Last week, I went to Target and picked up a signed copy of The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness (I love when Target has signed copies!). It sounds really interesting, and I am really looking forward to reading it. But it will be my first Patrick Ness novel. Which is perfectly fine, except that I’ve been meaning to read one of his books for over a year. So I started thinking about all the authors I want to try, but haven’t yet.
In the past two years, I read some quite a few big-name authors for the first time: David Mitchell, Rick Riordan, Kazuo Ishiguro, Sarah J. Maas, Ernest Cline, Ransom Riggs, Ernest Hemingway, Salman Rushdie, Stephanie Perkins, Leo Tolstoy, Michael Crichton, Gillian Flynn, Diana Gabaldon, Jennifer Egan, Lianne Moriarty, Orson Scott Card, George Orwell, Margaret Atwood, Henry James, Neil Gaiman, Truman Capote, George R. R. Martin, John Green, Chuck Palahniuk, Kurt Vonnegut, and Franz Kafka. To name a few. And I have loved almost all of them. So, in the next year or so, I really want to make it a point of trying out some famous authors I still haven’t gotten around to yet.
Here are my top fifteen:
- Anthony Doerr. I’ve owned his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, All the Light We Cannot See for months. I’ve heard nothing but incredible things about it, I just haven’t been in the mood to pick it up. Recently, I also purchased his two short story collections, The Memory Wall and The Shell Collector, and haven’t picked those up, either. I really
- Virginia Woolf. I have never read anything by Virgina Woolf. I do own a copy of To the Lighthouse, which I bought after attending an event with David Mitchell last year, where he said it was the most beautiful piece of descriptive literature he’d ever read. I feel like these are the things I should read to make me a better writer. It needs to happen.
- Jared Diamond. Somehow, I managed to get a history degree without having read any of his books. I own both Guns, Germs, and Steel and Collapse. So I have no excuse.
- David McCullough. Seriously, how did I get through college with not only a history degree, but an American studies minor without reading or watching John Adams? I just bought it, and I need to read it. So I can watch the series.
- Stieg Larsson. I might be the only person on the planet who hasn’t read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I bought the first two books a few months ago at a dollar bookstore (is it a bad sign that they had more copies of these books than anything else?) and never read them.
- Haruki Murakami. I had every intention of reading Norwegian Wood this year, but it’s halfway through November, and I just don’t see it happening. I do really want to read it soon, though, because it was highly recommended to me by a friend.
- Ayn Rand. I’m not going to lie: Ayn Rand really intimidates me. But I feel like she’s one of those authors that I just have to read at some point.
- Fyodor Dostoyevsky. On my grandmother’s recommendation, I bought The Brothers Karamazov earlier this year, when I was going through a Russian lit phase. Um, it’s gigantic. I know it’s going to take me forever to get through, I just need to do it.
- Rainbow Rowell. It’s nearly impossible to go anywhere without seeing a Rainbow Rowell book. But I still haven’t read any of them. I am planning on reading Fangirl soon, since it seems like the one I’d like most.
- William Faulkner. Just one of those authors who unfailingly appears on any must-read classic literature list. I have no idea where to start, so if you have recommendations – let me know!
- Albert Camus. My senior year in college, I took a contemporary American literature class (I was also an English minor), and everyone seemed to reference Camus, even when we were talking about Alison Bechdel. So I got the impression he’s kind of necessary to my literary education. Again, recommendations are welcome.
- Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I feel like I just keep repeating myself. I have heard so many good things about his books, I just haven’t actually read any of them.
- Brian Sanderson. I keep hearing about him, and really want to read his Mistborn trilogy soon! But they’re pretty enormous, so I’m waiting until I have a bit more time (all the reading challenges I did this year kind of forced me to read certain things).
- Donna Tartt. I feel like pretty much everyone has read or is reading The Secret. And she got a Pulitzer for The Goldfinch. So I feel like I should get around to reading her books at some point.
- Robert Galbraith. Yes, I know this is J. K. Rowling. And yes, I have read Harry Potter (multiple times). But I haven’t read any of the Cormoran Strike novels (because, apparently, I’ve been living under a rock). I will read them by the time the next one comes out.
What famous author do you want to read, but haven’t yet (and why)?