Hi everyone, and happy Top Ten Tuesday! This week’s theme is authors I’m dying to meet, and I’ve got just the list for you. 🤗
Fun fact: I’m actually not the biggest author person, meaning that unless you’re a huge (HUGE) favourite of mine, no book is an insta-read, and out of this list, probably only half are really huge favourites. Still, these are the authors I greatly admire for the work that they do, and I believe I can learn lots by meeting these people and spending even ten minutes in their company. Let’s get to it! 🌸
1) Brandon Sanderson
Sanderson is my fantasy king. He might not be the best at writing beautiful prose, but his world-building is freakin’ top-notch and he writes intricate, complicated plots really, REALLY well. He’s known for his ‘Sanderson Avalanche’, where he somehow manages to deliver really satisfying conclusions in a few chapters. He’s also crazy productive, so (hopefully) you don’t have to wait too long for his sequels. 🤴
He’s quite active on Reddit, if you’d like to stalk him there.
RECOMMENDED BOOK: I’d say Steelheart is his easiest work, but I really love the Mistborn trilogy for the massive behemoths that they are.
BOOK ON MY TBR: Warbreaker! It just sounds interesting and seems less heavy than, say, The Way of Kings.
2) V. E. Schwab
If Sanderson is my fantasy king, Schwab is my fantasy queen. She’s got such an elegant writing style and an ability to create magical worlds beyond my dreams. I’m always a little in love with her characters too, protagonist or villain and any shade in between, so that’s a plus. 🙆
RECOMMENDED BOOK: Vicious, for its exploration of self-made superheroes and good versus evil. It’s also generally more fast-paced than her other works.
BOOK ON MY TBR: Our Dark Duet. While This Savage Song is thus far my least favourite of her works that I’ve read, I’m still curious about Kate’s and August’s fate.
3) Sarah Dessen
Dessen holds a special place in my heart just because she’s likely my first real YA author. While her stories tend to be a bit formulaic and predictable, it’s the journey that’s the destination — her writing is always so meaningful, every scene so economical, and when it all draws into a conclusion I always feel like I’ve seen so much growth in the protagonist. 💕
RECOMMENDED BOOK: Just Listen. I mean, what else? And Lock and Key is a close second.
BOOK ON MY TBR: Her new book, Once and for All, is coming in June. WHO’S EXCITED?
4) Jodi Picoult
This is actually a bit of a weird one as I actually don’t read a lot of Picoult’s books, but I listened to her speak in one of my favourite podcasts and knew that I wanted to hear more about her writing process. She writes drama and mystery so well, and she knows just the right moralistic questions to ask to make you think. She also, apparently, replies to every email and tweet she gets. 🙏
I highly recommend listening to the podcast here. Picoult talks about writing Small Great Things, writing characters who are not her race, and using sensitivity readers.
RECOMMENDED BOOK: I read Change of Heart ages ago and apparently rated in five stars! I don’t really remember the book, but I’d trust my past self.
BOOK ON MY TBR: Small Great Things. She seemed to take such great care writing it and I’m curious as to what the outcome of the moral dilemma will be. 🤔
5) Rainbow Rowell
I actually met Rainbow Rowell last year at a writer’s festival and while I’m not the biggest fan of her books, she’s got such a warm, happy personality that I couldn’t help but to want to just hear her speak. About anything. Forever. I listened to her and David Levithan talk about writing fantasy and was just super drawn by how… candid and unabashedly herself she is. 🤗
RECOMMENDED BOOK: I’m going to say Fangirl — again, I’m not the hugest fan of her books but I do remember enjoying this one!
BOOK ON MY TBR: Is it bad if I say I don’t have any of her books on my TBR? 🙈 I don’t think she’s got anything coming out and I’m not interested in any of her current works. (I love her, though.)
6) Lucy Parker
Lucy Parker is a bit of a new find to me. I barely know anything about her but her books, both of which I’ve read, were so freakin’ awesome, they put me in a small hangover in which I tried (and failed) to look for books similar to hers. Her writing is super witty, her characters adorable and their relationships so damn mature and respectful, they’re everything I think a contemporary romance novel should be. ✨
RECOMMENDED BOOK: Parker only has two books and they’re part of the same series, so I’d say both of them! Act Like It is the first and it’s quite lovely (it has a pretend relationship!), though I think I like Pretty Face just a tad more.
BOOK ON MY TBR: Nothing yet. I’m waiting for her to write something new. 😭
7) Melina Marchetta
The first time I read a Marchetta book was actually when I was a teen. It was translated into Indonesian and I remember loving it, though I forgot about that book and its author until, well, I actually started blogging!
And what a great re-discovery that was, because Marchetta’s writing is one of the most nostalgic, authentic teen voices I’ve ever had the pleasure to read. In her books, teens act, think, and speak like teens. Surprising, isn’t it, how rare that can be at times? 😍
RECOMMENDED BOOK: My most recent reread of hers, Saving Francesca. Such a glorious coming-of-age book about family and friends and growing up.
BOOK ON MY TBR: Finnikin on the Rock! I’ve always wanted to see how she does fantasy but I keep putting it off in favour of others. It’s my own fault, truly. 😅
8) Haruki Murakami
I don’t generally enjoy magical realism or surrealism, but there’s something about Haruki Murakami’s books that I just love to bits and pieces. They’re just so… weird, but they’re also so beautiful, you can’t help but to embrace the weird.
He’s also somewhat formulaic in which after you’ve read a couple of his works you start to identify similar patterns and themes, but I always love what I’ve read. It’s like being transported into this an oddly enchanting universe that looks exactly like yours, but isn’t quite it. 😉
RECOMMENDED BOOK: I’d say start with Norwegian Wood or Blind Woman, Sleeping Willow — both are ‘easier’ reads to get into compared to his thicker, weirder books. ✨
BOOK ON MY TBR: Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche. It’s a non-fiction book about the 1995 Aum Shinrikyo sarin gas attack on the Tokyo subway.
9) Taylor Jenkins Reid
I’m actually not the biggest fan of Reid’s books but her themes, I am a huge fan of. She puts her characters through some of the worst situations I could think of and yet always manages to make me feel hopeful at the end. I tend to dislike her protagonists and disagree with their choices, but Reid’s books are so heart-wrenchingly realistic. They make me go: shit, what a terrifying yet beautiful life. 🙈
RECOMMENDED BOOK: After I Do is thus far my favourite of hers. It speaks about what happens after, well, the ‘I do’ — as it turns out, getting together with the person you love is the easiest part of all.
BOOK ON MY TBR: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, out in June this year.
10) Cheryl Strayed
I first heard of Cheryl Strayed when one of my best friends forwarded me a column of hers, telling me that she cried buckets of tears reading it. Naturally, I didn’t believe her so I went on to read that same column… and obviously, also teared up. There’s just something about Strayed’s writing that truly speaks to the heart. 💗
Now I follow her podcast (with Steve Almond) on Dear Sugar somewhat religiously. Many of the people writing to them I can’t directly relate to, but she’s so wise, so understanding, so kind that I just can’t help but to feel more empathetic just by listening to her speak. The same with her writing.
RECOMMENDED BOOK: Tiny Beautiful Things. Just such a lovely, gut-wrenching book that packs an emotional punch. Or if you’re in the mood for something shorter, this similarly titled column in which Strayed advises twentysomethings about to start adulthood. 🌟
BOOK ON MY TBR: Wild. I actually haven’t read the book that made her popular (?) though I’ve watched the movie (and loved it, naturally).
Do you want to meet any of the authors on my list, and who’s on your TTT this week? Leave me a link or let me know in the comments! 🌿