Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Top Five Wednesday - Gateway Books

Top Five Wednesday is a Goodreads group hosted by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes
This week's Top Five is "gateway books to your favourite genre". Now that is a tough topic. It's extremely hard for most of us book fiends to pick a favourite genre, never mind what books we'd recommend as a starter-kit! I narrowed my favourites down, and decided that today I'm going to talk about Children's Fantasy!

Now, when I talk about "Children's" fantasy, I don't mean middle grade. I'm Irish, and the way our book stores split up age catagories are a little different than the US alternatives. So what I mean when I say Children's Fantasy, is anything written for kid's in the age range of around 11 to 15.

Most people will say that, well, that's YA. But again, this is more for recommendations to books that don't quite hit the teenage topics, and deal more with pre-teens or early teens. Most people wouldn't put, say, Artemis Fowl in the same age-range as Uprooted, you get me? And, speaking of those...

5) Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer

This was one of the first series I read (almost) fully as a kid. I must have been around 10/11 when I started this series, and I read right up until The Atlantis Complex, which is the second-last book. This was actually the first series to get me into Fan Fiction too, because I used to post on forums on Ohhh, those were good times. But this series was a staple for me in Children's Fantasy, and I'll recommend it to anyone.

4) The Saga of Darren Shan by Darren Shan

Alright, I might have a small bias towards Irish authors, sue me. This series absolutely hooked me as a kid. Me and a friend of mine were utterly obsessed with the Darren Shan books. Shan also wrote a spin off series for Larten Crepsley but I never finished that one, but I'm thinking of putting that on my to-read list. This was a wonderfully dark vampire series, and I've never seen such a unique take on vampire lore.

3) Inkworld by Cornelia Funke

Another favourite of mine as a kid, this trilogy of books takes on the idea of stories coming to life, quite literally. I have the edition I used as a cover photo and FOR THE LIFE OF ME I CAN'T FIND THE OTHER TWO IN THIS EDITION. I want to beat my head off a wall when I think of it because it's So FuCKing BeaUtIFul. Ahem. I actually have an illustration and quote from this book tattooed on me. I would take a picture to show off but I'm too lazy.

2) His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman

I'll say it time and time again: this trilogy is my favourite. If you told me I could only re-read one series of books in my life I would pick this, hands down, no arguments. This is the first series of books I read that had a very deep subtext - a criticism of organised religion and questions of faith and
truth. This trilogy fucked me up and I LOVE IT.

1) Harry Potter by JK Rowling

Need I say more?

So, what are your favourite Children's Fantasies? What would you have picked as your favourite genre? Have you read any of these books? Let me know!

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