Today I’m doing and informal discussion on magical creatures. I highly recommend you watch my YouTube video of this. I think it’s a more enjoyable experience, but you can read a cleaned-up version of the closed captions here if you’d prefer.
I think magical creatures are an amazing part of fantasy, though we don’t see them in every fantasy story. In terms of classic magical creatures, there are only a couple that I really like; and those are unicorns, dragons, griffins, and elves. For some reason I just don’t love any of the others. There are so many different magical creatures out there. We have all the classic creatures like the ones from Greek mythology, but I really just like those four.
What I really like to see is lots of new and original magical creatures within stories. When you introduce a new or original creature, it needs to be explained and described well. Otherwise, I have a hard time picturing what it looks like, and if I can’t picture what it looks like, then I’m not really interested. I also really like when you take normal animals and give them magical powers like a magical stag. That’s also really interesting.
I’m going to share some examples of books I enjoy that have lots of magical creatures in them.
One is Harry Potter. There are so many different magical creatures within Harry Potter, and those are really interesting. We have a mix of old and new, and I really like that. We have dragons and unicorns, which are old; but then we also have things like thestrals, wrackspurts, and blast-ended screwts. We have normal creatures, and then we have new ones, and I really like that combination. We see some from Greek mythology like hippogriffs. We see things like Fawkes the phoenix. There are merpeople, giants, and centaurs. There are so many different magical creatures within Harry Potter, and they all contribute to the story. It’s really fun watching the characters interact with all the different magical creatures, especially in their Care of Magical Creatures class.
Another one I like is Lord of the Rings, and in that one, we have those elves and dragons that I really like. We don’t really see a whole lot of magical creatures other than elves, dwarves, goblins, and orcs. We get the spiders sometimes, the eagles, and then the one dragon; but we really don’t see anything else in Lord of the Rings. Most of them are those really sentient beings that are in the story.
The last one I want to talk about is Fablehaven by Brandon Mull. That one the stories center on magical creatures because it’s all about these preserves for magical creatures where they are kept safe from the human world, and where the human world is kept safe from them. We see so many different types of creatures within these preserves. There are unicorns, fairies, dryads, hamadryads, centaurs, satyrs, and demons. Each of the different preserves has a different combination as well like the preserve in the Middle East has Middle Eastern mythology-based creatures in it, and that’s really cool. There are certain places that mostly have dragons, giants, and other really dangerous creatures; and those preserves are very different from your typical preserve that has more of your normal, less dangerous creatures within it. What I really like is that some of the magical creatures are powerful enough that they have human avatars, and I absolutely love that. Some of the dragons do. Some of the unicorns do. That’s really cool. I love seeing them being able to interact with the characters in human form, but then they’re also a magical creature. I think that is super cool. I really like seeing all the different magical creatures within that series. It’s really fun because of that.
Another one that I like is Morizova’s stag from Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. That’s one where you have a normal animal that has magical powers, so I find that really interesting.
Those are really the big ones I can think of. A lot of the other fantasy books I’ve read don’t have a lot of magical creatures within them. Let me know in the comments what some of your favorite magical creatures are and if there are any magical creatures you don’t like. Let me know if there are books that have lots of magical creatures that you like reading because those are always interesting to check out.