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Your five favorite authors

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Your five favorite authors

Old 01-26-02, 06:44 PM
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Your five favorite authors

Let's not let the other forums hog all the meaningless goofy but fun random lists...

Who are your five (or more if you wish) favorite authors?

Rules: no comic book writers (that's a separate thread, I'd think) or screenplay-only writers; fiction or nonfiction is OK.

My choices in no particular order

Paul Auster - I never know where his books are going to go next. "City Of Glass" and "Mr. Vertigo" are wonderful flights of fancy with a realistic touch.
Richard Ford - The best short story writer in America, bar none. Beautiful prose and a knack for novels/stories with a quick, unexpected punch of sudden action or violence that changes everything.
Stephen King - Guilty pleasure, I know, but I gulp the man's books down like popcorn. Even the weaker ones are still enjoyable, and King has never been shy about his goals - to scare you, and entertain you.
John Updike - Reading over the huge range of this man's books leaves with you the feeling that he knows something about everything. One of those cases where the acclaim measures up to reality - he's the best writer we've got going, I think. Start with the "Rabbit" series for a sweeping look at modern life in America, then try one of his short story collections.
Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. - Wry, witty and tragic all at the same time, his inventive, askew look at the world starts to make perfect sense after a while.

Honorable mention: Vladimir Nabokov, John Irving, Harlan Ellison, Lorrie Moore, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, (nonfiction) John McPhee, Tim Cahill

Anyone else?
Old 01-27-02, 06:27 AM
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Stephen King
John Irving
Edgar Allen Poe
James Michener
John Steinbeck

Honorable Mention:
Larry McMurtry

Been wanting to read some Vonnegut, particularly after seeing the abysmal Breakfast of Champions earlier this month on cable...I KNOW the book has to be better than this piece of tripe...

Last edited by Stangman68; 02-21-02 at 05:45 AM.
Old 01-27-02, 10:32 AM
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Frank Herbert
C.S. Lewis
Joseph Conrad
Charles Williams
G.K. Chesterton

runners up: H.P. Lovecraft, George MacDonald, Flannery O'Connor, Ray Bradbury, Tolkein

I like a lot of classic literature as well, but for most authors, I haven't read more than one or two books, and I don't consider that enough to really know a writer by.

Tuan Jim

Last edited by Tuan Jim; 01-27-02 at 10:35 AM.
Old 01-27-02, 01:36 PM
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Terry Brooks - I love the Shannara series and Word series.
Agatha Christie - Probably the best Mystery writer that ever lived.
Arthur Conan Doyle - I've read all the Sherlock Holmes stories and I even enjoyed the Lost World.
Piers Anthony - My favorite author when I was a teenager. Incarnations of Immortality and the Magic of Xanth are my favorites.
Stephen King - What needs to be said about King.

I'd like to add a sixth author, because I love John Sandford's Prey series.
Old 01-27-02, 01:55 PM
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David Weber (Honor Harrington)
Anne McCaffrey (Pern, the Tower series, etc.)
Terry Pratchett (Discworld)
Christopher Stasheff (Warlock series, etc.)
Terry Brooks (Shannara)
Brian Jacques (Redwall)
Alan Dean Foster (Spellsinger, Pip and Flinx, etc.)
Robert Asprin (Myth, Phule, etc.)
Gordon R. Dickson (Dragon series, etc.)
Lillian Jackson Braun (The Cat Who...)
Carole Nelson Douglas (Midnight Louie, Irene Adler, etc.)
Piers Anthony (Xanth, Incarnations, Adept, etc., etc., etc.)
Spider Robinson (Callahan's)
Harry Harrison (Stainless Steel Rat)
etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

Oh... wait... five, you said??? Oh well, those are all competing for my top five, with David Weber probably leading the pack.
Old 01-27-02, 11:18 PM
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Off the top of my head, I can only come up with four. I guess I tend to like individual works better than the whole oeuvre of a particular artist. That being said, my top four are as follows:

Harlan Ellison - for hundreds of perfectly communicated short stories and for "Jeffty is Five," in particular, if for nothing else

John Crowley - "Little, Big," "Aegypt," "Love and Sleep," "Daemonomania" - any serious fantasy reader must read John Crowley

Scott Heim - "Mysterious Skin," "In Awe" - what a talented son-of-a-bitch; and damn him for writing the books I should have written

Clive Barker - because when he's cooking horror-wise, not even Stephen King can touch him; far more disturbing and violently poetic than even that pop-book market "king"
Old 01-27-02, 11:49 PM
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I'd like to add in people such as Dan Simmons, Vernor Vinge, William Gibson, and now that I'm typing too many others to mention...
Old 01-27-02, 11:58 PM
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George Martin - This guy has changed my expectations of any book I pick up. All 3 of his books are of the highest quality.

Terry Goodkind - Currently my favourite standard fantasy writer.

Dean Koontz - say what you want about his writing, but I have never experienced a writer who can write from every POV like this guy. From the separate stories in strangers that he manages to weave into one story to Seize the Night and Fear Nothing written in the first person.

George Orwell - always wrote on multiple levels

JK Rowling - These children's books live up to the hype. I just had to read them and they were worth the weird looks I received while buying them(I even felt the need to mutter "these are for one of my little cousins" when I bought them).

These are just my current picks. After my favourite, there are any number of authors that could pop into my head to fill out the list at any point in time.
Old 01-28-02, 02:38 AM
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Clive Barker for blending magickal realism in with traditional horror and modern fantasy. Imagica is a modern masterpiece -- a meditation on the nature of art, religion, gender, human nature, and reality.

Lucius Shepard This guy just kills. Describes the third world and other cultures like nobody else. His imagery absolutely draws you into the story and refuses to let go. Check out Life During Wartime, a harrowing science fiction-political-surrealist-war story, The Golden, one of the finest vampire novels written, and his short story collections The Jaguar Hunter and The Ends of the Earth.

Thomas Pynchon Impeccable craftsmanship. He illustrates his obsessions with stunning clarity and vision.

Philip K. Dick for making science fiction cool and wonderfully mad.

John Shirley for crossing genres so easily. Whether it's extreme gore, high tech science fiction, hard boiled action, surrealism, philosophical rantings, or, most likely, a combination thereof, nobody does it better than Shirley.

And honorable mention goes to: William Gibson for Neuromancer, Dan Simmons,Elizabeth Hand, Kathe Koja, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
Old 01-28-02, 11:59 AM
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Graham Greene - 1st

then, in no order:
Flannery O'Conner
Douglas Adams
Ernest Hemingway
Kurt Vonnegut

HM: Thomas Mann, Tom Robbins, Ridley Pearson, William Faulkner, John Steinbeck, Harlan Ellison
Old 01-28-02, 03:51 PM
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Ayn Rand
John Irving (right now anyway)
Heinlein (maybe - Just finished "Starship Troopers" I'm not sure about the philosophy that he is expounding but I liked it anyway)
Faulkner is good, but that's six...
Old 01-28-02, 05:13 PM
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I've really enjoyed multiple books by the following authors:

Russell Banks
Tom Wolfe
Salmon Rushdie
Tom Robbins
John Irving

Lately, I have really enjoyed the two books I read by Michael Chabon.
Old 01-28-02, 08:55 PM
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Hmmm, good poll.

Frederick Forsyth
Clive Cussler
Stephen Coonts
Ian Fleming
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Old 01-28-02, 10:01 PM
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Originally posted by BoatDrinks
Graham Greene - 1st

then, in no order:
Flannery O'Conner
Douglas Adams
Ernest Hemingway
Kurt Vonnegut

HM: Thomas Mann, Tom Robbins, Ridley Pearson, William Faulkner, John Steinbeck, Harlan Ellison
yeah, Graham Greene has some really great stories as well. "Our Man in Havana" esp. IMO. Great short stories too.

Tuan Jim
Old 01-29-02, 12:01 PM
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Paul Auster - not a big fan of Timbuktu but have liked pretty much every other title

Richard Russo - Nobody's Fool is one of my favorite books of all time and Straight Man is one of the funniest. His earlier books are also worth searching out.

David James Duncan - Brothers K is my favorite novel of all time. He loses me with the fishing references but I enjoy all of his writing.

John Irving - Liked everything except Son of the Circus and Fourth Hand. I hope Fourth Hand was an abberation.

John Updike - The Rabbit novels are essential - reread them every few years.

Top 5 but I missed: Jeanette Winterson, Jonathan Lethem, Martin Amis, Stephen King, Walter Moseley, Tom Robbins, Kurt Vonnegut.
Old 01-29-02, 12:55 PM
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Michael Crichton
John Grisham
Nicholas Sparks
Nora Roberts
Kay Hooper

Harper Lee , Wally Lamb
Old 02-10-02, 07:08 PM
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Judy Blume
Stephen Ambrose
Michael Crichton
Tom Clancy
Dr. Seuss
Old 02-17-02, 01:04 PM
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Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
Friedrich Schiller
Edgar Allen Poe
Franz Kafka
Mark Twain
Old 02-17-02, 02:20 PM
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I feel as if I should contribute but....

.... to my mind a favourite author is someone I've read a lot of. After naming
  • Gene Wolfe
  • David Zindell
  • Philip K Dick
I hit a wall!

I've read many others but cannot single anyone else out in particular off the top of my head without going back to the old shelves!

I have a bit of re-shelving to do, as it happens, with my ongoing clear-out so perhaps I'll come back here and edit when that stage is complete! (Perhaps by that time I'll have been reminded of a few "one-offs" on my shelves that belong in the top five or top ten....)

Last edited by benedict; 02-17-02 at 02:24 PM.
Old 02-23-02, 01:33 AM
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Stephen King
Pat Conroy
Neal Stephenson
Dan Simmons
J.D. Salinger
Old 02-23-02, 07:03 PM
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Ayn Rand (virtually everything, esp. Atlas Shrugged)
F. Paul Wilson (esp. An Enemy of the State and The Keep)
Dean Koontz (esp. Dark Rivers of the Heart and Dragon Tears)
early John Fowles (esp. The French Lieutenant's Woman)
James Hogan (esp. Code of the Lifemaker and The Mirror Maze)
Old 02-25-02, 11:48 AM
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My current favorites, all in the crime genre:

1) George P. Pelecanos (HELL TO PAY)
2) Dennis Lehane (DARKNESS, TAKE MY HAND)
3) Daniel Woodrell (GIVE US A KISS)
4) Jim Thompson (50s noir)
5) Thomas Harris (except for HANNIBAL)
Old 02-26-02, 09:42 PM
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Everyone has picks some good ones, I'll have to check some out...
My Favorite are:
1) Vonnegut
2) Crichton
3) Hemingway
4) Thomas Moore
5) Arturo Perez- Reverte ( Author of the last year and a half)
I go through phases ( My first three picks are constant the rest depending on what I'm reading)
Old 03-02-02, 11:41 AM
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1. NelsonDeMille
2. Tom Clancy
3. John Sanford
4. Patricia Cornwell
5. Jeff Deavers

Honorable mentions would be Steve Martini,Robert Tanenbaum,Dean Koontz,Michael Crichton,James Patterson,and Tom Savage.
Old 03-03-02, 03:00 AM
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My five favorite contemporary authors are:

Tom Clancy, Harry Turtledove, Larry Bond, Stephen Coonts, and Jack Higgins.


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