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What are some well written Urban Fantasy novels or well done Urban fantasy movies/tv shows?
Posted: 08 October 2012 07:29 PM   [ Ignore ]
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What are some well written Urban Fantasy novels or well done Urban fantasy movies/TV shows?  Also maybe some good urban fantasy graphic novels too.


I am interested in writing Urban Fantasy and maybe doing some graphic novels based on those stories.  I want to see how these books are written not to copy them but to understand how to write that genre better.


I did get my own copy of Living Dead in Dallas to read and then analyze.  I also got a copy of Time Traveler’s Wife (I know not exactly urban fantasy, but thought it might help)


I also like the Vampire Academy series and the Bloodlines series.  I had those books but I have lost most of my books.  I have a copy of Mona Lisa Awakening by Sunny but I have not taken it out of my trunk of my car.

I did checked out a book called Marked and a book caled Prisoner of Azkaban.  I am requesting Fool Moon.

Adult books are fine but I do not mind young adult.


Thank you!

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Posted: 08 October 2012 07:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Not sure if it’s URBAN Fantasy but I like Chronicles of Narnia. smile

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Posted: 08 October 2012 07:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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my favorite is The Hollows series by Kim Harrison.
and Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs

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Posted: 08 October 2012 07:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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There’s also the Cal Leandros series by Rob Thurman, the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher (which I think you listed book 2 of in your original post), the Jane True series by Nicole Peeler, and the Grave Witch / Alex Craft series by Kalayna Price.  I enjoyed all of them.

Although not quite what I’d call Urban Fantasy (but close), there’s the Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne and the Sandman Slim series by Richard Kadrey (this one is not for everyone).  I also enjoyed the heck out of these, but I’ll admit that my taste in literature isn’t quite like everyone else’s…  smile

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Posted: 08 October 2012 07:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Definitely the Dresden Files - these are some of my favorite books in any genre.

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Posted: 08 October 2012 08:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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There’s a tabletop role-playing game known as World of Darkness, which is all about urban legends. You get to role-play one of those creatures of the night, such as vampires (of course) or werewolves, or just a plain human who runs around screaming from those creatures. The rules of the game and the details of the world or setting in which the game takes place can be a great source of inspiration. You might like to start with the core rulebook.

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Posted: 08 October 2012 08:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere, either the novel or the graphic story.

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Posted: 08 October 2012 08:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Holly Black’s Tithe, Valiant and Ironside.  These are marketed as “young adult” books, but they’re very suitable for adult reading.  Valiant in particular has a more urban fantasy vibe.

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Posted: 08 October 2012 08:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Mercedes Lackey Bedlam Bard series and Serrated Edge series

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Posted: 08 October 2012 08:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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I’m a big fan of Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn series.


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Posted: 08 October 2012 10:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Buffy the Vampire Slayer actually originated the urban fantasy genre, at least that’s what Lou Anders, editor of Pyr Books said. So that’s a good one to have a grasp on. The TV show Charmed was also very much in that style. There are spin-offs of course, but the urban fantasy genre tends to be women with some sort of magical power kicking the bad guys/demons around in a modern urban setting.

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson, which I love, probably falls into traditional fantasy genre. I want to say high fantasy, or sword and sorcery fantasy. (The sorcery part of that one.) That’s because it has a medieval setting, with all that entails.

I write in the fantasy genre as well. I had no clue what urban fantasy was till I went to some conventions that talked about the differences.

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Posted: 09 October 2012 04:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a film in 1992, and a television series from 1997 on. Emma Bull’s War for the oaks was published in 1987 and is generally credited with being one of the earliest urban fantasy stories, though as with any genre there are various antecedents before it became an identified genre as such. And I would add War for the Oaks to the list. Charles de Lint’s Jack the Giant Killer is another 1987 early urban fantasy, it and it’s sequel (Drink Down the Moon) are also worth checking.

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Posted: 09 October 2012 06:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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I think I get tired of urban fantasy faster than any other flavor of SF/fantasy: there’s an awful lot of bad, cookie-cutter urban fantasy out there, and it seems less imaginative and more constrained than other sub-genres. I can only take so many steely-eyed half-{vampire/werewolf/fairy} heroines and their steely-eyed {vampire/werewolf/fairy} lovers before my stomach starts to rebel.

Richard mentioned “War for the Oaks”, which pretty much established the genre. Not one of my favorite books, but it’s source material if you’re writing in the genre. Another influential early book is Megan Lindholm’s “Wizard of the Pigeons”, which I remember as not being bad. I liked ‘Wizard’ more than ‘Oaks’, but both are probably required reading if you want to know what the conventions are.

Someone else mentioned Kadrey’s “Sandman Slim” cycle (“Sandman Slim”, “Kill the Dead”, “Aloha from Hell”, “Devil Said Bang”), which aren’t quite urban fantasy - call them ‘noirmonsterpunk’ - but are a fun read. My favorite Kadrey may actually be “Butcher Bird”, which he described as a kind of trial run for “Sandman Slim”; it’s even further from being urban fantasy, but it’s very vivid and enjoyable.

Gaiman’s “Neverwhere”, mentioned by someone else, is much more inventive than the usual hackneyed urban fantasy: a nice sense for myth, and no steely-eyed half-vampires in sight. His “American Gods” is road-trip-fantasy rather than urban fantasy, but it’s also pretty imaginative.

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Posted: 09 October 2012 06:54 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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angusm - 09 October 2012 06:10 AM

I think I get tired of urban fantasy faster than any other flavor of SF/fantasy: there’s an awful lot of bad, cookie-cutter urban fantasy out there, and it seems less imaginative and more constrained than other sub-genres. I can only take so many steely-eyed half-{vampire/werewolf/fairy} heroines and their steely-eyed {vampire/werewolf/fairy} lovers before my stomach starts to rebel.

I think more of Charles de Lint when I hear ‘urban fantasy.’  There is certainly too much vampire/werewolf in a lot of current fiction but it is obviously popular.

Hmm, what is the definition of urban fantasy? It brought something to mind, but I’m not sure I’m thinking of the same genre as others.

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Posted: 09 October 2012 07:12 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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angusm - 09 October 2012 06:10 AM

I think I get tired of urban fantasy faster than any other flavor of SF/fantasy: there’s an awful lot of bad, cookie-cutter urban fantasy out there, and it seems less imaginative and more constrained than other sub-genres. I can only take so many steely-eyed half-{vampire/werewolf/fairy} heroines and their steely-eyed {vampire/werewolf/fairy} lovers before my stomach starts to rebel.

I’m with you on that! I was a BIG fan of Urban Fantasy, but I’ve lost my taste for it, due to the same ol’ tropes in every single one. I’ve started to read UF that has a MALE protagonist (sp?) instead of the kick-arse female - the male leads have far fewer tropes.

K. A. Stewart’s “Jesse James Dawson” series is good - ” A Devil in the Details” and “A Shot in the Dark”. (male lead)
Mark del Franco’s “Connor Grey” series is excellent - “Unshapely Things” being the first.
And I second the Kevin Hearne series - the Iron Druid Chronicles.

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Posted: 09 October 2012 07:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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fivecat - 09 October 2012 06:54 AM

...what is the definition of urban fantasy? It brought something to mind, but I’m not sure I’m thinking of the same genre as others.

My understanding of urban fantasy is that it features protagonists who live in contemporary, usually urban settings, but who are involved in some way with the supernatural - magic, or magical creatures such as werewolves, vampires and fairies, or magical realms, such as Faerie. In other words, it describes our modern, technological world as coexisting with magic and magical beings or places.

So, for example, I wouldn’t consider Brandon Sanderson’s “Mistborn” or Fritz Lieber’s “Lankhmar” series to be urban fantasy because - although they have urban settings - the cities described aren’t our cities. And I don’t know if I’d consider Zelazny’s “Nine Princes in Amber” (or Henry Kuttner’s “The Dark World”, which inspired it) to be urban fantasy because, even though they feature a protagonist who begins in a mundane world - ours - and then discovers the existence of a parallel, magical world, the bulk of the action takes place in the magical world.

The “vampires! vampires everywhere!” strand of urban fantasy (i.e. Charlie Huston) is a little different from the “there are fairies at the bottom of the garden” strand (i.e. Emma Bull’s “War for the Oaks”), but they both juxtapose the familiar modern world with elements of the supernatural.

Discussion of whether Harry Potter or “Twilight” are urban fantasy is left as an exercise for the reader ...

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