I was tagged in the ‘I’m a sucker for…’ blog challenge by Peter across at The Swordsmith. There are lots of things I enjoy and look out for in books, but the following are the two (plus a third, current obsession) that stand out for me.
I maintain that not every book needs a map, but as anyone who has seen my reviews will know I am always excited when there is a map. Part of this harks back to when I studied Geography at University, as the cartography module was my favourite across the four years, and nowadays is probably the skill I use most from that time albeit for my own writing and D&D campaigns (so probably not what my lecturer had in mind at the time). More than that though, I love the details, and being able to place where events are occurring within a story by looking at the map, and I am that person who will flick back and forth to look at the map. There’s also the fact that maps can have such range, from simple and practical, to works of art that shows something about the culture and methods behind it, and I just love everything about them, and it’s another anchor that helps bring fantasy worlds to life.
I enjoy all kinds of fantasy, but I do find myself leaning more into the darker aspects of the genre. Grimdark – as debated as the term is, is a label that is likely to make me go ‘ooooh’. I’m not even sure I can put into words what it is about this kind of fantasy that appeals most to me, just that if I have a choice between comedic-fantasy or fluffier/lighter fantasy and dark/grimdark it is always the latter that I will read first, I have to be in the mood for the lighter stuff. And most of my ‘comfort’ reads fall very firmly into the darker end of the spectrum.
D&D Inspired Fantasy:
This is a more recent obsession, but more and more lately I find myself enjoying fantasy that leads into that D&D inspiration and the feeling of a classic adventure (even if that doesn’t tend to lean quite so far into the darker end of the spectrum). I put this down to the fact that I now play 2-3 times a week in different groups, and with it becoming such a large part of my life it makes sense that its influencing what I’ve been picking up to read, and even better it’s letting me discover a lot of new books and authors. (I just need more hours in the day to read them all).
So there you are three things I am certainly a sucker for :D, thanks again to Peter for the challenge and I will be tagging some people across on twitter!