Top Ten Tuesday: Reasons We Love Secondary World Fantasy

This week’s topic was a bit of a freebie: Reasons Why We Love [Blank]. We went with secondary world fantasy—fiction focusing on a non-Earth setting—because it is one of our most beloved genres. Thanks to That Artsy Reader Girl for another great Top Ten Tuesday!

1. It’s the ultimate form of escapism. Nothing takes you away from this world like a book set in a different one. We love learning about the unique people, cultures, creatures, and magic of fictitious worlds. 

2. It makes us think differently about our own world. Sometimes these worlds mirror our own, other times they are completely alien—but they always give us things to think about.

3. There’s no limit to the creativity or variety. Your imagination is more free to expand upon the setting and visualize its unfamiliar aspects. 

4. The stakes are often higher. With no real-world problems to deal with (at least not directly), the author is free to escalate the plot and action as much as they like. 

5. Cool clothes. Some fantasy authors (Brandon Sanderson, Christelle Dabos) dive deep into the fashion choices of their characters, which often reflect their unusual environments. 

6. It’s easier to believe than Earth-based fantasy (at least for us). When the book is set on a completely different world, the very laws of physics could go out the window—and somehow this can make the story easier to buy into. 

7. Earth is boring. Seagulls, fire hydrants, the DMV—it’s just been done too many times. Pick a different world! 

8. It’s generally uplifting. There are plenty of exceptions, but most of our favorite secondary world books are heroic and heartwarming. 

9. Long series mean you can escape for longer. There’s nothing like an unfinished 8-volume fantasy series that you’ve only ever gotten 5 books into. It’s just comforting to look at your shelf and know that this world exists. 

10. Interesting creatures. We always enjoy imagining some of the impossible-sounding creatures that author’s dream up.

One thought on “Top Ten Tuesday: Reasons We Love Secondary World Fantasy

Add yours

  1. Escapism and cool creatures for sure! Plus, I love that it’s an anything goes reading experince. Also, I’ve never thought about this much before, but the clothes/fashion is such a fun reason to love fantasy- great point!

    Liked by 1 person

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