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Best Fantasy Books of 2020

Below you will find a list of the fantasy books published in 2020 that we enjoyed most.

The Unspoken Name by A K Larkwood

10/10

A. K. Larkwood’s The Unspoken Name is among the most creative, exciting, and brilliantly-told epic fantasy novels I’ve read. It is an immersive experience that grabbed my attention early on, then grew at a staggering rate until I found myself being launched through fantastic worlds, meeting wonderful characters, and caught in a magnetic prose that left me spellbound. Larkwood has a tremendous talent for building upon the best parts of what makes fantasy great and elevates it all with her own dash of chaos and wonder. Simply put, it is an outstanding debut I won’t soon forget.

Series: The Serpent Gates: Book 1

Published: 2020

12+

The Once and Future Witches by Alix E Harrow

10/10

This book is pure adventure, brilliantly told, with powerful messages cloaked in the charm and wisdom you’d come to expect from an Alix Harrow story. Like her previous novel, it is a love letter to stories themselves, and it is a profound love of which I am grateful to have shared.

Published: 2020

15+

Age of Empyre by Michael J Sullivan

10/10

While Age of Empyre and the whole Legends series may struggle to top ‘The Riyria Revelations’ – for the simple sake that it does not have Royce and Hadrian – it is only by the barest of margins.

Series: Legends of the First Empire: Book 6

Published: 2020

15+

Battle Ground by Jim Butcher

10/10

If there's one word to describe this book it's 'change'. Some things have been ticking over in the series for a long while now and at times it seemed like Jim Butcher wasn't sure which way he wanted to take the story. Or even what he wanted to do with Harry. All that is done. Every single element of the series has been levelled by the events on Battle Ground, the city razed to its foundations, the characters broken down to their most essential parts. From this destruction will come something new, a rebuilding of place and person that wouldn't have been possible without such a thorough clearing of the way.

Series: The Dresden Files: Book 17

Published: 2020

15+

The Trouble with Peace by Joe Abercrombie

10/10

This one has it all. The Trouble with Peace is a quintessential Abercrombie story that draws pieces from all seven First Law novels before it. It features all your returning favorites: trademark humor, horrifying violence, grim wisdom, and an ending that will leave you craving for more. At this point, would you expect anything less?

Series: The Age of Madness: Book 2

Published: 2020

15+

The Girl and the Stars by Mark Lawrence

10/10

The Girl and the Stars is more than the start of a new series. It’s the culmination of some of the best ideas of Lawrence’s previous works while promising that amazing things are still to come. I can’t wait to get my hands on the next Icepunk book in the Yaz-mere.

Series: The Book of the Ice: Book 1

Published: 2020

15+

A Time of Courage by John Gwynne

10/10

Now THIS is the way you end a series. Readers and writers beware, a new standard has been set. A Time of Courage closes the story arc first begun in Malice, a tale of good and evil recounted by the many loved and hated voices of the Banished Lands. It culminates in a battle so visually and emotionally impactful that I had to put the book down several times just to process what I’d seen and heard and felt. 

Series: Of Blood and Bone #3

Published: 2020

15+

Along the Razor's Edge by Rob J Hayes

10/10

Along the Razor’s Edge will make you mad. It will make you hold your breath, pump your fist, pause and reflect, and swear at 2am. It will do all these things and more, because it is one hell of a great story. For me, it was more than just reading a book. It was an experience.

Series: The War Eternal: Book 1

Published: 2020

15+

The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

10/10

This is a special book, a story that will break your heart on one page and flood it with hope on the next. In this dark and difficult time in which we are living, it is stories like these that help remind us what we’re doing this all for.

Published: 2020

12+

We Ride the Storm by Devin Madson

10/10

You need to pick this book up. From the characters to the world building to the plotting and pacing it’s a masterclass in engaging fantasy. Among the finest debuts I have ever read, We Ride the Storm is a story that can’t be missed. Madson is sure to join the luminaries of the genre in short order.

Series: The Reborn Empire: Book One

Published: 2020

15+

The Obsidian Tower by Melissa Caruso

10/10

With this novel, Melissa Caruso solidifies herself as one of my favorite authors. The Obsidian Tower is a masterpiece of character driven fantasy. Set in the same world - but in a different time period than her Swords and Fire series, this story contains all the things we’ve come to love about Caruso’s writing. There are tense political machinations and negotiations. There is witty dialog. There’s magic! And, of course, a touch of romance. Couple all of this with a diverse cast of characters and you have a recipe for a magnificent fantasy novel.

Series: The Gate of Secrets: Book 1

Published: 2020

15+

Age of Death by Michael J Sullivan

10/10

Age of Death, then, sees Sullivan continue to solidify himself as one of the greatest practitioners of fantasy literature currently writing, and further builds the foundation from which he will be measured as a champion of the genre in decades to come. Sullivan is not just an author who can wring emotion out of his readers through beautiful character work but is also a first-rate imagination up there with the best. Combined, Sullivan outshines most of his peers and sends a challenge to all.

Series: Legends of the First Empire #5

Published: 2020

15+

Forged by Benedict Jacka

10/10

When you finish a book and wonder how the hell the next one will top it, then you know it’s a phenomenal read. That what follows is the finale in this 12 book series only makes the stakes even higher. But after this, I know that whatever Benedict Jacka does for the finale, it’ll be better than I could have imagined. And I cannot wait.

Series: Alex Verus series: Book 11

Published: 2020

15+

Temple of Sand by Barbara Kloss

10/10

I read this cover to cover in one go and I’m already so desperate for the next book that I’ve put my order in direct with the author. It’s an incredible series that deserves more readers so take a chance. Then get in line behind me for what comes next.

Series: The Gods of Men: Book 2

Published: 2020

12+

Blight Marked by Josh Erikson

9/10

A seriously epic book that ends with a spectacular finale of world shattering proportions. But wait! Don’t be sad… there’s more. I’m so excited about the direction this series is heading. Promises made. Deals to be kept. Monsters, mayhem, magic. Readers, we are in for something special.

Series: Ethereal Earth #3

Published: 2020

15+

Shorefall by Robert Jackson Bennett

9/10

Shorefall is a slice of genius slathered with unfiltered madness; it is an innovation on invention. I want to scrive in this world, to create and experiment with Berenice and Orso, to scale towers and improvise with Sancia, to fight battles and defend my friends with Gregor. I loved this book. Bennett is one of the brightest talents around. Read the Divine Cities trilogy. Read Foundryside. Read Shorefall. Read whatever comes next.

Series: Founders #2

Published: 2020

15+

The Lessons Never Learned by Rob J Hayes

9/10

Hayes has won several awards over the course of writing career, most recently the Booknest novel of the year, and is once again a finalist for this year’s SPFBO, which he won in a previous year. But through all his accolades and experiences in the self- and trad-published industries, there is no doubt in my mind that ‘The War Eternal’ is the crown jewel of his writing career. There is more going on beyond Eska’s endeavors that will be revealed in From Cold Ashes Risen, and I can hardly wait to find out how this story will pan out. All I know for sure is that it’s going to be fantastic, and you'll be plotting your own mission of vengeance if you miss it.

Series: The War Eternal: Book 2

Published: 2020

15+

Kings of Heaven by Richard Nell

9/10

Kings of Heaven concludes one of my all-time favorite series in riveting fashion. My expectations were exceeded and my anxieties were dismantled. It surprises and it saddens, and it gives the cast the ending they deserve. When I turned the final page, I was elated and drained, yet entirely fulfilled. Kings of Heaven does everything a good finale should do, while still leaving me craving for more stories from this era.

Series: Ash and Sand #3

Published: 2020

12+

The Midnight Lie by Marie Rutkoski

9/10

By far the most impressive part of The Midnight Lie is the writing, the author playing with lyrical or prosaic language in turn. Each sentence is cleverly crafted and beautifully evocative, emphasising the tone of the scene or clashing with it in arresting discord. It has sentences that stop you in your tracks; more than the weirdness of this imagined world, it is the enchantment of the words that take you somewhere magical.

Published: 2020

12+

The Shadow King by Alec Hutson

9/10

Hutson’s The Shadow King is a wonderful conclusion to his epic trilogy. It has a perfect classic fantasy feel. A wonderful epic fantasy to read curled in a blanket on a snowy morning sipping coffee. The way the various plot threads come together in a satisfying way is a masterful achievement. It's epic fantasy comfort food in the best sense of the term.

Series: The Raveling #3

Published: 2020

15+

The Bard's Blade by Brian D Anderson

9/10

The Bard's Blade delivers modern fantasy at its finest. While it has definite vibes of classical, chosen-one fantasy, (which, come on, though overused is popular for a reason) Brian D. Anderson has suffused the tale with his own fresh take on this well-loved staple, successfully composing an enthralling first entry in The Sorcerer's Song series.

Series: The Sorcerer's Song: Book 1

Published: 2020

15+

Peace Talks by Jim Butcher

9/10

This new perspective provides the opportunity for a fascinating exploration of what Harry expects from himself, and what we expect from him as a result. Grown up Harry is much more dangerous, and that opens up a whole new world of possibilities. It’s a fun read and a great set up for Battle Ground in September.

Series: The Dresden Files: Book 16

Published: 2020

15+