Howdy Folks! Sorry I have been so slack in updating, I am hoping people still read this blog... If you do, I am looking for some recommendations. Carl's reading challenge will be starting up soon, and last year I rewarded myself with one new purchase in honour of the challenge, so this year I am looking for another one. It is the R.I.P challenge, so I am looking for dark fantasy. I know most of the 'popular' fantasy authors, so I am really hoping people will go outside the box. Anyways, any recommendations would be great!

Also, I am looking for some Charles de Lint order. I have read a few books by him, but it was years ago, and I am currently reading Spirits in the Wires. I also have The Onion Girl headed my way. What other books by him are really good and people recommend? He has a lot of books to get through.

I have two fantasy books on the go, so updates soon, don't lose interest!


I haven't been reading this blog for long, so I'm not entirely sure what you've read so far or not. I assume you've read Garth Nix's trilogy "Sabriel," "Lirael," "Abhorsen"? If not, go read! Go now! The third book is the best IMO but they're all fantastic.

I've read the first one and never gone further because I wasn't super impressed. I own book two, though, I'll read it one of these days.

I have only read one book by Charles de LInt so far but I really enjoyed it and will be reading more. I read The Blue Girl which is a teenage fiction book about a girl who can see ghosts and later faeries. A little like Holly Black's book but I think I preferred this one.

I will give the darker fantasy a think, I can only think of Anne Bishop right now and I am sure you have read those or at least heard of them.

Thanks rhinoa, I will add The Blue Girl to the list. I have read the first two Anne Bishop books, and plan to read the rest sometime this year...

Have you read Angela Carter's "The Bloody Chamber"? It would be a good choice for RIP. It's a collection of fairy tale retellings, most of which are very dark indeed. It certainly qualifies as dark fantasy.

There's also Ray Bradbury's "Something Wicked This Way Comes". That book really disturbed me, and I am not disturbed easily.

You could also try Neil Gaiman's Death graphic novels, "The High Cost of Living" and "The Time of Your Live". They are independent stories from the Sandman, so you don't need to have read the whole series to enjoy them. They're among my very favourite of his things.

I own 'The Bloody Chamber'. Maybe I will keep that in mind for the list. Having not got to Ray Bradbury yet, that might be a good idea. As to Neil Gaiman, I am trying to read what I have by him before getting anything else, although I do have plans to get the paperback copy of Fragile Things when it comes out next month.

Dark fantasy - what about Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel books (Kushiel's Dart is the first) or Sarah Monette's Melusine series?

Not a hugely "outside the box" type rec, but both of them are among my favourite fantasy authors!

Neil Gaiman's young adults book 'Coraline' is sort of dark fantasyish...but you already know I am a massive fan and would reccomend all of his books.

I like some of Mercedes Lackey's stuff-more the stuff before she started doing the Luna line-not really dark but good fantasy.

As a newer reader I am not sure all you have read and reviewed but when I hear someone is looking for recommendations in the fantasy genre my first on is always the Chronicles of the Shadow War Trilogy by Chris Claremont and George Lucas. If you have ever seen the movie Willow with Val Kilmer this is what happens after the baby they save turns 12. Very intriguing and held my interest. Right now I am finishing book 2 in the Rangers Apprentice series by John flanagan - loving it and so glad that book three just came out so I can continue on in the story.

Hope you like these - keep up the GREAT work, your reviews are always the ones I go with when looking for new material. Have agreat day.

One thing I am planning on reading is (at least) the first book of the Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast trilogy: Titus Groan. It is billed as dark, gothic fantasy and looks wonderful.

I am a third of the way through Glass Books of the Dream Eaters and am finding it wonderful. It is a huge book though and maybe not a good challenge choice. It isn't fantasy so much as it is a dark, gothic historical novel. Reminds me of a book like The Woman in White.

The Book of Flying by Keith Miller is a fantasy book that I read last year (didn't review) that, for some unknown reason, really got to me. The book stayed with me for days after reading it. It is melancholy at times and has some very dark elements in it that the main character experiences as he goes on his journey.

Have you read Bones of the Moon or Land of Laughs by Jonathan Carroll? Both have fantastical and dark elements, although Land of Laughs is much more of a 'scary' book.

Did you read my recent review of Freaks by Annette Curtis Klause (Blood and Chocolate)? It certainly has some dark elements to it...much more tame, young-adultish dark, but it was very good. I plan on reading Blood and Chocolate for one of my reads.

Those are what I can think of off the top of my head. I'll do some more looking.

I'd add, Forest of the Heart and Someplace to Be Flying , to your DeLint reading list.

I'm just waiting for the latest Kushel book by J. Carey having enjoyed all the previous. I did not care for her 2 book Sundering series although I know many who did.

I forgot to mention that you should also consider Lynn Flewelling's other series, Tamir Triad starting with, The Bone Doll's Twin. Set in the same kingdom just a different time.

cool blog. Check mine out if you get a chance.

One of my favorite by de Lint is The Little Country. In fact, it's one of my favorite books, period.

li: I have started Kushiel's Dart three times and I haven't finished it any of those times. Maybe I will put it on my list for the challenge just to finish it already! I like it, I just can't seem to read it from start to finish. I own the first book in the Melusine series too. I might put that in for the challenge too because I really want to read it. So, good suggestions, just already on the pile. :)

raspberry swyrl: I have Mercedes Lackey's other stuff (well, not all of it) and I plan to read it as soon as I finish the Elemental Masters series that I have on the go. I have read Coraline by Neil Gaiman, it was a good read and it is very much darkish.

Carey: I have read the first book in the George Lucas series you mentioned, maybe it is time to track down book two and three. I haven't heard of the other book you mentioned, so I will be sure to look it up! Thanks very much for stopping by!

carl v.: You know, I have always wanted to read Jonathan Carroll but he was mostly out of print in Canada last time I looked him up. Maybe the R.I.P. challenge is the excuse I need to bring a book in from elsewhere by him... Some of your other recs I have heard of before but never read, and then others I have never heard of and will be looking up very shortly.

Elizabeth: Consider those two books added to my DeLint reading list. I own Lynn Flewelling's other trilogy, but after how much the other one did not set with me, I am giving myself some breathing room so I can hopefully go into it from a fresh perspective.

Thanks for all the recs folks, this is awesome!

booklogged: oops, I had the comment window open so I remembered to reply to everyone, you must have replied during that time. I think I have heard you mention The Little Country before. I will add it to the list for sure. :) Glad to see you back around!

I was wrong, it isn't that Jonathan Carroll is out of print, it is that his books take one to three months. I will have to try somewhere other than amazon.

About this blog

Welcome to Twisted Kingdom - a review site for science fiction and fantasy books.

There have been some recent changes, most obviously the template, so please bear with us while we set up our links and arrange the reviews on our sidebar.

Please drop us a line at if you notice any craziness, broken links or if you'd like us to add you to our link list.

About Me

My photo
Since I was a little girl I have been fascinated with books. Early photos show me with a book in hand, even if it was not exactly my reading level... My first word was a made-up word meaning 'book', actually. I suppose I had my priorities at an early age... Over the years my interest in books has become one of the defining features of who I am as a person. You can probably call me a bookworm. While I have other interests, reading will always be the one I talk about the most, even if I am not focusing on it as much as I used to.