Tuesday, 1 March 2016
Top Ten Tuesday: My picks for 'Books To Read If You Are In The Mood For Magic'.
This is actually a pretty tough week for me because I take so long to think of Genres to choose. In the end I went for 'Magic' because it's something, I think, that everyone likes to read or see once in a while and there are so many great books that involve it.
1) 'Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone' by J.K. Rowling.
Series: Harry Potter (#1)
Duh! This is an obvious choice! Maybe I should have limited myself to books I've read recently seeing as this is one of my many, favourite, childhood reads. I used to love magic in my stories when I was younger! This has got to be up there with the best though and I picked the first book not just so that the story makes sense for those who haven't read this series yet, but because it really gives you a feel for the amazing 'Wizarding World' that Rowling builds. If you haven't already (where have you been?) then seriously go and read them!
2) 'Matilda' by Roald Dahl.
Yes I know this is a children's book but it's the first one I read that involves magic in such a big way and to this day, Matilda is a character I can really relate to. This story holds a really special place in my heart for obvious reasons and if you haven't ever read any of Dahl's children's story then I strongly recommend this one as a great place to start! All of his stories have at least a dash of the magical in them which makes them so special: 'James & The Giant Peach' and 'George's Marvellous Medicine' are also real favourites of mine.
3) 'Wild Magic' by Tamora Pierce.
Series: The Immortals (#1)
If you haven't read any of Tamora Pierce's books set in Tortall yet then I would actually recommend you start with 'Alanna: The First Adventure' because chronologically it fits. However these series can really be read in any order and this one is my personal favourite and filled to the brim with magic. Daine, the main character, possesses wild magic which means she can communicate with animals and to an extent control their actions. I have many happy memories reading Tamora Pierce's books but this series was the one that really impressed me.
4) 'The Magician's Guild' by Trudi Canavan.
Series: Black Magician (#1)
I don't often get the chance to talk about this series, especially as I read it quite a while back. It was a real favourite of mine back in the day and I thoroughly recommend for the magic lovers out there! The guild itself is almost like a Hogwarts-style college, and the role it plays in civilisation is very interesting. At some point I would love to re-read this series, and this book especially was really good! This series was one of the first to truly break my heart with a character death too, though I won't give away who. I have no doubt that it will to any other readers also.
5) 'The Name Of The Wind' by Patrick Rothfuss.
Series: The Kingkiller Chronicle (#1)
This is turning into quite the list of throwbacks. 'The Magician's Guild' always really puts me in mind of what could be one of my favourite Epic Fantasy series of all time. No words can describe how this book captured both my attention and my heart and really confirmed my love for the Fantasy genre. So beautifully written! It's long but the detail is magnificent and Kvothe, the main character, also attends a Magical Learning Institute. The University that he attends is everything I could have ever dreamed. The campus, the library, the lessons/lectures really put me in mind of a real university experience. Not only that but Rothfuss magical world has an elaborate but impressive rule system that made it out as more of a science.
6) 'Book Of Shadows' by Cate Tiernan.
Series: Sweep (#1)
For those of you who don't like Epic Fantasy, then this series might be right up your street. It still contains magic of course, in the form of Wicca and Covens. This was a subject that I found interesting at the time so made an especially good read. I will warn you all that this series contains a lot of books and it did start to get a little on the dull side after a while (especially with the inclusion of a love triangle). Nonetheless it's a series with many merits including a more real-world use of magic.
7) 'Inkheart' by Cornelia Funke.
Series: Inkworld (#1)
Time for yet another type of magic. One that involves our real world containing people born with powers that allow them to read characters out of books. Wouldn't we all give our right arms to do that? I know I certainly would to get the chance to chat with Hermione Granger for a little while. Unfortunately in the story, it has some pretty disastrous consequences. But it does also mean imaginative, interesting characters and a clever plot-line to look forward to!
8) 'Eragon' by Christopher Paolini.
Series: The Inheritance Cycle (#1)
I've seen very mixed reviews on this series, some declaring that it's a 'copy' of J.R.R. Tolkien's works and others singing it's praises. I am among the latter crowd. The world-building in this book, to me, is phenomenal. Alongside that comes a complex but understandable magic system built with words. This book is my favourite because it contains Eragon's lessons with Brom and it's probably those scenes I enjoyed the most. I didn't actually ever finish this series because I need to read the last book. What that means is, I am going to be rereading this book and the rest at some point. Probably over the course of many months.
9) 'Sunbolt' by Intisar Khanani.
Series: The Sunbolt Chronicles (#1)
So this is actually only a Novella, and I read it in the last year or two. Despite this I loved it. This series holds so much promise and I know that a full length novel set after this one is COMING OUT THIS YEAR! So much excitement! The reason I recommend this book for magic in particular however is because despite there only being one real magical event in the story, it has such dire consequences and opens up so many questions that I need to find out more!
10) 'A Thousand Nights' by E.K. Johnston.
This book actually described magic of a very different kind, bordering on Magical Realism rather than Fantasy. I loved it though as Johnston took the concept of magic and how it develops, and spun it very differently. It's more about personal growth and family bonds rather than from a particular source. Some of the magical acts performed in this book are really interesting to read too!