Top Ten Fantasy Worlds – Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday


Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

There are a lot of fantasy worlds. Some of them it would be pretty awesome to live there… Others maybe not. I like fantasy worlds that are gritty and cold and harsh. But I also like worlds that suck you in. All of the worlds below do that.

1- The Wizarding World (Harry Potter)

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You’d be hard pressed to find someone who didn’t want to at least visit The Wizarding World, and Hogwarts would make school awesome… that is unless you’re a Muggle or a Half-Blood and Voldemort ended up in power. Rowling created one of the biggest, most detailed worlds for the Potter books and makes the series even more epic.

2- Middle Earth (The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit)

Middle Earth is arguably the most detailed fantasy world ever created for a book. Tolkien thought up languages and cultures, dozens of creatures and places. It’s hard to imagine a world ever coming close to being as detailed as Middle Earth. I struggled with the books, but the movies are among my favorites of all time.

3- The County (The Wardstone Chronicles or Last Apprentice series)

I like cold, harsh worlds and the County from Joseph Delaney’s series is pretty cold and harsh. Rain, snow, storms all help to create atmosphere, and the rugged landscape is almost a character in itself. It’s populated by all manner of dark creatures. This series is solid fantasy and if you haven’t read it, I urge you to check it out… all 14 (so far) books.

4- The Edge (The Edge Chronicles)

Like Potter, I grew up reading this series. Paul Stewart’s writing and Chris Riddle’s illustrations make the Edge a vivid, crazy world to read about. It sits somewhere between Pratchett and Tolkien, and it’s as cool as that sounds. 

5- The Shattered Sea (The Shattered Sea trilogy)

This is another cold, gritty fantasy world. So far there are two books out, and they keep getting harsher and gritter. Joe Abercrombie might not my able to rival Tolkien or George R. R. Martin on detail, but the Shattered Sea world has plenty of atmosphere. 

6- Panem (The Hunger Games)

Panem probably isn’t a place many would like to go, but Suzanne Collins’ reinvented America is also gritty and harsh, and the fact that it’s more realistic than most fantasy worlds makes it an even more interesting world to read about.

7- Lyra’s Oxford and parallel worlds (His Dark Materials)

I’m a big fan of the first two books in this series. Book 3 was good, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as the others. But the world Pullman creates is rich in detail and atmosphere. From the old buildings of Oxford to the frozen lands of Svalbard. 

8- Westeros (A Song of Ice and Fire)


Like Panem, it’s hard to imagine many people wanting to visit Westeros– on account of how many people die there. But Martin has created a world that rivals Tolkien in detail: countries, cultures etc. I haven’t read the books, but if the TV show is anything to go by, the books are awesome.

9- Camp Half-Blood (Percy Jackson/and spin-off series)

Like Potter, I grew up reading the Percy Jackson books, and Camp Half-Blood is another world that would be cool to visit. Rick Riordan writes like he can see into his reader’s heads and knows what they want. Camp Half-Blood has forests, sword fighting arenas, a lava wall for climbing and archery fields. 

10 – Erilea (The Throne of Glass series)

I’ve only recently started this series, after avoiding it because of the heavy romance in the first book. But I’m glad I gave it a shot. Erilea is a detailed world and Maas incorporates aspects from existing myth and legend to make for a fantasy world that easily pulls you in. 

Anyone have a favourite fantasy world from the list above, or another one I forgot or haven’t heard of? What places would you want to visit, or avoid?


About Sam Whitehouse

Sam spends most of his time in a different world to other people. If it isn’t one he’s created himself, it’s one he’s reading about. In the rare moments when this isn’t the case, Sam can either be found addicted to a sci-fi or crime show, re-watching Marvel movies, finishing up an assignment for his final year of studying Creative Writing at Sheffield Hallam University, or trying to get the dozens of ideas for stories in his head under some kind of control. Sam has lived in the same small village in Yorkshire, surrounded by countryside on all sides ever since he could remember. His childhood saw him get into plenty of scrapes climbing trees and crossing rivers and generally believing he was Indiana Jones. Sam gives credit to his Grandad for him wanting to be a writer, and his bedtime stories for keeping Sam’s imagination stoked. But credit must also go to Steven Spielberg, J K Rowling and Stephen King, who have provided plenty of inspiration over the years, too. Sam writes what he reads, and that is pretty much anything—save romance. Fantasy, thrillers, or crime: once an idea takes root, he can’t stop until the world, characters, and plot are on paper. A huge Marvel fan, Sam one day hopes to pen a screenplay for one of their movies, or direct one, or do anything at all related to one. Until then, he’ll stick to his own fantasy worlds and wait for Marvel’s phone call.

Posted on 05/19/2015, in books, top ten tuesday and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. I’m a fan of the Edge world, too. Such a cool idea!

    Here’s mine: Best Moving-and-Starting-Over Books!

  2. I’d probably be off to Hogwarts first, then middle earth and then I’d like to check in on Westeros but I don’t think I’ll ever want to be in Panem HAHA

  3. rachelburden

    This is a great Top Ten idea! Really interesting and I love a fantasy world. I read a post the other day about how they’ve calculated the distance Frodo and Sam actually walked… ermmm… here 🙂 (in case you wanted to know).

    I really want to read Half a King and Throne of Glass. Hopefully I’ll get round to them this year.

    Happy Reading
    Rachel @

  4. Not gonna lie, I had a lengthy internal debate on whether or not I’d ever want to visit Panem if I was given the opportunity (and to a lesser extent, to be part of the Hunger Games). It’s probably crazy to say yes but I’d actually really want to see how well I’d do; even if I know I’d die pretty quick LOL.

    Joey via. thoughts and afterthoughts.

    • I think I’m in the same boat, man. It’d be interesting to see how well I’d do in the games, but as for what you’d have to do to win… not sure I could go that far.

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