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What’s your all time favorite book series?

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On 7/2/2018 at 5:53 PM, Dora Vee said:

Dune was six books. And it's also a favorite of mine. :)

Dune was one book, and it is a classic. 

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Hmmm. Obviously ASOIAF for many reasons that I don't need to elaborate here (but also because it literally changed my life thanks to this board and the bwb). Pern for its formative role in my reading history, although I have barely read it as an adult.

But currently? A series that I can read again and again, and that I do still read once a year?

Bujold's Wide Green World Series. Besides being beautifully written and having prominent but sensitive details about gender issues, the series' fantasy world, magic system, and Big Bad are really unlike any other series out there. I mean, the Big Bad, instead of being rooted in 'evil' or greed' is based on medical concepts: the Big Bad is basically a cancer in the landscape that grows and grows and has to be fought off one outbreak at a time.

It's really cool stuff and one of the most sophisticated examples of fantasy world treatments that I've come across. And its just a great story.

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Mine is probably Harry Potter. Don't get me wrong, it's not among the best books I've read, and I'm not in any hurry to re-read anytime soon. But it's my favourite in that I grew up with it, I really feel like it's a generational thing, I was about the same age as the protagonists all through the series, I matured as the books did. That makes it really special to me. 

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Oh yeah, Harry Potter is kind of a given for me, too. Good call. Probably my top comfort read. When I just want to read something uncomplicated and emotionally affecting, that's the go-to series. Reading HP just makes me feel good.

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Acts of Caine just jumped into the running.  Absolutely amazing books, and except for about 3-400 pages during Blade of Tyshalle, I couldn't put them down.

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On 7/31/2018 at 5:10 PM, aceluby said:

Acts of Caine just jumped into the running.  Absolutely amazing books, and except for about 3-400 pages during Blade of Tyshalle, I couldn't put them down.

Same.  They are mesmerizing.

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Kind of hard for me to name a favorite these days.  The Caine books were my obvious answer for a long while, but I'm not sure if that brand of in-your-face grit would appeal to me in the same way now.  Ice and Fire was up there but the TV show kind of took something away from the special appeal of the books (unfair view maybe, but it is what it is).  I was big into Malazan for a while until Fall of Light--that was like hitting a brick wall.

Probably have to go with Wolfe's Sun books (Long Sun if I'm picking one).  

  

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Posted (edited)

Roger Zelazny's Amber series (all 10), if I had to pick just one.

  • lovely world
  • great multiverse concept
  • large cast of colorful characters
  • kickass, interesting main character for first 5 books (Corwin)
  • younger, more relatable character in the other 5 (Merlin)
  • Luke stole the show from Merlin several times but in a good way
  • fast-paced, fun dialogue
  • scheming royal family... it's just so entertaining
  • the magic (shadowalking, trumps) was very unique in the first half
  • though there was a power creep in the magic of the second half, it was still interesting
  • I thought Amber was cool. then I read about the Courts of Chaos. wow!
Edited by Gigei

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I can't get enough of Zelazny. One series I did enjoy and one that inspired the Amber series is Phil Farmer's World of Tiers series. Farmer's prose can be bit dull at times but when he is on he is great. I just wish he was on a bit more when he wrote this. 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, maarsen said:

I can't get enough of Zelazny. One series I did enjoy and one that inspired the Amber series is Phil Farmer's World of Tiers series. Farmer's prose can be bit dull at times but when he is on he is great. I just wish he was on a bit more when he wrote this. 

Always loved the World of Tiers series, the idea of custom-built pocket universes.  Kickaha is one of my all time favorite characters.

Edited by Leofric

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On 8/23/2018 at 11:49 AM, Gigei said:

Roger Zelazny's Amber series (all 10), if I had to pick just one.

  • lovely world
  • great multiverse concept
  • large cast of colorful characters
  • kickass, interesting main character for first 5 books (Corwin)
  • younger, more relatable character in the other 5 (Merlin)
  • Luke stole the show from Merlin several times but in a good way
  • fast-paced, fun dialogue
  • scheming royal family... it's just so entertaining
  • the magic (shadowalking, trumps) was very unique in the first half
  • though there was a power creep in the magic of the second half, it was still interesting
  • I thought Amber was cool. then I read about the Courts of Chaos. wow!

First five, classics. Second five, entertaining but just not as tightly conceived or plotted. 

 

Of course in this modern age of fantasy novel bloat, they'd just be two books in a series. I miss the days of Zelazny, Lieber and other authors who could just knock out a ripping yarn without crushing the reader to death with exposition. 

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Posted (edited)

Tough one.

If I had the irons put to me though, I'd probably have to say Elizabeth Bear's Eternal Sky.

 

ETA: Why? Wonderfully creative and beautifully written. I was moved.

Edited by JEORDHl

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Posted (edited)

Agree with a lot of what was said, and though i didnt love the last book and it not being finished, Red Rising by Pierce Brown has at times truly enthralled me.

Edited by The Lasr Storm

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Currently I'm really impressed by Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss.

Still SoIF is #1 so why it's not finnished?! ;-)

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Oh gosh, I'm old so trying to decide whether to divide by decade, and think I'll include a few not everyone will have heard of.  

Some early faves would be: The Tripods by John Christopher, Amber, Dune, Pern, Uplift by Brin, Majipoor Chronicles (Lord Valentine's Castle turned me on to fantasy, though the series then turned into Sci fi)), North Shore/South Shore by Sherri S Tepper, Snow Queen and Catspaw duologies by Joan D. Vinge, Golden Witchbreed duology by Mary Gentle, 

A little later I think: The Belgariad by Eddings (I know he gets panned now but I'd never read anything like him before - he was new and funny), Memory Sorrow and Thorn by Tad Williams, Death Gate Cycle by Weiss and Hickman, Daughter of the Empire series by Feist and Wurts, and everything by Hobbs and Leguin.  Also liked the Drizzt first few books and Wheel of Time first few books.

Currently, any series by Carol Berg, Catherine M Valente, Joe Abercrombie, Martin of course, JK Rowling, Philip Pullman, Brandon Sanderson, Scott Lynch.  Also like  Brent Weeks' Black Prism series (I was a beta reader so must plug! But good reads honestly) and the Twelve Kings of Sherakhai.

I have forgotten 95% of the books I've read but I remember these!

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Favorites are constantly in flux for me depending on mood.  

Ones that are regular touchstones:

David Drake's Hammer's Slammers  

Donaldson's Covenant books

Cherryh's collected SF works Love the Alliance-Union, but in deep with the Foriegner series

Glen Cook's Black Company

Wild Cards

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On 8/28/2018 at 6:07 PM, The Lasr Storm said:

Agree with a lot of what was said, and though i didnt love the last book and it not being finished, Red Rising by Pierce Brown has at times truly enthralled me.

I LOVE Red Rising.  The first chapter had me on the fence.  I found the writing, eh, rudimentary.  But the next chapter I was hooked and realized the 1st POV chapter was written in a style that mimicked character's experience and education more than the writer's skills.  I really enjoyed the way things went from subterranean to space to medieval.  I'm excited for the next books.

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I don't have any all-time favorite anything.

But in terms of fantasy series, after LOTR, which I've reread hundreds of times, the earlier titles of Steve Brust's Taltos/Jhereg series, and companion Khaavren Romances series, can be highly recommended.  The last two or three novels have fallen off because the author-prot-narrator scolds the reader so constantly for having expectations that the author has presumed the reader has, and tells the reader all the time how stupid he is, certainly not as smart and talented as the author-protagonist-narrator.  This new bitter tone, distracts from whatever story is being told, because this is not the tone of the previous books in the cycles.

The author's been doing these books for many years.  It's probably natural that the tone change, as the author and the times do. These are very bitter times indeed.  Still, I did get resentful of the lectures, as the entire world is lecturing me about somethings and others 24/7 (especially since everythings would be so vastly improved if the world would just do what I say it should :commie: ). 

Edited by Zorral

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In terms of children's books nothing beats L. Frank Baum's Oz. I read them all when I was a child and I love Oz and the characters Baum created. 

For "young adult" I am a Harry Potter fan.

For adult fantasy, in addition to ASOIAF and LOTR, I like Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast books and R. A. MacAvoy's Trio for Lute trilogy.  They both have some unique aspects and MacAvoy, in particular, I think is an unfairly neglected author. 

Most mysteries are written in open-ended series. I particularly like Steven Saylor's Roma sub rosa books where the detective, Gordianus the Finder, lives in the ancient Roman empire in the first century B.C.  Saylor is really great at integrating his fictional characters with real historical ones, especially Cicero.

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