I love a good series as much as the next person but stand alone novels are real gems. With a series, things are dragged out, mysteries are left unsolved and characters tend to take a while to get it together. In a stand alone you get a complete story, start to finish, in one conveniently bound, perfect package. Here are my current favourite fantasy/sci-fi stand alone novels.
5. The 13 ½ Lives of Captain Bluebear written by German author and cartoonist Walter Moers. It tells the story of a man sized, blue furred talking bear called Captain Bluebear. This novel is surreal, enchanting, and downright crazy. The characters are so original and it is unlike anything I have ever read, the fab cartoon illustrations and page layout really add to the reading experience.
4. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. This novel is a phantasmagorical fairy tale set in a Victorian era world. An amazing circus travels the world, no public schedule, no announcements. One day there is nothing and the next it has appeared. Open from sunset to sunrise, The Night Circus offers only the best in entertainment, food and curious exhibits. The Night Circus also works as a cover for the training of two magicians who, unbeknownst to them, have been in a to-the-death competition since their childhoods. It’s a thrilling and mysterious read that comes together beautifully at the end.
3. All My Friends Are Superheroes by Andrew Kaufman. This is a stunning little novel where everyone seems to have superpowers, except for Tom. Tom is going steady with his girlfriend, The Perfectionist; The Hypnotist is her jealous ex. Tom and The Perfectionist decide to marry and at the wedding The Perfectionist is hypnotised (three guesses who) to treat Tom as if he is totally invisible to her. Six months pass and she is convinced that Tom has abandoned her. Tom spends most of his time desperately trying to get her attention. Will he manage it? You should read this little gem and find out.
2. The Martian by Andy Weir. The appearance of this book will come as no surprise to anyone who has read my review of this novel . It is a fantastic example of science fiction and tells the story of astronaut Mark Watney as he struggles to survive after being left alone on Mars. This novel will keep you on the edge of your seat and your eyes glued to the page.
1. Uprooted by Naomi Novik. This is a fairy tale style novel filled with magic and wonder. Agnieszka is an ordinary girl from a small village that is surrounded by The Wood – a sentient and malevolent forest. The villages in Agnieszka’s valley are protected from The Wood by a wizard known as The Dragon. In exchange for his protection, The Dragon asks for one seventeen year old girl every ten years. Agnieszka is that girl. The novel is full of magic, stories, and wonder. It is a completely captivating read with a compelling story line. Everyone should read this book.
This is pretty good mix of stand alone novels, each is unique and unlike anything I have ever read. I recommend all these books to anyone who like fantasy and sci-fi, particularly if you like the story to be completed in one book.