Aside from Harry Potter and Narnia, here are some of my favorite middle grade/ young adult fantasy books. A lot of them are series. Again, as in my post 10 YA CONTEMPORARY BOOKS YOU SHOULD READ, I tried to keep it succinct with the reason I love a book.
Links to goodreads and/or my reviews. Sadly, haven't gotten to reviewing a lot of them yet.
HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE by Diana Wynne Jones
One of my favorite DWJ books* (who just happens to be one of my favorite authors, ever)--Howl's Moving Castle is a lovely mishmash of a book, with elements from fairy tales, a selfish wizard with a fondness for green slime, and one of the most wonderful voices I've ever read.
Goodreads/ My (ancient *wince*) review
CHARMED LIFE (Chrestomanci Chronicles) by Diana Wynne Jones*
Among the DWJ fans, there's a lot of disagreement about which is the best Chrestomanci book (they're all marvelous); but I'm so deeply besotted with Charmed Life that there was this weird period in my life a few years ago where I just reread Charmed Life every week for a year--I want to be in this book along with flamboyant Chrestomanci, timid Cat, and absurd Gwendolyn (yeahh, even her.)
*What is this. TWO books by the same author in the top ten? YEAH, that's right. *loves to plug DWJ books.* The world would be a sadder place without this genius authoress writing.*
FLY BY NIGHT by Frances Hardinge
A psychotic goose, a love for all things words, wonderful characters, and a setting reminiscent of 18th century England all combine to make this perhaps one of my most treasured reads--in my opinion, a modern children's classic.
My review/ Goodreads
FLORA SEGUNDA by Ysabeau Wilce
The voice of the main character--funny and so very unique--is what makes this book wonderful; the off-the-beaten-road feel of the world-building that takes inspiration from 18th century Spain is a bonus. ♥
THE SEVENTH TOWER SERIES by Garth Nix
It was hard for me deciding between the Seventh Tower Series and Sabriel*--but this is the series I've obsessively reread--love the light magic, and the plot and the premise and EVERYTHING.
*the books are so teeny I just had to put the whole series down. Plus, my favorite's the sixth and that would just be awkward, recommending you guys to read the sixth without the first, tehe.
THE MAGIC THIEF by Sarah Prineas
This book pretty much sums up everything I love about middle grade fantasy--the lovable main characters, the vaguely English setting, the magic and the irresistible VOICE.
THE IMMORTALS QUARTET by Tamora Pierce*
So really myyy loooove is In the Realm of the Gods (book #4 of this series)--but start off with the first, featuring lovely King Arthurish Tortall and a girl who has a special affinity with animals.
*if you haven't read a Tamora Pierce book (Alana, at least) your life has been unfulfilled.
THE HAUNTING OF ALAIZABEL CRAY by Chris Wooding
Dark, chilling, set in Victorian London--this was the first steampunk-monsters novels I ever read, and I've been deeply in love with it ever since.
My Review/ Goodreads
THE WIND SINGER by William Nicholson:
Again, I'm in love with the VOICE and the WORLDBUILDING and the quirky characters and the fight between good and evil and LOVE.
THE SQUIRE'S TALES by Gerald Morris.
This one is a tricky one--just because the way I started reading this series was out of order, and when I finally read the first book I didn't love it as much as The Savage Damsel and the Dwarf; but there's no denying Gerald Morris is pretty much the go-to guy for funny, wonderful retellings of King Arthur mythology.
So I'll be honest and say this list is coming from the mind of a 10-year old*; many of these books were the books I grew up reading and loving and the reason I love reading at all. But I think anyone of any age can enjoy books that are well-written.
I used to only read fantasy; it' s not just these books or these series but the AUTHORS that I encourage you to check out, since some fantasy writers seem to like to write 30 books, which I don't mind, since then I have more to read.
Anyhow, I hope you'll love them too.
Thoughts on this list? Have you read any of them? ( I know some might be rather obscure books.) What would you add to this list if you could?
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