fantasy reading

Why do People Read Fantasy?

Although fantasy is wildly popular, not everyone is a fan, and that’s OK. After all, we all have our preferred genres. Perhaps, many wonder, why do people read fantasy? Perhaps even some aficionados sometimes wonder the same thing; however, I’m sure that most of us already know the answer.

There are many good reasons to dive into a book and forget about the real world, in any genre of your choice. With fantasy, you literally dive into a whole other world.

Fantasy and the Real World

It’s fascinating how much you can use the fantasy genre to depict certain injustices in the real world or mock certain real-life events and even people.

It is so much more than just forgetting oneself into a swashbuckling adventure with a dragon and its human friend, or a rebellious harpy, an unwilling vampire, or a werewolf stuck in a coven where he doesn’t belong. An adventure you will surely have, but for each fantasy the author had to build a whole new world. The world building is a great endeavor (and one of the parts I enjoy the most).

Why do People Read Fantasy?
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While the author builds his or her fantastical new universe, he/she does much more than describing the huts and streets and what-have-you. Every world has its rules and regulations. Remember all those rules Harry Potter broke at Hogwarts?

Those rules often depict real-world laws and lend themselves to demonstrate abuse of power, tyranny, nepotism, and other human ills.

Certain dwarfs, pixies, sirens, or any other fantastical creatures can be used to represent a specific social class in the real world.

It doesn’t have to be obvious. Sometimes, it can be a little elusive or it is staring one right in the face. We all interpret books a little bit our own way, pay attention to different details, or look for something else.

Of course, not every book should be written to get a message or one’s own agenda out, but I do think that the fantasy genre is underestimated by many, since it is so perfect to demonstrate issues in the real world without naming any of those issues from the real world. You can make them part of the world you built and take the reader on a journey that leads him/her to the climax, the solution of the problem, and a satisfying end.

More Reasons to Read Fantasy

Fantasy gives you a view into not only another world but even into someone’s mind. After all, writing a book is akin to exposing your soul to your readers – which can be nerve-wrecking for some – including yours truly.

Fantasy is even said to help us learn problem-solving skills. Many stories in this genre let us live through impossible situations. Those open the door to innovation and creativity for adults and children alike. Seeing how characters in a book respond to adversity and how they have to think outside the box to solve their problems is a teaching tool for us to be more adaptable.

The Stone Series - Christine Duts

I don’t think that any fantasy author writes their books with that in mind – as far as I know, but I could be wrong – but it is even more wonderful that something that was created for entertainment, an escape, or maybe a personal release ends up being an educational tool.

Fantasy provides a welcome release, a momentary escape, and we all need that. Without venturing into fantasy or dreams, then what is left of us but a shell of who we are?

To me, fantasy is even allowing your inner child to take over, and without exception, we all need to connect with our inner child, especially as adults. So many lose their inner child when they get older. Nonetheless, it is so important to not let go of that little boy or girl in you, the one who loves to laugh out loud, do a spontaneous race on the beach, or whatever spur-of-the-moment idea makes us feel alive, even if it’s only for a few minutes.

All of these reasons show that – for the ones who spurn fantasy – the genre is underestimated.

I like many genres, but fantasy is definitely a favorite, especially in historical settings.

What genres do you like? What do you think of fantasy? If you’ve never read this genre before, would you like to try?

10 thoughts on “Why do People Read Fantasy?

  1. James

    Definitely! On the rare occasion I do read books (should definitely read more) a good fantasy book would usually take me to another place that would be impossible to experience in the real world. Sometimes even an escape from reality. Great read!!!

    1. Christine

      Thank you!
      Yes, an escape from reality, with a book you can travel far away without ever leaving your room 😉

  2. Femi

    Fantasy literature has always been a way for people to escape reality and explore new worlds filled with wonder and imagination. It allows us to step into the shoes of characters, immerse ourselves in their stories and experience different cultures, creatures and magic which could all be fictitious. Reading fantasy is not just about entertainment, it’s also about expanding our minds and gaining a deeper understanding of things and sometimes the world around us. Whether it’s exploring symbolism and its meanings in Dan Brown’s “Angels and Demons” or facing the darker aspects of life in J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter”. The genre has something to offer for everyone.”

    1. Christine

      I absolutely agree. It is more than entertainment, it’s indeed about exploring our minds and gaining a deeper understanding of things. Very well said! 🙂

  3. Boriana

    I absolutely love fantasy and have done my reading in this genre. An escape or sometimes even a savior. Starting with Harry Potter, traveling through vampire stories, and savoring the magical “reality” of Games of Thrones. I never have enough of the world, created by fantasy authors, and keep devouring series and imaginations. Enjoyed every word of your article!

    1. Christine

      Hi Boriana,
      It’s indeed a beautiful escape into another world, making us forget about our current world for a while. An escape or sometimes even a savior, I love that, it is so true!
      Thank you for you comment!

  4. Chas

    Hi Christine,
    Fantasy is my favorite reading. Especially, science fiction. As a child I would get lost in tales like the Red Planet, or some more believable with Jules Verne, 20 thousand leagues under the sea. I would get so involved in a book , I would read all night long on a school night and be so tired the next day. But, it allowed you to travel on an adventure and never leave you own bed!
    Thank you for bring back all those wonderful memories I had in fantasy reading!

    1. Christine

      Hi Chas,

      Me too, as a child I would get lost in books. I could be engrossed in them for hours on end.
      Thank you for stopping by!

  5. Tom

    Hi Christine,

    I find with reading fantasy, it is an escape from the normal everyday grind or the 9-5 grind. The key word is escape because I find I go into a different world within my head.

    It’s like when you watch a movie that’s not a true story and is true fantasy. You can escape the stresses of life and everyday issues that we all have. That is why it is so important for us because it is good for our mental health I believe. So I think more and more people should read fantasy.

    Thank you for sharing and keep up the amazing work.

    All the best,


    1. Christine

      Hi Tom,

      And those escapes from the real world are necessary. I find those escapes in reading and also in writing. I think that through those escapes we get a break from all the stress, and I agree, it can only be good for your mental health.
      Thank you for your comment!

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