10 Must-Read Fantasy Series

The world seems like a strange place these days, and with the lockdown in full effect, now is the perfect time to catch up on your backlist of books. Fantasy might be an intimidating genre, but it’s one that makes the impossible seem possible. Whether you’re new to the genre, or a lifelong fan, there is something for everyone in this list of 10 must-read fantasy novels.

The Shattered Sea by Joe Abercrombie

Half a King | Half the World | Half a War

Kicking things off is The Shattered Sea series. Perfect for fans of the Last Kingdom, Abercrombie’s novels takes all the themes familiar in fantasy such as betrayal, vengeance, and survival, but adds a layer of depth to them that makes the book all the more engaging. Our characters are flawed and complex, and throughout the book, we explore the varying degrees of strength that push our characters to their very limits. Continue reading

Waiting on Wednesday: Blood & Honey

Originally created by Jill at Breaking The Spine, and adapted to Can’t-Wait Wednesday by Tressa at Wishful Endings, Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

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Blood & Honey (Serpent & Dove, #2) by Shelby Mahurin

Publication Date: September 1st, 2020

Goodreads Summary
The hotly anticipated sequel to the New York Times and IndieBound bestseller Serpent & Dove—packed with even steamier romance and darker magic—is perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas.

After narrowly escaping death at the hands of the Dames Blanches, Lou, Reid, Coco, and Ansel are on the run from coven, kingdom, and church—fugitives with nowhere to hide.

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Discussion: The Best Scenes From Return of the King

In the final instalment of this series, we are looking at the best moments from the Return of the King. In the epic conclusion to this saga, the fellowship are faced with their biggest challenge yet as Frodo, Sam, and the villainous Gollum march closer to Mordor, and the spotlight falls on Minas Tirith, the last stronghold of Gondor. It’s a breathtaking final, one that is grounded in the last strength of the free people of Middle-earth. The Return of the King is a testament to all the hard work that went into creating this epic fantasy adventure. It’s a culmination of all the work that has gone into proving that epic fantasy is equally as compelling as any other movie genre. It paved the way for other fantasy franchises on the big and small screen and rightfully deserved the 11 Academy Awards it received in 2003. In a film that runs over 250 minutes (Extended Edition), here are the best scenes from Return of the King.

The Palantír

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In a brief reprieve following the Battle of Helms Deep, members of the fellowship are reunited with Merry and Pippin. Before departing for Edoras, Gandalf and company seek out a powerless Saurman for information on the upcoming battle. In this confrontation, we get a glimpse of the Palantir, Saruman’s direct link to Sauron. Pippin’s fixation on the Palantir would lead to the confrontational moment when he succumbs to the will of the Palantir, getting a glimpse of Sauron’s plan. This moment was so effective in luring the fellowship into a false sense of security while they regroup. Yet, with Legolas’ keen sense, that looming threat of danger slowly builds leading to Pippin succumbing to the will of the Palantir effectively crushes this lull, reminding us that they may have won the battle, but the war has yet to be resolved. Continue reading

Waiting on Wednesday: Unravel the Dusk

Originally created by Jill at Breaking The Spine, and adapted to Can’t-Wait Wednesday by Tressa at Wishful Endings, Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

36683940This week I am waiting on
Unravel the Dusk (The Blood Of Stars, #2) by Elizabeth Lim

Publication Date: July 7th, 2020

Goodreads Summary
The thrilling sequel to SPIN THE DAWN, a magical series steeped in Chinese culture.

Maia Tamarin’s journey to sew the dresses of the sun, the moon and the stars has taken a grievous toll. She returns to a kingdom on the brink of war. The boy she loves is gone, and she is forced to don the dress of the sun and assume the place of the emperor’s bride-to-be to keep the peace.

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Discussion: The Best Scenes from the Two Towers

The second instalment to the Lord of the Rings franchise, The Two Towers defies the middle movie slump as viewers are treated to an expanding universe, raised stakes, and one of the greatest battles in cinematic history. The Two Towers is an easy favourite in the franchise, as the scattered fellowship finds themselves at the heart of the conflict, and their journey becomes more perilous as they draw closer to enemy territory. Here are some of the best scenes from The Two Towers.

The Fate of Merry and Pippin

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A friendly reminder that Viggo Mortensen actually broke two toes when filming this scene. This moment showcases Aragorn’s skills as a ranger as it reveals the fate of the captured Merry and Pippin. The way the scene cuts from Aragorn’s shrewd tracking skills to Merry and Pippin’s escape was brilliant in heightening the sense of anticipation in hearing the fates of these Hobbits. Continue reading

Waiting on Wednesday: A Deadly Education

Originally created by Jill at Breaking The Spine, and adapted to Can’t-Wait Wednesday by Tressa at Wishful Endings, Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

50548197This week I am waiting on
A Deadly Education (Scholomance, #1) by Naomi Novik

Publication Date: September 29th, 2020

Goodreads Summary
Lesson One of the Scholomance

Learning has never been this deadly

A Deadly Education is set at Scholomance, a school for the magically gifted where failure means certain death (for real) — until one girl, El, begins to unlock its many secrets. There are no teachers, no holidays, and no friendships, save strategic ones. Survival is more important than any letter grade, for the school won’t allow its students to leave until they graduate… or die! The rules are deceptively simple: Don’t walk the halls alone. And beware of the monsters who lurk everywhere. El is uniquely prepared for the school’s dangers. She may be without allies, but she possesses a dark power strong enough to level mountains and wipe out millions. It would be easy enough for El to defeat the monsters that prowl the school. The problem? Her powerful dark magic might also kill all the other students.


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Discussion: The Best Scenes from The Fellowship of the Ring

There is no denying the influence the Lord of the Rings franchise has had on cinema. This franchise paved the way for fantasy on both the small screen and the big screen. It proved to the world that a fantasy adventure can be both visually striking and engaging in its narrative. With a strong cast of characters and a dedicated production team, the Lord of the Rings captures the spirit of this beloved book series. The Fellowship of the Ring kick starts this journey, and these are the most memorable scenes from the first instalment of this epic franchise.

Prologue: One Ring to Rule Them All…

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The opening sequence of The Fellowship of the Ring does everything it can to successfully hook a viewer. Establishing the history and power of the one ring and his master, we are given a glimpse into the despair and destruction that once beheld Middle-Earth. The dramatic shots of war and the corruption of men did a phenomenal job at establishing a lingering threatening presence from the enemy. Pair that with the almost ethereal narration from Galadriel, and we have an opening that instantly captivates the viewers. Continue reading