Actively looking for: reading group and literary fiction; voice-driven novels; high-concept and speculative fiction; love stories, family dramas, magical realism; narrative non-fiction in science, social issues, psychology, history, lifestyle; digital bestsellers across all genres of commercial fiction.
I am actively building my list in fiction and non-fiction. I love discovering new voices – I’m passionate about storytelling, and the way that stories can shape the world.
I’m looking for:
*Upmarket and literary fiction, I am drawn to character-driven and voice-driven stories with a strong sense of place. I love novels that explore relationships, particularly relationships within families. I loved Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane and The Dutch House by Ann Patchett. I also loved Pachinko by Min Jin Lee and Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Adichie, both of which are ambitious and encompass so much in their stories. I’m a long-time admirer of Alice Munro and the precision of her prose, the way she creates a fully realized story within a few sentences.
My favourite writers in this area include Elizabeth Strout, Donna Tartt, Jennifer Egan, Lionel Shriver, Ann Patchett, Curtis Sittenfeld and David Nicholls.
*Writing with a distinctive, unique voice. I love to be captured by a strong voice. I loved The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. I also admire Liane Moriarty and Jeffrey Eugenides.
*High concept and genre-defying novels – I am drawn to novels with a unique premise, novels like Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandel, The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffnegger and The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. I want to be transported by a story, and I have a particular fondness for time travel stories and anything involving magical realism. If there’s an element of darkness, that always intrigues me – ghosts, spirits, witches – stories that find magic in the ordinary. My dream would be to find something like The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. My favourite writers in this area include Margaret Atwood, Kazuo Ishiguro, Claire North and Kate Atkinson, they transcend genre and combine beautiful prose with strong stories.
In fiction, I’m looking for a good story – a story that transports me, that moves me. I will always remember a book that makes me cry.
*Non-fiction – my taste in non-fiction is broad. I read non-fiction to learn about the world, and I’m always looking for something that can give me a unique perspective on a topic. I once heard that in fiction, we seek the truth, but that non-fiction begins with the truth. I’m particularly looking for non-fiction on topics of science, history, philosophy, social issues, true crime, lifestyle, memoir.
I’m looking for books about fascinating topics, particularly those written by experts in their fields. I want to find books that reveal something about the world or inspire people to live their lives differently. I admire writers like Malcolm Gladwell, Seth Godin, Atul Gawande and Yuval Harari. I’m looking for powerful narratives, something like The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot or The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee. This includes memoir, such as Wild by Cheryl Strayed or When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalinithi. I also enjoy essay collections, writers like Jia Tolentino, Leslie Jamison or Emilie Pine.
My Favourite Novels:
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Americanah by Chimamanda Adichie
Standard Deviation by Katherine Heiny
The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
The Passage by Justin Cronin
Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
Us by David Nicholls
My Favourite Non-Fiction
When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalinithi
The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
Paula by Isabel Allende
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers
Wild by Cheryl Strayed
Sapiens by Yuval Harari
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
Quiet by Susan Cain
The Faraway Nearby by Rebecca Solnit
Just Kids by Patti Smith