Thursday, August 14, 2014

Fantasy Classics

This year's World Fantasy Convention (when the World Fantasy Awards will be presented) has the theme of "1914 - Three Centennials - 2014" - honoring British author Robert Aickman and sci-fi/horror illustrator Virgil Findlay, and commemorating the beginning of WWI. "1914 was a time of transition...We welcome you to join us in exploring the many facets, both light and dark, of these forces that shaped the future," their website explains. (You can read more about the theme there.)  Though the convention is not until November, their timeline of the centennial of the Great War begins August 5th, with Montenegro declaring war on Austria-Hungary. It also reminds us that "[w]hile J. R. R. Tolkien and Robert Graves survived, William Hope Hodgson and Saki were lost in the war.  In addition, Ambrose Bierce vanished into the Mexican Revolution that year."

With this theme in mind, we present to you a list of fantasy classics for your perusal, many recommended by staff!  We hope you will enjoy this list, and that it reminds you of fantasy fiction's long and varied history.

The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis

The Illustrated Gormenghast Trilogy by Mervyn Peake

The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien

The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley

Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury  
The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks
Lord Foul's Bane by Stephen R. Donaldson
A Spell for Chameleon by Piers Anthony [eBook]
The Last Unicorn by Peter Beagle
Till We Have Faces by C. S. Lewis
The Once and Future King by T.H. White
Conan the Barbarian by Robert E. Howard
The Dreamthief's Daughter: A Tale of the Albino by Michael Moorcock
The Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart
Deryni Rising by Katherine Kurtz

Assassin's Apprentice by Robin Hobb

There are also many fantasy classics that fall under the classification of children's fiction, but are enjoyable for all ages:

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin
Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame 

The Voyages of Doctor Doolittle by Hugh Lofting [eBook]

Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers

Finn Family Moomintroll by Tove Jansson

The Book of Three by Lloyd Alexander

Over Sea, Under Stone by Susan Cooper 

Are there classics we've missed?  What would you add (or subtract) from this list? 


"Core Collection: Fantasy Classics" [Booklist]

"Carte Blanche: Appreciating Oz" [Booklist]


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