I'm the same. Here are a few fantasy titles that I read recently and really enjoyed (they don't do the high fantasy language thing): * *Stardust* by Neil Gaiman * *Piranesi* by Susanna Clarke * *Senlin Ascends* by Josiah Bancroft And it's been several years now, but I actually did really get into the *A Song of Ice and Fire* series too. That's the closest thing to "high fantasy" I've ever enjoyed.


Piranesi was so good!


Stardust! The movie is excellent too


The Senlin Ascends books just wrapped up. I'd definitely recommend reading them.


I just finished the first one. For me it started off slow, but by the end i was in deep and I'm looking forward to reading the rest! Really different world.


Oh shit they finished book 4? Excellent.


Yeah, it came out very recently. I just finished it yesterday. I liked how it ended.


I know I know the trilogy His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman. The first book is called The Golden Compass.


Life changing


People are recommending Terry Pratchett, but he does do a bit of the fantasy language bit, its almost all done for linguistic sarcasm so you'll probably enjoy it


Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb Rivers of London is worth repeating


Hobb can wander into some heavy jargon, depending on the book. But I agree with recommending her in general.


I would say her jargon is most present in The Rain Wild Chronicles. I could make a case for the Liveship Traders considering the nautical stuff. That’s why I recommended Assassin’s Apprentice. What Robin Hobb do you consider to be a more appropriate suggestion?


I'll jump in here to agree with you...I started the Robin Hobb books with the Liveship Traders, I found them more accessible and then I was hooked and read them all!


rivers of london is great. has jargon for sure. but love that series.


Came here to recommend this series, and to mention that the jargon is very low-fantasy and often created (or debated) by the characters as we sit and watch. [Insert kicking-back-with popcorn. gif of your choice] Well, or it's London Metropolitan Police jargon, in which case it's snarkily explained by the narrator.




I don't know where you're finding your fantasy, I just don't see this kind of language getting cranked out in the vast majority of fantasy books any more... anyway, here's some suggestions of well-written fantasy from recent years: *A Master of Djinn* by P Djeli Clark *An Unkindness of Magicians* by Kat Howard *The Bone Ships* (and sequels) by RJ Barker Divine Cities trilogy by Robert Jackson Bennett, starts with *City of Stairs* Winnowing Flame trilogy by Jen Williams, starts with *The Ninth Rain* *The Ten Thousand Doors of January* by Alix E Harrow - also her more recent novel, *The Once and Future Witches* The Broken Earth trilogy by NK Jemisin, starts with *The Fifth Season*


Also Jemisin includes a glossary of terms in the back which is super helpful and should be standard in SFF.


Sanderson is notorious for this sort of language. I have to google terms for all of his books


I think I've read one book of his, was pretty underwhelmed by it and haven't bothered to pick up another since despite the heavy proselytising by folks who love him. \*shrugs\*


I like some of his work- particularly Mistborn and Way of Kings, but I can see how he’s not for everyone. I think his world building is, for the most part, excellent. His characters are also good, but the plot IMO can kind of wander bit for large parts of his books. I happen to love starting a book and feeling like I’m reading a different language for a while until I pick it up. So Sanderson tends to be right up my alley.


What's great about the genre, particularly at the moment, is that there's really such a variety of things being written - I have to say, the more people bang on about certain authors, the less I want to read them. I had one book, first of an as-yet unfinished series, much loved by many that I eventually gave away unread because I was so fed up with people talking about it like it would cure my acne, fix my depression, not to mention bringing about world peace and justice. ;)


He invents a lot of words which can be annoying. I think it's normal to have to invent names for races of creatures, kingdoms etc. but I know what OP means about the sort of pretentious names. One of the things I liked about Abercrombie (*The Blade Itself*) was that there wasn't so many weird invented terms to remember.


I dunno, I kind of like it personally. I think it helps with immersion. But I can also understand why someone would get annoyed with it.


I disagree. Sort of. I also agree. Sort of. Sanderson is a consummate world builder. Sometimes he does a slow reveal (Warbreaker) and sometimes he throws you right into the mess (Way of Kings). The problem with Way of Kings is you really aren't supposed to know what's going on in the prologue. But then the story moves to small scale stories that slowly open up into the big epic. And when you go back to that prologue later it makes way more sense. I think Warbreaker is the best Sanderson book to start with, and it might just be his most approachable book in general. Also, definitely stands among the best fantasy books of the 2000's.


You know- I haven’t actually read Warbreaker. I was coming from referencing the Stormlight archives specifically because I’ve just read those. I’ll have to look that one up and get it.


It’s criminally underrated. It’s a genuine delight.


Strong agree, and not a massive commitment like Stormlight either


The Bone Ships, while amazing, is full of jargon. Not typical fantasy jargon per se, but it’s hard to understand what is being talked about at first because of all of the made up words to describe items/rankings/flora and fauna in the world, etc. Not one I recommend to light fantasy readers for that reason.


I will keep recommending the First Law series by Joe Abercrombie until I ~~die~~ go back to the mud. I listened to the series on audiobook and had no trouble following along. There aren't too many magical creatures though. Mostly some magic and a bunch of a$$hats. Edit: reference to the series :)


And will never stop upvoting this suggestion. Most characters never encounter magic at all but it is there in the background


As many people point out, it's totally fair and reasonable that alot of characters in the books don't even believe that magic is real.


Castor Morveer talking about magic is so funny!


The audio book was superbly performed. The way he changed his voice to account for Glokta’s lisp was perfect.


T. Kingfisher! Try Clockwork Boys or A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking.


Seconding this ! AWGTDB was beyond amazing


Excited to see this here. I just started Rhenwars Saga but Clockwork is next on my reading list.


Rivers of London *Or* The Blade Itself


Rivers of london is solid gold, and if you like it, you'll probably also dig Terry Pratchett's Discworld, OP.


Isn’t discworld wheel of time?


Nope, totally different things. Discworld is not heroic fantasy at all, the setting is more urbanised, the time period equivalent is more Dickens than Middle Age, and it's usually very funny in a witty, tongue-in-cheek kind of way.


I tend to think of it as Renaissance Italy with a Dickensian twist in certain areas.


It's pretty crappy that you're getting downvoted for an honest question. Here, have my free award.


No but if you hate fantasy language stay away from wheel of time. It’s chock full of random fantasy language. Some much so there is a glossary in the back that’s usually many pages long.


The Blade Itself and the rest of the First Law Trilogy are perfect. I would also recommend The Name Of The Wind. You don't get drowned in fantasy names in neither of the series.


The funny thing about the name of the wind is that most of the names *are* fantasy names, but Rothfuss did such a great job with them that they all sound super realistic as names.


Just finished the first law trilogy. Excellent series.


Terry Pratchetts discworld series.


Literally, just pick one and go. My first Pratchett was Thud, but I still got the gist of who all the characters were despite it being like the 4th in that particular series.


Yeah I read Fifth Elephant then Carpe Jugulum and just kept reading at random until I’d read them all


Yep. I started with *Colour of Magic* (the first one) and while it didn’t put me off the others, I didn’t immediately want to pick up the second. A few months later, a friend gave me *Masquerade* because I like opera, and I was hooked. I think it’s a great idea to pick one of the close satires if it’s something you know about (*Moving Pictures* for film buffs, *Truth* for journalism fans, *Wyrd Sisters* for Shakespearean tropes, *Lords and Ladies* for an unusual take on Tolkienian Elves... the list goes on). In defence of *A Colour of Magic*, it’s not bad, and it’s a funny take on the standard D&D tropes. It’s just not the same style as the rest of Pratchett’s books.


I definitely agree. I went from Thud to the Colour of Magic and was a bit disappointed. Then I read Wee Free Men and was hooked in again. I always try to dissuade people from reading the Colour of Magic first. It's not a bad book, but it's definitely the weakest by virtue of being his first.


I’m new to DiscWorld and have no idea where to start - can anyone give me any direction? Is it right that you can literally start with any book, or is there a specific order to follow?


Basically everything he wrote could be a stand alone. The older books provide context to the newer books, and sometimes a character from one series will show up in a different one, but it's pretty much grab one and go. If you are looking for a suggestion of where to start, I would say either Guards! Guards!, Small Gods, or Monstrous Regiment. Just because those are either series starters (Guards! Guards!), or stand-alones.


Just pick one (NOT colour of magic) and go. If you visist the wikipedia page of the discworld, you'll see a pictures that details all the books, all the arcs they form, and all the official "entry point books". You can totally follow that but honestly, it's good fun too to just grab one.


Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, by Susanna Clarke I think you should try urban fantasy set in an alternate earth. That way at least most of the proper nouns (placer names etc) are familiar.


Have you seen the miniseries they made of it? I loved it but haven’t read the book. Wondering how they compare


I think it’s one of the best book-to-show adaptations I’ve ever seen. Casting, writing, directing, special effects, ambiance and tone… everything about it was pitch-perfect.


Naomi Novak does great fantasy that feels more “realistic” and doesn’t use a lot of made up words. I’d start with Uprooted. It’s a standalone. The Scholomance series feels good and modern, and *mostly* free of strange language. The monsters have funny names, and the Scholomance itself is weird, but otherwise it feels very modern and “real”


Have you tried Neil Gaiman? If I remember from reading some of his works years back he’s not super ‘fantasy’ about the language, but then I suppose his works might not count as fantasy either 🤷‍♀️


Oooohh yes Neil Gaiman!!


I have not


Then maybe have a look at Neverwhere, i am normally more of a sci-fi / thriller fan. But enjoyed this one.


Neverwhere is a favorite of mine! I recommended to a friend (big fan of Neal Stephenson) and he relentlessly made fun of me for recommending a book with “rat-speakers” 🙄


Loved Neverwhere!


Neverwhere is my favourite Gaiman book 😁


I keep seeing Neverwhere recommendations in this subreddit so I finally read it, and while I enjoyed it, I didn’t love it and it definitely wasn’t one of my favorites. I think my expectations were too high from everyone recommending it and therefore I was kind of let down. It’s still a good book though and worth reading.


Yeah, that bugs me too. Try Ursula le Guin's Earthsea books. And check out Diana Wynne Jones.


Seconding Diana Wynne Jones, her books are fantastic. The Pinhoe Egg is still one of my favourites.


Not sure I can agree on that by these requirements. They’re amazing books but they are flooded with references to the world’s geography, magic, ethnography, natural world… I doubt there’s a paragraph in them that doesn’t include something fantastical.


I'd say *The Dispossessed* by Le Guin is closer to not being so fantastical


I adore Earthsea, but I don't think of the language as straightforward. Dianna Wynne Jones is straightforward, If 30 year old memories are correct.


Hmm, maybe because I've been regularly reading the Earthsea books since my early teens I no longer notice any complexity. I know my way around so well now 😂


Night Circus may fit this


I wonder if you'd like the Locke Lamora series by Scott Lynch...It's a kind of gritty fantasy setting, Game of Thrones meets The Sting (or Oceans 11) meets Great Expectations


I really enjoyed the con artist/ heist spin on fantasy in these.


Amber chronicles by Roger Zelazny. Fascinating magical system waaay beyond most crap out there.


Zelazny is great in this regard. He's a great stylist who doesn't rehash all the fantasy cliches.


Graceling series by Cashore (3rd book, Bitterblue, is especially great)


Maybe try Lois McMaster Bujold? Her longest series is SciFi but she has two other fantasy series and both are fantastic. The world building is really unobtrusive, and characters are very well written. The “World of Five Gods” books start with the Curse of Chalion and have a Europe-a-few-centuries-ago vibe; they’re continuing with a series of novellas (starting with Penric’s Demon) if you’d like a shorter commitment to try. The other series, Sharing Knife, has more of a romance tie-in and 19th century U.S frontier setting.


Seconding Lois McMaster Bujold. I find her writing style very down to Earth.


The type of book you’re describing is often high fantasy or epic fantasy, which is a sub genre but definitely not the only sub genre in fantasy!! A few people have recommended grimdark, but you may also enjoy cozy or slice of life (such as The House in the Cerulean Sea) or urban fantasy, like the Dresden Files.


look into low fantasy books, just found out the difference between low fantasy and high fantasy. Low fantasy deals with fantastical elements on earth (future, past, etc.), while high fantasy is "not earth" or earth that has been so divorced from something it's not relevant to the setting or plot except for a few Easter eggs (Shannara, Wheel of Time) You may like the Dresden Files. They weren't my cup of tea because they are extremely... heterosexual, but supposedly they lean less into the neo-noir detective and dame tropes further into the series..


Neil Gaiman books like Neverwhere or Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files


I was going to make the exact same suggestions.


Glen Cooks The Black Company. Towns are named Charm, and Roses ect. Characters names are similar and short.


The October Daye series by Seanan McGuire takes place mostly in modern day San Francisco, uses pretty standard names you’re likely familiar with, and includes a short glossary and pronunciation guide. The first in the series is Rosemary and Rue—I found it and the second one a bit dark, then the characters expand and the series takes off in the third book. Seanan is also a reliably prolific author and keeps like 5+ series going with solid new releases each year.


I super strongly recommend The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss!


I always recommend Dan Simmon's Hyperion tetralogy in basically any situation. Top-notch stuff.


A lot of the good "high brow" fantasy recommendations have already been thrown out, but here are some more Y/A ones that are still pretty good. * A Court of Thorns and Roses series- Very little fantasy talk, but still decent world building and an interesting on going plot. Good deal of smut though which hurts the series in my opinion but that's just because I don't like fantasies in my fantasy \*ba dum tis\* * The Heir Chronicles- First book is The Warrior Heir, it has it's bit of in universe jargon but overall sticks close to reality as it is an urban fantasy series. Really interesting concept if you would like to give the series a look. * The Seven Realms series- I didn't get past book 3 I believe so I can't say how well the series ends, but I remember it being a decent read. I think this would be the heaviest of the three in terms of fantasy jargon while still being a very approachable series.


“lethandrial the high elf ascended Monochasm where the Elder of the Twizzler people….” made me actually laugh out loud thanks for making my day. Following this as I also wanna know books like what you described :)


Haha thanks! Hope you enjoy your next read!


The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. It’s been my favorite for six years and is so, SO good!


{{Black Sun}} by Rebecca Roanhorse. I just finished it, I'm not a fantasy person, but I had no trouble following what was going on. Warning, it's the first part in a series!


All those examples of "fantasy language" were place names or pronouns, my friend. So you just want names like "Bill" and place names like "Detroit?" Lol.


And if that’s what you want, check out the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Modern day detective wizard in Chicago. Great series, but it doesn’t really pick up until book 2 or so


I've read every single book. I was just poking fun of the OP's idea/example of "fantasy language." In DF, there is still the "White Council" and the "Wyldfae" and Harry is a "wizard", and there is House Raith of The White Court and so on. Sure, the floating skull is named "Bob" but odd-sounding place names are necessary in world-building High Fantasy because you are attempting to build an imaginary world and that was what the OP latched onto and I just thought it was a little funny. Sure, you can call the imaginary archipelago where Ged trains as a wizard "Milwaukee" and it could be funny to do once or twice but eventually, you're going to sound confusing at worst and lazy at best. “lethandrial the high elf ascended Monochasm where the Elder of the Twizzler people" Every word is plain English with the exception of proper nouns and place names as I've said. Here's what isn't "the - ascended - where the elder of the - people." So, it gave me a chuckle. I could make that sentence completely mundane by just changing everything to real world proper nouns: "Steve the Mormon ascended the Tenasserim Hills where the elder of the Lahu Tribe..."


I mean Dune has Paul, Jessica, and Duncan Idaho lol. I get what you’re saying though, it just made me think of that.


Yeah, Dune's a funny one in that way. I always chuckle at Duncan Idaho.


The best is later on in the series they name a river after him called… the Idaho river lol. I always laugh at the idea of this far flung planet with an Idaho river on it.


Anything low fantasy would probably fit that description


Joe Abercrombie - The Blade Itself. Glenn Cook - The Black Company.


Yes, TBC has the simplest names. Goblin, Lady, Tracker, Toadkiller Dog...


TBC has a very business like feeling. They are like Condottierie caught in a bad war somewhere. And they get on with the job.


I cannot reccomend {{Joust}} by Mercedes Lackey enough. Excellent well-written fantasy that stays grounded and doesnt dump 10 chapters of lore and worldbuilding on you. Its my favorite fantasy book in my favorite fantasy series for this reason!


[**Joust (Dragon Jousters, #1)**](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13993.Joust) ^(By: Mercedes Lackey | 448 pages | Published: 2003 | Popular Shelves: fantasy, dragons, mercedes-lackey, fiction, owned) >THE SECRET OF THE DRAGONS > >Vetch was an Altan serf working the land which had once been his family's farm. Young and slight, Vetch would have died of overwork, exposure, and starvation if not for the anger which was his only real sustenance--anger that he had lost his home and family in a war of conquest waged by the dragon-riding Jousters of Tia. Tia had usurped nearly halt of Alta's lands and enslaved or killed many of Vetch's countrymen. Sometimes it seemed that his entire cruel fate revolved around dragons and the Jousters who rode them. > >But his fate changed forever the day he first saw a dragon. > >From its narrow, golden, large-eyed head, to its pointed emerald ears, to the magnificent blue wings, the dragon was a thing of multicolored, jeweled beauty, slim and supple and quite as large as the shed it perched on. Vetch, almost failed to notice the Jouster who stood beside him. "I need a boy," the rider had said, and suddenly Vetch found himself lifted above the earth and transported by dragon-back to a different world. > >Vetch was to be trained as a dragon-boy, and he hardly believed his luck. The compound seemed like paradise: he could eat until he was full, and all he had to do was care for his Jouster's dragon, Kashet. > >It didn't take long for Vetch to realize that Kashet was special--for unlike other dragons, Kashet was gentle by nature and did not need the tranquilizing tala plant to make her tracttable. Vetch became determined to learn the secret of how Kashet had been tamed. For if Kashet could be tamed, perhaps Vetch could tame a dragon of his own. And if he could, then he might be able to escape and bring the secret of dragon-taming back to his homeland of Alta. And that secret, might prove to be the key to Alta's liberation.... ^(This book has been suggested 3 times) *** ^(34287 books suggested | )[^(I don't feel so good.. )](https://debugger.medium.com/goodreads-is-retiring-its-current-api-and-book-loving-developers-arent-happy-11ed764dd95)^(| )[^(Source)](https://github.com/rodohanna/reddit-goodreads-bot)


This series is SO underrated.


The Abhorsen Trilogy by Garth Nix. It has some names and titles but it's not super heavy if I recall. Dragon's Bait by Vivian Van Veld. Maybe the Grisha Verse novels by Leigh Bardugo, she has unique terms but does a good job of familiarizing the reader with them. I suggest the Six of Crows duology simply because it's a fantasy heist series, and you just don't see that much.


How do you feel about historical fiction? If you think you might like it, then I recommend reading everything by Bernard Cornwell. And I literally mean, everything. Starting with whichever era you think you’d like most. He has some Napoleonic era stuff with red coats, muskets and rifleman (Sharpe), he has American Revolutionary stuff (from the British perspective…with a surprise twist by guest actor Paul Revere!). He has Medieval England vs France with the Black Prince, the battle of Agincourt and Crecy. He also has dark ages / early Middle Ages series with West Saxon (pre Norman conquest) resistance to early Viking raiders. Basically all his books are a series, and they all follow a similar formula which is a lot of fun. And they’re all incredibly well researched.


Try *The Lies of Locke Lamora* and its sequel by Scott Lynch. It’s a pretty grounded fantasy setting loosely based on Renaissance Italy and deals with a group of gentlemen thieves pulling a heist.


The invisible life of Addie LaRue


Rivers of London is my current favourite.


Is that a graphic novel ? A lot of people have suggested it but it doesn’t look to be a novel.


No it’s the first in a series of novels by Ben Aaronovitch. They are modern and funny and the main character is a policeman who is an apprentice “practitioner”, (wizard).


Piranesi. May take a little bit to get into it but it’s worth it. Not usually into fantasy (more Oscar wild/Brontë) but this one caught my imagination.




Mmm. Now I want twizzlers!


Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Employee at Borders recommended them to me ages ago when I was browsing the fantasy section. Glad he did; those books are awesome. There are like 20 now, including the two short story collections.


The Witcher books are great fantasy without being too bogged down in lore language.


{{ The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher }} This series starts in modern Chicago.


[**Storm Front (The Dresden Files, #1)**](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/47212.Storm_Front) ^(By: Jim Butcher | 355 pages | Published: 2000 | Popular Shelves: fantasy, urban-fantasy, mystery, fiction, paranormal) >HARRY DRESDEN — WIZARD > >Lost Items Found. Paranormal Investigations. Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates. No Love Potions, Endless Purses, or Other Entertainment. > >Harry Dresden is the best at what he does. Well, technically, he's the only at what he does. So when the Chicago P.D. has a case that transcends mortal creativity or capability, they come to him for answers. For the "everyday" world is actually full of strange and magical things—and most don't play well with humans. That's where Harry comes in. Takes a wizard to catch a—well, whatever. There's just one problem. Business, to put it mildly, stinks. > >So when the police bring him in to consult on a grisly double murder committed with black magic, Harry's seeing dollar signs. But where there's black magic, there's a black mage behind it. And now that mage knows Harry's name. And that's when things start to get interesting. > >Magic - it can get a guy killed. ^(This book has been suggested 20 times) *** ^(34210 books suggested | )[^(I don't feel so good.. )](https://debugger.medium.com/goodreads-is-retiring-its-current-api-and-book-loving-developers-arent-happy-11ed764dd95)^(| )[^(Source)](https://github.com/rodohanna/reddit-goodreads-bot)


Orson Scott Card is mostly known for his sci-fi, but he has a large collection of fantasy works and they are amazing. His Mithermages series is my favorite but there is also the Pathfinder series (sci-fi fantasy mix), Alvin the Maker series (warning this is a spellbinding 7 part series....with only 6 books and it's been 8 years since the 6th was written), Enchantment, and Magic Street. The Wings of Fire series is also great if you like dragons. No crazy fantasy language, the dragons are the protagonists and it's their world.


The Dark Tower series by Stephen King is an exciting and fun read.


That’s what I came to say. He has some fantasy words sprinkled in there but he also has Hey Jude lol. It’s a nice mix and my favorite series hands down.


There are a ton of nonsense fantasy words mixed into that series though if you ken me sai Truemeathead.


Joe Abercrombie series.


Anything grimdark. The whole sub-genre exists to take the flower off of traditional fantasy tropes. Try Joe Abercrombie (*The Blade Itself).* Mark Lawrence (*Prince of Thorns).* Or the oft-unacknowledged godfather of the sub-genre, Glen Cook (*Chronicles of the Black Company).* I'd caution that all the Pratchett recs you're receiving should come with a caveat. Pratchett doesn't (didn't) really write fantasy. He dressed his characters up in fantasy garb, but wrote almost 100% satires of contemporary culture, only using the fantastical for additional comedic effect. He was a great writer, but might fail to scratch the correct itch if you want actual fantasy and not fun-filled crankiness aimed primarily at late 20th/early 21st century British society. Edit: make liberal use of Amazon's "look inside" feature on any of their kindle/e-book pages...whether you like or use Amazon or not. It's free to use, and will give you a sample of the start of each book. The one thing you can learn a LOT about from just a few pages is authorial voice.


This is a crazy take. Pratchett absolutely wrote fantasy, and considering Pratchett was one of the most staunch defenders of the fantasy genre, it is an insult to the man's memory to try to pull a fast one and claim he didn't write fantasy. Almost *all* fantasy is allegorical to the real world. Jesus. I also don't agree with you that an element of grimdark is "not having weird names". Mark Lawrence's books are the grimdarkest grimdark and the Broken Empire has plenty of the stuff OP says they don't enjoy.


I’m not sure what the point of fantasy (or any literature) that wasn’t allegorical to the real world would be. In order to achieve that you’d need to divorce it completely from anything we could understand, so it’s be meaningless to us. And it would have to be a really thorough divorce. Likely beyond human ability to write. When authors go out on the edge of comprehension limb they’re generally writing allegorically about the things we don’t understand in the real world (ie Author of the Acacia Seeds)


I agree with what you're saying, but sometimes fantasy is just a fun romp that isnt trying to say anything. For example, the Cradle series by Will Wight. It's not that the series is in a vacuum and absolutely unallegorical. But they are 300 page books where a guy tries to get stronger, fights some people, and then gets stronger. They're popcorn reads. Pratchett, on the other hand, is very much in conversation with the real world.


Yeah, you’re right in that they’re not always deep. I guess what I was trying to say is that all fantasy will be based on our world, and therefore is allegorical. Whether there is any depth to that allegory, or whether it was deliberate, is, I think, a separate question. But even a distorted funhouse popcorn read is a cultural artifact of being human, living on our earth. Perhaps I’ve just read too much anthropologically informed speculative fiction. Those ways of thinking about writing - reading not only what the author intended, but also what the author did and didn’t see, and how it reflects our world and theirs- are certainly a large part of how I relate to written works.


'Cosmicomics' by Italo Calvino


{{Differently Morphus}} by Yahtzee Croshaw. Governmental agency involved in the regulation of magic and extra dimensional beings. The story takes place in England and most characters are human., making the names of people and places easily read (mostly).


[**Differently Morphous**](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39027664-differently-morphous) ^(By: Yahtzee Croshaw | 1 pages | Published: 2019 | Popular Shelves: fantasy, audible, audiobook, audiobooks, humor) >A magical serial killer is on the loose, and gelatinous, otherworldly creatures are infesting the English countryside. Which is making life for the Ministry of Occultism difficult, because magic is supposed to be their best kept secret. > >After centuries in the shadows, the Ministry is forced to unmask, exposing the country's magical history - and magical citizens - to a brave new world of social media, government scrutiny, and public relations. > >On the trail of the killer are the Ministry's top agents: a junior operative with a photographic memory (and not much else), a couple of overgrown schoolboys with godlike powers, and a demonstrably insane magician. > >But as they struggle for results, their superiors at HQ must face the greatest threat the Ministry has ever known: the forces of political correctness.... > >Differently Morphous is the latest and greatest tale to emerge from the mind of writer (and narrator) Yahtzee Croshaw. ^(This book has been suggested 84 times) *** ^(34187 books suggested | )[^(I don't feel so good.. )](https://debugger.medium.com/goodreads-is-retiring-its-current-api-and-book-loving-developers-arent-happy-11ed764dd95)^(| )[^(Source)](https://github.com/rodohanna/reddit-goodreads-bot)


LMAO this is literally why I do not read much fantasy even though it’s a genre I really enjoy if it’s done a certain way. And the way is not fantasy language. At least not for me. I respect other peoples rights to enjoy it


The answer to this and many other questions on this sub is Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames


I was just about to suggest the same. Such a fun book. Basically reads out as an awesome D&D campaign.


Steer very clear of the Goblin Emperor. I love feeling like I’m reading a different language at first in fantasy novels- but Goblin Emperor was a whole other level. Joe Abercrombie- maybe?


**Cat Core** by Dean Henegar is about an older woman who mistakenly gets turned into a dungeon core. Since she doesn't know anything about games or fantasy worlds her assistant has to explain everything to her in layman's terms. **Publisher's Summary** It was just supposed to be a quick trip to the pet store for some cat food, but the universe had other plans for Florence Valentine. Good for nothing kids and some annoying store employees were giving her a hard time, and then things got worse when she was killed by a delivery truck. Instead of angels, pearly gates, and eternal rewards, a voice in her head keeps telling her that she’s become a dungeon core, whatever that is. Now people keep coming into her new home, wrecking stuff, and stealing from her. But not everything about this whole ordeal is bad. Not only can Florence decorate her home with a thought, but she can also create the best things in the entire universe — she can create kitty cats. Should these hooligans keep insisting on coming into her home, well, Florence and her kitties are going to have something to say about that.


Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss - one of my all time favorite books.


It sounds like you're trying to find fantasy that's more approachable. It's a problem, I agree, because a good fantasy author has to build a fantasy world and they're naming everything in the world, and if they succeed you'll be learning a lot of new words for the things in that world without you noticing. If you're having trouble and being taken out of the world, or confused about the words they're using, the author has failed. What books can I suggest that succeed? Brandon Sanderson travels the entire spectrum, sometimes intentionally and sometimes not. Elantris is an early book that, while it's great, does sometimes trip over its own feet. But Warbreaker really succeeds. It starts small, it introduces a really amazing magic system based on colors, and introduces you to the world through the eyes of two main characters learning about the city's people and the city's government at the same time, who have clear goals of simply finding each other and escaping the city to go home. Sanderson's Stormlight Archive starts off tripping over its own feet, but that's actually good, because when you read the first part of The Way Of Kings you're not supposed to know what the heck is going on. Then, it lays out the world for you, and things start to become clear. It's not only crazy well written, but it's a great puzzle that's fun to see fall into place. Also, there are no elves in Stormlight Archive. Just (Basically) jedi. Mistborn is rife with this kind of language and it trips over itself a lot. It's also (IMO) the most middling of his books. Basically, check out Warbreaker by Sanderson. If you click with it, try The Way of Kings. Sanderson's language is fairly modern.


{{In Deeper Waters}} by FT Lukens is fairly grounded in its use of fantasy language - the names can be slightly out there but never to the level of "Lethandrial" it's stuff that isn't as much of a headache to read like "Athlen".


[**In Deeper Waters**](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54303971-in-deeper-waters) ^(By: F.T. Lukens | 320 pages | Published: 2021 | Popular Shelves: fantasy, lgbtq, lgbt, romance, 2021-releases) >A young prince must rely on a mysterious stranger to save him when he is kidnapped during his coming-of-age tour in this swoony adventure that is The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue meets Pirates of the Caribbean. > >Prince Tal has long awaited his coming-of-age tour. After spending most of his life cloistered behind palace walls as he learns to keep his forbidden magic secret, he can finally see his family’s kingdom for the first time. His first taste of adventure comes just two days into the journey, when their crew discovers a mysterious prisoner on a burning derelict vessel. > >Tasked with watching over the prisoner, Tal is surprised to feel an intense connection with the roguish Athlen. So when Athlen leaps overboard and disappears, Tal feels responsible and heartbroken, knowing Athlen could not have survived in the open ocean. > >That is, until Tal runs into Athlen days later on dry land, very much alive, and as charming—and secretive—as ever. But before they can pursue anything further, Tal is kidnapped by pirates and held ransom in a plot to reveal his rumored powers and instigate a war. Tal must escape if he hopes to save his family and the kingdom. And Athlen might just be his only hope… ^(This book has been suggested 13 times) *** ^(34174 books suggested | )[^(I don't feel so good.. )](https://debugger.medium.com/goodreads-is-retiring-its-current-api-and-book-loving-developers-arent-happy-11ed764dd95)^(| )[^(Source)](https://github.com/rodohanna/reddit-goodreads-bot)


The Chronicles of Amber by Roger Zelazny


Hmmm that developed a lil bit into this language at timws


Assassin Apprentice by Robbin Hobb


You should give {{The 13th Zodiac}} a try. It's an epic fantasy by Indy author L. Krauch. It's available in paper or hardback, or on Kindle and free on Kindle Unlimited.


[**The 13th Zodiac: Book One**](https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/58722714-the-13th-zodiac) ^(By: L. Krauch | 405 pages | Published: 2021 | Popular Shelves: fantasy, indie-authors, action-adventure, romance, indies) >The 13th Zodiac is a High Fantasy, slow-burn romance with a hint of Anime. Originally, L. Krauch wrote it as a comic book in High school. Now, 20 years, and three kids later, she sat down and wrote a novel. So, grab some tea, slice up an apple, and enjoy this multi-PoV journey 20 years in the making. > >Running from his past finally catches up to Jase Raion, an ex-member of the Ashen Guard and the Crown Prince of Chall. After settling on the island of Aria, he receives an unexpected contract: The lost princess of Aria was discovered living in the port town of Brighton, on the outskirts of the island Kingdom. > >A trip to the markets in Brighton ends abruptly as Liya Fairaway stumbles into Jase. She vanishes in the busy marketplace when Jase realizes who she is, the lost princess of Aria and the bearer of the 13th Zodiac: Eternity. And his target. > >Something ancient pulls them together, a bond that neither can deny. Reluctantly at first, Jase joins Liya and the other Zodiac to end the threat of Soren Raion, the King of Chall. > >Time is not on their side, and Fate has other plans. > >Content warning > >Dear readers, the content within this novel will include detailed descriptions of violence (including guns, axes, and even some by hand), death, and mental illness (there is a character who has an unhealthy infatuation with another), as well as attempted sexual assault, use of alcohol, and foul language which might be harmful to some readers. ^(This book has been suggested 2 times) *** ^(34278 books suggested | )[^(I don't feel so good.. )](https://debugger.medium.com/goodreads-is-retiring-its-current-api-and-book-loving-developers-arent-happy-11ed764dd95)^(| )[^(Source)](https://github.com/rodohanna/reddit-goodreads-bot)


Dresden Files? Perhaps.


like 90% of them idk, try searching for "magical realism" specifically, it tends to be more like speculative science fiction ("what if X were real") with magic and mythical creatures


You can try the Mirror Visitor series. I’m making my way through it now


*The Black Company* is the first that comes to mind.


Ascendance of a bookworm is apart from the word "mana" pretty unique in it's language. Definetly would recommend it if you like slice-of-life fantasy stories with the best worldbuilding.


Alex Verus


I just finished the Frozen Crown and the Seventh Wife (the Warrior Witch duology) by Greta Kelly. It felt like a young adult book trying to be adult but I really enjoyed the story and there wasn’t too much of new languages to learn.


I would recommend anything by Joe Abercrombie or The Shadow the Gods by John Gwynne. The latter book does have a few "fantasy" terms in that he throws a few nordic words around but it's easy to tell what he means by context clues. It was one of the best fantasy books I've read in a long time.


Robin Hobb *can* be a little full on with the language, but it’s actually soooo worth the read.


KJ Parker is very grounded in reality. My favorites by him are The Company and the Engineer Trilogy. He definitely has some different names but they're not too difficult to follow.


‘Elder of the Twizzler People’ is a bonafide classic. How dare you! ‘The Dandelion Dynasty’ series by Ken Liu might be a good choice. It has a tiny bit of of the lingo thing but it reads more like an alternative history than a high fantasy saga.


sword of shannara trilogy by Terry Brooks.


I wanna say **Son of the Black Sword** keeps it’s languages, and professions, in simple speech. They obviously have some of their own terms and professions, but it feels like a grittier read. I think that has to do with the caliber of the action and the straightforwardness of the protagonist (if not at all the intricate background machinations). Give it a shot.


Try reading: Rhen by Charity Kelly


Read the first law trilogy, i think it doesn’t go into that high fantasy typical reading


The First Law series by Joe Abercrombie


His Dark Materials. There are a few fantasy words that are used repeatedly but I think for the most part it doesn't overly flex outside normal vernacular.


Jim Butcher, the Dresden Files. I guess it considered a subset of fantasy, but I love it. Great audiobook too.




Don't know if this qualifies as fantasy, but the A Discovery of Witches series was good (except the last half of the last one but it's kind of a must).


The Princess and the Goblin is very fantastical while also using names and terms from this world. It's as if it's all happening in our universe, just with goblins and magic


Dark Matter


First Law Trilogy by Joe Abercrombie. A little darker than most fantasy, but a must read for any fantasy fan.


Glen cooks the black company. Almost no gobbledygook, practically everyone has a single word name like feather, journey, whisper, the lady


The Raven Tower is great. Also, Memory Called Empire does a pretty good job of this. There are some titles and names but it’s not fully fantasy language.




Gentleman Bastards is the best.


Maybe you’d enjoy more urban fantasy, where magical things are happening but it’s set in our world?


I would recommend the Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab. I would NOT recommend anything by Guy Gavriel Kay. I just had to DNF one of his series EXACTLY for the fantasy language.


Magician and the rest of the Riftwar Saga by Raymond E. Feist. It’s my all time favorite and I would highly recommend to anyone looking for an excellent fantasy story


I've recently started rereading the Newford series by Charles DeLint.


The Tales from the Sinister City series by F.E. Higgins. They are supposedly YA but I thoroughly enjoyed each of the four books in the series. Good fun.


I'm reading Ella Enchanted and its very good!


I would suggest The Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind. However the themes started to become too “real-world” political towards the middle of the series. Still, a pretty engrossing read.


The City of Brass by SA Chakraborty


In addition to looking at Low Fantasy, I recommend checking out American Fabulism and Secret History, both subgenres of fantasy which steer clear of the tale-telling style that centers feudalism, chivalry, or pretension. I love me some HF now and then, but it's often not my cuppa. American Fabulism: start with The Paper Grail or The Last Coin by James P. Blaylock (he's also got some Steampunk stuff, but that's not what I came to recommend). They've got ghosts and magical artifacts and inexplicable stuff, and equal quantities of peril and whimsy. Modern settings. Secret History: start with Last Call or The Drawing of the Dark, by Tim Powers. Powers excels at selecting a time and place, researching the stuffing out of it, and then crafting a fully believable and internally consistent mythology which somehow manages to make perfect sense.


Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames. It's an adventure story with a little bit of magic, a bunch of fantasy monsters, and a few classic rock references. The language was so casual that the first couple of chapters were almost a shock after reading the flowery language type fantasy books recently.


[Mother of Learning](https://fictionpress.com/s/2961893/1/Mother-of-Learning) is a page-turner story about a studious mage stuck in a groundhog day loop. I like it a lot because it's written in an unpretentious conversational modern language, and at the same time it assumes that the reader is familiar enough with basic fantasy terms like spell casting and mana. Same goes for [Vigor Mortis](https://www.royalroad.com/fiction/40373/vigor-mortis/chapter/630602/1-wavering-souls), although this one isn't finished yet. In general I recommend taking a look at top charts on web fiction sites, they have a certain writing style I really like that isn't easily found in published works.


Kill the Queen by Jennifer Estep


Kill the Queen by Jennifer Estep


Mercy Thompson - Urban supernatural fantasy, featuring all manor of supernatural creatures


any book by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes


Cat’s Cradle by Vonnegut


You want r/dresdenfiles.


\*Curse of Chalion\* uses extremely straightforward language.


Some of them do go overboard with flowery language, don't they? But there are many that don't. Some good ones: *Game of Thrones* by George R.R. Martin *Dance of the Goblins* by Jaq D. Hawkins *The Chronicles of Amber* by Roger Zelazny *Rebel of the Sands* by Alwyn Hamilton *Rivers of London* by Ben Aaronovitch *The Crystal Cave* by Mary Stewart *Godstalk* by P.C. Hodgell *The Bloody Sun* by Marion Zimmer Bradley Don't just look at new releases, some of the best of Fantasy was written decades ago.


Are you perhaps looking for Urban Fantay? Six of Crows Leigh bardugo Mystborn Brandon Sanderson What you are describing is Epic fantasy. You perhaps want Urban fantasy.