Best Fantasy Books Subgenre Reading Challenge discussion

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General > New subgenres all the time?

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message 1: by Christie (new)

Christie Stratos (christiestratos) | 94 comments Mod
I noticed today that BestFantasyBooks.com now has 70 subgenres. They're adding more all the time, When I read the descriptions of the new additions - for example, Mythopoeia and Fantastique - they sound valid and distinctive, though there's always overlap with other subgenres. The degree of overlap and with how many other subgenres the overlap occurs is the biggest question.

I think fantasy is particularly subject to new mixes of subgenres because it's a genre of escape and it relies on new worlds, magic, and other elements that encourage the mind to go outside the box.

Do you like that there are so many subgenres of fantasy? Or do you think the lines can be so blurry between them that it's not worth it to have so many separate subgenres?


message 2: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Sayge | 7 comments Since this is my first foray into fantasy, my opinion may be irrelevant and sound uneducated (which it is within the fantasy genre), but here goes - for a newbie fantasy reader, it can get confusing because the subgenre names aren't always defining terms - like "Fantastique" - and we have to do some research to figure out what it is. So while I get excited at the prospect of a new twist on an old genre, sometimes I discover that the difference is so slight with maybe one added element that a new subgenre isn't really warranted. I feel that way about other genres as well, when, for example, 95 percent of a story fits solidly into a particular subgenre but a tiny new thing is added and suddenly that makes it a new subgenre. Maybe my inexperience with fantasy books makes this totally off the mark, so I'd love to hear what fantasy readers think.


message 3: by Christie (new)

Christie Stratos (christiestratos) | 94 comments Mod
A.L. wrote: "Since this is my first foray into fantasy, my opinion may be irrelevant and sound uneducated (which it is within the fantasy genre), but here goes - for a newbie fantasy reader, it can get confusin..."

That's exactly one of the things I hope to explore in this group - whether all these subgenres are different enough to warrant separate subgenres, according to each person's opinion, and whether we think the chosen books really do fit into their designated subgenre. I hope there will plenty of discussion on how to tell these subgenres apart, what defines them, preferences, and whether the books/authors make it easy to tell the difference or not. I think it will be really interesting, and I can't wait to hear opinions and ideas that I undoubtedly will not have thought of myself.

I also prefer names that in themselves tell what the subgenre's purpose is. Although I can't resist looking up what subgenres like "Fantastique" are. :)


message 4: by Tom (last edited Dec 10, 2015 03:08AM) (new)

Tom Fallwell I agree the title of a sub-genre should be descriptive, such as Heroic Fantasy. Easy to see that such a book is about heroes in a fantasy setting. As said above, "Fantastique" tells nothing, and as an avid fantasy fan, I have no idea what that is either. lol :)


message 5: by Christie (new)

Christie Stratos (christiestratos) | 94 comments Mod
Tom wrote: "I agree the title of a sub-genre should be descriptive, such as Heroic Fantasy. Easy to see that such a book is about heroes in a fantasy setting. As said above, :Fantastique" tells nothing, and as..."

Good to know what a well read fantasy fan thinks of a non-descriptive subgenre! It's a nice-sounding title but it doesn't say much.


message 6: by Josh (new)

Josh de Lioncourt (lioncourt) | 2 comments Personally, I have found that the fantasy books that blend genres tend to be the better overall. The more categories you add to any sort of mix, the more crossover you're going to have. That said, sub genres can be helpful for newcomers. It emphasizes that there is more to the genre than just Lord of the Rings-style entries.

Forgive any typos in this post. Typing on my phone over my first cup of coffee is a recipe for disaster!


message 7: by Christie (new)

Christie Stratos (christiestratos) | 94 comments Mod
Josh wrote: "Personally, I have found that the fantasy books that blend genres tend to be the better overall. The more categories you add to any sort of mix, the more crossover you're going to have. That said, ..."

That's very true, the more interweaved a fantasy book is between subgenres, the more varied and complete it can be. It's also true that some fantasy books/movies are so overwhelmingly popular that it's hard to imagine anything beyond them. Fortunately for us, there's tons more beyond those that are heavily advertised.

Your minimal typos are always welcome, as are your opinions. :)


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