Beginner Fantasy Books

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The crowd-ranked version of BestFantasyBooks.com's Beginner Fantasy Book list. This list gives books that are easy for first timers to the fantasy genre. The main criteria is that they be simple to read. Quite a few of these books might appeal to children, though adults can still appreciate them too. Note that these are not necessary the "best" in the genre, just the "easiest to read" in the genre with simple sentences, simple often cliched characters, and simple plots.
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The Traitor Spy Trilogy

by Trudi Canavan

Sonea, a Black Magician of Kyralia, is horrified when her son, Lorkin, volunteers to assist the new Guild Ambassador to Sachaka. When word comes that Lorkin has gone missing, Sonea is desperate to find him, but if she leaves the city she will be exiled forever. And besides, an old friend is in need of her help.

Most of her friend's family has been murdered - the latest in a long line of assassinations to plague the leading Thieves of the city. There has always been rivalry, but now the Thieves are waging a deadly underworld war, and it appears they have been doing so with magical assistance.

With over one million copies in print, Trudi Canavan has taken the fantasy world by storm. If you haven't done so already, THE AMBASSADOR'S MISSION is the perfect opportunity to discover the magic of Trudi Canavan.
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Schooled In Magic

by Christopher Nuttall

Everyone knows that the Tower of Alexis is impregnable...

...But Emily intends to prove them wrong.

The Kingdom of Zangaria has finally started its descent into civil war. King Randor has declared martial law, imprisoned the pregnant Crown Princess Alassa in the Tower of Alexis and started preparations for a first strike against his enemies. The time has come for everyone to choose a side.

Emily has arrived in Alexis with the intention of freeing Alassa before her father can have her executed. But as Emily and her friends are drawn into a maelstrom of rebellious factions and crown loyalists, of commoners trying to escape the chaos and noblemen trying to make it worse, they find themselves faced with an insolvable problem.

If they manage to liberate Alassa - and put her on the throne - will there be anything left of Zangaria for her to rule?
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maximum ride

by James Patterson

In James Patterson's blockbuster series, Maximum Ride soars above the world. But when that fantasy becomes a nightmare, Max and her friends take an unforgettable adventure and fight for their lives.

Maximum Ride and her "flock"-Fang, Iggy, Nudge, Gasman and Angel-are just like ordinary kids, only they have wings and can fly. It may seem like a dream come true to some, but their lives can morph into a living nightmare at any time.

Angel, the youngest member of the flock, is kidnapped and taken back to the "School" where she and the others were experimented on by a crew of whack jobs. Her friends brave a journey to blazing hot Death Valley, CA, to save Angel, but soon enough, they find themselves in yet another nightmare: fighting off the half-human, half-wolf "Erasers" in New York City. Whether in the treetops of Central Park or in the bowels of the Manhattan subway system, Max and her adopted family take the ride of their lives.

Along the way, Max discovers that her purpose is save the world. But can she?
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The Destiny of the Sword

by Dave Duncan

Wally Smith, having died on Earth, finds himself reincarnated as a swordsman in another world and entrusted by the presiding goddess with a mission that has no appeal for him at all. Can he bring together all the swordsmen to finally defeat the sorcerors and their terrible technology? Wally is not quite convinced he should, but goddesses can be very persuasive . . .
 
This is the third and final exciting book, after The Reluctant Swordsman and The Coming of Wisdom, in the Seventh Sword Trilogy. 

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Swordspoint: A Melodrama of Manners

by Ellen Kushner

Audie Award, Audio Drama, 2013

Award-winning author, narrator, and screenwriter Neil Gaiman personally selected this book, and, using the tools of the Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX), cast the narrator and produced this work for his audiobook label, Neil Gaiman Presents.

A few words from Neil on Swordspoint: "It's as if Jane Austen wrote fantasy... an imaginary world where the characters are real people: a Vanity Fair of aristocrats, rogues, orphans, and heroes; a book where the best swordsman in the land can make far more money dueling at private parties than he can as a knight-errant. Ellen Kushner casts her sharp eye over them all, but with great affection and lavish detaiI.... couldn't think of a better performer for Swordspoint than Ellen, and her reading is polished, intimate, and - since Riverside is of her creation - wholly authentic.

"What really makes this production of Swordspoint unique, though, is the supporting cast in this special "illuminated production". Several key scenes are fully dramatized, and throughout the entire book's soundscapes you will hear the cadences of the marketplace, the music of the drawing rooms, and of course the ring of steel drawn from the scabbard. Ellen actually wrote new dialogue for the crowd scenes, so the actors aren't just mumbling "rhubarb rhubarb" to simulate speech.... You'll be able to hear performances from acclaimed and award-winning actors, including Dion Graham, Katherine Kellgren, Robert Fass, Nick Sullivan, and the remarkable Simon Jones."

In this exciting new "illuminated production", the author herself reads her own work, supported by a full cast. Author Ellen Kushner is also a popular performer and National Public Radio host (Sound & Spirit). For years, fans have been asking her to record her own audiobook of Swordspoint. To mark the 25th anniversary of the book's publication, Ellen teamed up with Sue Zizza of SueMedia Productions, known for her signature touches of soundscapes and sound effects, multi-voiced dramatizations, and all the techniques of "illuminated production". Together they have made Swordspoint a brand-new audio experience, in which the full supporting cast dramatizes and illuminates key scenes from Ellen's compelling narration.

On the streets of Riverside, a man lives and dies by the sword. Even the nobles on the Hill turn to duels to settle their disputes. And in this city, the swordsman Richard St. Vier is the undisputed master, as skilled as he is ruthless - until a death by the sword is met with outrage instead of awe, and the city discovers that the line between hero and villain can be altered in the blink of an eye. Because every man lives at sword's point, if you can only find his weakness. And even the greatest swordsman in Riverside has one thing he cares for deeply.

Hailed by critics as "a bravura performance, a delight from start to finish" (Locus), "intelligent, humorous and dramatic" (Publishers Weekly) and "witty, beguiling and ingenious" (Interzone) , Kushner's "Melodrama of Manners" has become a classic, a favorite not only of Neil Gaiman but a host of distinguished colleagues, including George R. R. Martin ("unforgettable!"), Orson Scott Card ("powerful") and Gene Wolfe ("as if Noel Coward had written a vehicle for Errol Flynn!").

The artwork used for the audiobook edition of Swordspoint is based on the artwork and design by Thomas Canty for the original first US edition of the book.

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Arrows Of The Queen

by Mercedes Lackey

Follows the adventures of Talia as she trains to become a Herald of Valdemar in the first book in the classic epic fantasy Arrows trilogy

Chosen by the Companion Rolan, a mystical horse-like being with powers beyond imagining, Talia, once a runaway, has now become a trainee Herald, destined to become one of the Queen’s own elite guard. For Talia has certain awakening talents of the mind that only a Companion like Rolan can truly sense.
 
But as Talia struggles to master her unique abilities, time is running out. For conspiracy is brewing in Valdemar, a deadly treason that could destroy Queen and kingdom. Opposed by unknown enemies capable of both diabolical magic and treacherous assassination, the Queen must turn to Talia and the Heralds for aid in protecting the realm and insuring the future of the Queen’s heir, a child already in danger of becoming bespelled by the Queen’s own foes.
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zom-b

by Darren Shan

From Darren Shan, the Master of Horror, comes the first book in the Zom-B series that will have you on the edge of your seat and questioning what it means to be a human or a monster.

When news reports start appearing of a zombie outbreak in Ireland, B's racist father thinks it's a joke-- but even if it isn't, he figures, it's ok to lose a few Irish.

B doesn't fully buy into Dad's racism, but figures it's easier to go along with it than to risk the fights and abuse that will surely follow sticking up for Muslims, blacks, or immigrants. And when dodging his fists doesn't work, B doesn't hesitate to take the piss out of kids at school with a few slaps or cruel remarks.

That is, until zombies attack the school. B is forced on a mad dash through the serpentine corridors of high school, making allegiances with anyone with enough gall to fight off their pursuers.

ITEMS 20 - 27 of 27

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1 comments
Anonymous | 2013-01-28 02:13:36
Lord of the Rings is the best beginner fantasy book? Wow. Really? How about HP or the original Dragonlance?

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