Hello everyone and welcome to another #TopTenTuesday here on ATIB. I have been coming across some fantastic authors lately so I thought I would take this opportunity to discuss some of them! There are many authors I could have included today but I have kept it at 10… for now. I am sure a lot of you have read one or two or all of these authors and I would appreciate hearing about your experiences with their work. Also if you have any honourable mentions you want to share with us then that would be awesome too. Enjoy the list and I hope everyone has the chance to pick up a couple of new authors along the way.
Now I am starting this list with an author I haven’t recently come across but one who appeared out of the blue and blew me away. Ed McDonald is a fantastic SFF author who made waves with his first novel Blackwing. Ravencry is out very soon and it is sat atop my ‘2018 can’t bloody wait’ list. If you haven’t already been acquainted with Ed then I suggest you seek him out immediately and submerge yourself in his chaotic, admirable and mesmerising writing. Bloggers orders.
Anyone who has spent time on my blog recently will know that I can’t seem to shut up about Josiah Bancroft. Senlin Ascends and Arm Of The Sphinx were such outstanding novels set in an unforgettable place that got me back in the SFF mood. I have posted reviews for both books and I have done a Q&A with Josiah so you can check those out. Josiah has big visions and his Tower Of Babel is a great yet chaotic place to spend your time if you get the chance. Bancroft’s character development and sense of adventure is as addictive as it is infectious. I hope to be hearing more about JB in the future!
This was my last read and I thought Alice Blanchard was definitely worth mentioning on this list. A Breath After Drowning was an immersive and fascinating case of a woman confronting a past that has suffocated her for years. I couldn’t get enough of Blanchard’s depth, detail and exploration of harsh themes. ABAD was a challenging read in many ways but it certainly left an impression that I hope to feed by reading more of Alice Blanchard’s novels in the future.
E S Thomson
E S Thomson blew away when I picked up Beloved Poison and it kept me reading furiously. I was fascinated by the idea of a female defying the law and hiding in plain sight to maintain her family business as well as investigating some rather obscure and creepy occurrences at a nearby hospital. This series was dark, grainy and morbid yet had so much charm and character at the same time. I have also come across E S Thomson in short story collections and she still manages to put on a good show in such a small passage of text.
I have literally just finished Scythe this morning and it was sooooooo gooooood! I was blown away but Shusterman’s alternative vision of our existence where we have mastered all aspects of humanity, even death. Control of the population was required to stave over-population and produce an element of fear so the Scythedom was created to give a select group of individuals (Scythes) the responsibility of ‘Gleaning’ (killing) members of society who the deem fit. Above any law yet kept at bay by commandments and a strict bureaucratic system of their own creation, the Scythes can glean but they must act with skill and decorum. There are some who understand this need and there are some who want to defy it. Shusterman took my breath away and that doesn’t happen very often. I don’t like YA because it keeps real world themes at an arms length but in Scythe they are front and centre and it is compelling. Shusterman writes with calm and fury, power and vulnerability, amusement and shock. There are so many WOW moments in his work and I can’t wait for Thunderhead later on this year!
I came across Ruby Wax recently via Penguin getting in touch for a review. I had heard of her in book circles but never approached her work (even though she has spectacular insights into stress). How To Be Human was an absolute treat and I was glad to be able to share my review with everyone. Ruby has a fascinating view on modern life and I appreciated her view on frustration, parenthood, mindfulness, psychology and many other relevant issues in modern society.
Richard Fenton & Andrea Waltz
The Onyx Webb series will always have a special place in my heart as it is a fantastic ghost series that introduced me to a whole new format of writing. Told in from many different perspectives and in several different formats, the Onyx Webb series is an immersive treat that belongs on anyone’s TBR. Fenton and Waltz are a duo of writers who each bring a different tone and delivery to their fiction. It is seriously good stuff and I am sorry I have neglected books 4 and 5 (out of 9) but I will get back to them soon. If you like something a lot different then Fenton and Waltz are the way to go.
Hopefully plenty of you have already come across Mike in some capacity as he is hard to miss. I was really caught off guard by Mike’s short stories and they re-invigorated a passion for smaller pieces of fiction that I didn’t know I had. Mike Russell adores the surreal and loves to include a message in his writing that always seems to adapt how the reader sees the world. Mike is an author to watch in the future and if you haven’t already read one of his books of short stories then go and get one now 😀
I was asked to review Hendrik Groen’s second diary instalment on New Years Day 2018 and I had such a great time with this eccentric and empowering gentleman. Hendrik is an O.A.P confined to the walls of his retirement home but he is far from trapped. Deciding to share an account of the antics surrounding his Old-But-Not-Dead Club that is an amazing combination of courageous, moving, entertaining and deeply thoughtful. I can’t recommend Hendrik’s writing enough as it gives a voice to a forgotten generation.
Danny Denton gave us an abstract vision of a crime ridden Dublin and a young man honouring the only love of his short life. It was a phenomenal read that stretched my imagination further than ever before. I love a read that challenges my brain in many ways and The Earlie King & The Kid In Yellow was definitely a surreal and, at times, hard to process account of gangsters, heroes and love against the odds.
Thank you for stopping by to check out another Top Ten Tuesday here on ATIB. I love talking authors as much as books and it definitely shows here. I will certainly be revisiting this thread in the future as there are many other authors I would really enjoy giving a shout out in a post. Please feel free to share an author you recently come across this year and loved in the comments. Until another Top Ten Tuesday, happy reading everyone!