Falling in love with an author who already has a long writing career means that we can add a significant number of books to our wish list. But there is also something special about discovering new authors who are at the start of their writing journey and looking forward to their future work being published. After reading just one book by the five authors below (who have only published three books or less as far as I know), I became interested in continuing delving into their work.
The name Madeline Miller was not unknown to me when I decided to read Circe, but I had never read a book by her before. In her latest retelling of an Ancient Greek myth, she focuses on Circe, a daughter of Helios. She was sentenced to exile on a deserted island for using witchcraft against her own kind. The novel is similar to a fictional memoir, and Circe’s emotions are tangible. I now want to read The Song of Achilles and am eager to follow her career.
Imogen Hermes Gowar
Imogen Hermes Gowar’s debut novel, The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock, shines thanks to its believable characters and detailed writing style. Although the plot is not particularly remarkable, I still liked reading this character-focused novel set in eighteenth-century London. Jonah Hancock may have lost a ship, but he gained a mermaid. To recover the money that his vessel was worth, he consents to exhibit the strange creature. One of the places where it can be seen is at Mrs Chappell’s nunnery. There, he meets a beautiful courtesan – Angelica. When Gowar publishes a new novel, I’ll most certainly read it.
The Glorious Heresies was my introduction to Lisa McInerney’s work. It focuses on the lives of five characters (Ryan, Maureen, Jimmy, Tony and Georgie), whose paths cross after Maureen accidentally kills a man. At the same time, it delves into dysfunctional families, Ireland’s religiosity, drug dealing and prostitution. The majority of the characters feel truly real, and I cherished the occasional funny moments. I’ve been meaning to read The Blood Miracles for a while.
Hannah Kent is an author whose work I became interested in after reading her second novel The Good People. Set in rural Ireland in 1825, it’s a story full of superstition, rituals and folklore. After the death of her husband and daughter, Nóra had to take care of her four-year-old grandson. He was underdeveloped for his age and couldn’t speak since his mother had died. People believed that he was a changeling. I’ll probably read Burial Rites next year.
Afonso Reis Cabral
The Portuguese author Afonso Reis Cabral has only published two novels and one non-fiction book, but he has already won two literary awards. His first novel, O Meu Irmão, which I read a few years ago, won the Leya Award in 2014. It tells the story of two brothers, one of them with Down Syndrome. Their relationship gets more complicated after the death of their parents. It thankfully isn’t soppy, and the last third is surprising.
He has also recently won the José Saramago Literary Prize with his latest novel, Pão de Açúcar, which I want to read soon.
Have you read books by any of these authors? Tell me in the comments!