15 Authors I Love to Read

November 12, 2010

Chris tagged me on Facebook, apparently knowing very well that this would end up on my blog. The idea was to list my top 15 authors, without spending too much time mulling over the list – which I’ve done; and to tag others to do the same – which I’ve obviously not done. But don’t let that stop you – go ahead and create your own list, if you want to.

Meanwhile, here’s my list of my top 15 authors.

  1. Enid Blyton
  2. A A Milne
  3. Walter Farley
  4. Agatha Christie
  5. Gerald Durrell
  6. P G Wodehouse
  7. Charles Dickens
  8. James Hadley Chase
  9. Erle Stanley Gardner
  10. Georgette Heyer
  11. Dick Francis
  12. JRR Tolkein
  13. JK Rowling

This makes me realize some weird things about myself

  • I love murder mysteries! This is a surprise – I never realized I love murder mysteries this much. I seem to have grown up on a diet of murder mysteries! I’ve only listed five authors here, but I’ve left out Raymond Chandler, GK Chesterton (not exactly murder mysteries, but detective stories anyway), Ruth Rendell, the Nancy Drew author (the original author, not the proxy you get nowadays) and probably a few others. Oh, and if you think that Georgette Heyer in there is a nod at romances, think again – I’ve collected all 13 of her murder mysteries that hopefully still occupy pride of place in my mother’s house.
  • I like Brit writers. (Not really a surprise.)
  • I’ve read a lot of non-fiction in recent years, but I can’t recall any of the authors. (Weird.) There’s only one non-fiction author on that list.
  • Some of the authors from my childhood days still rate as my favourite authors.
  • I could only think of 13 authors. (Were you thinking I can’t count? I can, but it doesn’t matter because all these little icon thingies actually do the counting for you nowadays. No wonder human brain capacity is decreasing.) Initially I put Bill Bryson on the list as a nod at travel writing, but then I realized he’s not in the same class as the other authors in my list (probably because he doesn’t do murder mysteries), so I took him off. (Poor Bill – what a slap in the face!)
  • In my mind, Enid Blyton is actually two or three authors – the author of Noddy, who taught me to read; the author of the house in the tree series, was it called the Faraway Tree or something like that?; the author of the Famous Five and the Secret Seven series; and the author of St Clairs, which was a series like no other. Oh, that’s actually four different authors. So does that make my list of 15 complete?
  • There are lots of individual books I’ve loved, which would probably make it to my list of top 15 books, but very few authors that I’ve gone back to time and time again. (And not all the authors listed above would have a book features on the list of top 15 books. Weird.)

In fact, that last point there got me thinking: Why not a list of top 15 books as well?

  1. Waiting for Godot (TS Eliot)
  2. The Lord of the Rings (JRR Tolkein)
  3. Born Free (Joy Adamson)
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
  5. Seven Years in Tibet (Heinrich Harrer)
  6. Where the Indus is Young (Dervla Murphy)
  7. My Family and Other Animals (Gerald Durrell)
  8. Harry Potter series (JK Rowling)
  9. A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (a trilogy in four parts) (Douglas Adams)
  10. Congo Journey (Redmond O’Hanlon)
  11. As far as my feet will carry me (Josef Martin Bauer, Clemens Forrell)
  12. The Black Stallion (Walter Farley)
  13. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
  14. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
  15. The Selfish Gene (Richard Dawkins)

There you have it. I bet you haven’t ever heard of half these authors (to be honest, I had to search on Google to find out some of the authors), and yet… there’s not a single Enid Blyton book on this list! (And seven non-fiction books – not counting the Hitchhiker’s Guide…)

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