Tonight's Game of Thrones episode is going to be show's best season finale ever , according to its producers. After "The Children" airs on HBO, the show will have covered book three A Storm of Swords, as well as parts of books four (A Feast For Crows) and five (A Dance With Dragons), of the A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin . George, of course, has yet to finish books six and seven — so he's offered up some fabulous recommendations for readers to bide their time while they wait.
Mr. Martin, who has become one of the most popular epic fantasy writers of recent years, proposed some must-read titles on his blog, Not a Blog . If you've already read the classics (Tolkien, Leiber, etc.), then the author has strong endorsements for a handful of modern fantasy books as well. While you're anticipating The Winds of Winter (read an excerpt here! ), curl up with his favorite epic fantasy authors.
Source: Getty / Todd Oren 
The Only Books as Epic as A Game of Thrones
We'll kick off with this episode of The Sync Up , where we discuss the only series George considers "the original Game of Thrones," The Accursed Kings by Maurice Druon.
This title from The Long Price Quartet  is set in the city-state of Saraykeht, a bustling — but peaceful — metropolis. The Galts threaten the city's tranquility, and it's up to a poet-sorcerer and his companion to save it from demise.
The Kingkiller Chronicles  trilogy is a modern marvel in the world of epic fantasy. The books follow the story of Kvothe, who attempts to enter an esteemed school of magic and eventually becomes one of the most notorious magicians of all time. It's Harry Potter — for grown-ups.
The Lies of Locke Lamora  is a tale about an orphan who escapes slavery by becoming a talented thief in the island city of Camorr.
Boneland  is the third in the Weirdstone trilogy, which is considered a children's fantasy but is just as appropriate for adults. It's based on the folklore of The Wizard of the Edge, and it focuses on the story of a young girl named Susan, who is appointed as the guardian of the "weirdstone."
Ursula K. Le Guin
A Wizard of Earthsea  is the first in a trilogy about a wizard's apprentice who discovers that he is destined for greatness.
In Tales of the Dying Earth , there is adventure mixed with dry humor in this collection of short stories about wizards who seek to create artificial life.
Robert E. Howard
The Savage Tales of Solomon Kane  details the saga of the deadly Puritan and his adventures in the 16th century. He faces ghosts, demons, dark sorcery, and more marvelous magic.
C. L. Moore
Jirel of Joiry  is a lady of swords and sorcery during France's Dark Age in this haunting heroic fantasy.
Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser  are two beings — the first is a northern barbarian and the second is a small thief — traversing the land of Nehwon.
Bestselling Watership Down  follows a crew of creatures who must flee their home in England's Down due to man's intrusion.
The Gormenghast Trilogy  tells the story of Titus Groan, a 7-year-old heir to a crumbling estate in a Byzantine society on the brink of treachery.
The Once and Future King  is a classic telling of King Arthur's epic saga.
In the riveting Roman Britain Trilogy , we meet Centurion Marcus Drusillus Aquila  and his former slave Esca, who seek to go beyond Hadrian's wall.
This collection of "weird stories"  is by one of the greatest fantasy writers of modern history. His complex sentence structure adds to the dizzying horror and fantasy laid out in his writings.
Clark Ashton Smith
The author of The Dark Eidolon and Other Fantasies  was revered by none other than the aforementioned H.P. Lovecraft. This collection brings together his best "weird fiction" tales.