One of the most prolific fantasy writers ever. He has a pattern of starting a new series with a fresh innovative idea, and then never stopping it unless the publisher begs him to. Thus, he is one of the most prolific fantasy writers without writing many Doorstoppers.Piers Anthony has written several series, including:
- Xanth, mostly set in a world of magic and puns about the size and shape of Florida (both the world and the puns).
- Incarnations of Immortality, where being an Anthropomorphic Personification is just a job.
- The Apprentice Adept series, about two mirror worlds; one hi-tech, one magical.
- The Bio of a Space Tyrant, about the titular tyrant's rise from refugee to supreme power in a Sci-Fi Counterpart Culture based on Earth in The '80s.
- The Cluster series, where all Faster-Than-Light Travel is done through possessing aliens.
- The Mode series, which is about characters traveling across dimensions—each of which has fundamentally different rules—on foot. (Literally, every ten meters they are in a new dimension they could not see before, stepping across the boundary is very dangerous, and they'd have to do this for hundreds or thousands of dimensions before reaching an (hopefully) stable "anchor" dimension).
- The Battle Circle trilogy; about the conflicts between a heavily ritualized warrior culture and a hidden technocratic culture in a post-apocalyptic Earth.
- The Jason Striker series, co-authored with Roberto Fuentes, which had a Fair for Its Day depiction of martial arts as a mix between a highly technical sport and mystical mumbo-jumbo.
- Of Man and Manta, a trilogy of science fiction stories exploring the nature of sentience and human interaction with Starfish Aliens, Energy Beings and intelligent animals across several worlds and parallel universes.
Works by Piers Anthony with their own page include:
His other works include examples of:
- Author Filibuster: A variant: Anthony concludes most of his novels with a chapter-long "Author's Note" in which he writes about the novel itself, what happened in his life while writing the novel, and whatever else he feels like.
- Bizarre Alien Senses: In Omnivore, the fungus-derived mantas use biological radar to "see" their surroundings.
- Black Comedy Rape: The entire point of his "adult-themed" comedy Pornucopia.
- Colonized Solar System: In the Bio of a Space Tyrant series, the entire solar system has been colonized in a contrived way that results in the solar system having the same political systems as twentieth-century Earth on a larger scale: for instance, the United States of Jupiter is basically the USA, while the Earth itself has become the equivalent of India (with the Moon as Sri Lanka).
- Disposable Woman: Women in Bio of a Space Tyrant seem to exist solely to be brutally raped and murdered.
- Eat Brain for Memories: Firefly. A small protoplasmic monster dissolves and absorbs the interior of people's bodies. It gains their memories and personality from their brains.
- Eskimos Aren't Real: In "Possible To Rue", a young boy's pleas for a pet pegasus leads his father to look the animal up in the encyclopedia and show that they're mythical. So are unicorns. To the father's astonishment, so are zebras, mules, and even horses, which he distinctly remembers placing bets on. It's implied that, by denying zebras are real to avoid having to buy one, the father has inadvertently begun erasing these creatures from the universe.
- Genius Loci: A few of these, most notably the titular Chthon.
- Honor Before Reason: In the Battle Circle trilogy, the entire Nomad culture is based on this.
- Inside a Computer System: Killobyte has the main characters trapped in VR.
- Pirate Girl: Several in The Bio of a Space Pirate.
- Rape as Drama:
- In Fractal Mode, the time spent with the rabble includes mental images of rape (provided by Darius, transmitted by Seqiro) during the duels with the rabble (in the form of ribbon bondage). This is in addition to Colene's memories of rape near the beginning of the book.
- Pretty much every woman in Bio of a Space Tyrant is subject to this.
- In the Chthon books, the Minions, a modified offshoot of humans, treat torture, rape, and incest as normal sexual practices, and love as a potentially lethal perversion.
- Sapient Cetaceans: In his stories about a human dentist abducted by aliens to serve as their on-ship oral hygeine practitioner (Prosthro Plus), the intrepid orthodontist is called upon to do some filings for a life-form on a wholly aquatic planet, who turns out to be the son of a whale-like species who are planetary rulers and who can therefore pay the fabulous costs of tons of gold used to restore the cavity-laden rotten teeth. After several days of work with JCB's to excavate the rot and a portable blast furnace to melt the gold for the fillings - all done inside the creature's mouth as it really is that large - the dentist asks what caused catastrophic rot in the first place, learning that over-indulgent parents had allowed too many sweeties and not imposed a good enough teeth-cleaning regime...
- Wanting Is Better Than Having: The Battle Circle trilogy is made of this trope. No one ever seems to get what they (used to) want, except in the worst possible/least satisfying way. Overused to the point of a Broken Aesop ("Desire only leads to disappointment.")