Every Tuesday The Broke and the Bookish hosts a meme inviting book bloggers to post a top ten; anyone can join in and if you don’t have your own blog you can always add your own list in the comments. This week we’re sharing authors whose works we discovered for the first time this year.
1. Justin Cronin
If you’ve been following my top tens you’ll notice I somehow manage to include this guy almost every week, regardless of theme. As well as being single-handedly responsible for making me read a zombie/vampire epic (my first), he also wrote the beautiful and deeply moving Mary and O’Neil. Alas, he only has 4 books to date and I’ve read them all this year.
JD is like a less well-known version of Jonathan Franzen. I’ve read two of his books, and am looking forward to the other three titles on his backlist.
3. Hugh Howey
Wool is hands-down the best speculative fiction I have read this year, or any year in recent memory. Howey has lots of other books which I look forward to checking out.
4. Patrick DeWitt
DeWitt’s The Sisters Brothers has the most singular voice I have come across in a long time. Definitely jonesing for more of his action.
5. Maria Semple
I recently read and loved Where’d You Go, Bernadette? Alas, it is Semple’s debut so I guess I’ll be waiting a while for the next gem to drop from her pen.
6. David Sedaris
Even though I had heard about David Sedaris from a million people, I somehow only got around to checking him out for myself this year. I read two story collections: Naked and When We Are Engulfed in Flames in succession, laughing, squirming, and cringing my way through his painfully honest tales of dysfunctional family life.
7. Justin Torres
Reading We, the Animals is like getting punched in the face. Yes, it is that powerful! Once again, a debut, so I wait, a little impatiently for the follow-up.
8. Megan Abbott
I read two books by Abbott this year – The End of Everything and Dare Me. Abbott unflinchingly renders the complexities of adolesecent and teenage girls, and their intense friendships in that I can’t look/I can’t look away kind of way.
9. Elliot Perlman
Despite being one of Australia’s best-loved contemporary authors, I had somehow managed to miss Perlman’s work until I read The Street Sweeper this year. Examining the holocaust and the American civil rights movement, The Street Sweeper is not for the faint –hearted, but it is an incredibly moving and beautifully written book for those who are willing to tackle a book about humanity’s sometimes-dark heart.
10. Marilynne Robinson
Have you heard of the slow-food movement? To my mind Robinson could be part of a slow-book movement. On one level nothing seems to happen. But subtly, everything happens. Reading her work is a little like meditating: simultaneously frustrating and soothing. But ultimately rewarding.
Which authors have you discovered in 2013? Please share your new passions in the comments – I’d love to know.