“Top Ten Tuesday” is a feature started by “The Broke and the Bookish“, in which people list their top ten books that match some given criterion. It changes every week, and happens on a Tuesday. Lots (a frankly ridiculous number) of bloggers take part.
This week’s topic is auto-buy authors – authors who you automatically buy when a new book comes out because you know it will be worth it.
I struggled, I must admit, with this topic; so many of my favourite authors are dead, and so not releasing anything new. Plus, this topic has rather a lot of overlap with last week’s, and I didn’t want to end up repeating myself too much.
The list that follows, in no particular order, is a list of authors who are still alive, and still producing books. Probably more importantly, they’re all authors who I trust to produce something that will, at the least, be entertaining. If any one of them released a new book tomorrow, I’d buy it without hesitation.
1. Ilona Andrews
Ilona Andrews is actually two people, writing as a team, but I’m going to count her as just one. The Kate Daniels books are favourites of mine – in some ways, the books are standard urban fantasy, but there are important differences. For one thing, the world is more original than most in the genre. For another, Kate Daniels is an awesome protagonist; faced with enemies, she stabs them rather than swoons. That’s a relatively rare quality in female leads, and it’s fantastic.
2. Neil Gaiman
He’s just very, very good at it. His books are wonderfully crafted, with a beautiful dream-like quality.
3. Adrian Tchaikovsky
In my opinion, Adrian Tchaikovsky is massively underrated. His Shadows of the Apt series has so many things that make it stand out from other fantasy series, yet it doesn’t get half the attention. He writes about the industrial revolution, but with monstrous insects and feuding city states as well.
4. Steve Alten
There are very few good books about giant sea monsters. In fact, the vast majority are absolutely appalling. Steve Alten writes the good kind – exciting, varied, big and loud. I’ve been waiting for the next book – MEG: Nightstalkers – for ages now.
5. Stephen King
It’s not really a question with King of buying books as they come out. I have a huge amount of catching up to do. But I am getting there, and I’ve yet to come across anything that I’m not happy to have bought.
6. Ben Aaronovitch
Urban fantasy police procedurals in Britain – beautifully crafted, unlike anything else. Plus, the copies I have all have spines that connect together in a pattern, which is another reason to buy them.
7. Janet Evanovich
I just really like everything she writes – it’s all pacey, funny and dramatic. She jumps all over genres, but is never boring.
8. Joe Abercrombie
Joe Abercrombie writes dark, realistic fantasy with complicated characters and compromise. He manages to make it serious without going overboard, and violent without it becoming gratuitous. I’m working my way through his second series now.
9. David Weber
I am a total sucker for naval fiction, with stern captains facing danger unflinchingly for the honour of the Crown. Particularly when it is set in a space-version of the Napoleonic era, and contains six-legged cat aliens.
10. Kevin Hearne
The Iron Druid Chronicles are exciting. And expansive and entertaining and fun. The books are power fantasies in which dogs talk back to deities and humans face down immortal and implacable forces. Each book is bigger and more spectacular than the one before.
The parent post on The Broke and the Bookish is here.