Seeking something new and Epic for fantasy

Overread

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Title says it all really. I've been a little bit out of the book and reading world for a spell so wondering if something new has come along that's worth checking out. I've been a big fan of stories like Lord of the Rings, Malazan Book of the Fallen, Magician and Game of Thrones. So I'm hunting for something that's a little more grand scale and epic sweeping to get stuck into.
 

Cat's Cradle

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Hi Overread. I don’t read a lot of epic fantasy, and I’m not sure everyone would consider the book I’ll recommend to be in that genre… that said, I adored The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Buehlman (released 2021 as the first book in a proposed trilogy; the second book is rumored to be expected in 2023).

It uses many of the tropes of epic fantasy, as I understand them, but subverts them in such a way that, to me, they seemed fresh (a guess, but this might have been an intentional undertaking on the author’s part). So, Guilds, thieves, knights, magic, etc, are all present. Quests, goblins, a kraken, etc. But all done in a way where the characters seemed uniquely interesting, and seemed to go well past the tropes that engendered them.

I thought the characterization throughout the book’s 413 pages (perhaps not an epic length) was excellent. I thought the pacing was first rate. There are a number of fight/battle scenes that seemed remarkably active or realistic and tense - that really take you, in the moment, into the fight (the book opens with one, amongst several small bands of antagonists, including our MC, the thief).

I think what surprised me the most were 4-5 scenes scattered throughout the book that just came out of nowhere and that slowed down the book’s pacing, and were quiet, poignant and emotion-packed… all totally unexpected. One involves a hanging, and I won’t say more.

If I remember correctly, the book is told in the first person, and I know that might turn some people off (the thief is our narrator).

The book is a bit bawdy at times, and I think there may be foul language throughout, but not too foul (a thief and his cohorts would be expected to swear, I’d think). But I can't recall a new fantasy novel I've enjoyed this much, for ages.
The author also writes horror - I thought very highly of Those Across the River. CC
 

Overread

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First person sounds more like an adventure style story to my mind than what I'd consider Epic Fantasy.
Which isn't to say that epic stuff can't happen in first person adventure style stories, but more that when I think of Epic I tend to think of a series which follows multiple protagonists and might, as a result, observe the sweep of power and events over a much greater geographical and social expanse. So you get many more viewpoints, angles, lots of different events and a greater sense of how multiple separate events are adding up to a greater whole.
 

HareBrain

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It's not new, but the big one missing from your original list (that I've read, anyway) is Tad Williams's Osten Ard series. Have you read that?
 

tachyon

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Blacktongue Thief is really good, I think I posted about it here. It doesn't have multiple POV and as such the scope is somewhat less grand I guess than what you're looking for.

Allow me to recommend

1. The Shadows of the Apt series, by Adrian Tchaikovsky, starting with Empire in Black and Gold

Epic fantasy with a steampunk flavor. Big world, lots of history, factional politics, magic, spies, war, betrayal, and giant insects. Completed series. The first 4 books can be read as a single story arc, but there are 6 more if you want to continue.

2. The Psalms of Isaak series, by Ken Scholes, starting with Lamentation

Epic fantasy with ancient technology, weird magic, politics, betrayal, spies, assassins, big scope, secret history, and ancient powers awakening. Finished series, 5 books.

3. The Moontide Quartet series by David Hair, starting with Mage's Blood

The 2 continents are preparing for war again as the bridge that links them appears again after 12 years. War, politics, grand scope, mysterious magic and arcane powers. Finished 4 book series.

4. The Bloodsworn Saga by John Gwynne, first book The Shadow of the Gods

Second world, but norse-inspired with fairies and gods, magic, longships, ancient feuds, a quest to find missing children, secrets and betrayal. Books 1 and 2 are out - I haven't read the 2nd yet. There are more to come.

...

I'd also like to add that Evan Winter's "The Burning" series, starting with Rage of Dragons is really fresh, and an excellent read but mainly uses single POV character and the first book is not as grand in scope as you might like. Like Blacktongue Thief I highly recommend it but it's not exactly what you say you're looking for.
 
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I really enjoyed Patrick Rothfuss's Name of the Wind. Though, the Universe isn't as large as Malazaan, or Middle Earth, each character has a lot of development. The whole story is centralized around an arrogant, redheaded lutest who is struggling through a university.

Anne Mccaffery's Dragonflight is one of my favorites.

Terry Brooks's Shannara books are good.
 

BAYLOR

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First person sounds more like an adventure style story to my mind than what I'd consider Epic Fantasy.
Which isn't to say that epic stuff can't happen in first person adventure style stories, but more that when I think of Epic I tend to think of a series which follows multiple protagonists and might, as a result, observe the sweep of power and events over a much greater geographical and social expanse. So you get many more viewpoints, angles, lots of different events and a greater sense of how multiple separate events are adding up to a greater whole.

The High House by James Stoddard
The Flame House by James Stoddard


You might find the Tales The Flat Earth Series by Tanith Lee to be of interest.
 

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