Best D&D Novels- Of All TIme


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Xaelvaen

Stuck in the 90s
I suffered through the original dragonlance novels just to get to read "The Second Generation" and "Dragons of Summer Flame" which made it all worth while. Of course, the Song of Huma sheet music being printed in the back of "Second Generation", as well as Knights of Takhisis AD&D 2E statistics, had absolutely nothing to do with my love of that particular novel at all.
 

SpellJammer16

Apprentice of the Seventh Circle of Mystery
Today I would say my favorites are the I,Strahd books by PN Elrod.
I love Vampires :)
Dragonlance was my favorite for awhile.
Because I first started with Dragons of Autumn Twilight back in '84 when it was on the shelf of Waldenbooks.
I had just started playing D&D the year before and was very excited about it. I even DM'd a few DL modules when I wasn't running Ravenloft or Pharoah :)
I was out of it for awhile but I managed to get all caught up on Raistlin thanks to Audible.
I've listened to all of the Weis / Hickman stuff now and needed a break from Dragonlance... so Listening to the Dark Elf Trilogy for the 5th time now... ah how relaxing.
 
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SpellJammer16

Apprentice of the Seventh Circle of Mystery
I also enjoyed

Ravenloft - Knight of the Black Rose
Ravenloft - Spectre of the Black Rose

There is also a Lord Soth story in the Worlds of TSR comics
 

jonesy

A Wicked Kendragon
The best D&D books I've ever read is the Defenders of Magic trilogy by Mary Kirchoff.
Night of the Eye, The Medusa Plague and The Seventh Sentinel are books nominally set within the Dragonlance setting, but you really need no knowledge of any other books as they tell a complete self-contained story.

This trilogy is as high magic as the old Dragonlance ever got. It's got wizard duels, political intrigue, fantastic voyages, plot twists galore and magic magic magic.
 


Kaodi

Adventurer
I own quite a few D&D books that I have not read since I was a kid. I generally refer to it now as "trashy pulp fantasy" but I would never get rid of them. My fantasy book collection is a treasured memento of my childhood. I am sure it was probably a significant influence on my writing style as well. You might think that would be bad if the books were "bad" but I am not sure that it was deleterious.

I do remember liking Elaine Cunnigham, and of course I read a lot of DragonLance by Weis & Hickman. I imagine it would be terrible to reread but I will always have a soft spot for Darkwalker on Moonshae though. Apparently it was the first Forgotten Realms novel? Really brought owlbears, displacer beasts, and perytons to life.
 

Kaodi

Adventurer
I wonder if you could make a movie work, or at least a short, where everything is viewed through Raistlin's hourglass eyes. Everything is withered or dead looking, yet the plot and dialogue barely acknowledges this fact because that is not the world as it really is.
 

Tristissima

Explorer
My favorite D&D novel isn't actually a novel, I daresay, but it is a tip of the hat to this here ol' forum. Cuz it's Sepulchrave's Story Hour, with Eadric and Mostin and all them. I discovered way back in college (when the very first thread was active, I think) and fell in effing love with it. That led me to what's-their-name's Story Hour which eventually had its setting published as a 3rd-party campaign setting called Valus.

After that, I'd prolly hafta list a novel which is D&D-adjacent ~ Ashes of the Sun, one of the first-run Magic: the Gathering novels from way back in the day ~ it's on my short list of geeky pop-culture projects that taught me deep lessons about life and helped form who I am. It's an embarrassing, and perhaps thankfully short, list. Ashes of the Sun was the first text I encountered that argued for the primacy of truth over accuracy, and taught me the magickal power of story, and illuminated the tension between "everyone can be anything if they try" and "people are the way they are because that's the way they are". That last bit helped prepare me to be ready for existentialism in a deep way when I finally came across it ~ existence precedes essence, but both are important. Also, it didn't resolve neatly, like so much schlock fiction out there. The ending was, in some sense, unsatisfying while still tying up the plot. It wasn't a happy ending for the minotaurs, the human martial artist, or the one goblin who managed to still his mind.

Third on my list is an actual D&D novel ~ the first Dragonlance novel I ever read, believe it or not, was The Second Generation, which had so many lovely bits of mythopoeia grounded in D&Dness that I just fell in love with it immediately. The sense of wonder spawned from it simultaneously building upon a deep previous background that I didn't know and seeding an unknown future with potential characters and plotlines is a high I've been chasing again for the last, what, 25 years of my narrative-addicted life.

I wonder if you could make a movie work, or at least a short, where everything is viewed through Raistlin's hourglass eyes. Everything is withered or dead looking, yet the plot and dialogue barely acknowledges this fact because that is not the world as it really is.

I would 185% watch this, and would quite happily work with folk on making it somehow (anyone in the SF Bay wanna?) as a fanproject or a "real film"
 

So many...… I'll go by campaign world-

DARKSUN TROY DENNING "PRISM PENTAD" describes and gives life to a truly unique game world. Though it faltered some towards the end, there is a huge scope to the over-all storyline. Also of note is LYNN ABBEY's Pavak and Hamanu series. I truly wished Novels like this fleshed out the other Sorcerer Kings and Queens.

EBERRON Loved both story arcs by DON BASSINGTHWAITE. Especially the second arc. Never cared for polital tales but this one was great. JAMES WYATT's STORM DRAGON was also incredible in scope and importance. I also have to mention TIM WAGGONER's "BLADE OF THE FLAME" that was one of the best "Buddy" stories I have ever read.

FORGOTTEN REALMS I have not read a lot FR novels but RA SALATORE's work is incredible. I also enjoyed his Cleric Quintet series. And for another "Buddy" series there is KATE NOVAK and JEFF GRUBB's AZURE BONDS series- my first love in DnD novels.

GREYHAWK MARGARET WEIS and TRACY HICKMAN's first trilogy was my introduction to Grey Hawk. Great stories and I wish to get more.

RAVENLOFT Only have a few of their books but JAMES LOWDER's KNIGHT OF THE BLACK ROSE was a great read.

All of these I completely enjoyed but it really comes down to style, game world and characters one enjoys. Then of course- how well written it is.

Still want Nibenay and Wanderer Novels hint hint ;)
 

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