As a writer, I am also sort of a fanatical reader. I have my favorite authors and books and become attached to the characters and the plot lines to the point that I will try to seek out the unreleased material on the internet and enter discussions about possible movie adaptions. Books are definitely more than just words on pages, they are the gateways to new worlds.
I am a rather fast reader and have plowed through entire series in just one or two days. I also love to reread my favorite novels, even though I already know how it ends. Because, for me, it isn’t the destination of the book that is interesting, its how the writer takes you there.
So, here are my favorite series of all time:
1.) The Belgariad by David Eddings: The fact that I love David Eddings work is no secret. When reading my novels his influence can be seen in how my world works and how my characters interact. The book series, which was published in the 80s, follows a young farm boy named Garion who lives with his Aunt Pol and works in the kitchens. Garion is the boy in the prophecies, however, and he has to help retrieve the Orb of Aldur and slay the evil god Torak. No spoilers here, its all listed in the summaries on the cover sleeves. I just recently read the series over winter break. I had read other books my David Eddings before this and I found the series so enthralling that I read all 5 books in 3 days.
2.) The Mallorean by David Eddings: Ah yes, another series by David Eddings. This series of 5 books takes place directly after the events in the Belgariad. Accidentally, I read this series first. I purchased the books at a yard sale for a buck each and fell in love with the writing. It didn’t matter that it was the 2nd series. Eddings gave enough background info to where I knew most of what was happening. This series follows Garion, the boy Errand, and their companions in a new quest against darkness.
3.) Shannara by Terry Brooks: Okay, I could have split this overarching series into each of its fantastic and very different subseries, but then it would be hard to choose which is the best! With over 20 novels in the series, it will take the reader a long way. It is of course an epic fantasy series, but with an interesting touch. It takes place in the future. Three of the subseries, the Word & the Void, the Genesis of Shannara, and the Legends of Shannara deal with the transition between modern-day Earth and the Four Lands. The series really focuses on the downfall of society, the war between magic and science, and innovation. Even better, Brooks lives in Seattle. I started reading the series when I bought six of the books at the same yard sale mentioned before. Now I have read all of them except for the two newest books that came out in the past year. The first novel, the Sword of Shannara, was published in 1977 and the last subseries is currently in the works.
4.) The Lord of the Rings by John Ronald Reuel Tolkien: What can I say, LOTR is probably one of the most influential works of the 20th century. I read the books, including the Hobbit in ninth grade after being a fan of Peter Jackson’s movie adaptions for many years. Infact, I saw the Return of the King in theaters when it came out, despite my really young age. Tolkien has inspired practically every modern-day fantasy writer, and as a result his influence has become a bit overused. I don’t mind though, as long as I try to steer my books away from becoming tolkienesque.
5.) Halo by various authors: Yes, they are based off of Microsoft’s best-selling video game series. But one thing that I have found by reading these are that they are even better in book form. The games follow one perspective (two counting the Arbiter) in a combat-only role and usually only in the presence of some sort of forerunner technology. The novelizations follow other storylines, such as the gap between Halo 3 and Halo 4 through the eyes of the ONI and the troubled peace with the Covenant. Even if you dislike the games, I would give the novels a try.