The epic book series we didn't want to end

What we'd give for one more book. . .

You're fully immersed in the world. Utterly invested in the characters. Completely absorbed by the writing. Why must it end?! We take a look at the epic fantasy and science fiction series that left us bereft when they finished.

The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake

Starting with The Atlas Six and ending with the much-anticipated The Atlas Complex, Olivie Blake's dark academia trilogy pits six magicians against each other as they compete for a place in the Alexandrian Society and a lifetime of power and prestige. Expect manipulation, alliances and unwise hook-ups.

The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

City of Bones

by Cassandra Clare

Book cover for City of Bones

The first series from Cassandra Clare's epic Shadowhunter Chronicles – or the third, if we're going via internal chronology – The Mortal Instruments is a mainstay of YA fantasy. Beginning with the book City of Bones, the series follows Clary Fray as she uncovers her family history and meets the Shadowhunters, a group who protect the human world from dark outside forces. Fans missing the series have plenty more to go at though: aside from the four other series in the Shadowhunter Chronicles, the prolific Clare has recently published her first book for adults, Sword Catcher.

Don't Miss

Cassandra Clare's books: a complete guide

Read more

Legacy of Orisha by Tomi Adeyemi

A dark and dangerous piece of West African-inspired fantasy YA. Forced to hide her powers under the tyrannical rule of a ruthless king, Zélie finds herself with a chance to bring magic back to her people and take down the oppressive monarchy. She must learn to harness her powers and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good. But danger lurks around every corner, vengeful spirits wait in the waters and Zélie herself is struggling to come to terms with the strength of her magic.

The Radiant Emperor Duology by Shelley Parker-Chan

Set in fourteenth-century China, this duology we wish was a trilogy is a queer reimagining of Zhu Yuanzhang's rise to power.

She Who Became the Sun

by Shelley Parker-Chan

In a famine-stricken village on a dusty plain, a seer shows two children their fates. For a family’s eighth-born son, there’s greatness. For the second daughter, nothing. In 1345, China lies restless under harsh Mongol rule. And when a bandit raid wipes out their home, the two children must somehow survive alone. Zhu Chongba despairs and gives in. But the girl resolves to overcome her destiny. So she takes her dead brother's identity and begins her journey. Can Zhu escape what’s written in the stars, as rebellion sweeps the land? 

He Who Drowned the World

by Shelley Parker-Chan

After triumphing over the Mongol rulers, Zhu Yuanzhang aspires to become emperor. However, her ambitions are challenged by Madam Zhang, who seeks the throne for her husband, and Wang Baoxiang, a scorned scholar craving revenge. To secure her position, Zhu forms a risky alliance with the unstable eunuch general, Ouyang, while all contenders push their limits for power. As desire and ambition clash, the question remains: can even the most ruthless heart bear the steep price of their pursuits?

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman

A rollicking series of adventures taking in parallel worlds, magical creatures and trans-dimensional librarian spies. Get ready to follow Irene, who works for the mysterious Library, an organisation set up to to harvest works of fiction from different realities. 

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses

by Sarah J. Maas

Book cover for A Court of Thorns and Roses

Is there a list of fantasy book series on the internet without Sarah J. Maas on it? This phenomenally popular series follows nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre as she is taken into the world of lethal, immortal faeries after accidentally killing one of them. 

Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Adrian Tchaikovsky is the king of epic science fiction and fantasy and we could have chosen any of his four series for this list. We've gone, though, for the Arthur C. Clarke winning Children of Time trilogy, the story of humanity's battle for survival on a terraformed planet which is already occupied. In this battle between civilizations, who will be the final heirs of the new Earth?

Kushiel's Legacy: the Phèdre Trilogy by Jacqueline Carey

'Rich, intricate worldbuilding meets swoonworthy romance' says Olivie Blake of this romantasy trilogy. Jacqueline Carey's series follows Phèdre nó Delaunay, a servant turned courtesan and spy, and one touched by the god Kushiel’s dart, chosen to forever experience pain and pleasure as one. 

The Dark Tower by Stephen King

The Dark Tower series

by Stephen King

Book cover for The Dark Tower series

Made up of eight novels and a novella, The Dark Tower series follows the Gunslinger (who lends his name to the first book) and his quest towards the Dark Tower. It's a multi-genre epic, taking in elements of fantasy, Western and horror, and hops around the King multiverse with aplomb. Initially fans had to wait years between installments, but those coming to the series now can take in all 4000 pages at once if they choose!