Welcome to my second Top Ten Tuesday list of the week, were I look at my most anticipated fantasy novels coming out in the first half of 2022. Traditionally I usually only do one list to represent the top upcoming books for the year, however, I was inspired to separate out the fantasy novels into a second list due to all the awesome and impressive fantasy reads coming out extremely soon.
2022 is shaping up to be one of the absolute best years for fantasy books with a ton of epic and amazing sounding novels set for release throughout the year. I am particularly excited about the next six months as there are some deeply impressive books coming out that I am extremely excited for. This includes some fantastic sounding sequels, continuations to brilliant series, and several cool new novels for some very talented authors. I have already highlighted several of these books in some previous lists and Waiting on Wednesday articles. Indeed, the last three Waiting on Wednesday posts I have published have all highlighted some particularly epic upcoming fantasy novels. This, as well as some other recent novels I have talked about, made me really appreciate just how awesome the upcoming year is going to be fantasy wise, hence this list.
Just like with my other list of the night, I am only featuring books that are set for release in Australia between 1 January 2022 and 30 June 2022 which I have some descent details about. I also excluded one of the top fantasy books of the year, A Practical Guide to Conquering the World by K. J. Parker, because I have already read it (spoiler alert, it is incredibly awesome and hilarious). Despite only being fantasy books, I ended up with a huge collection of exceptional novels that I wanted to feature, which made completing this list surprisingly difficult. I was eventually able to break it down to the best 10 books (with honourable mentions), and I feel that I have capture the books that are going to be the best fantasy reads of 2022. So let us see what made the cut.
Rise of the Mages by Scott Drakeford – 25 January 2022
An interesting start to a fun new series.
League of Liars by Astrid Scholte – 22 February 2022
A brilliant sounding young adult fantasy book with a great story about a magical prison break. I already have a copy of this book and I look forward to seeing what happens in it.
One Foot in the Fade by Luke Arnold – 26 April 2022
The third book from Australian author Luke Arnold that follows on from his fantastic first two novels, The Last Smile in Sunder City and Dead Man in a Ditch.
Engines of Empire by Richard S. Ford – 31 May 2022
This is a compelling and interesting fantasy novel that I think has a bit of potential. Focusing on a family of industrialists in a fantasy landscape, this sounds like a great start to an awesome new series, and I am very keen to read it. It looks like we have a bit of a later release date here in Australia, but hopefully I will get a chance to read it at some point this year.
Top Ten List:
The Starless Crown by James Rollins – 4 January 2022
The first book on this list is the impressive sounding The Starless Crown by James Rollins. Rollins, who is best known for his thrillers, is making an interesting jump back to fantasy with this novel and I like the cool and intriguing plot this book has.
The Justice of Kings by Richard Swan – 22 February 2022
The next entry, The Justice of Kings by Richard Swan, is another awesome fantasy read with a great deal of potential. Set to combine legal thriller elements with a fantasy setting, I love the sound of this amazing sounding novel and it is already receiving some very positive reviews. I have a feeling that this is going to be one of the best books of the year and I can’t wait to check it out.
Age of Ash by Daniel Abraham – 22 February 2022
One half of the team behind The Expanse series (make sure to check out my review for the last book, Leviathan Falls), Daniel Abraham heads back to the fantasy genre with the epic Age of Ash. An interesting sounding novel filled with political intrigue and a murder mystery, I think this will be an amazing read and I cannot wait to check it out.
The Bladed Faith by David Dalglish – 5 April 2022
Bestselling fantasy author David Dalglish presents a cool and intriguing first novel in a new series with The Bladed Faith. This book follows a deposed prince who takes up a role of a legendary hero and assassin to avenge his parents and gets sucked into a deadly mission of vengeance. I love the sound of this outstanding read and I look forward to seeing how its fantastic story turns out. No cover yet unfortunately, but hopefully that will come out soon.
The Hunger of the Gods by John Gwynne – 7 April 2022
After having one of the best books (and audiobooks) of 2021 with The Shadow of the Gods, fantasy author John Gwynne continues his brilliant Bloodsworn Saga with The Hunger of the Gods. This intense and action-packed series had an incredible introduction and I am extremely confident that The Hunger of the Gods will be an exceptional and excellent read, especially with that epic cover.
The Girl and the Moon by Mark Lawrence – 26 April 2022
The always enjoyable Mark Lawrence continues his great Book of the Ice series with The Girl and the Moon. The previous two novels, The Girl and the Stars and The Girl and the Mountain have been extremely compelling and I cannot wait to see how this cool series continues.
Kagen the Damned by Jonathan Maberry – 10 May 2022
One of my favourite thriller authors, Jonathan Maberry, is diving into the fantasy genre this year with Kagen the Damned. Set to be an intense and brutal revenge read, I really love the sound of Kagen the Damned and have no doubt it will be another exceptional five-star read.
Master of Furies by Raymond E. Feist – 9 June 2022
One of the best fantasy authors of all-time, the exceeding talented Raymond E. Feist, brings his fantastic Firemane Saga to an end with Master of Furies. Following on from King of Ashes and Queen of Storms, this should be an excellent read and I look forward to seeing how this trilogy concludes.
In the Shadow of Lighting by Brian McClellan – 21 June 2022
After wowing the world with his exceptional Powder Mage novels, Brian McClellan is returning with a brand-new series this year. The first book in this series, In the Shadow of Lighting, sounds like an excellent and captivating read and with the talented McClellan at the helm this will easily be one of the best books of the year.
The Martyr by Anthony Ryan – 28 June 2022
The final entry on this list is The Martyr, the follow up to Ryan’s epic 2021 novel, The Pariah. I had an amazing time reading the first book in this series and I already know I am going to deeply love The Martyr when it comes out later this year.
Well that’s the end of this second list. As you can see, there are some mighty impressive fantasy books coming out the first half of this year. All the above entries on this list have an incredible amount of potential and I have a feeling I am going to deeply enjoy every single of one of these great reads. I honestly think that 2022 is going to be an outstanding year for fantasy, not only with these amazing books, but because of some of the other ones potentially coming out later this year (I’m really hoping Joe Abercrombie, Jim Butcher and R. J. Barker all have new novels this year). I look forward to seeing how all these cool novels turn out and I think I am going to have an incredible time reading fantasy in 2022.