Thursday, 27 January 2011
Author Spotlight week - Janice Zick shares her favorite authors
My favorite authors are Anne Tyler for Breathing Lessons, Saint Maybe, The Accidental Tourist, The Clock Winder, The Amateur Marriage, A Slipping Down Life and numerous other novels that have been made into movies. Her characters are always quirky and her style is unique and nearly impossible to imitate: She uses spare language and her themes are always salt of the earth, down to earth, middle America. Her dialogue is spot on. Her novels are character driven and her characters are always a little addle brained and seem to barely muddle through life. They struggle with everyday issues as a result of their own off-beat, unconventional view of life. They seem to obsess over ordinary circumstances that most others would take as a matter of course. In a sense, they seem to invent their own problems. I enjoy her books so much that I actually wrote her once and told her she wasn't allowed to ever die. (She never responded.) Really, if you haven't read an Anne Tyler novel, you should IMHO..
I also like Barbara Kingsolver for The Poisonwood Bible and Summer Sisters. I like Pat Conroy for Beach Music, Prince of Tides and Lords of Discipline. He is, perhaps the most lyrical author I can name.
I like John Steinbeck for Of Mice and Men, The Pearl and Cannery Row; Frank McCourt for Angela's Ashes, which earned the Nobel Prize for literature, although I was somewhat disappointed in his second memoir, Tis. I think like Gone with the Wind, Angela's' Ashes was a work impossible to trump—a very hard act to follow for the author. McCourt, who died recently, began his writing career later in life, which is very unfortunate; because he was extremely talented. I'm sure he had many more novels in him.
I also enjoy John Grisham and Elizabeth Berg. I'm always awaiting their next novel.