7 Fantasy Expectations That I’ll Pine Over |Diversity, Stabbing, Characters, and More. E.g Me Handing My Heart Over To The Dark Side (#No Regrets).

Fantasy books are were my best friends, now I’m just very fussy. 

My last post talked about rep in fantasy books vs contemporary books and I realised while I was writing that post, that damn I’m actually really picky about fantasy books / what I want to see in them.  

I just have very high expectations I think? Fabulous, honestly.

I’ve read TWO fantasy books recently (Carry On (still recovering), and an ARC: Prodigy Prince (worldbuilding!!)) when usually most of my reads would be fantasy?!

I think that I have these huge phases where fantasy is all that I can love and then BOOM— I don’t want anything to do with it because I can’t find it as magical as it was before.

And I think that as I read fantasy books my expectations just go up and up and up and up until that’s-it-nothing-is-good-anymore-when-they’re-actually-amazing.

So yeah let’s talk about my super high expectations at the moment.

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1. DIVERSITY.

This is a whopper. And, if I’m honest, one of the biggest reasons why I’m not reading as much fantasy at the moment. There’s a huge LACK of LGBTQ diversity in the fantasy genre (which I ranted about furiously in my last post) which makes me retreat into other genres…

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(lgbtq)

  1. Carry On (I’m dead, ok?)
  2. The Mortal Instruments (I ship so much) / The Dark Artifices (KIERAN!!)
  3. The Raven Cycle (nothing makes me happier (apart from maybe cake))
  4. Six of Crows / Crooked Kingdom (wesperforeverbye)

and… I can’t think of any others that I’ve read.

I just don’t know why it’s so hard to incorporate rep?!?! LIKE PHULEASE. I will cry on you.

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2. ACTION FROM THE START.

Can we just start the book in the middle?! I think that it would be WAY more interesting. Then you have to figure out all the boring—sorry, I mean informative—backstory and BOOM. Infinitely more interesting.

Sometimes with Fantasy Books™ nothing really happens that quickly bc it’s all the characters plotting how they’re gonna do things and all their lil opinions and I’m just here like???? I will nOT remember any of this anyway???? so why not just throw me???? into the drama???? already????

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3. 1000 BATTLES… THAT I CAN ACTUALLY FOLLOW ALONG WITH.

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Is it just me that gets super confused with battle scenes?? I JUST THINK YES YES THIS SCENE AND DGKGKN STABBED JHNHKD SO AWESOME... and then ten seconds later 100 characters are dead and I don’t know how?!

Some I can follow along with, eg: “GJGN punched GNGN and GNGN fell.”

Any more detail than that juicy description? ABANDON FREAKING SHIP.

But battle scenes are actually amazing?!?! And I love them?!?!?! BUT HELP ME UNDERSTAND!! I WILL GIVE YOU ALL THE CAKE YOU DESIRE!!

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4. MAYBE NOT 4375 CHARACTERS?

Is it just me who can not—for the life of them—remember who anyone is up until the last, maybe, 20 pages???

And yeah?? I’m sure they’re important?? But do I remember them?? NOPE.

It’s like all the important things just?? don’t stick?? tho this could be me talking about anything if I’m honest.

The main character?? who is that??

If I’m honest though, the books that have fewer characters I enjoy more?? Because they’re more developed?? FOR EXAMPLE CARRY ON… 2 main characters, 2 friends. BAM. I understand this. The Raven Cycle? 5 characters—and that’s just about okay with my brain to register.

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5. NAMES THAT I CAN ACTUALLY SAY, THANKS.

You know, what makes you sound even more insane when rambling over a book and start to hyperventilate? BEING UNABLE TO SAY—OR SPELL—THE CHARACTERS NAMES THAT YOU’RE SHRIEKING ABOUT.

Then again… you could, in Typical Lu Fashion, just forget all their names like I do and call them Goodie 1, Goodie 2, Goodie 3, Baddie 1, Baddie 2.

Do some authors LITERALLY just dnhldrkl on their keyboards and then make a name out of it?

HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO READ THAT IN MY HEAD? HUH?? DID YOU THINK OF THAT, YOU MEAN CREATURES? PROBABLY DID IT ON PURPOSE!

No… I am definitely not salty about this…

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6. STABBING. 

In my opinion, there just isn’t enough stabbing, and shooting and DEATH.

Yes, I want casualties on every page, and those casualties to not just be my heart. Actually, can we just have some more morally grey “goodies” that don’t always do the right thing?

I feel like they’re all so “good” and… it’s like… you?? are?? so?? righteous?? how?? I think that’s why I love SoC so much because Kaz Brekker is not afraid to just beat someone to death with a stick. Ohhh and Laila Bard from ADSOM. So stabtacular.

I JUST LOVE STABBY MURDER (in books). I think that it’s so much better that way??? It just IS.

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7. MORE MASTERMINDS, PLEASE.

(I’m talking SoC/CK genius)

I want that MASTER PLAN. I want that plan so thought out, they just kick everyone’s ass. I want BRILLIANCE. I want DECEPTION. I want EXPLOSIONS. And I want it NOW.

(Basically, I’m just asking for 10000 books just like SoC. Blame Kaz Brekker)

Sorry, not sorry. Really clever, morally grey gang members, with unending sass, and great fashion, will always win over my heart. (it’s not even a competition, I’ll just throw it at them, and I’ll do so gladly).

THEY’RE JUST BRILLIANT. BYE. Screenshot 2018-06-02 14.37.45

What do you ask for from fantasy? Let me know that I’m not the only one with super high expectations? Lol, I actually love fantasy I’m just,, me. Anyone know any really gay fantasy books that I need to read? (plsplspls)

 

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40 thoughts on “7 Fantasy Expectations That I’ll Pine Over |Diversity, Stabbing, Characters, and More. E.g Me Handing My Heart Over To The Dark Side (#No Regrets).”

  1. […] 💛 Lu @ It’s Lu Again shares her 7 fantasy expectations 💛 Olivia @ Purely Olivia talks about her one major problem with Harry Potter and shares other thoughts related to the series 💛 Amy @ Bursting With Books is back! 💛 Eve @ Twist in the Taile shares their YALC 2018 recap 💛 Lily @ Sprinkles of Dreams talks about why we need (more) confident female characters 💛 Em @ Yellow’s The Word talks about her trip to Amsterdam. I linked back to Day 4 because it links back to all the previous days so you can easily find those 💛 Amber @ The Literary Phoenix shares five things she learned from Camp NaNo 💛 Elm @ Just Call Me Elm Or Something talks about when writing becomes stressful […]

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  2. YES LU ALL OF THIS!! I 100% feel you on reading less fantasy – I’ve barely read any fantasy this year and I’m pretty sure contemporary has taken over my heart?? BECAUSE IT’S JUST SO MUCH MORE DIVERSE? Most fantasies literally take place in different worlds. And it’s still white, straight and cis ????

    Starting in the middle would be GREAT yes please. I often have trouble getting into fantasy because 1) I’ve gotten used to the pace of contemporaries and 2) they often start so slow?? Even though they turn out to be amazing and action-packed but the beginning,, is so difficult. Like I was actually worried I wasn’t going to like SoC because it took a while to get started/for me to get interested. AND OH MY GOODNESS BATTLES CAN BE SO CONFUSING. I often have to reread sentences because ?? what just happened?? did someone just die?? how?? when?? what is going on??

    AND YES TOO MANY CHARACTERS WHO ARE ALL THESE PEOPLE WHY DO AUTHORS THINK MY SMALL BRAIN CAN KEEP UP IT CAN’T. Though to be fair I’m reading The Brightsiders right now, which I started last night and today I already went ‘who dat’ at one character’s name being dropped adsngj There aren’t even that many characters and it’s a contemporary, so maybe this is just a me problem 😂

    ALSO CARRY ON I LOVE CARRY ON SO MUCH I REREAD IT EVERY YEAR AND NOW WE’RE GETTING A SEQUEL 😭

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    1. OKIM SORRY THAT IM JUST SEEING THIS??????????

      TOTALLY, THAT’S ME!!!! IM ALWAYS SO. CONFUSED. like literallyl,,, what is going on half the time??????????? too many characters!!! ew ewewewewewewewewew. i swear i do pay attention??? or maybe i just think that i do?????

      OMG WAYWARD SON!!!! I CANNOT WAIT

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m dying for more LGBTQ+ rep in fantasy! Everyone seems to be adding in more racial diversity but sadly, LGBT+ and disability reps are sorely lacking! It’s something I always try to be conscious of while working on my WIP. I always ask myself, “How can I help a community be represented?” It’s nothing about gaining more attention but because I want people to know they’re worth a million stories!

    Please bring back the masterminds, and the villains with a heart! The latter is just about my favourite trope ever haha

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  4. hey so Lu this is a really great and fun post!! but I did want to point out that… those being the only four lgbtq fantasy books you’ve read is sort of… part of the problem? I mean, I appreciate your intent by pointing out lack of diversity in fantasy novels – that’s a very real problem and relatable as hell. but it seems very… idk, weird? that this post is pointing that out while mentioning only four fantasy series with lgbtq lead characters, none of whom are by authors who are publicly out, all four of which are m/m by white women.

    that’s not to say those books aren’t great – I’ve read and loved all four!! – but it seems veeeeeery weird, and super super super not-intersectional to me reading this? idk?

    and it’s also… only four! and there are a lot more out there!! and I don’t think this was the intent, but it reads like the implication is that no other queer fantasy books exist? I don’t know?

    um, so if you needed recs for really good fantasy novels with lgbtq leads: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/52545435?shelf=gays-in-fantasy
    I really like The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza, which is weird and funny and bi!! And Wild Beauty, which has an all-bi cast!! And Jane Unlimited, which is very weird and sapphic!! And Every Heart a Doorway, which is a series with trans and ace and lesbian leads!! And The Wicker King, which is by a black woman and very weird and creepy and gay? And Girls Made of Snow and Glass, which has a lesbian snow white!! And Reign of the Fallen, which is about a bi necromancer!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Yeah these were just a few that came to mind but I get what you mean?? What I meant to say was that these are the only super HYPED ones that I’ve actually managed to read and I didn’t want to go recommend books that I hadn’t read yet (such a Wild Beauty which I’m DYING to read) because the rep could be bad and I’d have no idea??? Sorry, it wasn’t my intent to come across that way and I know that there are plenty more of fantasy books out there!! And thank you for all the recs!!

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      1. it’s okay, just like!! something to think about in the future!! bc I think in the context of the post it doesn’t really read as intentioned 😫

        anyway I hope you read + enjoy some of the books on that list!!

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  5. Omg I completely agree with ALL of this. I hate the lack of LGBTQA in fantasy! All those series you listed with LGBTQA characters are literally my favorite. There’s not enough! And I want more morally gray characters as well! Kaz is honestly such an ideal character to me. Fantasy is my favorite genre, but after reading so much my expectations keep getting higher and higher. Six of Crows/The Raven Cycle/Daughter of Smoke & Bone were all so good, it’s hard to find series that top them.

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  6. OH MY THIS POST IS EVERYTHING. I can relate to everything here. I don’t know why I feel so confused during battle scenes sometimes, but I do and sometimes it’s annoying because, like you perfectly said, all of a sudden someone dies and I just have no idea how it happened?! And yes, sometimes fantasies seem quite fascinating, yet… well, they take a little while to actually GET fascinating, they are so slow at the beginning and it’s a bit frustrating. And CHARACTER NAMES.I tend to forget them anyway, so…..😂 AND A BIG MASSIVE YES TO DIVERSITY. We need way more diversity in fantasies. ❤

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  7. THIS IS ME, 1000%. IT’S LIKE EVERYTHING I’VE EVER BEEN THINKING ABOUT FANTASY THIS YEAR. Holy wow yes I am disappointed with the diversity in fantasy these days. Plus this is why I absolutely love and freaking adore Cassandra Clare (I am so mad people hate on her just because she’s famous grr) because like here we have huge epic action adventures with like mental illness rep, POC rep, disability rep?? It’s so freaking beautiful??? AND QUEER. Keiran and Mark tho. Ty and KIT. It’s basically like if a character walks on the page you know they’re going to rep a real kind of person and I love this afjdklsa I have too many feelings someone shut me up.😭😭

    Also am so tired of really boring world building (don’t dESCRIBE A LAKE I DON’t CARE) and long battle scenes. I prefer to watch battle scenes in movies? On page it gets tedious. Also I want more stabby masterminds, and less sexism! Like what the heck, people, why can fantasy books imagine talking dragons but not a world where women aren’t oppressed????? I feel like fantasy needs to majorly up its game.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It really needs to step up. like,, TELL ME WHY the lake is amazing or powerful, don’t go on about the starlight catching in the waves and the ripples dissipating at the banks! I! DONT! CARE!

      Urgh yes the sexism. Needs to die, honestly!

      TY AND FREAKING KIT. MY HEART BEATS FOR THEM. TY AND KIT. Kieran and Markkkkkkkkkk. Sorry Christina, leave my tol sons alone.

      Her books are amazing because can we just talk about how Ty is represented in this book??? It’s beautiful to see??? And??? All the gay??? Is just??? Melting my stone heart????

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  8. Six of Crows was a game changer for me. Kaz is a brilliant character, I wish I could master mind such clever plots. And it was this novel that made me think twice about my own writing. I’ve now added more diversity into my fantasy novels.

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  9. DAMN! I ABSOLUTELY AGREE WITH YOU! Though fantasy worlds offer SUCH AN ESCAPE but for that to happen, WE NEED TO ACTUALLY CARE ABOUT THE WORLD FIRST! I mean, the last time it happened with me was back when i read Lord of the Rings andsince then, although i have read fantasy bookd and have enjoyed them, it just never got to the point where I could read fanfictions and imagine mysef with my fabourite characters and in my fabourite scenes before I fell off into a dee sleep, dreaming and blushing! 🤣😂 i remember how i used to read reader x xyz character fanfictions kn wattpad and archiveofourown! DAMN! THAT PHASE REALLY WAS SOMETHING! I used to enjoy that! But now..its just meh! And although Game of Thrones is fucking amazing, the ONLY thing i ACTUALLY care about in the books is DRAGONS! Just as long as my precious baby dragons are okay, the whole of Westeros can just FUCK ITSELF! HAHAHAHAHAHHA!! 🤣🤣🤣🤣😂😂😂😂😂😂😂

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  10. Fantasy books definitely need wayyy more diversity! Like, how hard is it really? Urgh. The only other ones I can come up with (after some scrolling through my goodreads shelves) are The Darkest Part of the Forest (not a POV character, but both very large characters), and Girls Made of Snow and Glass (One of two POV characters has and adorable sapphic romance).

    Also stabbing. Give me all the stabbing.

    And hahahahaha, quite honestly my strategy with battle scenes is just wait til they’re finished and see who’s dead. They’re too hard to keep track of… I mean, I TRY. I just usually fail.

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  11. I’m still just as into fantasy now as I was when I first started reading, but yeah I agree with your post because there are a lot of things I’d love to see done more in fantasy books. 🙂
    Diversity is obviously a main one for me too (it’s everywhere else but the fantasy genre it seems) but also yes more epic heists like the kind in SoC/CK would be amazing! 😀 I’ve yet to find a book with a character that can complete when it comes to Kaz’s epic plans and I want to find one. Also I feel like if it was written well finding a book that drops you right into the middle of the story could be really cool!
    Great post Lu, and if you ever find a fantasy book with all these things you’ll need to let me know because I’ll want to read it too! 🙂 ❤️

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  12. ohmygod this post is so relatable I LOVE IT and I LOVE YOU. you literally put my exact thoughts into words and you are a magician. ❤

    it fills me with rage whenever there's 0% diversity in a fantasy book, like I KNOW it's a fictional world but in what world is everyone straight and pretty and white?? (ofc I'm not saying there's anything wrong w being those things, but you know, it's been the standard in most fantasy books and I totally get what you mean)

    and yes the info-dumping needs to stop! I love world-building, but it needs to be done well, you feel? I can't have all these 10 syllable names and faces thrown into my face all at once. (like… do you know how embarrassingly long it took for me to spell out Celaena Sardothien's name correctly) and no, you're not the only one who gets confused on battle scenes, it always takes so much brainpower for me to visualize all the punching and gutting, etc :'')

    Liked by 1 person

    1. AHH THANK YOU!!!!!! ❤ ❤

      Urgh. 0 Diverstiy actually makes me scream??? I don't even know how authors avoid it???? It's just a big part of the world?? IT IS THE WORLD?? I just gkjsrngjsg don't compute with 0 diverstiy.

      YEAH!!! I don't need a ten page essay on the magic system or what a tree looks like, you know?

      LOL I STILL CAN'T EVEN SPELL HER NAME. and yay!! I'm not the only one!!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. GOODIE 1 GOODIE 2 GOODIE 3 I’M DeAD.

    also I completely agree with your sentiments about diversity in fantasy?? I feel like some people are like “oh it’s a fake world no need for diversity” when that’s completely WRONG.

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  14. I agree with ALL of this! I want better fantasy that is not the same lost queen/chosen trope over and over again. It’s getting insanely annoying. And the world building is NOT that complicated and the straight white, heteronormative culture is getting on my freaking nerves.
    Please, more morally grey, masterminds taking on the evils of capitalism and personal vengeance that makes sense. Also, adorable couples we can all love and melt over.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OH YES!! SUCH A GOOD ONE!! The whole “chosen one” trope got old 6 Harry Potter books ago.

      YES. SOMEONE ELSE SAID IT. This priviliged, heteronormative, white culture is not all there is to a world!

      YES. YES. masterminds, and evil but not evil, and complicated characters are in NEED!!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. OKAY YES I AGREE WITH YOU SO MUCH. I’m not into fantasy too much, but if it met more of the expectations you set here, maybeeee I’d love it a little more.😂I’m always honestly so lost & confused during battle scenes? And when I can’t say names of the characters? AND, I’m just bitter and salty when there’s no diversity. This was a fabulous post! *cheers*

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  16. This makes me thinks a lot about my WIP and I fell really called out. Especially on characters number and names. But on my side, we italians saysa: we read things as we write it. But I never got a things about phonetic ans such, so it will be a mess.

    Honestly, I’ve still to get why I can’t follow what is happening in battles. You end one and suddenly someone is dead. When it happened? When? Sometimes I got that someone was dead only two pages later. 😂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh my gosh I’ve done that too! I think that it was maybe a book from the TMI series and then I thought, “where’s drjngj?” because they were unusually absent… turns out,, they were capurted or something??

      Liked by 1 person

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