Sooo… This is kinda out of left field. A bit of an oddball post, too. But, um, I’ve got something to confess to everyone.
I. Am. A. Huge. Geek.
There, I said it! Whew! So glad I finally got that off my chest. I mean, I’m sure it was pretty obvious, from the kinds of books I read, but I wasn’t completely sure.
Anyway, I’m a geek, and The Legend of Zelda is like my favorite thing ever. Ever. And there’s a new game coming out tomorrow – Tears of the Kingdom. So I thought, what better way to pay tribute to the franchise that I love the most, than to connect it to books in some way and post about it on my blog. (Where everyone can see it.) (Cuz the internet is forever.)
So yeah, I’m bursting with excitement. These last 24 hours or so are gonna be hell. But I’m still riding the high of the hype train nonetheless.
But I’m heading towards a tangent. Let’s get back to books with Legend of Zelda vibes. Here’s five books (or series really, they’re all series) that I’ve read that reminded me of Zelda.
If you’re interested in any of the books/series on this list, click on the corresponding images if you want to learn more information. I got ’em linked.
#1: The Lord of the Rings
I thought I’d get the obvious one out of the way first. The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien is the progenitor of modern fantasy. Not just of books either. Of a lot of fantasy stuff.
Elf-like beings? Check. An epic quest to save the land from dark lord? Check. Magic and swords? Check. There’s a lot of similar vibes between these two series. Particularly if you watch the Peter Jackson movies and then play Ocarina of Time or Twilight Princess.
#2: The Inheritance Cycle
So, I’m totally aware that The Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini is a bit of an homage/ripoff of a lot of the fantasy that’s come before it. (And Star Wars.) But I haven’t read any of those books (except for part of The Lord of the Rings), so Eragon and its sequels are going on this list.
Farmboy is upended from his normal life and set on the path to defeating a dark lord? Check. Dragons? Check. Magical blue swords? Check. Magic sentient trees? Check. And, last but not least, elves? Check.
#3: The Seven Realms
The Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima is a bit of the odd-man-out in this list, but I still felt a ton of Legend of Zelda vibes while reading these books.
A kingdom in turmoil? Check. Very atmospheric and immersive? Check. A male and female lead, one a mage and one a warrior? Check.
#4: The Chronicles of Prydain
Of this list, I’m probably the least familiar with Lloyd Alexander’s Chronicles of Prydain. But I’ve seen The Black Cauldron movie that Disney made, and I’ve read the first book (and most of the second, I think), so I know enough.
Orphan boy upended from his quiet life to go defeat a dark lord? Check. A quirky companion or two? Check. A beautiful princess with a complicated relationship with said orphan boy? Check.
#5: Deltora Quest
Deltora Quest by Emily Rodda has a special place in my heart. I didn’t really read them until I was in middle school – and even then I didn’t get very far because I thought I was too old for them and got embarrassed – but I did like what I read.
Then, in high school I found the anime adaptation (yes, there’s an official, licensed, anime adaptation) and watched it. And I absolutely adored it, even though the voice acting was… not the best. I loved the world and the story so much though, and I hope to read through the entire thing for the first time soon, and then share it with my children when they exist.
(Also, its similarities to a quest in a videogame are deliberate. Rodda saw his much her kids enjoyed games and wanted to write a book/series that reflected them.)
Oh, almost forgot. An epic quest to defeat the dark lord? Check. Swords and magic? Check. Locating magical stones to unlock a McGuffuin of sorts? Check.
BONUS: The Legend of Zelda Mangas
This is cheating a little, but I just couldn’t help it. I absolutely HAD to plug the Zelda manga. Mangas. They’re just so wonderful – the kind of supplemental material that fans love. And they have gorgeous artwork and they follow the base plot extremely well, even if a lot of stuff is cut to meet the page count.
The Legendary Editions of the mangas are also fantastic. I love how colorful and distinct they are, not to mention their omnibus forms makes them a bit more convenient to shelve and store.
And I can’t talk about the LOZ manga without mentioning the crème de la crème.
The Twilight Princess manga adaptation is absolutely amazing. Dare I say, nearly perfect. (And that’s not just cuz it’s my favorite game in the series and I’m biased. Nuh-uh.)
The art is beautiful, just like the other mangas, which is not at all surprising. (They’re all written and drawn by the same author, Akira Himekawa (which is an alias for a mangaka duo).) But this time, the mangakas were allowed to adapt the game at a more sedate pace. So, instead of doing the entire game in a volume of two, they had eleven volumes to tell the story. And it makes a glorious difference.
But yeah, I gotta stop gushing or else I’ll just keep going on. Forever.*coughs awkwardly*
So, these are the books with Legend of Zelda vibes. Have you played any of the games? Have you read any of these books/series on my list? What did you think of them?
Anyway, as always, thank you so much for reading, and have a really, really, awesome day/night!
See ya ~Mar