If you are into sci-fi & fantasy, this is a great discussion
I can’t deny that many of my favourite fantasy series have moderate to minor fantastical elements: Martin’s own A Song of Ice and Fire, David Gemmell’s Drenai novels, John Marco’s Tyrants and Kings trilogy, J. V. Jones’s Sword of Shadows, and most recently Daniel Abraham’s The Long Price quartet.
The reason I like these various series so much is because the focus is almost entirely on the characters; the fantastical elements add texture and depth, but aren’t overbearing. These are fantasies that retain a very strong human element.
via Speculative Horizons: Fantasy trappings – is less more?.