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kathy_tt

Do you read lots of books by the same author?

kathy_t
7 years ago
last modified: 7 years ago

Although I'm currently on a Louise Penny kick (5 books so far), it has been unusual for me to seek out the works of any particular author. My one exception has been John Irving. I've read 6 of his novels, but it's been over a period of 30 years or so.

Do you have one or more authors you've read a lot of?

Comments (42)

  • friedag
    7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I used to read a lot more books by the same writer than I do now. I think I've read (and reread) everything by Daphne du Maurier. Same with Anya Seton and Mary Stewart and probably quite a number of others that aren't coming to my mind immediately. Oh yes, Cynthia Harrod-Eagles is an author that I've now read sixteen of her Morland Dynasty series in the past year (I think).

    There are many authors of nonfiction that I will grab as soon as I find them, such as Charles Nicholl, J. P. Mallory, Michael Wood, Jared Diamond, Brian Fagan, and lately Charles C. Mann. The trouble with nonfiction writers is their relatively low output, which is probably as it should be, now that I consider it carefully -- a better product is an unhurried one.

    Kathy, I read three in Louise Penny's series. I liked the first one and really liked the second one, but the third one fell off for me, so I knew that was indication for me to give her books a good, long break before I go back to them. Unfortunately, by then I most likely will have to reread the first three. I've always preferred writers whose books are stand-alones rather than parts of series, unless I think they are exceptionally good series.

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  • ingeorgia
    7 years ago

    Absolutely. Robert B. Parker, love all of his books. Janet Evanovich, Sara Paretsky...one has done an alphabet series and the other numerical. When I find an author whose characters/writing I like I continue to read them.

  • annpanagain
    7 years ago

    I also read mystery series. When I find a new-to-me author, I have to read all the other books they have written. Sometimes the early ones are OOP and I have to go to places like Betterworld to buy them.

    Sadly some of the authors I like have died or are no longer writing more of their series. Sometimes I get in contact with an author and ask for more!

    Simon Brett graciously answered me and wrote another Mrs. Pargeter mystery.

    I hope I had something to do with his decision!

  • gardenerlorisc_ia
    7 years ago

    When I find one I like, I gather all of their books and read them. Lee Child, John Sandford, Stuart Woods, Robert B Parker, Sue Grafton and have read a couple of Janet Evanovich. Still trying to decide whether to keep going on hers. They have not so far seized me.

  • annpanagain
    7 years ago

    I stopped reading Evanovich for a while. I bought Top Secret 21 and it is still on the TBR pile. I just couldn't get into it but last week picked up her last one Turbo 23 from the library and that was fine. I probably needed a break!

    I have bought all the books including 21 and given them, up to 20, to my D as she has more bookcase space than I have. Now I am helping a GD find some missing numbers for her collection.

    The style has varied from the earlier books. I think they are now more amusing. I prefer cosy mysteries with some humour!

  • laceyvail 6A, WV
    7 years ago

    For series writers, if I like the writing and the author's characters, yes, I'll read them all. I always enjoy Lee Child's Jack Reacher (and I read nothing else of that type); I love Donna Leon's characters, including Venice itself; I read Louise Penny for the characters, though I feel the plots have gone way over the top: Philip Kerr and his noir Hitler's Germany settings.

    With other writers not writing series, sometimes I love the writer's work and sometimes not. I like much of Jo Walton, others not so much. I think Alan Furst's novels set in and around WW II are magnificent, his grasp of the places and time is so deep and subtle, but they're not a series because they never have the same characters (except once, I think) and they can be read in any order. I love almost everything by the mostly forgotten Bryher who wrote spare, deceptively simply historical novels set in various places. I loved, loved Naomi Mitchison's The Conquered and liked The Corn King and the Spring Queen , but pretty much hated the other books of hers I could find.

    I's a mixed bag for me.

  • yoyobon_gw
    7 years ago

    I have read all of Jacqueline Winspear's series Maisie Dobbs and am eagerly awaiting the next one which is to be released this March !

  • bossyvossy
    7 years ago

    I used to do that b/c I liked an author's style but would eventually tire of the style, no matter how good. I'm slightly embarrassed to admit I don't read as many books as I did in the past.

  • sheri_z6
    7 years ago

    This is definitely me. I will read everything an author I like has written, until the quality of the story starts to lag (looking at you, Janet Evanovich) or the author changes their tone or writing style to such a degree that I no longer enjoy them (ex: Bill Bryson, an author I have loved for years, whose latest book, IMO, was simply one long whine).

    I enjoy memoirs and non-fiction, and have read nearly everything by Mary Roach, Tony Horwitz, Peter Mayle, and Bill Bryson.

    I've read a lot of Geraldine Brooks, most of Jane Austen, all of Barbara Pym, and quite a bit of Neil Gaiman.

    I'm also a romance reader and have read all 100+ Nora Roberts books (though not her J.D. Robb ones), Mary Stewart, M.M. Kaye, Phyllis Whitney (this was ages ago), Georgette Heyer, and a handful of other Regency romance authors.

    Most recently I've been reading a lot of fantasy/steampunk/romance hybrids, and have read everything available from Elizabeth Hunter, Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs, Meljean Brook, and Deborah Harkness.

    Maybe I'm a little obsessive?

    These are my "keeper" books that I will go back and re-read. There's great comfort in picking up a book by an author you know well, and great pleasure in anticipating a new book from that author.


  • woodnymph2_gw
    7 years ago

    If I find I really enjoy the author's style, I will look for other examples of his/her work. Writers I have read repeatedly include: DuMaurier, Peter Mayle, Tracey Chevalier, Ian McEwan, Geraldine Brooks, some mysteries by Susan Hill, Annie Dillard, Frances Mayles, the Cahills, Paul Theroux, and Bill Bryson

  • rouan
    7 years ago

    Absolutely! If I like an author, why wouldn't I look for more. (Rhetorical question, by the way, lol). Some of my favorites include Jane Austen, Georgette Heyer, Mary Stewart, Elizabeth Peters, Ngaio Marsh, Rex Stout, and Louis L'Amour. There are others, of course but these came off the top of my head. A couple of current authors I have read everything they've written are Megan Whalen Turner and Sarah Addison Allen.

  • gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)
    7 years ago

    Always :-) And for the same reasons cited above - if I like an author and their characters (which in many cases will reappear in book after book), then I will read everything they have published. It's like reconnecting with old friends :-)) With a slight modification - some authors will introduce a new setting or a new set of characters that just don't jive with me (eg. Elizabeth George and her Becca King novels) and those I tend not to follow up on.

    The problem with this is that when you have gone through a favored author's bibliography, you kinda just have to wait until the next book is published. And that doesn't always happen very rapidly, if at all. Bummer!!!

    I am now completely up to date with J.A. Jance, John Sanford, Lee Child, Elizabeth George, Louise Penny, Maeve Binchey, Dick and Felix Francis, Robert B. Parker (and his estate authors), Stieg Larrson (and his estate authors), Jan Karon, John Lescroart, Stephen White, C.J. Box and a whole bunch more. Now I have to keep looking for new and prolific authors to keep me going - I go through about a book a day, on average :-))

  • Rosefolly
    7 years ago

    I have many authors whose books I always read, until I don't any more. Sometimes an author's writing will decline in quality, sometimes he will go off in a new direction that does not appeal to me, and sometimes my own tastes will change.

  • PRO
    Anglophilia
    7 years ago

    I inherited my MIL's collection of murder mysteries, mostly English murder mysteries. I adore them! When I first got them and started reading them, I noticed that my MIL had written a date on the fly page. I wondered why until I realized that sometimes there was more than one date and that she reread them, using the date so it was not too long after the previous reading. I now add my own dates, and yes, every few years, I will reread an entire author's works. I remember a few things in them, but not so many as to spoil the read.

    It's not easy to find a well-written book anymore. I have no desire to read about violence, sex and vulgarity. There is quite enough of all of these things in the world today and as I read for "escape" from these things, I don't invite them into my library, but I do look for other books as favorite author has written.

    I felt a deep personal loss when English mystery giant P.D.James died a year or so ago. I always enjoyed her books so very much - she wrote beautifully, her characters had depth and she had a great spirituality in her works. I adored her autobiography. One of my favorite quotes is from "The Lighthouse". It is "...the assault on excellence by naming it elitism." SO very true today.

    I do read Sue Grafton - she is a native of my city. I've been lucky that her husband is a great gardener and has spent the last 2 decades restoring the fabulous gardens of the lovely old mansion they bought that overlooks the OH river. He is always out there when the garden is on a local garden tour in the spring, but she is not. Like the late Dowager Duchess of Devonshire (another of my heroes), she also keeps chickens.



  • carolyn_ky
    7 years ago

    Anglophilia, that's my city, too. Lunch sometime, maybe?

  • netla
    7 years ago

    When I discover a new author I like I tend to binge read everything of theirs I can get my hands on, and some I will buy without even looking at what the book is about.

    There are so many I don't know where to begin, but I suppose Terry Pratchett makes a good starting point, as I have every single one of his Discworld novels.

    Others include Gerald Durrell, James Herriot, Georgette Heyer, Ngaio Marsh, Agatha Christie, Neil Gaiman, Simon Winchester, Colin Thubron, Nora Roberts and Jennifer Crusie.

    I used to love reading Anne McCaffrey's Pern books, but stopped buying them when science fantasy turned into science fiction, and I have something like the 30 first Xanth books by Piers Anthony, but stopped reading those when they just got too silly for my taste.

    I'm sure I'm forgetting some.

  • vee_new
    7 years ago

    Kathy, the short answer is NO! Obviously I have read books by the same author, but I would avoid doing so one after the other. I really need variety plus the need to 'know stuff' so am not much interested in mystery/romance/science fiction, although I will dip into one occasionally. I remember back in the days of the much-missed Mobile Library three books in a series by the same writer were available and the driver said "Go on take them all now" but I declined saying I would pick the second one up on a future visit. As it turned out those books didn't reappear for about 2-3 years by which time I had forgotten the original story. Recently a friend lent me ALL the MC Beaton Agatha Raisin books (about 20) I read the first one and could get no further and returned them. They were extremely popular over here; just not for me.

  • vee_new
    7 years ago

    Well there has to be an exception that proves the rule!

    Way back in the early '70's I read a book by the then very popular R F Delderfield A Horseman Riding By the title taken from a Yeats poem

    "Cast a cold eye

    On life, on death

    Horseman, pass by"

    If you enjoy works that are quintessentially English I think you would enjoy his work. In this book (actually three volumes published in the US under the above title) he traces a family from Edwardian times to the 'modern' day . .. and this is pre Downton Abbey et al.

    Other titles include The Swann trilogy and To Serve Them All My Days. They can be picked up very cheap on Amazon!

    Several books were made into popular TV series.


  • annpanagain
    7 years ago

    Netla, I like Cruisie too and have read most of her books although I don't really like the fantasy ones much.

    I know she collaborates sometimes and I wonder if she did with "Welcome to Temptation" as the dog changes sex halfway through the story. My D didn't notice but I think there was some sloppy editing going on!

  • dandyrandylou
    7 years ago

    netia: Am so glad to see you mention James Herriot as he and his writings are surely a wonderful part of my life.

  • katmarie2014
    7 years ago

    Hmm, I'll try this again. I just accidentally, I think, erased my comment. I used to seek out books by the same author once I found one I liked, but like Rosefolly said sooner or later the quality of the writing changed, I changed, they became too much alike, etc. Now if I like an author and come across another by that person, I will pick it up and read it, but I don't look for them anymore. If it is a series, and I like it, then I will try to get the rest of the series and read them one after another. I think I was the only person I knew who thought Hunger Games was OK but not great, and had no desire to read the rest of the series or see the movies.

  • carolyn_ky
    7 years ago

    Vee, I read a lot of Delderfield back in the day and have many of them in paperback. They are books I would enjoy re-reading if those pesky other authors I like would quit writing so many books.

    I am presently reading A Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourn. I enjoyed her first book featuring Veronica Speedwell (yes, that's right, all you gardeners), A Curious Beginning, but I think I am reading this one too close to it because I'm not liking it as well even though it is quite entertaining.


  • Kath
    7 years ago

    Short answer - yes!

    I have a complete collection of Agatha Christie, all the Morland and Slider books by Harrod-Eagles, Diana Gabaldon's Outlander books in paperback and hardback, plus all the extras, and collections of Daniel Silva, Deborah Harkness (only three so far, but I'd buy the next), Frederick Forsyth, Dick Francis, C S Sansom, Arthur Hailey, Leon Uris (except the last one which was awful!), and Sharon Penman.

    Also Tiffany Reisz, Joey Hill and Candace Blevins who write a combination of erotica/romance/paranormal books, and Bill Bryson on the non fiction front.

    Authors I used to collect but gave up on include Elizabeth George, Jeffery Archer, Jasper Fforde, J A Konrath, and Janet Evanovich. I still read Mark Billingham and Stuart MacBride but don't buy them.

    I also have several books by Delderfield - the Horseman trilogy, the two Avenue books and To Serve Them All My Days - and a few by Taylor Caldwell and Edward Rutherfurd, although we have had the last couple of his on audiobook.

  • carolyn_ky
    7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I looked to see if Rutherfurd had a new book since Paris and discovered one from 2004 called Dublin: Foundation that I've never read. Are you familiar with that one, Kath?

  • vee_new
    7 years ago

    Carolyn I haven't read this but I understand it is very long at well over 800 pages and maybe not quite as good as his others.

  • carolyn_ky
    7 years ago

    Thanks, Vee. That's a lot of pages for a not-as-good book!

  • Kath
    7 years ago

    Carlolyn - DH and I have listened to both Princes of Ireland and Rebels of Ireland (the books have different names in the US I think) and enjoyed them both.


  • vee_new
    7 years ago

    Kath, I wonder if the books produced as CD's are full length versions of the original texts? I remember enjoying Sarum and London but found The Forest became rather tedious.

  • martin_z
    7 years ago

    Yes. It tends to be my "guilty pleasure" authors, too. So, I've read pretty well everything by Dick Francis, Ed McBain, Robert B Parker, Agatha Christie.

    But there are others - I never miss a new Ishiguro, but he's hardly a prolific author. I like Julian Barnes, and I've read most of his books; he's someone who I would read even if the blurb on the book didn't attract me.

    Series books - I do feel it necessary to read them one-after-the-other - so the Stephen King Black Tower series I read in quick succession. But I'm not generally a Stephen King fan so I haven't read most of his books.

  • carolyn_ky
    7 years ago

    Martin, I'm not a fan of King either. I read the first few that everyone was talking about, but they are too tense for me. The one I did like was The Stand, which is a (long) story of good versus evil. I think it has been revised, but I didn't read the revision. Have you read that one?

  • Rosefolly
    7 years ago

    Vee, books on CD are generally the full text, though sometimes abridged. . The shortened ones seem to be mostly light non-fiction, such as self-help books, or extremely long and wordy classics. Charles Dickens comes to mind.

  • vee_new
    7 years ago

    Thanks Paula, I listen to quite a few 'readings' via the BBC and have always assumed them to be abridged especially as they have to fit into 5 or 10 fifteen minute weekday slots.

    They have just finished A Death in the Family by Karl Ove Knausgaard, Nordic Miserable and next week go on to Norway:The Bird Tribunal by Agnes Ravatn, Scandi-noir Psychological. I wonder at them choosing these themes for bed-time listening!

  • Kath
    7 years ago

    Sorry Vee - yes, the books were unabridged. I check before I buy any audiobook to make sure of that. Sadly, I can't get a full version of Rutherfurd's New York because I'd really like to listen to that.


  • martin_z
    7 years ago

    Hi Carolyn - yes, I'd like to read the Stand, but as you say, it's been revised (as in - made much longer than it was). It's the old problem - the more popular an author, the less likely the editors will be prepared to say "Look, this is really a bit verbose - it needs to be cut down a bit...." Stephen King wanted to revise The Stand, and that's his prerogative - but I'd like to read the original version, not the new one.

    It's like DVD's and "director's cut" or "extended edition" versions. I want to see a DVD of the film as shown in cinemas - not some other longer version with scenes which, when you see them, you realize why they were edited out !

  • annpanagain
    7 years ago

    I like DVDs with scenes that haven't been included. Sometimes they are interesting but made the movie too long. Other times they have been cut for good reason, as Martin says!

    The "Vanity Fair" with Reese Witherspoon had two endings, neither of them followed the book but I preferred the 'return to India' which was screened, rather than the funeral. That was so inaccurate anyway for the customs of the time. To my understanding, women didn't go to a funeral then, let alone give a graveside address!

  • Amy Camus
    7 years ago

    I love to listen to the Agatha Raisin and Hamesh Macbeth books by M.C. Beaton. I've listened to nearly all of the audio books my library has. I love the actors that read them. I think Penelope Keith reads the Agatha books and she is wonderful. I also enjoy reading Barbara Pym.

  • Rosefolly
    7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Martin you need to track down a first edition of The Stand (1978 HB/1980 PB) if you want the shorter one. I looked up when he came out with his longer version, 1990. I remember being quite annoyed with him, considering it quite arrogant. It was already a long, wordy novel, and he thought that each sacred detail of his vision needed to be included! I understand that he took the opportunity to update cultural references at that time.

    Vee, I think radio readings are quite a different thing that recorded books you buy or borrow from the library. They take many hours to listen to, and the radio wouldn't have time to broadcast the whole thing.


  • vee_new
    7 years ago

    A good point, Rosefolly. The BBC has just 'done' a reading/dramatised version of Little Women and whole chunks of the story have had to be left out. Often these 'readings' present an opportunity for me to access works I would never buy or borrow from the library such as the Scandi dramas, mentioned above, or as another eg the now notorious (?) book We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver . . . a work I found horribly compelling but really brought alive by the narrator.

  • kimquinn1959
    7 years ago

    I have read most of Pat Conroy's books multiple times. If I truly enjoy a book I am a reread for life. Chair Potok, Taylor Caldwell, Diana Gabaldon, Patricia Cornwell, Charles Dickens, to name a few. Some characters I revisit over and over. It's wonderful!

  • kimquinn1959
    7 years ago

    Hi vee new. LOVE R. F. Delderfield! Am collecting all the Paul Craddock stories and the Swann trilogy through thriftbooks.com I feel you can simply sink down into the landscapes and enjoy these many characters no end.

  • vee_new
    7 years ago

    Kim, several of Delderfield's books were made into TV dramas and can still be purchased . . . or watched on Youtube, although the colour has faded over time.