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Magic in Fantasy

Magic is one of the hallmarks of fantasy literature, and it's also one of my absolute favourite elements. Being a key component of many fantasy settings, it can take many forms, like a strong wizard casting mighty spells or magical creatures with unique skills. So why is magic such a captivating component in these stories? What is it about magic that makes it so appealing?

First of all, I think I feel so strongly because heavy themes, allegories and metaphors can be discussed and explored by magic systems, and real-world societal issues can be explored in a way that is fun and entertaining. Additionally, I guess it pulls me in because I am a person who thoroughly enjoys feelings of wonder and possibilities. Everything is conceivable and the impossible is made feasible by magic, which opens up whole new worlds of possibilities. It's simply thrilling to see characters harness their amazing abilities and utilise them to defeat their adversaries or to learn new skills that aid them on their travels.

The "Harry Potter" series by J.K. Rowling is one of the most well-known instances of magic in fantasy literature, and certainly, one that has influenced me on many levels. The wizarding world is a realm where magic is not only real but also crucially important to the storyline. This element, the adding of something more, of magic, to our reality, has always had a great pull on my heart. The tale revolves around spells, potions, and magical creatures, and part of what makes the novels so engrossing is seeing Harry and his pals master them.

Yet, as alluded to before, magic may be employed to explore deeper themes and concepts as well as serve as a story element. 

Lev Grossman's novel "The Magicians" uses magic as a metaphor for mental illness, addiction, and the search for purpose in life. 

Not only is magic a delightful tool for the characters to employ in this universe, but it also plays a deep and nuanced role in the narrative, giving it a lot more depth and significance.

Check out "The Kingkiller Chronicle" by Patrick Rothfuss or several of Brandon Sanderson's publications if you like magic in fantasy novels (like the Mistborn series and the Storm light Archive series). 

These series have particularly well-built magic systems that feel intriguing and enigmatic, all while adding levels and levels of interest to the already compelling narratives.

Ultimately, magic plays a deep and nuanced role in fantasy literature. 

It may be used as a story device, a source of wonder and excitement, or a means of delving further into certain topics and concepts. No matter what, there is no disputing the might,  allure and, oftentimes, simple fun, of magic in the realm of fantasy literature.


Dark Fantasy


High Fantasy


Contemporary Fantasy

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