In 2017, I started asking everyone for what gryphon books I should be reading. Like so many gryphon fans, The Black Gryphon, The White Gryphon, and The Silver Gryphon had been a big part of my childhood. A lot of time has passed since The Black Gryphon‘s debut in 1994. In my head, I thought there might be twenty new gryphon books.

Well, you’ve sent your suggestions in, and there are a lot more than twenty. More like a hundred a fifty! (You can view them over on the Gryphon Reading List if you’re curious. If you see one you like that’s not on there, use the contact form to suggest it.)

So I started reading, and here are the ones I’ve made it through so far. I’m including a quick sentence in case it piques your interest.

Gryphons Aren’t So Great is a children’s book about a knight and a horse that’re best friends. The knight meets a gryphon and the horse is left jealous. Despite the title, I think it’s based on the premise we already know: gryphons ARE that great. Very cute.

Song of the Summer King, Skyfire, A Shard of Sun by Jess E. Owen. The Summer King Chronicles are middle grade fantasy fiction with a strong myth quality to them. The protagonist is a gryphon, there are no humans, and other characters include wolves and lions. Beautiful covers by Jennifer Miller, a favorite gryphon artist of mine.

Griffin Ranger: Crossline Plains, Griffin Ranger: The Monster Lands by Roz Gibson. Gibson is a comic artist who writes dark fiction and Griffin Ranger is no exception. These books are kick-a-puppy dark. They start in a version of Earth where humans never existed, and instead other species evolved to fill their roles. It’s a little scifi, a little noir crime fiction, a little alternative history, all dark. It includes artwork every few chapters by the author and also fan favorites like Cara Mitten.

The Gryphon Generation by Alexander Bizzell. There’s an interesting story here. When I was recovering from the last pulmonary embolism (thanks for that, APLS), I offered to do a free edit on any gryphon books until I was well enough to start back on my normal editing work. Alex was one of three authors who took me up on the offer. The Gryphon Generation is a fantasy in an urban setting—Macon, GA—where gryphons have come into being and humanity is learning to adapt to the idea of not being the only sapient species around. It’s a little slice of life, a little fantasy, and a little sports drama (gryphball). The cover is by Cyfrowa “RedIzak” Izabela, who also does two interior art pieces.

The Gryphon Rider Trilogy: Windsworn, Windswept, Windbreak by Derek Siddoway. There’s also an optional short story, “Birds of a Feather,” that I picked up from his mailing list. These are fast-paced YA epic fantasy. While Windsworn has a striking cover, seeing the red gryphon Fury on the cover of Windswept is what convinced me to buy them immediately. They took over the Mythical Creatures category at the end of 2017 and start of 2018, holding their own against the usual dragon fare.

The Eyrie Book of Gryphons by John Winkle is a combination of short stories, novelettes, and nonfiction. It has an interesting premise: alternating chapters of nonfiction, then a related fiction story that includes much of the same material.

The Book of Gryphons by Joe Nigg. This is an old, out-of-print book that has a cult following among gryphon fans. Joe Nigg has done two books that explore gryphon culture. While a critique might be that Google and Wikipedia can get you the same information, I’d argue that the author has included a lot of useful photographs and does a better job explaining the non-traditional gryphons that you’ll find on Wikipedia. My takeaway was that every culture has their own version of a gryphon, many of which aren’t just eagle + lion. I did notice a theme in my nonfiction reading, though, that might be useful. If you’re looking for a single source of the gryphon of mythology, there really isn’t one. Humans love combining animals too much. You’ll find bird-cat myths sprung up in cultures that never interacted.

Those were the highlights! I also read two other gryphon books that aren’t published yet, a few short stories like “Foaling Season,” and some articles. There’s a lot of great fiction out there. Definitely give it a go if you haven’t!

Looking forward to 2019, I plan to start with Of Gryphons & Other Monsters by Shannon McGee before trying out the Red Sword Trilogy by Michael Wallace. After that, The Griffin Mage series by Rachel Neumeir and I’ll finish up the Summer King Chronicles with the short story collection that came out in 2018.