I LOVE DEBUT AUTHORS!!
In fact if I had to choose between only reading debut novels for the rest of my life, or eliminating them completely, I would choose the former.
I know that most of you think I’m mad. In the last few weeks I have seen several tweets/comments knocking debut authors and even a post revealing a cautious attitude to them. I thought it was time for me to explain my passion for them and try to get you to embrace debuts as much as I do.
Take a look at the following list:
- To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
- Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
- Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell
- Sense & Sensibilty by Jane Austen
- The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
- Fried Green Tomatoes At The Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg
- Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis
- Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
- Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
- The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
- Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
- Black Beauty by Anna Sewell
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling
Apart from being classics loved by millions of people across the globe, they are also all debut novels. You may not enjoy all of the books on the list (I certainly don’t!), but you can’t dispute the quality.
The thing about debut novels is that they tend to reflect whatever the author is particularly passionate about – authors put their whole being into that book, unsure as to whether or not they will ever write another.
It is also increasingly hard for authors to get their work published. That means any debut snapped up by an agent must really stand out from the crowd. I find that established authors can get away with printing fairly average books, but unknown authors have to produce something really special to even have a chance of seeing it on the shelves.
Many people noticed that my list of the best debut books of 2011 was much more appealing than the list of books written by established authors and I think this proves my argument – debuts are far more interesting and emotionally powerful than second or third novels.
Which is your favourite debut novel?
Do you think you can spot the difference between a debut novel and one from an established author?
In case you were wondering – all the books pictured in this post are debuts too.