16 Adult Fantasy Books For When YA Just Won’t Cut It

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When I was an angsty pre-teen, I was nothing short of obsessed with fantasy novels. I loved anything and everything that had to do with dragons, witches, fairies—you name it, I was into it. I still love a little trip down memory lane every now and then, and I’m happy to pick up a Cassandra Clare book at any age. However, sometimes I have to face the facts: I’m a real adult, and to be completely frank, the romance scenes between Ron and Hermione just don’t cut it for me anymore. Luckily, there is a wide selection of adult fantasy books that can both satisfy your craving for a magical read and make you feel like the mature grown-up that you are as you read them, even if you spend hours watching reviews of them on Tik Tok. Get ready to read like it’s 2010 again (in the best way).

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Madeline Miller


Circe, the daughter of the Titan Helios, is a strange child: She possesses the power of witchcraft, which threatens the gods themselves. When Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, Circe ultimately has to choose whether she belongs with the god she was born from or the mortals she has come to love.

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V.E. Schwab

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

In 1714, Addie LaRue made a bargain to live forever and is now cursed with being forgotten by everyone she meets. Everything changes for her when, 300 years later, she stumbles across a young man in a bookstore who remembers her name.

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Samantha Shannon

The Priory of the Orange Tree

The House of Berethnet has ruled Inys for a thousand years, and the unwed Queen Sabran the Ninth feels pressure to conceive a daughter before her realm is destroyed. Meanwhile, the divided East and West remain in conflict, and an ancient enemy awakens.

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Leigh Bardugo

Ninth House

When the downtrodden Galaxy “Alex” Stern gets a full ride to one of the world’s most elite universities, she wonders, what’s the catch, and why her? She quickly discovers that the occult activities of Yale’s secret societies are far more sinister than one might imagine.

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Alix E. Harrow

The Ten Thousand Doors of January

As the ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke, January Scaller feels little different from the articles that decorate the halls of his mansion. That is, until she finds a strange book that tells tales of love, adventure, and danger.

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Erin Morgenstern

The Starless Sea

Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a graduate student in Vermont who discovers a book hidden in the stacks containing a story from his childhood. Desperate to discover how this came to be, he discovers an ancient library hidden far below the surface of the earth. Zachary travels the twisted tunnels of this magical world, finding his purpose.

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Sarah J. Maas

House of Earth and Blood

Bryce Quinlan is the survivor of a demonic attack on her closest friends and seeks to avenge their deaths. Hunt Athalar is a notorious fallen angel, offering to help Bryce find the culprit in exchange for his freedom from the Archangels. On their journey, they discover a dark power that threatens everyone and everything.

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Deborah Harkness

A Discover of Witches

Deep in the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, Diana Bishop unwittingly sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure, and she is the only one who can break its spell.

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TJ Klune

The House in the Cerulean Sea

Linus Baker’s solitary life is disrupted when he is summoned by the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth to travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist.

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Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman

Good Omens

Aziraphale, a fussy angel, and Crowley, a fast-living demon, find themselves in a predicament when they are forced to reckon with the loss of their lifestyle among Earth’s mortals in the face of the Apocalypse. They must decide to either drown their sorrows, laugh it off, or do something about it.

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Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Gods of Jade and Shadow

When Casiopea Tun opens a curious wooden box in her grandfather’s room, she accidentally frees the spirit of the Mayan god of death, who requests her help in recovering his throne from his treacherous brother. Casiopea’s adventure will take her from the jungles of Yucatán to the lights of Mexico City.

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Shelley Parker-Chan

She Who Became the Sun

In 1345, China lies under harsh Mongol rule. When a bandit attack orphans two of the Zhu family’s children, the son, Zhu Chongba, succumbs to despair and dies. Propelled by her desire to survive and disguised as her dead brother, his sister enters a monastery and learns she is capable of doing whatever it takes.

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Susanna Clarke


Piranesi lives to explore his house, an endless labyrinth containing an imprisoned ocean that floods rooms in an instant. The one other person in the house, The Other, visits Piranesi twice a week and asks for help with his research. However, as Piranesi explores, evidence emerges of another person and a terrible truth.

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Grady Hendrix

The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires

Patricia Campbell’s main excitement in life comes from her true crime book club—until she is viciously attacked by an elderly neighbor after the book club one night. This incident brings the handsome James Harris into her life, but when children on the other side of town go missing, Patricia realizes James is a monster of a different kind.

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Marlon James

Black Leopard, Red Wolf

Tracker is known far and wide for his skills as a hunter. When he finds himself part of a group that has come together to find a mysterious boy who disappeared three years earlier, Tracker starts to wonder: Who is this boy, and why do so many people want to keep Tracker from finding him?

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Bridget Collins

The Betrayals

The jaded Leo Martin has been exiled back to Montverre, an ancient and elite academy hidden high in the mountains, where society’s best and brightest are trained for a mysterious competition. As Leo connects with the academy’s magister, Claire Dryden, long-buried secrets rise to the surface, and centuries-old traditions are shockingly overturned.

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