Greatest Fantasy Authors of All Time

The Top Ten Greatest Fantasy Authors of All Time

1 J. R. R. Tolkien John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973), known by his pen name J. R. R. Tolkien, was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor who is best known as the author of the classic high-fantasy works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.

A Song Of Ice And Fire, Harry Potter, The Inheritance Cycle, The Wheel Of Time, and many other fantasy book series wouldn't be here without any influence by something that would only come from the mind of J.R.R. Tolkien.

The great story to the side, he has written the only fantasy books that were meaningful to me. For example the one ring is a treasure that can help people in many ways but it corrupts the user because that's the nature of power, if you give power to someone after a while the others will be destroyed because the user will only care for himself and that's why Gandalf chooses a hobbit to take it to mount doom because hobbits don't want power so they will not be corrupted fast unlike elves and men. Smaug is a great example to because it represents dictators. you see he takes erebor only to sleep on the gold as dictators do in rich countries. In my opinion these books are second to none in every aspect.

Pivotal. Such depth of characters and created story lines. So much of modern fantasy derives from Tolkien's works.

I have read his utterly marvelous books they are fantastic he deserves this spot.

2 Brandon Sanderson

Number 1 fantasy writer in 20 years at his current pace he will leave all other authors in this genre in the dust.

A true master of fantasy. He always has the best side characters and his world building is spectacular.

Author of the highest rated novel on Goodreads, Sanderson is one of the best up and coming writers today. He is already prolific in his work, and he doesn't leave his fans in the dark for years for new series installments as is common in the fantasy genre. Most of his books are long, but once you start reading you'll never want them to end.

One of the hardest working Authors out there today. He is a master or creating a world but his true strength is developing characters with depth that readers can't help but be invested in. If you are looking up any list of great authors his name should be on it regardless of genre. The length of his stories may be intimidating to some but the ease of which you will flow through his work will amaze you. If you haven't read any of his work yet, stop reading this and go start. Mistborn is a great place to start!

3 J. K. Rowling

I've been reading Harry Potter since I was 9 and have probably read the whole series 10times now.

This author am closest to in writing style according to some test from a while ago. I never seen anything wrong with Harry Potter so then good for J.K. Rowling for the cool adventures in Science Fiction. - iliescu

She is the best author ever known to history

Rowling = next Tolkien

4 George R. R. Martin George Raymond Richard Martin (born George Raymond Martin), also known as George R. R. Martin, is an American author known for his epic fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire, which was later adapted into the famous HBO series Game of Thrones.

Still have a deck of cards lying around from Game of Thrones. Good game from the tales of 'A Song of Ice and Fire'. It is fun and interesting though kind of odd in appearance it has heart and magic or something. Great! - iliescu

The Genius who came up with Game of Thrones...no one can beat this man

They are Amazing!

Asoiaf, greatest series ever written

5 C. S. Lewis

This guy was the second pioneer of modern fantasy after Tolkien

I don't know what we would be without The Chronicles of Narnia. Seriously. We wouldn't be looking for worlds behind the wardrobe; we wouldn't be entranced by paintings of the sea, we would never have tried on the magic rings, we never would have met Aslan.

No matter what he was the one who brought the fantasy genre to a front seat.

Never read the books, but I've seen 2 of the movies. Maybe I should check him out. - Alpha101

6 Terry Pratchett Sir Terence David John "Terry" Pratchett (1948-2015) was an English author of fantasy novels, especially comical works. He is best known for writing the comic fantasy book series Discworld.

He is just great - Aleksei

The greatest

There is much to learn from the Turtle and Discworld unwinds nearly the whole advantage. Well thought out! - iliescu

Terry Prachett is one of gems in literature.

7 Rick Riordan Richard Russell Riordan Jr. (born June 5, 1964) is an American author. He is known for writing the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series. His books have been translated into 42 languages and sold more than 30 million copies in the US. 20th Century Fox has adapted the first two books of his Percy Jackson ...read more.

Only thing that I can say is : he's amazing he is amazing he IS amazing and perfect and perfect and perfect

Amazing author. Why isn't he higher on the list?

He should be number one on this list. The Best!

I love his books!

8 Robert Jordan James Oliver Rigney Jr. (1948-2007), better known by his pen name Robert Jordan, was an American author known for writing the epic fantasy series The Wheel of Time. He was also known for writing stories about Conan the Barbarian, and for writing other books with different pseudonyms. He died from cardiac ...read more.

Epic fantasy and best ending to an epic fantasy I babe ever seen

Jordan deserves to be much higher on the list! The impact he had on the genre cannot be measured.

Should be top 2. No more needs to be said. Its criminal that he is this low on the list!

The Wheel of Time: Long, Engaging, and Epic.

9 Raymond Feist

One of my favorite authors of all time and I am as they say late to the party. His ability to capture the imagination while keeping a dark undertone is incredible. Not to mention his ability to keep continuity with his book series that span several time skips is impressive to say the least.

He is by far the best fantasy Author of all time.
Magician is just awesome.

God in the genre

Far better than Tolkien

10 Patrick Rothfuss

Anyone who thinks Rick Riordan is better than Patrick Rothfuss only cares about quantity and not quality

The Contenders

11 Robert E. Howard

Most visceral, gripping fiction ever! Especially for boys and men- no 'chick lit' here!

Conan the Barbarian is a staple of modern times television, the collection of the stories have charm within - possible why is in second rank. Uncertain of the other novels but Conan can be recognizable right away, good work from that. - iliescu

12 R.A. Salvatore

Love and have read everything he has written

13 Robin Hobb

Should be in top 5. Fantastic author and recognised widely as one of the greats.

The series about Fitz and the Fool is one of the best. Outstanding writer that captivates the reader from beginning to end,

A really good author. Should be higher on the list.

14 Steven Erikson
15 David Gemmell

Love Gemmell, so underrated, should be in the top three,

The best by far.

16 Joe Abercrombie

Joe outstanding. He visits the dark side of characters like no other.

R u kidding? he is the best, for a normal person, not babies that read the other crap

gut

17 Michael Moorcock Michael John Moorcock is an English author of science fiction and fantasy. He is best known for his series of books centering around the fictional character Elric of Melniboné.

Told beautiful stories that were individual masterpieces linked together

18 Jules Verne Jules Gabriel Verne was a French novelist, poet, and playwright best known for his adventure novels and his profound influence on the literary genre of science fiction.

Have read the Novel name as 'The Golden Volcano' write of Jules Verne which is neat but kind of drastic at the end their prize goes to the ocean. Also another of classic towards modern is 'White Fang' written of Jack London. These encompass a lot of key points in nature of imagination and somewhat hold relevance despite time passages supposing. A good read, yeah could be. - iliescu

19 Ursula K. Le Guin

If you haven't read Left Hand of Darkness consider yourself under educated.

A Wizard of Earthsea is influential and still astounding to find. Wish there is more courage to familiarize with it, this author does good with it. Normal can find as the top fantasy authors list from searching. Has a nice surprise in that segment of writing. - iliescu

20 Piers Anthony

Not only a phenomenal author but writes several books at a time in different series. Must be brilliant. Would love to spend an afternoon just chatting.

21 Terry Brooks

Love the running with the demon series wish he had written more books.

22 Stephen King Stephen Edwin King is an American author of contemporary horror, supernatural fiction, suspense, science fiction, and fantasy. Many of his most well-known novels include Carrie, It, The Shinning, The Stand, Misery, The Dark Tower series, and Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption, which was later ...read more.
23 Tad Williams
24 David Eddings

Funniest fantasy books ever I dare you to read the Eleniun or Tamuli series and not laugh out loud many many times

25 Christopher Paolini

The inheritance cycle is one of my favorite series of all time and was perhaps THE series that got me into fantasy.

Your books are my geywey ignasia! - Swiftdawn

THE INHERITENCE CYCLE= MY ENTIRE LIFE. "Atra Gulai un ilian tauthr ono un atra ono waise skolir fra rauthr" (sorry the accents aren't there) "Let Luck and happiness follow you and may you be shielded from misfortune" Christopher Paolini, your books are my "gedwey ignasia" - Swiftdawn

26 Andrzej Sapkowski

He perfectly captures the classic fantasy conventions of high and epic fantasy. His works encapsulate both fantastical conception and the struggles of modern day Poland.

27 Fritz Leiber
28 Neil Gaiman Neil Richard MacKinnon Gaiman is an English author of short fiction, novels, comic books, graphic novels, audio theatre, and films.

He should be in the top ten. He's a legend.

29 H.P. Lovecraft Howard Phillips Lovecraft (August 20, 1890 – March 15, 1937) was an American author who achieved posthumous fame through his influential works of horror fiction. Virtually unknown and published only in pulp magazines before he died in poverty, he is now regarded as one of the most significant 20th-century ...read more.
30 Brent Weeks
31 Roger Zelazny
32 Wolfgang Hohlbein
33 Scott Lynch

Severely underrated

Understatement of the decade "Severly underrated"

34 Philip Pullman
35 Susanna Clarke
36 Guy Gavriel Kay
37 Terry Goodkind
38 Jacqueline Carey
39 Gene Wolfe
40 Margaret Weis
41 Taran Matharu

A true up an comer of the genre his summoner trilogy is one of best I have read recently and I can see great things coming for him and am excited to see what he does next.

The summoner series is so good - sjd

42 Gary K. Wolf
43 Markus Heitz
44 Roald Dahl Roald Dahl (13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990) was a British novelist, short story writer, poet, screenwriter, and fighter pilot. His books have sold more than 250 million copies worldwide.

15. The Enormous Crocodile
14. Charlie And The Great Glass Elevator
13. The Minpins
12. The Magic Finger
11. The Giraffe And The Pelly And Me
10. Georges Marvelous Medicine
9. Esio Trot
8. The Twits
7. The BFG
6. James And The Giant Peach
5. The Witches
4. Fantastic Mr. Fox
3. Danny The Champion Of The World
2. Matilda
1. Charlie And The Chocolate Factory

Remember, this is my opinion! Don't hat on my opinion!

45 Lloyd Alexander Lloyd Chudley Alexander (1924-2007) was an American author of fantasy novels for children and young adults. His most famous work is the fantasy series The Chronicles of Prydain (which was later adapted into the 1985 Disney film The Black Cauldron, which has also earned a reputation for being one of ...read more.
46 Diana Wynne Jones

Castle In The Air is one of the only books I will continue re-reading over the years.

47 Brian Jacques
48 Jim Butcher
49 N. K. Jemisin
50 China Miéville
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