Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Top Ten Urban Fantasy Books

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created and hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Top Ten Urban Fantasy Books
by Kayla

Urban fantasy is a sub-genre of fantasy defined by place; the fantastic narrative has an urban setting. Many urban fantasies are set in contemporary times and contain supernatural elements. However, the stories can take place in historical, modern, or futuristic periods. The prerequisite is that they must be primarily set in a city.

Okay, I know this is supposed to be the best books in a particular genre, but most of these are going to be series because they all contribute so much to the story as a whole. Yes, it is cheating, but I do what I want. {{sticks out tongue}}

1. The Hollows Series by Kim Harrison

There is absolutely no way in the world that I could choose just one of these that I like the best. However, I don’t think I liked Black Magic Sanction. (It was one or two books ago that came out a few years ago.) Whichever one it was, it didn’t really impress me.

2. The Southern Vampire Series by Charlaine Harris

Okay, I’ll admit that they start to drag around book 8, but they are amazing up until that point. I know there are a few people that have given up on the series altogether, but I will not leave Eric Northman until the very end. (Maybe you should take a page out of MY book, Sookie.)

3. The Mercedes Thompson Series by Patricia Briggs

I love, love, love some Mercy Thompson! This series is fun, fresh, and you’re not ready to bash the characters heads in, even though book seven is coming along soon. (Okay, I was kind of mad about how something went down in Iron Kissed, but we’re not going there today.)

4. The Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter Series (Book 1-5) by Laurell K. Hamilton

These books are fantastically great, but I had to quit reading them after the sixth book because she turned into a simpering little puppy. It wasn’t necessarily bad or anything, she just stopped being a bad a**. I just lost all respect for her and interest in the series. I was all “blah blah blah” about it and moved on about my business.

5. American Gods by Neil Gaiman

Mythology + Mystery + Action = Awesome – I’m totally marrying this guy when Amanda Palmer is done playing with him.

6. The Sabina Kane Series by Jaye Wells

This is a very interesting spin on vampire, witch (okay, mage), and [some] werewolf mythology. The world-building is exceptional, and the heroine is one of my favorites. Jaye Wells is not afraid of doing what is necessary to move the series along (I don’t want to spoil anything), and the books are not suffering any sort of blandness because of it.

7. The Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne

You guys should have known that Atticus O’Sullivan will be on every list that could possibly pertain to anything about that man. He is a hot, 2000 year old Druid on the run from the various pantheons of gods. And he’s hot. {{swoons}} Okay, now that I have that out of the way, I can tell you that it is a great, funny read. Oberon, Atticus’ Irish Wolfhound, is a fantastic sidekick and a fan favorite. However, my heart belongs to Atticus fully. Well, maybe I’d leave him for Perun (see Hammered).

8. Ariel by Steven R. Boyett

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned the book on this blog or mine, but this is one of my all-time favorites. It’s a post-apocalyptic novel about a boy and his unicorn. Yep, a unicorn. All of the rules of science suddenly stop working for no apparent reason, and magic takes over. It is a gripping read, and I did a lot of thinking/fantasizing about what I would do if I was faced with the same situation as the characters.

9. The Vampire Lestat by Anne Rice

This book chronicles the life of Lestat de Lioncourt from his birth in the 1760s to present day (which was the late 1980s when it was written). This is what inspired my love of vampires, and I would one day love to see a cage match between Lestat and Edward. Just sayin’.

10. A Touch Mortal by Leah Clifford

This book is about suicide victim, Eden, and her struggle to adjust to “life” as a Sider – an individual caught between life and death. She’s fallen in love with a fallen angel, dies, and is thrown into a different world within our own that has a completely new set of rules. Yes, there is some of the teen angst thing going on that I usually detest (passionately), but it works in this dark novel. Awesome. Sauce.


  1. No love for Jim Butcher? I've read a number of these, and his series is right there with them.

    1. I am very embarrassed to admit that I have not read Jim Butcher yet. All of my friends have bullied me, and I promise that Storm Front is on my Nook. I just spent so many years doing research for my degree that I feel like I'm playing catch-up with everything else. I'm giving myself a "Me Month" for reading and reviews, and it'll probably be devoured then. :-)

  2. I've read five of the ten and three of the others are on my to-be-read list. Great list.

    1. Thanks! I'm glad that you agree. :-D

      Kayla @ Krazy Book Lady

  3. I've read about half of the ones you listed...the others are going on my list! :)
    I agree with everything you said about The Hollows series (although I'm still mad at her for a certain individual's demise)and I'm completely in love with the Iron Druid Chronicles.

    And yeah....add me to the list of people bullying you into reading the Jim Butcher books. ;)

    1. I think it was necessary for that individual to die, unfortunately. The series would have stagnated if he had stuck around. Not that I'm happy about it or anything.

      And you're added to the list. I will definitely be reading Storm Front in May. :-)

      Kayla @ Krazy Book Lady

  4. I've read about half the ones you listed, and the others are definitely going on my list if they aren't there already.

    I LOVED The Hollows series (although I'm still mad at her for a certain character's demise)...and I devoured the Iron Druid Chronicles in much the same way.

    Add me to the list of people bullying you into reading Jim Butcher. :)

  5. Love your list. Can you expand to eleven? War of the Oaks by Emma Bull gave birth to the genre.

  6. Fabulous list! Most I've read but a few I haven't... thanks for adding to by TBR pile :)

  7. The Fae Series is one of the BEST urban fantasies I have ever read....by Karen Marie Moning. The first book is called Dark Fever. GREAT.

  8. Currently reading the American Gods, it is pretty good so far. I agree with the Dresden Files comment, it is a great series, lots of good humor. The Iron Druid was good, and another series I enjoyed was the Elemental Assassin Series, I would recommend it! Thanks

  9. That is a pretty good list. I have a few recommendations from you due to my recent obsession with brit fantasy. Try the Mathhew Swift/Midnight Mayor series by Kate Griffin (a very young and very gifted writer). Also, the Felix Castor series by Mike Carey rocks hard. As for Jim Butcher, that series lacks texture for me -- its all fund and adventure but I like more grit in urban fantasy lit.



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