books · features · Shar

Bookish Planet: The land of High Fantasy

By Shar

Bookish Planet is an original feature on Virtually Read in which general or vague from books are ‘toured’ by your lovely, helpful tour guides. Today we are visiting the generic fantasy world.


The fantasy land is prevalent among high fantasy books. There are several prevalent features in the fantasy land.

Firstly, there must be a variety of different races, such as elves, dwarves, and humans. Other possible races include dragons, orcs, and goblins.

The land is usually one continent with little to no contact with others and little knowledge about it. It is usually bordered by uncrossable boundaries such as deserts, mountains, or wasteland.

It is often contains one or multiple oppressive kingdoms or empires, and often features characters whose aim is to overpower them. The technology is similar to that of Earth’s middle ages: there is no electricity, internet, guns, cities or bombs but rather arrows, slingshots, lamps, and villages. Often the land is in the midst of a war of some kind or the other; innocent villages of various races become caught up in it and die uselessly.

The most prevalent feature of the Fantastic Land is magic; it’s use is widespread and the MC is always capable of it. Different lands have different magical systems, but some involve magic-wielders and non-wielders; etc.



You may meet a variety of races, as has been previously mentioned, such as hobbits, orcs, dwarves, humans, elves, and best of all dragons. Characters you could come across include Eragon (Inheritance Cycle), Frodo and Sam (the Lord of the Rings), Akiva (Daughter of Smoke and Bone), Celeana (Throne of Glass), Katsa, Bitterblue, and Po (Graceling), and Laia (an Ember in the Ashes). Best of all, if you’re lucky you might meet Smaug, Saphira, Firnen, or Glaedr.(we all know dragons are the highlight of any high fantasy setting.)


The High Fantasy land really has it’s origins in J.R.R Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, published about 50 years ago. Since then, it has accommodated many, many epic and engaging stories. C.S Lewis’ Narnia chronicles and Lewis Carrol’s Alice duo also have varying elements of the fantasy you can find in novels published today.


Where to stay:

The Land is normally full of accommodating village inns, or if something more exciting takes your fancy, palaces, elven towns, or dwarf caves are plentiful. (Accommodating owners of such places are fewer and far between). Be prepared with a LOT of hand sanitiser; cleanliness is often not a first priority for people who are trying not to get killed/trying to kill the bad guys (there’s always a bad guy), although healers are common. Bring reading material, of course, and a torch if you can; fire danger is better avoided and you can say it’s some special magic. Be prepared to go without wifi until your return.



Different races speak different languages; there are often runes of one kind or another. Elves speak Elvish, dwarves Dwarvish, humans Human (usually), and dragons? Dragonese, of course. Depending on which place you’re visiting, different languages will be spoken, so a guide to pronunciation and reading of runes will not be provided. If all else fails, depend on you local magic user for telepathy in order to communicate (or at least hope that they’re a collector of languages, like Karou).


Above all, enjoy your stay in the Fantasy Land; you won’t get these types of opportunities often. You will see and experience things in your wildest dreams, so blend in, absorb all the culture you can; and don’t forget to save a little bit of magic for your (surely epic) journey home.


Which fantasy lands have you visited? Would you sacrifice wifi for magic? (yes, of course). Where else should we go?


10 thoughts on “Bookish Planet: The land of High Fantasy

  1. Cool post. D’ya reckon that high fantasy is always an allegory for the highly fantastic planet we live on and the authors are trying to tell us something about our own world? Or are these things just magical stories that have no connection to the real world? What relationship between these kind of books and magical realism where fantasy and magic leaks into the world we live in (e.g. Garcia Marquez, Allende etc)?


  2. I found this through Cait’s blog comments and oh my goodness, I love this! XD Fantastic post! (Er… no pun intended. *cough*) High Fantasy is my favorite, so this was fun. 😉 (Ooh, and book rec: you should read The Tough Guide to Fantasyland by Diana Wynne Jones! It’s kind of like this, but more in depth; and is likewise hilarious. :P) Loved reading this!


    1. Don’t worry, we’re big pun fans ( I mean, look at our blog title). I haven’t read any of Diana Wynne Jone’s books, but this one sounds really good. I’m glad you liked it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This is great! I love the part about one continent- how true is that? Seems like there’s always just ONE land and of course the obligatory wasteland or whatever. 🙂 And the part about villagers dying uselessly- the worst thing to be in a fantasy land is an innocent peasant I think. 🙂


  4. Ahahahaha I love this! I am bookmarking this to refer to when I write high fantasy. And Karou collecting languages is just SO cool, isn’t it? ❤ ❤ I think I would sacrifice wifi for magic, because magic can surely create magical wifi, right? RIGHT?

    PS: Loving this series!!


  5. Yes of course, give me magic any day! I found this post rather interesting in the respect that it has mentioned the norms…. so in my world I am writing I want to change some of those…. I’ve been doing a lot of world building recently.


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