This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is “Authors I Haven’t Read, But I Want to Read Books by Them“. Selecting just ten names from the hundred or so authors on my wishlist is a challenge.
To simplify the task somewhat I’m limiting myself to authors from countries other than UK, Canada and USA. All the books mentioned are titles I own already
1. Tsitsi Dangarembga, Zimbabwe: This Mournable Body
Dangarembga’s debut novel, Nervous Conditions was named by the BBC as one of the top 100 books that have shaped the world. Her most recent novel. This Mournable Body, was shortlisted for the 2021 Booker Prize.
2. Damon Galmut, S Africa: The Promise , The Good Doctor
Galmut came to my attention thanks to a fellow member of a Nordic walking group. She was very enthusiastic about The Promise which went on to win the Booker Prize in 2021.
3. Nikkolai Gogol, Russia: The Nose
It’s been many years since I read one of the Russian greats. The Nose is a short story, a format I don’t particularly enjoy but thought it might be good as a warm up before delving into one of his more meaty novels like Dead Souls.
4. Jean-Claude Izzo, France: Marseilles Trilogy
I have a fellow blogger (now sadly no longer active) to thank for alerting me to Izzo, an author credited as the originator of the “modern Mediterranean noir movement.” I’d never heard of that movement but this article gives a very useful explanation. Emma @ BookAroundTheCorner, who has a phenomenal knowledge of French literature, considers this an unmissable trilogy.
5. Thomas Mann, Germany: Death in Venice
Mann is another gap in my experience of the great and the good in literature. I’m almost afraid to add him to the list because he sounds like a difficult author. I’m thinking that Death in Venice, a novella, could be a gentle introduction to his writing.
6. Chibundu Onuzo, Nigeria: Sankofa
Onuzo has been widely tipped as a name to watch. She was the youngest female writer (at 21) to be signed by Faber and Faber. Her first novel The Spider King’s Daughter won a Betty Trask Award and was shortlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Commonwealth Book Prize. Sankofa, her latest novel is described as a funny, painful novel in which a mixed-race British woman goes in search of the West African father she never knew.
7. José Saramango, Portugal: Raised from the Ground
The death of the Nobel Laureate in 2010 was marked by two national days of mourning in his native Portugal, such was the esteem with which he was held. Whether I appreciate his experimental style remains to be seen. I’m made nervous by comments that his style often features long sentences, sometimes more than a page long, consisting of clauses joined by commas but minus full stops.
8. Marlene van Niekerk, S Africa: Agaat (translated in English as The Way Of The Women)
I’ve read books by several South African authors but all of them were written in English. So I was attracted to Van Niekerk partly because all her work is in her first language of Afrikaans. Agaat is her second novel in which she explores themes including the family, the change in power dynamics occasioned by the end of Apartheid, and inequalities of race, gender, and class.
9 Patrick White, Australia: Voss
Plans are afoot to do a readalong of Voss as part of Australia Reading Month 2022 hosted by Brona @Brona’s Books and Bill @ theaustralianlegend. I hope that happens because I just need a nudge to begin reading Patrick White , the only Australian to have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.
10 Seishi Yokomizo, Japan. The Village of Eight Graves; The Ingunami Clan
East meets West in Yokomizo’s mystery novels. He modelled his novels on the detective story format used by “British-style” mystery writers like John Dickson Carr, publishing most of them in serial form.
So what do you think? Have you read any of of these authors —if so, would you recommend them?
For those of you not familiar with Top Ten Tuesday, this is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl. For the rules and the list of topics visit the Top Ten Tuesday page on her blog