What is your fantasy origin story? (The first fantasy novel you read)
Not quite sure because already as a youngster / child I read and got to read fantasy books of various kinds. However, I think it’s either The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis, or Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s stone by J. K. Rowling, or maybe even Alanna by Tamora Pierce, which was the book that really got me started reading fantasy. But I’m not quite sure what kind of book it was. Most likely is Narnia or Harry Potter. It’s been a long time since I started reading myself, and it’s also been a long time since anyone read to me. But I’m almost certain it’s Harry Potter because my mother read it aloud to me.
If you could be the hero/heroine in a fantasy novel, who would be the author and what’s one trope you’d insist be in the story?
Again, this is a difficult question. It probably has a lot to do with who writes it all, and what I feel for at the moment. It probably also has to do with how I feel the author will deal with me. It’s probably I do not really know how to think or feel about this issue. It’s probably entirely on how I feel at the moment. But also what I feel should be included in it. Whether it’s going to be grimdark, or a little light-hearted fantasy. Or if it is the chosen one trope or if it is a completely different trope. I’m not entirely sure I want everything to go well for me. But at the same time, I feel that it may be that I want it.
It’s probably the case that I choose Laini Taylor, most of all because she’s wonderful at writing fantasy, but that I want a little bit of the feeling of Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo in it all, especially the feeling of Kaz. Do not know exactly what kind of trope I want in it all. But maybe a werewolf’s trope, or something like that. As I said, not sure. Maybe wings of some kind. I simply do not know. Know, though, that I want to be maybe a thief or assassin. But in any case it has something to do with fights of various kinds. It’s just that I simply can not decide on something, even if it’s maybe I should decide on something. Know that it’s mainly because I love the feeling of Kaz, and the feeling of Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy by Laini Taylor, so it’s something I would like to include in the fantasy book if it’s so that I should be in a book of some kind.
What is a fantasy you’ve read this year, that you want more people to read?
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo, because I really love Kaz and Inej, but also all dregs. Also love their way of saying No Mourners, No Funerals. It’s such a wonderful way of saying that they want the other person or persons to come back to them safely.
Red Sister by Mark Lawrence. A wonderful grimdark book, which is the first in a trilogy. It always makes me smile as soon as I think about it. It’s so heavenly and wonderful. There is so much to feel for too many characters. There are also things that can be learned from the characters. That ‘s why I love how Nona is. Her way of being, her sarcasm and how she feels that friends are important in a way that is not really visible in every way.
Legendborn by Tracy Deonn. Mainly it has enough to do with diversity, characters and the feeling of the book but also that it is an Arthurian book.
What is your favourite subgenre? What subgenre have you not read as much from?
This is a difficult question. Most of all because there are so many subgenres in fantasy. But some fantasy subgenre I have at least started to read more about is Grimdark. Did not really think I would like this subgenre as much as I do but feel it is wonderful. There is so much that is interesting and exciting about it all. But then there are more subgenres that I like. This is the question I will always have the hardest time answering because I simply do not feel completely sure of what I like for the subgenre best. I think it’s so that I can make the best of it all and say that I can not really decide that there is so much good. But also because I hate to decide for myself. In any case, I like strong grimdark. I do not know what made me like it as much as I do but it is something anyway. It just feels like I have to read Grimdark more or at least try it at some point.
Grimdark is a subgenre that I am starting to like more and more. But I still love epic fantasy, and fantasy overall.
Who is one of your auto-buy fantasy authors?
Not quite sure if I have an auto-buy fantasy author or authors. It is the case that there are a lot of authors I read but it is probably not the case that I have one that I have to buy as soon as it comes out. So I do not know if it is the case that I have someone from whom I buy books as soon as they come out.
How do you typically find fantasy recommendations? (Goodreads, youtube, podcasts, instagram…)
Finds most of all my fantasy recommendations on Goodreads, youtube, discord, storygraph. Most of all, it has enough to do with what I currently feel easier to look for. But I think it’s so that I most of all find what I want to read on youtube, among all the booktubers I follow. Among all those I feel I find fun to watch. But it could also be that it is among everyone on tiktok that I follow that makes me find a lot of my books with. Or very many books I find on tiktok among those I follow these and those I find by looking around on tiktok. I think it’s mostly because tiktok is the place where I find books right now. But it probably has to do with the fact that this is where it’s easiest for me to watch video right now.
What is an upcoming fantasy release you’re excited for?
Had I done this earlier this year, I would have said The Mask of Mirrors by M.A. Carrick and The Unbroken by C. L. Clark and Son of the Storm by Suyi Davies Okungbowa. As well as The Gilded Ones by Namina Forna.
Now I can say that I’m interested in She Who Became The Sun by Shelley Parker-Chan, Jade Legacy by Fonda Lee (if I can finish reading Jade City and Jade War before it comes out.) And Gearbreakers by Zoe Hana Mikuta.
What is one misconception about fantasy you would like to lay to rest?
One misconception that I want people to be aware of is that not all fantasy is made by male writers. It’s not just male main characters. It’s more than that. It is also the case that there are male writers who have made some of the best female main characters I have seen. There is so much that is not true.
It is perhaps the case that much is done by male writers that is talked about. But it’s so much not just male writers. There are so many books I love that are not by male authors.
It’s not just that there are elves and dwarves in fantasy. It’s so much more than that. There is so much that has nothing to do with elves and dwarves. But I myself am aware that it is the case that when one thinks of fantasy that just elves can come up in one’s head. I myself often think of elves when I hear fantasy. But there is so much more to fantasy than just other races. It’s worldbuilding. There is so much more. But it’s not the easiest thing to remember. There are other magic systems.
If someone had never read a fantasy before and asked you to recommend the first 3 books that come to mind as places to start, what would those recommendations be?
One of the books I can think of is Alanna by Tamora Pierce, because it is a little different but at the same time not something that is difficult to read. It may be that it is made for younger people but I still feel that it is a good place to start. It is a light book series that is not the most difficult to read, but also does not have all the cliché concepts as in many other series.
The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch. Most of all because there is a slightly different concept here. Not because it’s really what one calls “normal” fantasy. But a little more morally gray characters. A downright different book that I still have not read but what I have read is amazing. Want more people to read this series.
The third book I intend to recommend is probably Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor. It is also a different fantasy. Most of all, it probably has something to do with the fact that the magic system has disadvantages. Probably love the magic system a lot. But also Karou, who is one of the main characters. She has blue hair. And she’s a badass. Like her best friend is badass. Everything about Karou’s character is something that makes me love her. There is so much that she touches with who she is. With what she feels.
Who is the most recent fantasy reading creator you came across that you like to shoutout?
No idea right now. And something that is a little hard for me to keep track of. But there are so many. And there are so many who are good at so much. It’s hard for me to even say someone I like right now. Because there are so many that I like.