mind there’s some previous history I’ve missed. Then, if I like Stone Of Tears, I’ll go after Wizard’s First Rule and go chronologically from there.

8. Sherry Thomas’ Elemental Trilogy (YA Fantasy)

Burning Sky cover

Another case of cover love here! Both The Burning Sky and The Perilous Sea have absolutely gorgeous covers that call my name and beg me to read the contents inside. And after reading Mary Weber’s Storm Siren earlier this year, I’m eager to read more about elemental magic. Sherry Thomas’ Elemental trilogy seems like an appropriate place to start. Of course, I need to get the books first!

9. Patrick Rothfuss’s Kingkiller Chronicles (Adult Epic Fantasy)

Name of the Wind cover

I’ve read nothing but high praise for Patrick Rothfuss’ debut fantasy series. The premise of the Kingkiller Chronicles sounds awesome, too. A former master magician relates his life story over the course of three novels, two of which have been released so far (The Name Of The Wind and The Wise Man’s Fear). Part of the appeal for me is that these books are written from a first-person perspective – a rarity in the fantasy genre, and a huge incentive for other unpublished fantasy writers like myself who are working on first-person narratives.

10. Jacqueline Carey’s Kushiel’s Legacy Series (Adult Epic Fantasy)

Kushiels Dart cover

I almost didn’t put Kushiel’s Legacy on this list because I’ve purposely postponed reading the first book Kushiel’s Dart. Sadomasochism and sexual violence don’t interest me at all – and apparently, both topics crop up frequently in Jacqueline Carey’s landmark series about an alternate Europe where people are descended from fallen angels. Yet I’m probably judging this saga too quickly. Phèdre nó Delaunay has been hailed as one of fantasy’s most dynamic heroines. And from the reviews I’ve read, there’s also loads of political intrigue and espionage. A lot more than what meets the eye, in other words. So, I think I need to swallow my reluctance to read sexual themes and give Kushiel’s Dart a fair chance.

Have you read any of the books or series listed above? What did you think of them? And, what fantasy and science fiction series are you itching to read but haven’t gotten around to yet? Feel free to share your picks in the comments below. Even better, if you want to participate with your list and want to post it at your own blog – TAG! It’s your turn. 😉

14 thoughts on “Top 10 Science Fiction & Fantasy Series I Want To Start

  1. Over Sea Under Stone was on my shelf gathering dust too. I tried to read it this summer, but I couldn’t get into it at the time. I haven’t read Throne of Glass either, but it’s near the top of my to read list! I really liked Legend. (I havne’t read Allegiant either, I’m a total coward) There just aren’t as many good scifi books out there right now and almost all of them are dystopian.

    The Sword of Truth is really good, but this isn’t really a series you can jump into anywhere. I’m sorry! You should probably wait until you can find Wizard’s First Rule.

    All of the other books on your list are on mine too! (Except Kushiel’s Dart, which oddly enough is the only one I own. Maybe your review will convince me to give it another chance. I’m too scared to try it!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • *lol* Well, since we both like fantasy, I guess it shouldn’t surprise us that the list of books we want to read would be similar! 😉

      I haven’t read “Allegiant” yet only because I don’t own it yet. However, I DO know what happens at the end and how it upset so many fans, but I’m keeping an open mind. I don’t want other peoples’ opinions to taint my experience with the book before it even begins…

      About SOT: Really? Eeeeek. I hate buying multiple books in a series before reading them in case I don’t like them and choose to bow out. But maybe I’ll have to do that for this series.

      About “Kushiel’s Dart”: If you’re trying to decide whether to read it too, I’ll make a point to get to it over the next few months. How does that sound?

      Like

  2. Really enjoyed this challenge! Maybe I’ll have a go, too:)).

    As regards your list – you’re in for a real treat with The Dark is Rising – while there is a tad more description than a modern read would have, it is a joy to read. No one builds tension and real sense of fear better than Cooper.

    And for quite different reasons, I’m also envying you experiencing Rothfuss’s writing for the first time. He’s also a really, really nice man… saw him at World Fantasycon last year and he’s funny and self deprecating. But writes like an angel.

    There are a couple on your list I’d like to get to grips with – the Alison Goodman and Sarah Maas – and a couple you can keep… I’ve tried several times, but cannot bond with Terry Goodkind’s work – it just misses me. I also tried a Jacqueline Carey and hastily put it down again…:) Just as well we’re all different, or wouldn’t it be a boring world?

    Liked by 1 person

    • If you do decide to do it, Sarah, let me know. Would love to see your choices!

      That’s kind of what I’m expecting from The Dark Is Rising, since it was published that long ago. I like to read classics when I have the chance. One of my favorite authors of all time is actually Ursula K. Le Guin. Maybe you’ve heard of her? She’s written both fantasy and science fiction.

      You’re the second person this week who’s shared nothing but compliments for Rothfuss’s work! I’ll have to get a copy of the first book ASAP then. 😀

      I haven’t read anything by Terry Goodkind or Jacqueline Carey yet, so I can’t say I have an opinion about their work yet. That said, I do think every author is worth checking out, and if you don’t care for the first book you read from them, whether you want to continue reading their work is completely up to you. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Please, please, please do not read Sword of Truth out of order. You will spoil so much of the main characters relationship that it will most likely spoil the rest of the series. Especially as the first three or four books are by far the best.

    I’ve been reading Science Fiction for a while, but this list has really invigorated my interest in Fantasy again. I’d become a bit fed up with it after the slog that was Game of Thrones (great books, but so, so, depressing and tense. Just not an ‘enjoyable’ experience) but some of these seem to reintroduce the sense of wonder I look for in Fantasy. Going to work my way through some of these (the only ones I’ve read on here are SoT and Patrick Rothfuss’ books so this is a great list for me :-)).

    Liked by 1 person

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