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The main answer for me about why I try new authors is that someone at Bookflurries or another group of friends mentioned them to me.  I checked them out, tried some of the books and either became enthusiastic or dropped them.  Most often, I read a bunch of what the author had written trying to read them in order.  I have been enriched by trying new authors though I still enjoy old favorites.

When I could go to book stores, I would look at the shelves of books recommended by the workers and in the library, I would look at the new arrival shelves and the books that were displayed standing up to catch my attention.  I would also check the sale table at the book store or the books for sale at the library.  

I used to get a catalog about general fiction books and I still get a catalog about science fiction and fantasy stories where I have found new authors to try.

As others have said, it is good to pick up a book and read a little of it, first.  Barnes & Noble on-line has a feature where you can read a bit of the book by clicking on it.  Sadly, I have forgotten to do that a few times and I was sorry.

Sometimes, I read reviews.  Sometimes a cover grabs me.  Sometimes a book is mentioned in another book.  Sometimes as I look for one book at B&N several other books of the same time or subject are mentioned and I get hooked.

As I said last week, I sometimes read a book that I learned about from a good movie.  For example, I watched Behind the Lines about Dr. Rivers and Siegfried Sassoon and decided I wanted to read the book Regeneration by Pat Barker as a result.  The other night I re-watched the film and I understood it better the second time from having read the book.  It is a very powerful film.  

Many people here have used lists from Goodreads.

While I am waiting for a favorite author to write a new book, I get bored and that is when I need a new author.  It is especially nice if the books of a trilogy have already been published so I can read them all at once without waiting.  It is nice when I love a new author to find there are other books in the series of mysteries.  

Sometimes, I don’t like the first book that I try, but I go on and I find the second one is better.  Then, I am glad I tried more.  

I have been enjoying new settings in different countries, too.

How about you?  If you see a book in the library that looks good, will you give it a try?

Are you willing to try a different genre than you are used to reading if people have been praising the author?

Here is a list of new to me authors that I tried in the last couple of years: (the so-so are not on the list because I might try them again sometime, but not for a while)

I Loved Them: (a # means that I read a bunch by that author or a series)


#Louise Penny (Inspector Gamache)  (Canada)

#Lee Child (Jack Reacher)

#Barbara Hambly (Benjamin January) (New Orleans)

#James Church (Inspector O )  (North Korea)

Tom Franklin

Leonie Swann  (the sheep)

#Lee Nichols

#Tana French  (Ireland)

#Andrea Camilleri  (Inspector Montalbano)  (Sicily)
   (except the first one and the latest one)

# Donna Andrews (Meg Langslow) (Virginia)

# Rennie Airth  (Inspector John Madden) (England)

# Martin Walker  (Bruno)  (France)

# Margery Allingham (Albert Campion) (England) (new to me, but from back in the days of Agatha Christie)

# Susan Hill  (Simon Serrailler) (England)

Hugh Laurie (Thomas Lang)

#C. J. Box (Joe Pickett) (Wyoming) (not sure if I will continue)

# Julia Spencer Fleming (Clare and Russ) (New York state)

# Spencer Quinn  (Chet and Bernie) (California)

# Ben Aaronovitch (Constable Peter Grant) (paranormal mysteries) (London)

# Gay Hendricks, Tinker Lindsay (Tenzing Norbu) (California)

# Colin Cotterill (Dr. Siri Paiboun) (Laos)

Not for me:

Gillian Roberts  (tried two)

Ann Cleeves

Donna Leon  (tried two)

Karin Fossum

Reginald Hill

Chris Ewan

Caro Peacock

Jeri Westerson (tried three)

Miranda James (tried two)

Kerry Greenwood

Val McDermid

Fantasy/Science Fiction  

#Patrick Rothfuss

#N. K. Jemisin

# Courtney Schaffer

# China Mieville

Erin Morgenstern

M. C. Planck

#Peter F. Hamilton  (Great North Road is also a mystery)

Hugh Howey

Not for me:

Deborah Harkness

John Stephens

Paolo Bacigalupi

David Wingrove (tried two)

General Fiction

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, Sisters of the Heart

Deborah Smith, On Bear Mountain

Pat Barker, Regeneration

Elizabeth Wein, Code Name Verity

William Kotzwinkle, The Bear Went over the Mountain


Adam Goodheart, 1861: The Civil War Awakening

John Laurence, The Cat from Hue

#Taylor Branch

Parting the Waters: America in the King Years 1954-1963
Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years 1963-65
At Canaan’s Edge: America in the King Years 1965-68

Jerry Dennis,  Living Great Lakes: Searching for the Heart of the Inland Seas  

Madeleine Albright, Prague Winter

Candace Millard, Destiny of the Republic (about James Garfield)

Tom Reiss, The Black Count: Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo   (about General Alexandre Dumas)

Mark Bittner, Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill

It is OK to argue with my choices for the categories because I know that some people really liked the books that I didn’t or they can’t stand the books I like.  I am just trying to get a discussion going.

I am grateful for the recs that led me to the new authors that were winners for me.  Thank you!

Are there some new authors for me to devour?

It is OK to talk about any book.  The author may be new to me even if it is an older classic.  

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Robert Fuller says:

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POLL:  If you like mysteries and you haven't heard about any of these authors, it is time to try some.  I always try to start with the first one in the series, but sometimes the first one is not as good as later ones.

Originally posted to Readers and Book Lovers on Wed Apr 09, 2014 at 05:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Progressive Friends of the Library Newsletter.


Which is your favorite mystery writer?

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| 22 votes | Vote | Results

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