Best Fantasy Books To Read in 2021 | Top 5 Picks

Fantasy books or novels always could transport the reader to different lands and cultures. They have always managed to enthral and capture the reader’s attention in the first few chapters and have left them wanting more. With various worlds featuring witches, Grisha, women warriors and scholars, 2021 is set to release a fantasy novel with a seemingly endless range. While there are a lot of amazing and captivating stories, some of these stories are made to be read and devoured word to word. Fantasy novels create some of the most beautiful universes, which are full with magic and have some kind of folk or mythology as it’s base. 

This year has been huge for the fantasy genre in books as we can see many new releases with some promising debuts. So if you are wondering: “ What fantasy book should I read ?” We, after a lot of deliberation and contemplation, brought to you the best fantasy books of 2021 . 

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Our Top 5 Picks

Empire of The Vampire

Author: Jay Kristoff

Language: English.

Expected Publication date: September 7th, 2021.

Ratings: 4.37 out of 5.

Empire of The Vampire
Empire of The Vampire

Storyline: From the last dawn, it’s been twenty-seven years. Vampires have been at war with humanity for almost three decades, creating their immortal kingdom thus breaking down our kingdom. In a sea of black, only little small bursts of light exist. Gabriel de León is a silver saint, a holy brotherhood devoted to protecting the realm and the church from nightmarish beings. Still, until daylight failed us, even though we know Silver Order couldn’t hold back the flood, and now there is only Gabriel remains.

The last silver saint is compelled to reveal his tale after getting trapped by the creatures he promised to kill. It is a tale of legendary battles and forbidden love, of losing trust and found bonds, of the Wars of the Blood and the Forever King, and the search for humanity’s last hope. This is fantastic, and one of the best fantasy books ever written.

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Hall of Smoke

Author: H.M. Long

Language: English.

Publication date: January 19th, 2021.

Ratings: 3.89 out of 5.

Hall of Smoke fantasy novel
Hall of Smoke

 Storyline: Hessa is known as an Eangi, a Goddess of War warrior priestess with her skills to transform an enemy’s bones into dust with a single cry. She is exiled from her deity for disobeying her goddess’s command to kill a traveller, and she prays alone for mercy on a mountain top. Raiders burn down her village and wipe out the Eangi priesthood as she is out. Hessa, the last Eangi, is grieving and lonely, and she must locate the traveller, atone for her sins, and protect her place in the High Halls with her beloved ones. Moreover, Hessa tries to reclaim her goddess’s favour as clans from the north and legionaries from the south ravage, which is her homeland, slaughtering all in their way.

Zealot warriors, deceitful gods, and newly awakened demons pursue Hessa, at any turn as she seeks salvation and vengeance. Her quest, though, exposes a harrowing truth: the gods are dying, though the afterlife’s High Halls are disappearing. With each unanswered prayer, Hessa’s faith in her goddess starts to erode. When Hessa is thrown into the war between the gods of the Old World and the gods of the New, she tells us that there’s a lot more at stake rather than just surviving her own death. Underneath the surface of her planet, greater, older forces sleep. 

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The Effort

Author: Claire Holroyde

Language: English.

Publication date: January 12th, 2021.

Ratings: 3.37 out of 5.

The Effort fantasy
The Effort

Storyline: When the dark comet UD3 was detected near Jupiter’s orbit, it was widely neglected. The danger of an eight-kilometre comet posed to the human race’s future which incomprehensible to them who knew better — scientists including Benjamin Schwartz, manager of NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies. An asteroid collision of much than a billion times the strength or energy of an atomic bomb finished the dinosaurs’ 150-million-year reign. Then What will happen to the planet’s seven billion people if a comparable occurrence has occurred?

Ben and his tenacious partner, Amy Kowalski, travel to South America to put together an international counter-terrorism unit with Love Mwangi, nomad researcher, and Zhen Liu, an intelligent engineer from China’s national space agency. Simultaneously, life onboard a polar icebreaker goes on as usual, despite the looming shadow of comet UD3. National Geographic photographer Jack Campbell worked to document the majesty of an Arctic until it destroys forever. Gustavo Waypi, a Nobel Laureate poet from Brazil, cannot recognise his beloved twin brother’s who were the latest murder. And Maya Gutiérrez, a passionate marine biologist, is falling in love for the first time, and it was quite sudden.

These men and women must band together to live in a world of uncertainty where there are no limits, and nothing is of guarantee. Still, They have two options: neutralise the earth’s biggest threat (preferably before mass panic sets in or world leaders announce World War III) or allow the destruction of humankind itself.  The Effort is the codename for their mission. Making it undisputedly one of the best fantasy books available. 

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She Who Became the Sun

Author: Shelley Parker-Chan

Language: English.

Expected Publication date: July 20th, 2021.

Ratings: 4.44 out of 5

She Who Became the Sun
She Who Became the Sun

Storyline: Two fates are given two children in a famine-stricken village on a sandy yellow plain. Greatness, a boy. Nothingness, a teen… The Mongols ruled China in 1345. Greatness appears only in legends for the starving peasants of Central Plains. When this eighth-born son of the Zhu family, Zhu Chongba, is granted a wonderful destiny, everybody is confused about how it will unfold. On the other hand, the family’s smart and competent second daughter’s destiny of nothingness is completely predictable.

As the bandit orphans the two children, it is Zhu Chongbawho succumbs to desperation and dies. Desperate to prevent her imminent death, the girl will assume her brother’s identity and joins a monastery as a young male novice. Her burning need to be alive drives her. Zhu finds that she is capable of going to any kind of extent, no matter how hard to escape her death. After her sanctuary is ruined for joining the Mongol revolt, Zhu seizes the opportunity to claim a different destiny entirely: her brother’s squandered greatness.

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The Shadow of the Gods

Author: John Gwynne

Language: English.

Expected Publication date: May 6th, 2021.

Ratings: 4.58 out of 5.

The Shadow of the Gods fantasy books
The Shadow of the Gods

Storyline: The cataclysm of the gods’ collapse shattered the world of Vigri as they were waged war and drove themselves to extinction.  A new age is emerging,  in which power-hungry jarls feud and monsters prowl the forests and mountains. A future those who are courageous – or desperate – enough to find out the bones of the dead gods which still have tremendous strength.

Today, as war rings through the mountains and fjords, fate follows in its footsteps of three people: a huntress on a risky mission, a noblewoman who has forsaken luxury in searching of fighting glory, and a thrall pursuing revenge among the Bloodsworn’s famed mercenaries. When the planet once again sinks the shadow of the demons, all three will affect the world’s destiny. We have a few more recommendations for the best fantasy books, check those out if you haven’t already!

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Other Recommendations

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, also known as The Kingkiller Chronicles: Day One, is an excellent heroic fantasy book written by American author Patrick Rothfuss. This is the second book in the fantasy trilogy The Kingkiller Chronicles, following is The Wise Man’s Fear and The Witch’s Pupil. Its original publication date was on June 7, 2021, DAW Books in New York City. The story centers on a war raging in the middle ages between Christians and non-Christians,”Pagan Coalition.” King Henry leads the Christians.

The Name of the Wind
The Name of the Wind

The novel begins at the Battle of Alesia. The pagans easily rout the Christians and take over the kingdom. Not long afterwards, King Henry is captured along with all his retainers and transported as a prisoner to the town-town of Tortage. There he befriends the lady of the title, Camilla. The two begin to live together in a small cabin, where they forcibly help the other prisoners with their problems. They also become good friends with each other. The novel continues with them forming an uneasy alliance against the pagans, who seek to destroy them.

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss is one of the best fantasy books you should ever read, period. It is witty, entertaining, romantic, and has a great story development. If you enjoy fantasy, then this book should become one of your favourites. I certainly hope I have been able to convey my thoughts on The Name of the Wind positively and have attracted you to this great book for more information about The Name of the Wind and other fantasy books.

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The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson

Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb is a historical fiction novel about a young woman in modern-day London, assassin “Annabel” who is hired to perform killing assignments for hire by a very wealthy and influential family. Compared to the famous “Harry Potter” series, the magic system is a prominent part of the plot. In this book, Annabel is hired on an assignment to kill a target. Yet, she soon finds out that she isn’t really in need of such a job…she is training to become an assassin herself! And though she is hired for a special purpose, she also ends up falling in love with a man who is much more than just a hitman. For me, these two stories are incredibly similar, and I would recommend them.

The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson

Of course, I must stress that this is only my opinion. Other people may read the book differently, with different impressions based on their likes and dislikes. I believe that this fantasy book is one of the best fantasy books in the recent years. The story is gripping and romantic, at the same time highly realistic. Moreover, the plotting and characters is extremely well . The character descriptions are really likable.

Overall, this was a great book about a tough young woman in modern-day London who forcibly pursues a career as an assassin. I enjoyed reading it and found myself thinking about the same things as I often do with fantasy books.If you enjoy fantasy and historical fiction, you will find this to be a good read. Otherwise, you may find the content and storyline a bit dull. 

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A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin 

A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin is one of the best adult fantasy novels I have read. It is certainly fantasy at its best. That is saying something because this book stands out in the highly competitive field of fantasy novels. The story has a setting of hundreds of years ago when people were still trying to master the ocean and its forces. A wizard named Azhagh has found a mysterious box containing some very powerful gemstones. The gemstones have magical properties, and one of them, Heartstone, gives the owner the power to command love and life.

A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin 
A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin

Azhagh is a powerful wizard. He is about to learn that power from another who has also come in possession of a gemstone named Heartstone. Azhagh’s life will change forever as he draws into a world of magic and the arms of his old friend, the human, Melia. Azhagh must struggle to maintain his own life while battling the magic and the evil that seeks to take over the world.

This book is very different from other fantasy novels. Le Guin creates a realistic world and fills it with magic. It is also worth the reader’s time to check out the other books in the Earthsea series. It is a fantasy novel that is worth reading, and if you have not already started it, why not try it? 

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Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb

American writer Brandon Sanderson writes The Way of Kings, an incredible epic fantasy book . It is also the third book in The Stormlight Archive trilogy. The Way of Kings consists of one prologue, one epilogue, seventy-five chapters, and an epilogue. I must say this book was a real page-turner and pulled me into the story. Kings’ way also contains many mythologies and magical creatures along with an intricate plot and captivating characters.

Assassin's Apprentice by Robin Hobb
Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb

Once you start reading The Way of Kings, you’ll quickly find that the storyline is excellent. Sanderson creates a fascinating world that vividly portrays the harshness of the universe while at the same time providing excellent characters and detailed scenes. I especially loved Sanderson’s penchant for creating powerful characters with genuine emotions. Marlow Taggert, a knight of the Ironlands, is the main protagonist of The Way of Kings. His personality is perfectly contrasts his equally noble but flawed friend, Boadhagh Mac Tirall.

The Way of Kings isn’t just a fantastic fantasy book; it’s also a great page-turner. This book kept me reading throughout, and even when I finished up, I had to put the book back down to pick up where I left off. Although it may take a bit of work to get into, once you start The Way of Kings, there’s no stopping you. I highly recommend this book to fantasy fans and new readers alike. If you like fantasy, then The Way of Kings should be on your list!

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Witches Steeped in Gold

This is a powerful book having its setting in the picturesque country of Jamaica. The story revolves around two powerful witches driven by vengeance, thirst for power, and even freedom. And When a common enemy arrives at their doorstep, they plan to form an alliance and try to win this power-thirsty battle. This is the tale of  witches, two enemies, who come together for a unified cause.

Witches Steeped in Gold fantasy books
Witches Steeped in Gold

Now, what can be more gripping than that?  This book has everything a reader needs: an enemy to friends trope, a distrustful alliance, lust for power and more. This can be a very powerful young adult fantasy debut by Cannon Smart.

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The Gilded Ones

The Gilded one has a very dark and edgy theme to it, and the author has calculatedly addressed the otherwise sensitive topics like racism, patriarchal practices and also feminism. The story does not refrain from showing powerful and barrier-breaking women figures. However, it must be noted that this book is not for the faint-hearted, you might like it if you enjoy spooky books. It does contain a lot of violence and other triggers. This just proves that Forna, the author, does not shy away from talking about heavy and difficult topics. The story is based on 16-year-old Deka, destined to be more than just what her village offers.

The Gilded Ones
The Gilded Ones

Her worst fears come true when she is cursed with golden blood during the ‘Blood-letting’ ceremony. Which indicated a fate worse than death in her village. She chooses to be free and join the army of chosen girls, born to protect the emperor.

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Rule of Wolves

Rule of wolves will take you back to the welcoming arms of Grishaverse, and it is the second part of the duology King of Scars. Thus, this book will produce a very satisfactory and powerful end to the duology. This book continues the story of the war riddled nation Ravka and their sworn enemies, the cold nation of Fjerda. The story travels around three recurring characters of Grishaverse, Nikolai Lantsov, the ruler of Ravka;  Zoya Nazyalensky, the most powerful witch and Nina Zenik, a fierce warrior. The fate of their nation rests on these three as they try to find freedom for their country.

Rule of Wolves fantasy books
Rule of Wolves

This is the best fantasy book series of all time and has already got so many readers hooked onto it, and it is without a doubt that this book, too, shall do the same. This book can have a special significance, as Grishaverse is coming to Netflix with the first book, shadow and bone. 

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Son of The Storm

It is one of the most anticipated and best new fantasy books that is being released this year. This is a story of a young scholar. Who has the determination to make his life mean something more than his traditional and rigid family’s decision. An opportunity presents itself when an unexpected guest lands on his doorstep. Drawing him into a series of conspiracies.

Son of The Storm
Son of The Storm

The lead takes upon himself to unearth all the forbidden mysteries and hidden magic of his nation. This book is the first of the trilogy, the nameless republic and is sure to grab the attention of many book enthusiasts.  

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The Councillor

This story has machiavellian undertones, as the newly appointed councillor of Elira must choose as to who will ascend to the throne following the death of her queen, Sarelin Brey. While the quest for the new ruler is in progress, she should also pursue the queen’s killer. The lead Lysande is calculative and ingenious. Determined to fulfil her purpose, but as her quest progresses, she cannot deny her increasing thirst for power. This book brims with political drama, schemes and betrayals. This also features an unapproving alliance between the councillor and a prince. Altogether this book is going to create a mark and leave the readers wanting more.

The Councillor fantasy books
The Councillor

The machiavellian undertones refer to the dishonest and strategising context given by the book. There will be more parts of this series to come, adding to the best fantasy books available, but the number of entries that has been decided is unclear.

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