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An Aficionado’s Guide to the Top 100 Fantasy Books of All Time – Part 6

A few things you should know about this list:
*It was voted on by a large group of fantasy readers (majority rules)
*If a single book is on the list and that book is part of a series, it’s a recommendation for the entire series.
*I have read some of the books, but not all.
*I provide a link to the books I have reviewed.

I decided to break this into parts because it’s a pretty long list.

 

An Aficionado’s Guide to the Top 100 Fantasy Books of All Time – Part 5
 
 
moon called41. Moon Called
Series: Mercy Thompson
Review: 4 Stars

Mercedes “Mercy” Thompson is a talented Volkswagen mechanic living in the Tri-Cities area of Washington. She also happens to be a walker, a magical being with the power to shift into a coyote at will. Mercy’s next-door neighbor is a werewolf. Her former boss is a gremlin. And she’s fixing a bus for a vampire. This is the world of Mercy Thompson, one that looks a lot like ours but is populated by those things that go bump in the night. And Mercy’s connection to those things is about to get her into some serious hot water…

 
darkfever42. Darkfever
Series: Fever

MacKayla Lane’s life is good. She has great friends, a decent job, and a car that breaks down only every other week or so. In other words, she’s your perfectly ordinary twenty-first-century woman. Or so she thinks…until something extraordinary happens.

When her sister is murdered, leaving a single clue to her death–a cryptic message on Mac’s cell phone–Mac journeys to Ireland in search of answers. The quest to find her sister’s killer draws her into a shadowy realm where nothing is as it seems, where good and evil wear the same treacherously seductive mask. She is soon faced with an even greater challenge: staying alive long enough to learn how to handle a power she had no idea she possessed–a gift that allows her to see beyond the world of man, into the dangerous realm of the Fae….

As Mac delves deeper into the mystery of her sister’s death, her every move is shadowed by the dark, mysterious Jericho, a man with no past and only mockery for a future. As she begins to close in on the truth, the ruthless Vlane–an alpha Fae who makes sex an addiction for human women–closes in on her. And as the boundary between worlds begins to crumble, Mac’s true mission becomes clear: find the elusive Sinsar Dubh before someone else claims the all-powerful Dark Book–because whoever gets to it first holds nothing less than complete control of the very fabric of both worlds in their hands…

 
The Wizard of Oz43. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
Series: Oz
Movies: 1939, 1978
Review: 3.5 Stars

In a terrifying instant of darkness, a tornado snatches up Dorothy Gale and her dog Toto, whirling them on the wild wind out of Kansas and straight to Oz.

In this wondrous world of sorcery and danger, Munchkins, flying monkeys, talking mice and fighting trees, all Dorothy wants to do is go home…

Together with the Scarecrow who wants a brain, the Tin Man who wants a heart, and the Cowardly Lion who wants courage, Dorothy and Toto must follow the Yellow Brick Road to find the Wizard of the Emerald City. But before the wizard of Oz will grant their wishes, Dorothy and her friends must do the impossible–Destroy the all-powerful Wicked Witch of the West….

 
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Review: The Umbrella Conspiracy (Resident Evil #1) by S.D. Perry

umbrella comspiracy

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Raccoon City: a remote mountain community suddenly besieged by a rash of grisly murders encroaching upon it from the surrounding forest. Bizarre reports start to spread, describing attacks from vicious creatures, some human…some not. Victims are apparently eaten.

At the epicenter of these deaths is a dark, secluded mansion belonging to the mysterious Umbrella Corporation. For years Umbrella has labored within the mansion, unwatched, ostensibly conducting benign genetic research.

Deployed to investigate the strange goings-on is the Special Tactics and Rescue Squad (S.T.A.R.S.), an unusual paramilitary response unit boasting an eclectic assortment of mission specialists: roguish Chris Redfield, former cat burglar Jill Valentine, dead-eye Barry Burton, and the enigmatic team leader, Albert Wesker. Together with the other S.T.A.R.S. operatives, they have good reason to believe they’re ready for anything.

But what unfolds as the S.T.A.R.S. penetrate the mansion’s long-locked doors is terror beyond their worst nightmares: creatures that defy the laws of life and death – the result of forbidden experiments gone disastrously wrong. Behind it all is a conspiracy so vast in its scope and so insidious in its agenda that the S.T.A.R.S. will be betrayed from within to ensure that the world never learns Umbrella’s secret. And if any survive…they may well come to envy those who do not.

Another Vacation Read

I’m not sure what to say about this book. I enjoyed it for what it was…I was entertained.

I have a bit of a thing for video game novelizations. I love the Diablo series (currently I’m waiting for the Diablo III expansion pack: Reaper of Souls to be released). I managed to pick up two of those novelizations and I enjoyed those as well.

I decided to pick this book up because I really enjoyed the Resident Evil movie (the first one, of course) and my husband and I have one of the games (don’t ask me which one). So I had some familiarity with the franchise but not very much.
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Sheepfarmer’s Daughter by Elizabeth Moon

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Paksenarrion—Paks, for short—refuses her father’s orders to marry the pig farmer down the road and is off to join the army. And so her adventure begins—the adventure that transforms her into a hero remembered in songs, chosen by the gods to restore a lost ruler to his throne.

Sheepfarmer’s Daughter is book 1 of The Deed of Paksenarrion.

Paksenarrion is the daughter of a sheepfarmer. Her father plans to marry her off to a local pig farmer but Paks has other ideas. She dreams of being a valiant soldier on a trusty warhorse. She and her father fight, then she runs off and joins Duke Phelin’s mercenary army.
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The Black Company by Glen Cook

the black company

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Some feel the Lady, newly risen from centuries in thrall, stands between humankind and evil. Some feel she is evil itself. The hardbitten men of the Black Company take their pay and do what they must, burying their doubts with their dead.
Until the prophesy: The White Rose has been reborn, somewhere, to embody good once more.
There must be a way for the “Black Company” to find her…

The Black Company – an elite mercenary company – is narrated by Croaker, the Company annalist and only fully trained doctor. The book starts with the Company in a contract with a country named Beryl. The country is going to hell in a handbasket due to the weakness of the country’s leader.
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The Troll Hunter by Keith C. Blackmore

the troll hunter

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A warrior with a secret. A band of cutthroats. And a monster of legend.
A morning that no one wanted. Battle rusty from the war infirmaries, a company of Sujins are ordered to march north through a war torn country, guarding a mysterious koch. They are whipped by the murderous Rusk the Two Knife and led by the enigmatic Bloor, the only cavalier to survive the Field of Skulls.

Together, they will march into the unknown, and arrive at the teeth of hell.

And only one man will possess the skills necessary to bring the survivors back.

A tale of heroic fantasy. Some graphic violence and language.

Trolls – mindless, destructive monsters, driven by their hunger and willing to eat any living thing – especially humans. Terrorizing the countryside and any towns they cross, trolls kill and eat all the humans they can. From far and wide, people travel to locate The Troll Hunters – the only men able to track and kill these man-eating beasts. How did these men become Troll Hunters and what motivates them? This is their story.

That little summary above (in bold) is a lot closer to what the book is about than the actual blurb. But even then it really doesn’t tell the reader what the book is about before the reader picks it up. And that is the major problem I had with this book – the description of the book does not give the reader any real clue as to what is going on. A friend recommended this book to me – telling me that it was very like David Eddings (one of my favorite authors).

If I had to try to compare this book or author to anyone I would say that Keith C. Blackmore and The Troll Hunter is a lot closer to Glen Cook and The Black Company. This is Military fantasy without any magic…just a really big and really bad troll. Not an evil troll, just destructive and hungry. So, I really wasn’t expecting Military Fiction…and I’ve been a bit of a moody reader lately. I had a bit of a love/hate relationship with this book. The book is very well written and I did enjoy it…I just wasn’t expecting it.
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