This past year, my mother gave the entire family a reading challenge of fifty books – that we hadn’t read before! This gave me the opportunity to read several new authors, which I will share with you for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday post!
Since I read fifty books this past year – and kept track of them all! – I’m able to split this list into “indie” authors and more “traditional” or classic authors.
So, for authors I read for the first time in 2018, and who publish their books independently:
A good writer with a fresh, interesting perspective on things.
She also has a third-culture heritage. Check her out!
Her mystery was actually a mystery!! but oh, she needed a competent editor!
She took a story I’m not that crazy about (Sleeping Beauty) and a setting I wasn’t sure about (cross-genre dream-worlds) and wrote a tale that sucked me in.
Probably because of the feisty younger brother.
A competent author with a bright future before her…though if it were me writing the story, I wouldn’t have let romance solve the world’s problems.
That’s me. Grumpykinz.
Her short story really nailed what it’s like to grow up in a large, homeschooling, Christian family.
Other Indie Authors from this year:
Julie C. Gilbert (The Collins Case)— I’m glad I read her story, as I’ve referred to it several times in my own work…as something not to do. I feel bad, but really…gotta be honest, or how will we grow?
Ruth O’Neil (Come Eat At My Table)— A really slow-simmering story joined up with an uninspired writing style to…sneak up on my emotions when I wasn’t looking!
His suspense is AMAZINGLY SUSPENSEFUL; his mysteries are deep and twisty; and his plot “onions” have layers upon layers of juicy, edge-of-your-seat intrigue.
But you gotta have a strong constitution and conscience.
(Read my full reviews for content cautions.)
Author’s Goodreads page
This is a fantasy series with world-ending stakes, told through the eyes of the very relatable Corwin — who doesn’t trust his eight brothers farther than he can throw them, but will drop everything to hear to latest gossip about what they’re up to.
It’s super fun. My brother has yet to yield and read it.
(Also: Zelazny could have used a competent editor. But that’s the way it goes.)
Author’s Goodreads page
(Monster Hunter International; Monster Hunter Vendetta; and Monster Hunter Alpha)
Fulfills the genre. So if you’re into splatting monsters with jacked-up firearms…full steam ahead!
My brother (who gave up on the reading challenge when he got a job in March) has read through to Book 6 and is eagerly awaiting the next one.
Another fun fact: Mr. Correia self-published MHI, but then signed with a publisher — Baen Books. Proof of what can happen to you if you know your audience, get them to trust you, and write a gripping, solid, entertaining story!
(Read my full review for content cautions.)
This book was profound, interesting, and somewhat disturbing. If you want to know about the actual history of were-wolves and their legends, this is a good, readable book.
Author’s Wikipedia page
(The Hunt for Red October)
Red October was good, honest fun. It’s dubbed the father of the “techno-thriller” genre, and I can see why. While it wasn’t as pulse-pounding as Ludlum’s stuff, it did manage to make the science of submarines sound exciting (or at least interesting).
Author’s Goodreads page
Other “classic” authors I read this year:
Blake Snider (Save the Cat)— A must-read in writers’ circles…for good reason. I’ve gotten a little bored with the glut of writing gurus on the internet—so if you’re only going to buy one writing book, Save the Cat is a good, all-bases-covered source-text.
Ian Fleming (On Her Majesty’s Secret Service)— This is the first James Bond story I’d ever read…and frankly, Robert Ludlum is better. Sure, Ludlum has sex – and more violence – but I don’t come away from his stories feeling so empty.
John Grisham (The Racketeer; The Testament)— I know John Grisham is a really big name (at least in the circles I’ve touched) but my first impression was…bleh. Mom convinced me to try another of his books, and it was…okay…? I guess I didn’t loathe the main character of The Testament—so that’s a plus.
Sir Walter Scott (Ivanhoe)— This is a classic, a treatment of Robin Hood and King Richard, a treatise on racism and classism in 12th century Britain, and well worth reading. Even if you’re not into historicals, it might teach you something!
Virginia Myers (Vessels of Honor)— As a Christian, this book was an amazing example of showing grace and love to people we don’t see eye-to-eye with!
Mike Mikalatos (Good News for a Change)— This book is about talking to others about Jesus, but it would be useful for so many other situations because it’s about actually listening to people while conversing with them and is AWESOME.
What Will I Read in 2019?
I had a lot of fun with this reading challenge, and met a lot of new “author” friends!
Let’s see what cool new books I read in 2019.
Kimia Wood currently lives somewhere in the American midwest, bracing for the collapse of society by baking, knitting, writing, hobby-farming, and reading as much Twitter as possible before the web goes dark.
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