Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Longest Fantasy Series

Victor Stanciu of the Walk Into Mordor blog has compiled an amazing list of the longest fantasy series by page number using LibraryThing.com web scraping and Amazon’s API.

The list is a bit mind-blowing personally in light of just how many pages of the series on this list I've read. (Did I really read nine thousand pages of Pern?  How many hours is that?) It's also eyebrow-raising in that the series that top the list aren't necessarily the ones I would have guessed.

I've lifted the first twenty results and posted them below for the sake of discussion, but, before you peek, try guessing which series made it into the top ten.  Drop a comment below to let us know how many you got right.. Read the entire list at Walk into Mordor, and make sure to give Stanciu a head nod in the comments for this great bit of innovation.

# Series Books Pages
1 Discworld 38 books 13674 pages
2 The Riftwar Cycle 26 books 11873 pages
3 Wheel of Time 14 books 11362 pages
4 Xanth 33 books 11480 pages
5 Valdemar 26 books 10592 pages
6 Saga of Recluce 16 books 9696 pages
7 Malazan Book of the Fallen 10 books 8981 pages
8 Dragonriders of Pern 24 books 8980 pages
9 Shannara Universe 20 books 8976 pages
10 Sword of Truth 12 books 8784 pages
11 Anita Blake Vampire Hunter 19 books 8192 pages
12 Redwall 21 books 8081 pages
13 The Three Worlds Cycle 11 books 7926 pages
14 Realm of the Elderlings 11 books 7749 pages
15 The Legend of Drizzt 20 books 7243 pages
16 Deverry Cycle 15 books 6912 pages
17 Wars of Light and Shadow 9 books 6281 pages
18 Kushiel’s Legacy 8 books 6192 pages
19 The Dresden Files 14 books 5771 pages
20 Crown of Stars 7 books 5264 pages

Against all rationality, I'm actually a little upset by the realization that The Wheel of Time doesn't come in at the top of the list. I completely would have pegged it as the single largest series by volume. And, while I shouldn't be upset by that, seeing as this isn't a contest, I am. Even if the next two books in the series are the largest in the series, Wheel of Time wil be stuck at number two.

What makes me smile, though, is that, if Jim Butcher really is serious about his Dresden Files series running thirty books long, it may eventually rise to the third or fourth spot, even given the growth of other series in the intervening time.

Photo Source: er3465

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