Though I missed the Top 5 Tuesday meme that proposed this topic, having seen Rachel’s post, it really got me thinking, and I couldn’t resist putting together a list of my own. As always, let’s just jump right in.
1. Daphne du Maurier
I can’t believe I only read Daphne du Maurier for the first time this year, and yet she has already cemented her place amongst my very favourite authors of all time. It all started with Rebecca back in February, and a further 4 books later, there’s no going back. The immersive quality of her stories, and the way she both paints settings and builds atmosphere with words are unparalleled by any other writer I have read.
2. Agatha Christie
Agatha Christie is another author I picked up for the first time early this year (January, to be precise), and yet it feels like I’ve loved her forever. As with du Maurier, I have so far read 5 of her books, and can’t wait to explore more of her complex tales, which are always full to the brim with brilliant secrets and lies. She never fails to catch me by surprise with her twists, and to sweep me up with the quintessential cosy crime vibes that she creates. Perfect escapism!
3. Shirley Jackson
This is a slightly rogue choice in that I’ve still only read one book by Shirley Jackson thus far, but what a book it was. We Have Always Lived in the Castle was so captivating, nuanced and quietly sinister; thick with brooding atmosphere, a startlingly unique protagonist, and many layers to be unpicked. She encapsulated everything about gothic fiction that I love, and so I have high hopes for her other works.
4. Cynan Jones
I’ve read 2 books by Cynan Jones this year, and both are written in a style that despite feeling stripped back to its bare bones, somehow manages to capture a lyricism and stark beauty that are astonishing. Deceptively simple, both were the kind of stories where there was a lot of depth to be explored beyond the surface level plot, being driven by fascinating characters and heady emotion.
5. Donal Ryan
Donal Ryan is another writer whom I’ve only read one book by so far, but whose style grabbed me so much, I can’t wait to see what else he can do. Not only did he create layered characters that felt so real for all their flaws and complexities in All We Shall Know, but the way he structured the narrative was such that he constantly caught me off guard, hitting me in the gut with the most amazing one-liners that made me constantly re-evaluate everything about the book.
There we have it! Who are some of your favourite ‘new to you’ authors of this year?