Here at Warwickshire Libraries, we are all about the books! Books you’ve read, books you didn’t know about, books that you’ve heard of but aren’t sure if you’d like. We want to introduce you to fabulous authors and with so many to choose from, there are bound to be some that we all miss. With that in mind, over the coming weeks and months, we will be revamping the ‘Reading Ideas’ pages on our catalogue website to bring you lots of different ideas for your reading pleasure in 2019.
First up, is a list we’ve called ‘Debuts‘ featuring what were the debut works of some well-known “classic” authors, books by some of the biggest authors around at the moment, and books by new authors whose fiction debuted in 2017 and 2018. We’ve gathered examples of debut fiction to whet your appetite and hopefully allow you to discover some enthralling reads as we go through 2019.
You can check to see if you’ve missed an early work by an author whose books are now widely known or discover a brand new writer from their first published work. Just think of what you might find! Some of them are standalones, while others will open doors into series that will engulf and consume your reading time. With so many to choose from, here are a few of my picks from the list – first, the ones I have read and then, the ones I’ve still to get to.
My picks from ones I’ve read:
Only Child by Rhiannon Navin
Coming to terms with the aftermath of a school shooting, this is a book that poses lots of questions and will make you empathise with the families impacted by terrible events. The fact that it is told from the perspective of six year old Zach makes it all the more powerful. It was a ‘Richard & Judy Book Club’ pick for 2018 and when you read it, it is clear to see why.
The Chalk Man by C J Tudor
When a book has an endorsement from Stephen King, you know it’s going to be good and this creepy thriller is no exception. When an innocent children’s game takes a dark twist and sinister stick figures mysteriously start to appear, drawn in chalk, something is afoot. With shades of King’s ‘It’, this is a novel that will have you hooked and wanting more from Tudor (her next book is published in February and you can pre-order it here)
My picks from the ones I haven’t read (yet!)
Anatomy of Dreams by Chloe Benjamin
I was hooked by the Benjamin’s second novel, ‘The Immortalists‘, an epic tale that follows the fortunes of 4 brothers and sisters who get their fortunes, and the date of their deaths, foretold by a mysterious travelling psychic. The captivating writing, strong characterisation and story spanning five decades made it one of the books I most remember from last year. When ‘Anatomy of Dreams’ arrived at my library, I was very excited and have added this firmly to my TBR pile for 2019.
The Idiot by Elif Batuman
This was shortlisted for The Women’s Prize for Fiction last year and, although it didn’t win, I have only heard good things about it. Tackling the age-old quandaries of love, life and how you cope when adulthood strikes, this debut novel will grip you.
Adam Bede by George Eliot
There’s obviously a Warwickshire link to Eliot (she was born in Nuneaton) and this year marks the 200th anniversary of her birth so what better year to make a start on her books and where better to start than the beginning! If you want to know more about Eliot herself, have a look at our Local Studies website.
Carrie by Stephen King
It may shock you that this is on my ‘not yet read’ list but during my teen reading years, I jumped straight into the middle of Stephen King’s catalogue – scaring myself silly with ‘The Dark Half‘ and ‘Cujo‘. That means, of course, that I haven’t read where it all began so I shall be rectifying that this year by taking in the tale of Carrie and her telekinetic powers.
That’s just 6 of the books that appear on this list – there are more to discover so I hope you find something in there that matches your reading desires for 2019. There’s obviously loads not included too – if you have a favourite debut I’ve missed, let me know in the comments as I’m always happy to add to my ‘To Be Read’ list.
A few more recent debut novels of interest:
The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
The Haunting of Henry Twist by Rebecca F John
Bird Box by Josh Malerman