What’s on the Shannara Reading Order?
This Shannara reading order comes from the series of books written by Terry Brooks. The Shannara Chronicles is a television series, developed by MTV, based on the book series. The show starts with Elfstones of Shannara. This timeline lists all of the Shannara books and tie-in series. These include the Word/Void series. It also includes the show, even though the show does not perfectly follow the books.
The Shannara series has a lot of separate stories, often appearing in trilogies. While Terry Brooks has continued to write books in chronological order over the years, he has occasionally gone back and written prequel novels. He even created a graphic novel as part of the timeline. Now that MTV has adapted the series, more people have interest in reading the books. So enjoy this timeline which should hopefully help you catch up on the lore of the epic Shannara timeline.
Where to Start Reading Shannara?
While not the chronological beginning, you should probably start with the trilogy that began the epic series. These books are The Sword of Shannara, Elfstones of Shannara (which is where the MTV show starts), and Wishsong of Shannara. After that, it doesn’t matter if you go back to read the prequels, or if you continue with the sequels. That said, the Word/Void trilogy stands alone, and exists much earlier than the main Shannara storyline. So that’s another good place to start, especially since it begins the chronology.
|1||Word/Void||Imaginary Friends||Short Story||Terry Brooks||1991||Written as a prototype of the Word/Void trilogy.|
|2||Word/Void||Buy||Running with the Demon||Novel||Terry Brooks||1997|
|3||Word/Void||Buy||A Knight of the Word||Novel||Terry Brooks||1998|
|4||Word/Void||Buy||Angel Fire East||Novel||Terry Brooks||1999|
|5||Genesis of Shannara||Buy||Armageddon's Children||Novel||Terry Brooks||2006|
|6||Genesis of Shannara||Buy||The Elves of Cintra||Novel||Terry Brooks||2007|
|7||Genesis of Shannara||Buy||The Gypsy Morph||Novel||Terry Brooks||2008|
|8||Legends of Shannara||Buy||Bearers of the Black Staff||Novel||Terry Brooks||2010|
|9||Legends of Shannara||Buy||The Measure of the Magic||Novel||Terry Brooks||2011|
|10||Shannara Prequel||Buy||First King of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1996|
|11||Paladins of Shannara||Buy||Allanon's Quest||Short Story||Terry Brooks||2012||Collected in Paladins of Shannara|
|12||Trilogy||Buy||The Sword of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1977|
|13||Paladins of Shannara||Buy||The Black Irix||Short Story||Terry Brooks||2013||Collected in Paladins of Shannara|
|14||Trilogy||Buy||The Elfstones of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1982|
|15||Shannara Chronicles||Buy||The Shannara Chronicles (Season 1)||Television||Alfred Gough, Miles Millar||2016||Loose adaptation of Elfstones of Shannara|
|16||Paladins of Shannara||Buy||The Weapon Master's Choice||Short Story||Terry Brooks||2013||Collected in Paladins of Shannara|
|17||Trilogy||Buy||The Wishsong of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1985|
|18||Other||Buy||Indomitable||Short Story||Terry Brooks||2003||Collected in Legends II|
|19||Other||Buy||The Dark Wraith of Shannara||Comic||Terry Brooks||2008|
|20||Heritage of Shannara||Buy||The Scions of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1990|
|21||Heritage of Shannara||Buy||The Druid of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1991|
|22||Heritage of Shannara||Buy||The Elf Queen of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1992|
|23||Heritage of Shannara||Buy||The Talismans of Shannara||Novel||Terry Brooks||1993|
|24||Voyage of the Jerle Shannara||Buy||Ilse Witch||Novel||Terry Brooks||2000|
|25||Voyage of the Jerle Shannara||Buy||Antrax||Novel||Terry Brooks||2001|
|26||Voyage of the Jerle Shannara||Buy||Morgawr||Novel||Terry Brooks||2002|
|27||High Druid of Shannara||Buy||Jarka Ruus||Novel||Terry Brooks||2003|
|28||High Druid of Shannara||Buy||Tanequil||Novel||Terry Brooks||2004|
|29||High Druid of Shannara||Buy||Straken||Novel||Terry Brooks||2005|
|30||Dark Legacy of Shannara||Buy||Wards of Faerie||Novel||Terry Brooks||2012|
|31||Dark Legacy of Shannara||Buy||Bloodfire Quest||Novel||Terry Brooks||2013|
|32||Dark Legacy of Shannara||Buy||Witch Wraith||Novel||Terry Brooks||2013|
|33||Defenders of Shannara||Buy||The High Druid's Blade||Novel||Terry Brooks||2014|
|34||Defenders of Shannara||Buy||The Darkling Child||Novel||Terry Brooks||2015|
|35||Defenders of Shannara||Buy||The Sorcerer's Daughter||Novel||Terry Brooks||2016|