This is such a mean Top Ten Tuesday prompt! Honestly–I love so many different authors and, having had the opportunity to work with so many over the last few years, it’s hard to pick my favorites. So this list of ten? Let me just say it’s by no means exhaustive, nor in any sort of order. I don’t honestly hold any one of these brilliant people above the other–they’ve all got equal space on my shelf. I’ve also included first lines from my favorite books of theirs.
1. Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Book of choice: Leaf Storm and Other Stories
On the third day of rain they had killed so many crabs inside the house that Pelayo had to cross his drenched courtyard and throw them into the sea, because the newborn child had a temperature all night and they thought it was due to the stench. The world had been sad since Tuesday.
2. Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Book of choice: The Shadow of the Wind
I still remember the day my father took me to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books for the first time.
3. Sarah Waters
Book of choice: Fingersmith
My name, in those days, was Susan Trinder. People Called me Sue. I know the year I was born in, but for many years I did not know the date and took my birthday at Christmas.
4. Lucy Robinson
Book of choice: her newest, The Day We Disappeared
I stared in confusion at the hayloft. It was not a hayloft. It was a square white room with a single bed and a sticker on the wardrobe saying, ‘I ♥ PONIES!’
5. Victoria Fox
Book of choice: Wicked Ambition
IF NOT VICTORY, REVENGE! It was printed in hot-pink marker on the back of the cubicle door, the lettering neat and precise.
6. Barbara Kingsolver
Book of choice: The Poisonwood Bible
Imagine a ruin so strange it must never have happened. First, picture the forest. I want you to be its conscience, the eyes in the trees.
7. Haruki Murakami
Book of choice: After Dark
Eyes mark the shape of the city. Through the eyes of a high-flying night bird, we take in a scene from midair. In our broad sweep, the city looks like a single gigantic creature–or more like a single collective entity created by many intertwining organisms.
8. Neil Gaiman
Book of choice: Neverwhere
The night before he went to London, Richard Mayhew was not enjoying himself. He had begun the evening by enjoying himself: he had enjoyed reading the goodbye cards, and receiving the hugs from several not entirely unattractive young ladies of his acquaintance; he had enjoyed the warnings about the evils and dangers of London, and the gift of the white umbrella with the map of the London Underground on it that the lads had clubbed together to buy him; he had enjoyed the first few pints of ale; but then, which each successive pint of ale he found he was enjoying himself significantly less; until now he was sitting and shivering on the pavement outside the pub in a small Scottish town, weighing the conflicting merits of being sick and not being sick, and not enjoying himself at all.
9. Jojo Moyes
Book of choice: The One Plus One
The irony did not escape Jessica Thomas that she’d lost the best job she’d ever had because of a diamond. Not because she stole it but because she didn’t.
10. Carson McCullers
Book of choice: The Heart is a Lonely Hunter
In the town there were two mutes, and they were always together. Early morning they would come out of the house where they lived and walk arm in arm down the street to work.
If you’re interested in getting in touch, tweet me at @stephanie_khani or email me at emailthelondondiaries [at] gmail.com!