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20 Best Fantasy Book Series of All Time

Fantasy books often appear in a series. The intricate worldbuilding, often including sword & sorcery, magic, elves, orcs or goblins of some sort, usually takes more than one volume to accomplish. And we're fine with that. The longer the better, we say! These are our picks for the Top 20 Fantasy Book Series of all time. Don't fret — no spoilers here.

1 - The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

Not much can be said about the most famous of all fantasy series in literature. Tolkien set the stage for others to come. It has spawned two animated features and multiple live action movies, but nothing tops the words on the page. Read and re-read for fantastical pleasure. The orcs only get sweeter.

2 - The Dragon Riders of Pern by Anne McCaffrey.  The defenders agains thread, deadly filaments that fall from the sky, the dragons and their riders are a must-read!

3 - A Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) by George R.R. Martin. The books are better than the HBO series (some may argue otherwise) but definitely give this one a full read. Martin is a master wordsmith who can map expansive worlds and characters.

4 - The Earthsea Trilogy by Ursula K. LeGuin. Nothing short of magical. She influenced fantasy for years to come. These books had an apprentice going to Wizard's School long before Harry Potter went to Hogwarts.

5 - Circle of Light by Neil Hancock. Now out of print and never published in ebook format, this was an enchanting series in 1977. If you can find any used copies, grab them! The characters are not all human, and their adventures are engrossing.

6 - The Swords Trilogy by Michael Moorcock. After Corum's family is killed, he seeks revenge. Losing and eye and a hand, he trades two magic artifacts to replace them. The Eye allows him to see the undead netherworld. The hand enables him to summon the last beings he killed — this time to fight for him. An adventure-filled trilogy from the great Michael Moorcock.

7 - Xanth (aka The Magic of Xanth or The Xanth Chronicles). There are 47 Xanth books by Piers Anthony, a massive series that started in 1977 and goes still to today. The first 10 novels are the core. Extremely fun, filled with magic and mayhem, the first few books are a must-read.

8 - The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. There was a even a collectible card games for WoT in the 90s. Great series.

9 - The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss, starting with Name of the Wind. Brilliantly written, almost like reading poetry.

10 - The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. Classic and still holds up today, for the most part.

11 - The Sword of Shanarra by Terry Brooks. Dating all the way back to the 70s, this one still gets talked about.

12 - Runelords by David Farland

13 - The Riftwar Saga by Raymond E. Feist

14 - Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

15 - The Chronicles of Thomas Conenant the Unbeliever by Stephen R. Donaldson

16 - Conan the Barbarian by Robert E. Howard

16/tie - Kull (an Atlantean barbarian) by Robert E. Howard

17 - Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling

18 - Chronicles of the Black Company by Glen Cook

19 - The Earthsinger Chronicles by L. Penelope

20 - Discworld by Terry Pratchett

Honorable Mention: 

The Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordon starts with #1 The Lightning Thief.

The Assassin's Apprentic by Robin Hobb

The Wardstone Chronicles by Joseph Delaney

There are more, but these are our top picks. High fantasy can transport you like nothing else from the dim world of our modern day to a magical place with more light. Don't ever lose the reading urge.

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