Recommendations: Fantasy Vol 1

Hi and welcome to the reading world!

Today, I’m sharing a few picks of some fantasy novels that I’ve read and loved that are non-Western European inspired! Western European has very commonly been a major inspiration source for fantasy novels throughout a lot of publishing, but for today’s recommendations post I’m going to spotlight some of the incredible stories out that feature inspiration from other areas of the world. I wanted to share this after a follower on my Bookstagram mentioned wanting to hear more about some of these, so if you have any post requests please feel free to leave a comment!

Without further ado, here are some recommendations for fantasy novels taking place in a non-Western European inspired world!

Fireheart Tiger by Aliette de Bodard

Fireheart Tiger takes place in a world inspired by pre-colonial Vietnam. This novella may be short in length but has excellently written political intrigue and an awesome character arc. This is a great pick and one I also recently featured on my Bookstagram this month for a read featuring LGBTQ characters!

Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse

I’ve talked about Black Sun a lot on the blog, as it was my Favorite Read of 2020, and this one takes place in a world inspired by pre-Colombian Americas. This is the start of a new series that features multiple protagonists in storylines that interweave and build up to some major elements that I’m still in shock over. This is another one that features some great LGBTQ protagonists and I have a full review available!

City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty

Really, the entire Daevabad trilogy is incredible and one of my all time favorites. This is a political and historical fantasy that begins in 18th century Cairo and takes off from there. I’ve got a spoiler-free review of the entire trilogy for more of my thoughts.

Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

This is one of my more recent reads and is inspired by Mexican folklore. I loved reading the urban 1920s setting combined with gods and an incredible heroine on a journey. Although this was my first book I’ve read by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, it definitely won’t be my last.

The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

This was last month’s @b2weird book club pick, and the series itself is based on the events of the Second Sino-Japanese War. I’ve only read the first book of this trilogy so far, but it is incredibly written with elements of political and military fantasy interwoven throughout, but also definitely one that confronts the devastation and grief that the characters face head on throughout.

Have you read any of these? Which ones would you recommend?

As usual, if you would like to see what some other readers have shared as potential trigger warnings for these books, please check out a resource like The Storygraph to see a list of trigger and content warnings compiled by readers.

Thank you for stopping by!


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