2020 Fantasy Books

Created by Bob Helmbrecht, Collection Development Librarian

Fantasy novels today aren’t just about young farm boys in a world based on medieval Europe going on quests for the mystery artifact to defeat the Dark Lord. Although there are still some of those coming out if those are your favorites! Authors from diverse backgrounds are writing great stories influenced by cultures from all around the world. Here are a few of the best that came out in 2020. These are all standalone books, or the first books in their series, so you don’t have to worry about jumping in in the middle of the story.

Every great city has a soul. Some are as ancient as myths, and others are as new and destructive as children. But every city also has a dark side. A roiling, ancient evil stirs in the halls of power, threatening to destroy New York City and her six newborn avatars unless they can come together and stop it once and for all.

The story of an unwilling dark sorceress who is destined to rewrite the rules of magic. Book one in the Lessons from Scholomance Trilogy.

A young royal from the far north, is sent south for a political marriage in an empire reminiscent of imperial China. She’s a northern daughter in a mage-made summer exile, but she will bend history to her will and bring down her enemies, piece by piece. Book one in the Singing Hills Cycle series.

A stunning new epic fantasy series following a girl who is cast out by her people and must fight with everything she has to survive. Book one of the Book of the Ice series.

An unmissable fantasy debut–an epic tale of intrigue and revolution, soldiers and assassins, ancient magic and the eternal clash of empires. Book one of the Legacy Trilogy.

Award-winning author Andrea Hairston weaves together African folktales and postcolonial literature into unforgettable fantasy in “Master of Poisons.” An epic fantasy that will bleed your mind with its turns of phrase and leave you aching for the world it burns into being.

One woman will either save an entire continent or completely destroy it in a captivating epic fantasy bursting with intrigue and ambition, questioned loyalties, and broken magic.

From the bestselling author of “Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell,” an intoxicating, hypnotic new novel set in a dreamlike alternative reality. Piranesi introduces an astonishing new world, an infinite labyrinth, full of startling images and surreal beauty, haunted by the tides and the clouds.

When a woman with perfect memory sets out to solve a riddle, the threads she tugs on could bring a whole city crashing down. The God-King who made her is at risk, and his other servants will do anything to stop her.

A strikingly original contemporary fantasy novel set in Reykjavik where wild and industrialised magic meet. A time of magic. A time of industry. A time of revolution.

Amid the whir of city life, a young woman from Harlem is drawn into the glittering underworld of Manhattan, where she’s hired to use her knives to strike fear among its most dangerous denizens. Ten years later, Phyllis LeBlanc has given up everything–not just her own past, and Dev, the man she loved, but even her own dreams.

When a priestess is rescued from a death cult by a sorcerer, she becomes his personal assassin. But would you do anything for the person who saved your life?