Top Ten Tuesday

A Whole New World – Favorite Fantasy Book Settings {Top Ten Tuesday}

Fantasy Book Settings

As hosted by The Broke & The Bookish

So originally the prompt this week was ‘books set outside the US’, but here’s the thing: I don’t read enough contemporary to come up with ten books set outside the US. (I’m working on it guys, I swear! Summertime is contemporary time.)

What I do read quite a lot of? Fantasy books. And guess what? They are pretty much all set outside the US, because they pretty much all take place in a faraway fictional fantasy land. Plus they get bonus points because they have gorgeous MAPS!

So while there are a ton of fantasy lands I would love to live in, I tried to narrow it down to these ten:

The Wizarding World/Hogwarts from Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling)

Marauder's Map (Harry Potter)

The most similar to our muggle world, but of course I would want to live there! Still waiting for my Hogwarts acceptance letter though…

Middle Earth from The Lord of the Rings (J.R.R. Tolkien)

Map of Middle Earth (Lord of the Rings)

Especially The Shire. I think I would feel right at home in the beautiful and peaceful Shire in my own little hobbit home.

Prythian from A Court of Thorns and Roses (Sarah J. Maas)

Map of Prythian (A Court of Thorns and Roses)

Divided in several Courts, I think Prythian has a ton of beautiful and enchanting places. However, the Night Court would definitely be where I belong. β€œTo the stars who listenβ€” and the dreams that are answered.”

Erilea from Throne of Glass (Sarah J. Maas)

Map of Erilea (Throne of Glass)

Erilea is full of beautiful and fantastical places, from Adarlan’s biggest city Rifthold to the pirates at Skull’s Bay, from the Red Desert to the Witch Kingdom and all the way to the mysterious Terrasen.

Ravka/Kerch from the Grisha trilogy (Leigh Bardugo)

Map of Ravka (Grisha Trilogy)

The whole world of the Grisha trilogy is gorgeous, but I love the Russian-inspired Ravka and the Netherlands-inspired Kerch the most. Plus this world has Grishas and Grishas are awesome.

AlagaΓ«sia from Eragon (Christopher Paolini)

Map of Alagaesia (Eragon)

Another gorgeous world filled with amazing magical creatures. This series is urgently due a re-read because I miss this place.

The Witchlands from Truthwitch (Susan Dennard)

Map of The Witchlands (Truthwitch)

With only one novel in the series out so far, there is still a lot to discover. But the first book already gives a great taste of what’s to come and I want more. Plus, witches!

The Seven Kingdoms/The Dells from Fire (Kristin Cashore)

Map of the Seven Kingdoms (Graceling)

Granted, the Seven Kingdoms sound gorgeous. But even more so, I’m intrigued by the Dells with its impossibly beautiful animals of unnatural colors that can entrance and control people. So while it would be an incredibly dangerous place, it would be so, so beautiful.

The Seven Realms from The Demon King (Cinda Williams Chima)

Map of The Seven Realms (Seven Realms)

The Seven Realms is one of my favorite fantasy settings ever. There’s magic, queens, wizards, clans and even it’s very own wizard school. I can’t wait to dive back into this world with the new novel Flamecaster.

Eretz from Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Laini Taylor)

Map of Eretz (Daughter of Smoke and Bone)

Eretz, also known as Elsewhere, is basically another universe to our earth. It is also home to tons of chimaera and has its own unique history and culture and I just love this world and these books so much.

What are some of your favorite book settings? do you prefer mostly fantasy or contemporary settings?


  1. Such a clever twist on the out of US theme. I love bookish maps and I have spent many happy hours exploring these lands. My TTT

    1. Thanks! Bookish maps are one of my most favorite things ever too πŸ™‚

  2. Oh my goodness. Book maps are one of my favorite things ever. So this post is giving me major heart eyes. πŸ™‚ I’ve read and loved almost all of these! Fantastic list!

    My Top Ten

    1. Thanks! Book maps are definitely a BIG PLUS in any book πŸ™‚

  3. I love fantasy even though my list was mostly contemps or mysteries. And I like your map graphic at the top of the post- I was looking at that and thinking ooh what books are those from? Most of these I haven’t read, but now I want to try Throne of Glass and Court of Thorn and Roses just based on the maps! And Middle earth is such a great choice too. Would love the Shire! πŸ™‚

    1. Maps are really great! I sometimes just buy a book because it has a beautiful map, no shame πŸ™‚

  4. Omg CHEER FOR THE SEVEN REALMS BOOKS!! I don’t see hardly anyone reading them, which is bizarre because they are basically the BEST of ever. <3 Although that's coming from someone who's only read 2 books and is procrastinating the other two because I don't want them to end.? I know! I'm weird. And also the ACTOAR map looks suspiciously like the Game of Thrones map…heh.

    But basically all the map-love in this post is making my map-loving-heart beat a little faster. <3

    Thanks for stopping by @ Paper Fury!

    1. Oh yes, the Seven Realms books don’t get nearly enough love! And I’m a little jealous you still have two books to go, I wish I could re-read them with a clear mind πŸ™‚ At least there’s still Flamecaster and the rest of the new series!
      And actually, you have a point! I didn’t realise, but the ACOTAR map does resemble Westeros/Essos a bit πŸ™‚

  5. Like your take on this week!! I actually have only read ToG and that series. I do have Harry Potter and ACOTAR on my list. Great list!!

    1. Thanks! I hope you’ll enjoy Harry Potter and ACOTAR πŸ™‚

  6. Harry Potter was on my list this week too!
    My TTT:

    1. One can never go wrong with Harry Potter πŸ˜‰

  7. This made me think of a fantasy trilogy I reread from time to time: Lyonesse, by Jack Vance has a neat map, too. My TTT.

    1. I did not know that one, but I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for the recommendation!

  8. I totally agree that summertime is definitely contemporary time. Love your take on this week, I actually had a really hard time coming up with books I loved and felt slightly bad that all of my picks were mostly just England.

    1. I completely understand, it was really difficult finding ten books set outside of the US, let alone ten different locations! Luckily fantasy worlds are a nice way to sidestep it a bit πŸ™‚


    I don’t generally look at maps beyond the first glance, but I love seeing them spread out like this! People are so creative, and all these maps look really… complete. Like it makes the setting that much realer.

    1. Maps really are great πŸ™‚ And I do love the detail they put into them, it does make the story seem so much more complete and real!

  10. Haha I decided against going with high fantasy though we find a lot of great worlds that way as well. I can’t wait to hear what you think of Flamecaster. πŸ™‚

    1. I’m super excited for Flamecaster! πŸ™‚

  11. I love this! Maps in books are my favourite! Even though they’re mostly in high fantasies which intimidate me ? but they’re super pretty to look at! I would give almost anything to be able to go to Hogwarts or the Wizarding World! I really want to read Truthwitch and The Grisha Trilogy!

    1. Thanks! Maps are great! πŸ™‚ Being able to live in the Wizarding World would be a dream come true! I really loved Truthwitch and the Grisha trilogy, hope you’ll enjoy them!

  12. I love fantasy book settings and book maps so much! There’s something magical about discovering a brand new world within a book, really great twist for this week’s topic!

    1. Thanks! You are so right, maps really are a bit of magic πŸ™‚

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