Okay, I know it’s Saturday, but I was such a slouch yesterday, so I didn’t do any blogging whatsoever, and I love the topic for Friday Favorite Five from Way Too Fantasy this week, so here I am!
I’m always down for a good tome, especially in fantasy, but I hadn’t quite realized how many books are just under 500 pages, so this actually took me a second to put together. All of these have special places in my heart, though, so without further ado!
We all knew The City of Brass by SA Chakraborty was going to be on my list, let’s not even pretend here. The hardcover comes in at 533 pages, and it’s the most perfect 533 pages ever. It’s not a page too short or too long, and every single page inside is just delightful. This not only never disappointed me, it put me in the worst book hangover I’ve ever experienced, and I can’t wait to do it all over again next year when the finale comes out.
Reasons to read: truly masterful writing, excellent and flawed characters, complex lore, angst and forbidden romance and moral greyness
Joe Hill’s The Fireman is a brick of a book at 752 pages, and honestly? So many things surprised me about this book that eventually it became a solid favorite of Hill’s for me because all of them were such damn good surprises. There is nothing I didn’t love about this book, and I only wish I could somehow erase it from my memory so I could experience it all over again for the first time.
Reasons to read: kickass feminism, stellar writing, interesting take on the apocalypse
You can try to pry The Death and Life of Zebulon Finch by Daniel Kraus out of my cold, dead hands, but I’ll raise from the grave to take it back. The paperback is 672 pages, but the sequel comes in at a whopping 800 pages, and both combined is still not enough for this gruesome, terrible story about a living dead boy. This book is a lot, and I mean that in many different ways, and it’s definitely for a niche audience, but I love the hell out of it.
Reasons to read: the most asshole living dead boy ever, not even morally grey just no morals, interesting writing style
Christopher Paolini’s Eragon was a transformative book for me in high school. It was one of the motivating reasons why I wanted to start writing fantasy, and I so clearly remember reading it and thinking that if he could do it, as one of the first major YA high fantasy books with dragons that I’d ever read, then I could definitely do it. The hardcover only barely crosses the mark at 509 pages, but the rest of the series more than make up for it as they get progressively longer.
Reasons to read: DRAGONS, very Tolkien-esque with created languages, several different races, and a complex world
It should also come as no surprise that Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor is on this list for me. At 536 pages, it was one of my all-time favorite books. I had an unique experience with it–I couldn’t really settle in the first 80 pages; it just wasn’t holding my attention. And then, out of nowhere, I was head over heels in love with it. Talk about insta-love–I went from casual acquaintance to would die for Lazlo Strange in a heartbeat.
Reasons to read: the MC breaks his nose because a book falls on it and he’s too busy reading another book to notice, slow-burn in all sense, the Hero’s Journey (sometimes literally), top notch writing