Dear Michael, I hope some time you'll make another post that is more defined. When trying to choose my "favorite author," three genres came to mind:
1) Authors I've read the most of. Sometimes if I liked a book, I've read another book by the same author. Sometimes it stops right there. But with two authors, I just kept going, reading everything they wrote that I could get my hands on. So, in one sense, they're my "favorite" authors.
2) Authors of my favorite books. For years, I've named two novels as my all time favorite books. They're two which just blew me away. The author of one is also one of the authors I've read the most of. (And I'm glad I did keep reading as that's how I eventually came upon that one that would awe me.) As to the other author, the book's sequel didn't come close to measuring up, nor sequel after that, where I stopped. Yet I'd have to give him credit as "favorite" for that one book of his that totally captivated me.
3) Desert Island author. A different animal! Defining his choice this way, chris cudnoski listed an author & book that would certainly be on my own desert island list, too: A. Conan Doyle's The Complete Sherlock Holmes - one of the few works I *could* read over and over again for the rest of my life. And yet A. Conan Doyle would not rank "favorite author" by those other criteria. And while surely that book would be on a Desert Island list of ten... five... even three, I'm not sure about a "list" comprised of only one book. Maybe. Maybe not.
Choosing *just one* favorite author proved too difficult. At least to be recorded for posterity! I guess what I'd be most interested to read for others here at the DP would be their DESERT ISLAND LIST OF BOOKS - allowing 10 (no if's, and's, or but's, meaning people would have to give it some thought).
Such a list could then include authors who are dear to our hearts for different reasons. Such a list could include both non-fiction and fiction and acknowledge different interests and moods. And yes, even though I might *not* wish to read them over and over, I'd still have on my list a couple books that had the most influence on me *even if* to just know they were there. Just in case.
P.S. During Hurricane Sandy, leaving at the last minute, I grabbed only one book: the Holy Bible. I think when NPR once did this Desert Island idea with listeners, they qualified "other than the Bible."
I'd love to see the ten BOOKS we'd choose if we were stranded on a desert island. Also a desert island list of ALBUMS/CD's. Top SONGS, too, if we could only hear ten for the rest of our lives. Also a desert island list of MOVIES. Anyone else interested to know each other's (top ten) Desert Island lists?
When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir
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