Top Ten Tuesday: Check Um' Out

Top Ten Tuesday appears each week over at The Broke and the Bookish.  The topic this week is : Top ten authors who deserve more recognition.

I am going to look at some individual books here, because I haven't read enough of some of these author's works to claim that all of it is good:) Many of these authors do get some recognition (awards or academic recognition), but they don't get "buzz" or much attention in the blogosphere that I've seen.

 10.  I feel like poetry is pretty underrepresented on my blog.  Philip Larkin is one of my favorites.  Elizabeth Bishop is another. Both are accessible poets whose work is enjoyable on a narrative level as well as being pleasurable because of the language.

9. Tom Wolfe:  With Wolfe I have read a few: The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, The Bonfire of the Vanities and I Am Charlotte Simmons. I am always impressed by Wolfe's ability to immerse himself in a culture, whether he is writing fiction or nonfiction.  I mean, when I look at the disparities in the three books that I've read, I find it incredible that he has managed to capture each of these worlds so accurately. 

8. J.G.Ballard, Crash:  Ballard has written many other novels as well, but this is the only one I've read.  Crash isn't for everyone; it is extremely graphic.  However, I am impressed by the detail of Ballard's prose and from what I know, he is also a wildly diverse author. 

7.  Steven Millhauser, Dangerous Laughter: This book was on The New York Times 10 best books of the year a few years back, and one of Millhauser's other novels won the Pulitzer, so he isn't exactly an uncovered gem, but this is one of my favorite short story collections and I don't see it mentioned much. 

6.  Frank Norris, McTeague:  This is my favorite under-read "classic."  McTeague is strange and dark and not too long, and anyone who is taking a trip through the world of canonical literature and doesn't have it on his or her list, should consider adding it.

5. Maira Kalman:  I did see Kalman's book And The Pursuit of Happiness on another blog, and that's why I picked it up.  I had seen her illustrations in Strunk and White.  I find her delightful.

4. Cecile Pineda, Face:  This a seldom read book for fans of existentialist literature.  Pineda is a Brazilian author, and maybe the most unheard of author on my list.

3. Zadie Smith, White Teeth:  This is a pretty popular book, but I felt compelled to put it on the list because I don't read many reviews of Smith's work.  She also has two other novels and an essay collection.

2. T.C. Boyle:  I've read a few things by Boyle and I made the bold claim in one of my other posts that he is one of my favorite living writers.  I decided to show the image of Boyle's short story collection After the Plague because the title story in this collection is my favorite thing I've read by Boyle.  He is funny and political, so if you are into that, he is a good choice.

1. Graham Swift, Waterland:  This book is my go-to recommendation, especially for people with reading tastes at all similar to mine.  I wrote about it for the Literary Blog Hop a few months back and you can see that post here.


  1. I just read a Tom Wolfe novel last week -- "A Man in Full"!

    And poetry is generally underrepresented on book blogs. I think the only books I've mentioned have been by Kahlil Gibran or were collections...

  2. Last semester it seemed like everyone at my school was reading white teeth so I bought it and then never got around to reading it. I'll have to get to it soon!

  3. I've read Smith's On Beauty and White Teeth but White Teeth is definitely my favourite. I love her humour.

    I read Ballard's Empire of the Sun which I loved and I have another one of his books sitting in my tbr pile. will be interesting to compare his fiction to his biography.

  4. Excellent list, with both great authors and a nice variety of genres represented.

    Maira Kalman! Yes. How did I forget her?

  5. Aside from Philip Larkin, i haven't read any of these but a few are on my TBR. This makes me even more excited to get to them.

  6. I've heard mixed things about Zadie Smith and can never decide if I should check her out or not. Perhaps someone I should look into a bit closer

  7. I've been itching to read Zadie Smith and it just doesn't seem to happen.

    Some other interesting titles I'll have to check out.

  8. I haven't had the pleasure of reading these authors, so I thank you for sharing (I also appreciate the fact that you posted cover pics...nice touch!)

  9. Kalman's been in my library queue for weeks, but it looks like I'll have the privilege of reading her soon! I can't wait! TC Boyle's got a new one out, and I've read pretty much everything he's ever written, so I'm in the queue for that one too!
    Thanks for reminding me to return to all these fine writers; I admire your good taste!

  10. I've heard of Zadie Smith and T.C. Boyle but haven't read anything by them. The others definitely sound good so I'll be looking into them. Thanks for stopping by my blog! :)

  11. It appears that I’m going to have to expand my TBR list... I’m not familiar with any of these authors, but some of their novels seem interesting.

  12. Great list. I really enjoy Elizabeth Bishop's poetry and now I'm off to check out Larkin. Thanks!

  13. These people definitely deserve recognition - I've only read Zadie Smith (love her)! Great list.

  14. Some very interesting choices. Great list.

  15. Agree with Tom Wolfe and I've been meaning to pick up that Millhauser short story collection!

  16. I've heard of quite a few of the authors, but not the books. I'll have to go check them out now. Thanks for the recommendations!


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