When it comes to the immensely popular fantasy genre, we all know the highly iconic works that dominate our bookshelves. These include The Lord of the Rings, The Chronicles of Narnia, A Song of Ice and Fire, and of course, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. But for every popular franchise, there are unfortunately dozens of hidden gems that never truly see the light of day. For that reason, I would love to hear what some of your most underrated fantasy books are. New or old. Long or short. Children’s or (young) adult. It matters not. What I’m truly interested in is the impact which these books have had on you as a reader as well as the reasons for why you loved them as you did.
Leave your responses either by reblogging or commenting below.
I’m looking forward to getting to know some of your under-appreciated fantasy favourites. And who knows … you might even discover your next summer read. 📚📖
Midsummer’s Eve is just around the corner. So why not celebrate the summer solstice by picking up a good old Moomin book? I recommend Moominsummer Madness.
This hardback edition by SORT OF BOOKS is bound using Jansson’s original cover art and is also fully illustrated by the author herself. What’s more, it also comes with a lovely fold-out map that allows you to keep track of the characters’ movements and provides an overview of the book’s setting.
I recently read Tolkien’s Tales from the Perilous Realm, a collection of short stories and poems that comprises some of his earliest delves into the realm of fantasy. Though mostly unrelated to his Middle-earth stories, it was fascinating to see how some of these early ideas of his would later find their way into the The Lord of the Rings, often in subtle and surprising ways.
The above picture shows an excerpt from my favourite poem, ‘Errantry’, which bears a striking resemblance to the ‘Song of Eärendil’, composed by Bilbo in the House of Elrond during The Fellowship of the Ring.
• Excerpt is from Tales of the Perilous Realm (Deluxe Edition), beautifully illustrated by Alan Lee, who was also a conceptual designer on the Peter Jackson films.
The Art of The Lord of the Ringsby Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull
This book collects numerous maps and sketches that served as visual aids to Tolkien as he wrote his famous masterpiece. The book also comes in a beautiful slipcase, and is decorated with some of Tolkien’s original artwork.
Am I the only one who associates certain books with certain seasons and will never read a given book outside that designated reading season? In particular, my favourite books, the ones I re-read yearly.
An example: I read The Lord of the Rings on a yearly basis, always starting with the first part (The Fellowship of the Rings) in the autumn of each year.
Should I, however, fail to do this for whatever reason, my entire reading schedule for the year will be disrupted and the experience of reading that book simply won’t feel ‘right’ (or in any case, not as right as it would if I had read it during the season I’ve come to associate it with).
Most often this is simply due to the fact that the events of the book take place in a particular season or perhaps it is in this season where the story begins:
Eg. The Fellowship of the Ring begins with Bilbo Baggins’s birthday celebration in September.
Or, if this is not the case, I may associate a book with the season in which I first read/received it:
Eg. I received The Silmarillion for the first time as a Christmas present and began reading it shortly afterwards. Therefore I’ve come to associate this book with late winter/early spring.