After the comments left on my post here, and some consultation with the members of the Science Fiction Fans group on LibraryThing, I have come up with a list of twelve fantasy novels for next year's reading challenge. Those books are:
- Pawn of Prophecy, David Eddings (1982)
- Magician, Raymond E Feist (1982)
- The Dragonbone Chair, Tad Williams (1988)
- Assassin's Apprentice, Robin Hobb (1995)
- King's Dragon, Kate Elliott (1997)
- Colours in the Steel, KJ Parker (1998)
- The Sum of All Men, David Farland (1998)
- The One Kingdom, Sean Russell (2001)
- The Darkness That Comes Before, R Scott Bakker (2003)
- The Wizard Hunters, Martha Wells (2003)
- The Blade Itself, Joe Abercrombie (2006)
- Winterbirth, Brian Ruckley (2006)
The plan is: each month I will read one of the above, and then blog about it. I won't just be considering the quality of the work in question - the writing, the plotting, the world-building, etc. - but also whether or not the book makes me want to continue reading the series. It should prove... informative. Some of the books I've chosen are quite hefty volumes, so it should also prove... strengthening.
I'd just like to reiterate that I won't be coming to modern / secondary world / Tolkienesque (whichever term you might prefer) fantasy completely cold. I've read Robert Jordan, George RR Martin, Steven Erikson... a whole bunch of fantasy. But none of the above, of course.
The list may change, depending on whether or not I can get hold of a chosen title. I already have Colours in the Steel on my book-shelves, so that'll be January's read.