10 Reasons I Love High Fantasy Books

Hello dear readers, welcome back to another Top Ten Tuesday put on by the Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s theme is 10 Reasons I Love [Insert Topic]. Right away I knew what I wanted to talk about; High Fantasy. It is by far my favourite genre, and there are definitely more than 10 reasons why I love it.

If you have any reasons why you love High Fantasy Books, please add them to the list. I always like reading other peoples’ reasons for loving fantasy.
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Travel to Impossible Worlds

With high fantasy, we aren’t limited to our world, or some near identical variant of it. We go to Middle Earth, Westeros, or wherever the words take us. We get to escape the reality that is our lives because there is so little in common with our lives and the lives of those trying to destroy their enemies using magic.


The Stakes are High

High Fantasy gives us impossible odds. We aren’t trying to take down a gang member, escape this monster, or fall in love with the girl next door. With High Fantasy the goal is often to destroy a near god like figure. Something that powerful can only be defeated with great sacrifice and risk, and we go along for the ride.


Magic Systems

What is High Fantasy without world destroying magic? It’s part of the experience. We often get to explore the magic system alongside one of our main characters. What makes the magic system even more amazing is that they are so unique. Each high fantasy series has an aspect to it that makes it different from the rest and stand out.


Worldbuilding

This is my favourite aspect of High Fantasy. It’s like taking a history lesson of the book series. We get events that happened years before the books take place, we get character backstories, we get future books explaining the entire world.

The possibilities are near endless, and when an author does a good job at creating a world, magical things can happen.


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Spans over Several Books

When I read a book, there are too many times when I want more. I want to follow the characters more, I want to watch them grow. That’s only possible to do (properly) over several books. I want to dedicate days and weeks to one series. I want to immerse myself in the world over and over, not just over one book.

25 of the Best Fantasy Books You Should Read Next - James T Kelly ...

We Learn Who the Characters Are

High Fantasy often brings readers a lot of different character. They all have different backstories, different experiences and different goals. When we get to step into their mind and explore their thoughts and fears. It helps me connect to the characters and put myself into the story.


The Stories stick with you

When you follow a story or a character for several books, you can’t help but keep it with you. It becomes a part of who you are and what stories you like. It influences the way you feel about other books and how you connect with them.


“Fiction is the lie through which we tell the truth.” ― Albert Camus

A quote that becomes more and more true the more High Fantasy I read. With High Fantasy, we get to explore fantasy worlds that have no similarities with our own world. Despite that, we can explore human issues in a different light. We can explore and learn about things from the perspective of the victims and the accusers and hopefully come to a better understanding of the issue in our own lives.

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Recommend a high fantasy book

I want the happy ending

It’s not guaranteed, but more often than not, we get the heroes defeating the villain. It often comes with losses and hardship along the way, but the after books and books of struggling, the moment the heroes finally succeed feels amazing. It makes the struggle more than worth it.


Possibility for awesome memorabilia

I think the memorabilia world is bombarded with only a few fantasy series, mainly Game of Thrones and Harry Potter, and it sucks because there are so many opportunities for amazing TV shows, t shirts, and dozens of other things.


If you have any reasons why you love High Fantasy Books, please add them to the list. I always like reading other peoples’ reasons for loving fantasy.
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Sabran IX Berethnet: A Queen of Legacy

Hello my dear readers. After many weeks of putting it down to finish other books, I finally finished The Priory of the Orange Tree.

This isn’t a review of the book, that will come some time in the future, hopefully soon. Instead, I want to analyze one of the main characters that stuck out to me during the book; Sabran IX, the ruler of the Queendom of Inys.

Some of these opinions might be seen as controversial, and if you agree or disagree with me, we should talk about it in the comments, or send me a message on social media.
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She’s Flawed

My favourite thing about Sabran is that she is far from perfect and confident. She is very much a flawed character, and that is what makes her story so much more interesting.

She is a young Queen, but a strong ruler.

She has her fears about having children, and pursues immortality instead. She has fears that plenty of young women have.

Childbirth can be a scary thing for anybody, even a queen. If the power of immortality was at your fingertips, wouldn’t you think of pursuing it too?

Samantha Shannon, author of The Priory of the Orange Tree

She’s Conflicted

Sabran has lived her entire life with other voices in her head, making decisions for her. She is the Queen, but she’s had advisors and other nobles limiting her freedom of thought.

Because of this, we see her doubt. We see her unsure of herself when she has a moment of privacy that the reader gets to explore. On the surface, she is a strong, more than capable queen. When we can tear wear the tough exterior, she is scared, she is unsure, she is exhausted.

It can’t be easy being a Queen, and when you’ve had a parentless existence like she has, you can imagine how lonely it can be.


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She’s Romantic

Marriage is one thing Sabran tried to avoid when she was young. She didn’t want to marry, she wanted to be immortal instead.

When love finally comes her way, it’s as if she dives into it head first. She opens herself up to it, and she enjoys it. All of her fears are put to the side, and she accepts the beautiful things that love can bring.

That’s when her world is torn apart.

Sabran finally accepts love. She realizes the good it can bring, and how happy it can make her, and then it is ripped from her.

Her husband and her child are taken from her. The two things she was terrified to go through with were torn from her, her fears come true.

The emotional and mental destruction that would bring on anyone. She spent years avoiding them, and it is almost as if her fears made it a reality.

When Sabran realizes her feelings for Ead, it’s as if her pieces are put back together, slowly, but much stronger.

Cover from Goodreads

She allows herself to feel again, despite all the pain and fear it has brought her.

This time, she finds the love of her life. She finds her other half, and even when she falls into more emotional moments, where Ead is in danger, she keeps a strong head and does what needs to be done.

She may love Ead, but she knows when she needs to be a lover and when she needs to be a fighter.


She’s Strong

It’s never directly stated, but it seems like Sabran’s ancestors have always suffered from depressive episodes.

It’s fairly well known, and Sabran experiences a few throughout the book.

What I like about her, is that she comes back from these dark moments, and she steps up when the time is right.

A thousand years of “destiny” and “prophecy” are on Sabran’s shoulders. She believes she is the sole reason that the end of the world is alive. She believes if her lineage ends, the Nameless One will rise and destroy the world.

When a High Welters, the strongest of the dragons besides the Nameless One, comes to her doorstep, she doesn’t hesitate in confronting it. She knows she could die with one swipe of its tail, but she confronts it as if she could kill it with her gaze alone.


She’s Wise

As we make it further into The Priory of the Orange Tree, the entirety of Sabran’s religion is tested more than once.

The truth to the origin story of her religion is proven wrong, and then wrong again.

Despite this, she is understanding, and she is open minded. She could remain ignorant, sticking to her beliefs of what her and her people have been taught for hundreds of years.

It would be the easiest thing for her to do, but she is willing to accept the truth to it all, and learn from it.

Fan art of Sabran IX from the PotOT Wiki

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Sabran’s character is far from perfect. She’s a bit of a bitch at times during the start of the book, but as we get to know her more and more, we understand why.

We understand her thoughts and actions more and more, and we realize she is an amazing character.

Sabran is definitely my favorite part of The Priory of the Orange Tree. She provides a wonderful emotional thread to the story, and it’s always refreshing to have a character that acts with her mind and heart, instead of just her heart.

Fan art of Sabran IX from the PotOT Wiki

What did you think of Sabran IX? I’d love to talk about her, or this book in the comments, or on social media.
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Mistborn Review: A Hero’s Struggle

My Rating:  ★★★ ★ ☆

Author: Brandon Sanderson

Before I opened this book I wasn’t too sure about whether I’d like it. I love Brandon Sanderson and all the books of his that I have read so far have been amazing, but I read a few iffy reviews of Mistborn and was a bit nervous.

Those nerves quickly subsided when I started reading it though, cause I was hooked by the end of the first few chapters.

What really got me interested, which isn’t usually something I find in books, is that the entire plot of the book was laid out very early on.

The premise of the book is that there is a group of thieves and criminals, and they plan on overthrowing the government.

What’s beautiful about it though, is that their entire plan is spoken about. We know exactly what steps need to be taken in order for this all to work.

Some might think it’s annoying because there is less suspense, but I firmly disagree with that. I think there is so much opportunity for suspense and potential failure that the story benefits from it.

There are some cheesy moments that all books fall prey to. Two people falling in love after meeting one night, ruining the plans you’d have to kill them is the first one that comes to mind.

In knowing the overall story, we just know that something will go wrong. There’s no way that the story can go perfectly as planned right? There’s no way our heroes can do exactly what they need to, cause where’s the fun in seeing them succeed so easily?

There is a sort of joy in seeing heroes struggle, even though we want them to win.

It’s sort of weird if you think about it. We all want the hero to win, so why do we want him to suffer and struggle? Why shouldn’t he win easily? Why do we want the hero to get beaten, battered, bloody and bruised.

We should want him to complete his goals with ease.

But that’s boring.

A story wouldn’t be much fun if we didn’t overcome some obstacles. That’s what makes them a hero though. They are a hero because they overcome great adversity and triumph in the face of defeat and despair.

A hero that struggles and goes through pain is a hero because of it. Because all that pain and hardship is what relates us to the words on a page, or the character on the screen.

Mistborn gives us two main heroes. Two characters that are the same in so many ways, but so different too.


My one big complaint about Mistborn and the world it is in is the “magic” system. What’s cool about it, Allomancy as it’s called, is that it uses metals that are absorbed into your body.

What isn’t so cool is that you sort of forget what each power does over time. Some of the powers are used enough, or are written in a certain way that the meaning comes across in a memorable way, but there are just about as many that you confuse.

Without spoiling anything, there are 8 different “powers” and each sort of has an opposite. Some of the powers are easy to understand, and the names for them give away their meaning.

Some of them aren’t really used often enough, so when they are mentioned it takes you a second to remember what power is being used.

Overall, fantastic book. I have the other two books in this trilogy and can’t wait to get my hands on them, but I promised myself I’d take a crack at IT before going back to The Wheel of Time, which I need to read before coming back again to Mistborn.


My question to you is simple, what is your favourite magic system that you’ve read. Harry Potter’s straight up wand use, or maybe Twilight’s magical creatures? Is it Game of Thrones subtle magical world, or something else entirely? Let me know in the comments.