. . . you might like these books, movies, and miniseries!
The Black Prism by Brent Weeks
Powerful rulers and illegitimate children seem to go hand and hand, and Emperor Gavin Guile’s secret son may have the potential to destroy him.
The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian by Robert E. Howard
If your heart belongs with the Starks in the North, you will love the barbarian warrior from the frozen northlands who came “to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandaled feet.”
I, Claudius by Robert Graves
You want blood, guts, and political intrigue? No better place to find it than Ancient Rome.
The Legend of Drizzt series by R.A. Salvatore
Salvatore may get the award for the world’s longest fantasy series. The title character is a dark elf who has turned away from his evil brethren and has many, many, many adventures across the Forgotten Realms.
The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
Hopefully this is obvious . . . but LOTR is the classic high fantasy good vs. evil battle in a world that resembles medieval Europe. Not as much political intrigue, but plenty of bloodshed, suspense, and even—in the case of the Hobbit—dragons.
The Once and Future King by T.H. White
Arthurian lore is the original high fantasy, and T.H. White is the best since 15th century Thomas Mallory.
Shadowmarch by Tad Williams
To the north are the mysterious Twilight people and to the south the advancing armies of the god-king, but Southmarch has even more to fear from the political enemies within its walls.
The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan
In another high fantasy classic full of prophecies, wars, and good old fashioned evil, the Dark One threatens to escape its prison and destroy the world and time.
The White Queen and other books by Philippa Gregory
If you’re in it for the sex and political intrigue, Philippa Gregory’s historical fiction novels focus on the complicated politics and relationships of the Tudors and their many enemies, internal and external.
A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin
Can’t get enough of Daenerys and her dragons? The sorcerer Sparrowhawk does some dragon-taming himself in this fantasy classic.
Movies and Miniseries
“The Borgias” (2011-2013)
If you enjoy watching a ruthless family fighting for political power against a backdrop of sex and violence (and even a bit of incest), this historical fiction series may be for you.
Conan the Barbarian (1982)
George R.R. Martin credits Robert E. Howard’s Conan the Cimmerian as part of the classic fantasy foundation from which he built his Game of Thrones series. Schwarzenegger stars in the film adaptation.
Family rivalries take center stage in this high fantasy/science fiction about a rightful heir who is unfit to rule and his disingenuous, backstabbing brother who steals the kingdom from him.
“The Tudors” (2007-2010)
Sex, bloodshed, and political intrigue—everything that makes Game of Thrones great, minus the fantasy.
If you always root for the underdog, you might enjoy this fantasy adventure film about a dwarf farmer who becomes the unlikely hero who saves a baby from an evil sorceress.