Book Recs: High Fantasy

Have you ever noticed how a lot of fantasy with LGBT characters tends to be urban fantasy? Obviously, that’s no bad thing, but sometimes you just want to read about LGBT characters in high fantasy settings. (Or, let’s be real, you want to read high fantasy settings without the casual homophobia, but apparently that’s too hard for some people to write. Not that I’m bitter, but.) Because it’s fantasy, so why shouldn’t we be there too?

So here are ten high fantasy books with LGBT mains. Brief disclaimer before I begin: there are three books on here I haven’t read, but people I trust have reviewed them highly (and also I plan to read them asap).

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Luck in the Shadows

74270

Lynn Flewelling
Goodreads
Rep: bi mcs

Why Should I Read It?

I’m reccing this book knowing that the actual romance element of the series doesn’t even happen until the end of book two, but whatever. I’m counting this as the series. And also I just love Alec way too much not to rec it.

inbtwn

Girls of Paper and Fire

39898847

Natasha Ngan
Goodreads
Rep: wlw mcs (ownvoices)

TWs: rape, sexual abuse/sex slavery, gender violence

Why Should I Read It?

If you want to read a beautifully immersive fantasy tale, with a f/f romance, then this is the book for you. I don’t think I’ve stopped thinking about this book in the months since I read it, and I just know book two will leave me an emotional wreck. So, yeah. Join me in emotional wreckage.

inbtwn

The Afterward

36998181

E. K. Johnston
Goodreads
Rep: lesbian mc, bi mc, trans side character

Why Should I Read It?

Sapphic second chance romance with the most intense confession scene I have ever read in an f/f romance – I’m never ever going to stop reccing this. It’s also a high fantasy with a not-so-epic plot. Which, honestly, is a nice change up.

inbtwn

Beneath the Citadel

36430924

Destiny Soria
Goodreads
Rep: bi mc, gay mc, ace mc

Why Should I Read It?

One of my favourite things about this book is that it says labels on the page. I think it’s pretty much the only high fantasy I’ve ever read that does that, and honestly, I think it’s something fantasies should do more of. It’s a fantasy, for crying out loud, you can pick and choose everything so why can’t you pick and choose to include labels. Also the characters are great and kudos to Destiny Soria for that ending.

inbtwn

The Fire’s Stone

338131

Tanya Huff
Goodreads
Rep: bi mcs

TWs: implied incest, torture, physical abuse, alcohol abuse

Why Should I Read It?

So, I recced this one on my last list too, but now I have actually finished this book, and I can rec it wholeheartedly (and with TWs included this time). Because if you want a brilliant found family relationship and a helluva lot of angst, then this book is for you.

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The Perfect Assassin

39863314

K. A. Doore
Goodreads
Repgay ace mc, lesbian side characters

Why Should I Read It?

Amastan is, all at once, a distinguished, functional and chaotic gay (I don’t know how he does it). Surely that’s enough for you to want to read this book. But if not: great worldbuilding, compelling mystery, and a fantasy world with absolutely no homophobia. (Also book two is out in November and is f/f, so you want to get on this series now.)

inbtwn

In the Vanishers’ Palace

41724928

Aliette de Bodard
Goodreads
Rep: wlw mcs

Why Should I Read It?

Take a Beauty and the Beast retelling. Add an f/f relationship, dragons, and Vietnamese mythology, and you’ll get something like this book. And also, actual skillful and believable development of the relationship from kidnapping (here, selling) into something romantic.

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The Priory of the Orange Tree

29774026

Samantha Shannon
Goodreads
Rep: bi mc, lesbian mc

Why Should I Read It?

This is the first of the three books I haven’t myself read. But everything I’ve been hearing about this one is positive. If you want a good slowburn f/f romance, where better to find it than in an 800+ page long book?

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The Raven Tower

39395857

Ann Leckie
Goodreads
Rep: trans mc

Why Should I Read It?

I don’t know about you, but I actually love fantasy books where the gods are actually tangible/touchable, so this one sounds amazing. And it’s topped off by a trans main character.

inbtwn

The Ruin of Kings

42615703

Jenn Lyons
Goodreads
Rep: bi mc

TWs: rape, torture, murder, child abuse, domestic abuse

Why Should I Read It?

I only found out this book had a bi main character a few days ago (I saw it in the bookshop and my sister stared at me disapprovingly while I contemplated buying it, so I didn’t get it, came home to find out it was gay), and that, combined with the synopsis, makes me absolutely desperate to read it. Maybe I’ll just drop everything on my currently reading shelf and start this, huh?

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I hope you found something here to read!

What are your favourite gay high fantasy novels?

charlotte

9 Replies to “Book Recs: High Fantasy”

  1. I absolutely love Luck in the Shadows! It’s worth the wait for the romance because their relationship is so pure.

    I love high fantasy and it’s really difficult to find some with LGBT characters so thanks for this list! 🙂

    Like

  2. I bought Girls of Paper and Fire out of spite after I saw a girl on bookstagram talk shit about it lmao. I haven’t read it yet, but I can’t wait to do it and rave about how good it is! I’ll check out all the other ones, thanks for the recs 🙂

    Like

  3. The Ruin of Kings definitely has caught my attention. Thank you for this great list! It’s really hard to find high fantasy LGBTQ+ books so whenever I find one I’d treasure it like a gem. Keep up the wonderful job with the rec lists!

    Like

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