There are authors whose work we, as dedicated readers, want to continue to explore for years to come. We treasure almost all of the books that we read by them and, thus, cannot wait to pick up again a few more of the novels, poetry or short story collections that they wrote for our enjoyment.
My favourite authors of all time are those whose work I’m constantly recommending to other readers, even though I didn’t equally love all of the books that I read by them and don’t think that all of them are perfect. I have read three or more books by the authors below, and their work has a special place in my heart.
Daphne du Maurier
I fell in love with Daphne du Maurier the moment I read Rebecca, my favourite book by her followed by Jamaica Inn. Her work doesn’t fit neatly into one genre, comprising both historical fiction and sci-fi, for example. But both her novels and short stories tend to be atmospheric, enthralling, gripping and slightly mysterious. The characters that she created are vivid and many unforgettable. I’ve read nine of Daphne du Maurier’s books so far! I haven’t finished exploring her work yet, though. I still have at least eight of her other books on my wish list.
Jane Austen’s wit is matchless. She had the power to turn ordinary love stories into captivating narratives, while realistically depicting the life of the middle class during the 19th century. She used irony and satire to criticise the actions of various characters. The first book I read by Austen, Pride and Prejudice, remains my favourite. Her other five novels I enjoyed almost equally. I still want to read a collection comprising some of her shorter works (Lady Susan, The Watsons and Sandition).
I read my first book by José Saramago, who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1998, more than 15 years ago. Since enjoying As Intermitências da Morte (Death at Intervals in the translation into English), I’ve read seven more of his books. My favourite so far is O Ano da Morte de Ricardo Reis (The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis). He wrote novels, short stories, poetry, plays and non-fiction, and many of his works are allegories. His writing style is distinctive. He used no quotation marks. Instead, he differentiated the dialogues and the thoughts of the characters from the rest of the text using a comma followed by a capital letter. His books are, nevertheless, surprisingly readable. I still want to read at least seven more of his books.
Eça de Queirós
Eça de Queirós is a Portuguese author from the 19th century who embraced the realism movement. He aimed to present reality as it was. His work is a portrait of the vices of the society of the time, featuring for that reason various interesting symbolic characters. I’ve read seven of his books so far. My favourites are Os Maias (The Maias) and O Crime do Padre Amaro (The Crime of Father Amaro in the English translation). I still want to read three of his other books.
Compared with the other authors on this list, Jessie Burton is a novice. I adored the first two books I read by her, though. The Miniaturist and The Muse are utterly gripping and are populated by outstanding characters. The descriptions of the settings are also amazing, and interesting social issues are well incorporated into the plots. Although I didn’t cherish reading The Confession as much as I was expecting to, it is still a worthy book as well. I’m interested in reading all her future work for adults, despite being a bit apprehensive about the unexpected sequel to The Miniaturist.
Nearly all of the five books that I read by Margaret Atwood have different structures and present readers with distinctive plots, but they all end up touching on issues related to women’s agency. They are stimulating works, and the social commentary is well merged with the stories. Except for The Testaments, which disappointed me with its lack of character exploration, they feature authentic narrators and convincing characters. My favourite books by Atwood so far are The Handmaid’s Tale and The Blind Assassin. Despite not having been completely blown away by any of the books that I read by her, Atwood still deserves a spot on my favourite authors of all time, because the ones that I read left me confident that there’s a huge possibility that I’ll at least enjoy almost all of her other work.
Do you like the work of these authors? Who are your favourite authors? Tell me in the comments!