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Mongolian Fantasy: A Guide to the Genre (2022 Edition)

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If you are looking for information on Mongolian fantasy as a genre, you have come to the right place. The Mongol people are historically known for their massive military forces, evil and powerful leaders, and strong religious ties. Though they endured many hardships, Mongolian history is a great place to set a fantasy novel. 

There are so many bits of history that authors use to create a Mongolian fantasy, and they work very well alongside elements of a traditional fantasy novel. Magic, curses, and mythical creatures are common in Mongolian fantasy. If this sounds like something that sparks your interest, keep reading to learn more about the Mongolian fantasy genre. 

Mongolian History 

The Mongol people are an East Asian ethnic group coming from Mongolia, China, and parts of Russia. They have a rich history full of wars, political corruption, and beautiful culture. 

Many people are familiar with Genghis Khan, who was the Emperor of the Mongol Empire in the 13th century. Genghis Khan was a ruthless leader who caused the mass extermination of millions of people. He is known as one of the greatest conquerors of all time. He also helped the Mongol Empire expand and advance. During his short reign, technology, communication, and weaponry all advanced quickly. 

Today, Mongols are still associated with Genghis Khan, but their culture and history are much more rich and full than being just a powerful Emperor. Mongols make up the majority of the population in Mongolia, and there are a large number of Mongols in China, as well. Most Mongols practice Buddhism. 

Mongolian Fantasy 

Mongolian fantasy fanart

The rich and long history of the Mongols makes a great opportunity for a crossover into the fantasy genre. The history of the Mongols is very well-documented, and there are so many interesting and unique bits of history to include in a fantasy. Mongolian fantasy novels take those bits of history and use them to create a fantastic story with historical elements that may or may not be accurate.

A Mongolian fantasy novel often includes war and powerful leaders, as this is part of what the Mongols in history are known for. Massive military forces are a common element in a Mongolian fantasy. 

Not every Mongolian fantasy focuses on war, however. The rich culture of the Mongols also allows inspiration to be drawn from other areas of their history. Customs, religious practices, and mythology are also common in Mongolian fantasies. 

The fantastic elements of a Mongolian fantasy vary between novels. Some common elements of fantasy are mythical creatures, spirits and ghosts, and magic. Each Mongolian fantasy gives a new spin on the culture and what is possible in a fantasy novel. Rest assured that there are not two books that are the same within the Mongolian fantasy genre. 

Examples of Mongolian Fantasy 

Mongolian fantasy is a great genre to read if you are a fan of reading about wars, evil leaders, and epic journeys across sweeping landscapes. Just about every novel in the genre could also be classified as high fantasy, as well. The vastness of a Mongolian fantasy novel is usually quite breathtaking. 

There are very few novels or series of novels that are completely “Mongolian.” Many novels in the genre take great inspiration from Mongolian culture and history, but the authors weave that history into their own, fictional worlds. This makes for some amazing stories that have a lot of their basis in history. It is a great genre for any fan of both history and fantasy to dive into. 

Eternal Sky

The Eternal Sky trilogy is a series of novels by Elizabeth Bear. It is a fantastic series that is largely inspired by Mongolian culture. This series follows the fictional grandson of Genghis Khan as he leaves the battlefield where he was left for dead. The boy, Temur, is now the heir to the throne, but he will have to fight to keep his title. 

If you are looking for an excellent example of a Mongolian fantasy, look no further. This series is heavily influenced by Mongolian culture, history, and customs. It is clear that Bear did her research when writing this series. There are also many elements of a great fantasy woven throughout this series, as well. There are wars, epic quests, princesses, ghosts, and so much more. Everything you are looking for in a Mongolian fantasy is within the pages of Elizabeth Bear’s Eternal Sky series. 

The King Beyond the Gate 

The King Beyond the Gate is a 1985 novel by David Gemmell. This novel is not as obviously Mongolian-influenced as the above novel, but it definitely warrants a place on this list. The main premise of this novel is an ancient civilization of people who are attempting to overthrow a power-hungry emperor. It takes inspiration from the histories of many different Asian countries and creates a new and exciting story to follow. 

Gemmell has several novels that take place in the same universe. Though they are not technically a “series,” they do follow a chronological timeline. Each novel takes place at least 100 years after the previous novel, giving a great historical look at the universe that Gemmel created. None of the characters from previous novels come up in subsequent novels, so it is not necessary to read them all in order. These novels are a unique and interesting take on Mongolian fantasy, and they are definitely worth a read. 

Crossroads 

The Crossroads series is a Mongolian-inspired series of novels by Kate Elliott. If you are looking for a great high fantasy series full of epic battles, mythical creatures, and evil leaders, look no further. There are a lot of characters in this series making the world seem larger than life which can be fun to read. This series takes place in a fictional world, but the influence of Mongolian culture and the leaders and wars of the time is clear.

Each novel in the series takes on a different point of view. The reader gets to experience the world from the perspective of several different characters who all have very different experiences. Be ready to open your mind to this new world when you pick up this series. It is exciting and captivating. And it will likely be a series you will remember for a long time to come. 

Conclusion

I hope this article has helped clarify what this unique fantasy subgenre is all about.

And if you want to read more about fantasy subgenres on this blog, check out:

Lastly, feel free to leave a message in the comments below if you have questions about this or another fiction literature-related topic!

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