I came across this bookish meme through Kerri @ Kerri McBookNerd. It piqued my interest so I thought I might as well do this 5 On My TBR list, considering how incredibly long my to-be-read list has become these past few years (HAHA). The rule is relatively simple. I just have to pick five books from my to-be-read pile that fit the week’s theme. For this week’s theme, it is new to you authors. I have quite a lot of authors whose works I want to read and experience. My venture into the grand vistas of literature has made me encounter names I would have not encountered had I opted to stay in my comfort zone. Without more ado, here are five authors new to me that are part of my reading list. I hope you get to enjoy my list. For now, happy reading!
5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook where you chose five books from your to-be-read pile that fit that week’s theme. If you’d like more info, head over to the announcement post!
One of the most recent additions to my reading list is Danish writer Tove Ditlevsen. The first work I have encountered is The Copenhagen Trilogy which I came across through an online bookseller. It piqued my interest because I have read Paul Auster’s The New York Trilogy previously and I have also come across Pedro Juan Gutierrez’s Dirty Havana Trilogy. It was only after buying that book that I learned that it was a memoir, separately published before it was collectively published as a single book. The more I researched about Ditlevsen, the more my interest grew. She is recognized as one of Denmark’s renowned writers. I don’t think I have read any Danish works before, except perhaps for Hans Christian Andersen. I am hoping to break this barrier with Ditlevsen’s memoir but I am also hoping I could get to read her other works.
It was in early 2020 that I first came across German writer Herta Müller. Some of her works were being sold by an online bookseller. Luckily enough, I managed to snag one of her works, The Hunger Angel. To be honest, what really caught my interest is the fact that Müller won the Nobel Prize Literature in 2009. Upon researching more about her, I learned that she was born in Romania and that she has a very prolific career as an essayist and poet. Apart from The Hunger Angel, her only other work I have encountered was The Passport. Nevertheless, I am looking forward to reading more of her works and I might just include The Hunger Angel in my 2022 Top 22 Reading List.
Tan Twan Eng
After featuring two European writers, here is an Asian writer. It was through a friend that I have come across Malaysian novelist Tan Twan Eng. I am not sure if it was The Garden of Evening Mists or his other work that my friend has read but he gave such glowing account of his prose that I took note of him. Thankfully, I managed to purchase a copy of his work this year and I can’t wait to immerse in his second English novel, which won the 2012 Man Asia Literary Award. I am not sure if I have previously read the work of any Malaysian writer before but lately, I have been slowly dipping my fingers into the works of our South East Asian neighbors. I have already started with Vietnamese and Singaporean writers. This year, I had my first Indonesian novelist in Eka Kurniawan.
Perhaps the novelist who has been on my to-be-read list for the longest time is popular French novelist Marcel Proust. I bought my first Proust book, Swann’s Way about six or seven years ago. However, when I learned that this was the first book of a series, I resolved not to read it until I complete all books in the series, in the same format. In Search of Lost Time (or also Remembrance of Things Past), the series in which Swann’s Way is the first book is comprised of about seven books. Over time, I was able to purchase five more of these books. I am just one book short of completing all volumes. I think it is about time for me to start with the series. With my 900th book over the horizon, I am seriously considering Swann’s Way to be my 900th novel. I also have other books in mind, like The Hunger Angel. I’ll see in a couple of days’ time.
Of course, the list wouldn’t be complete without Abdulrazak Gurnah, the most recent Nobel Laureate in Literature. Up until this year’s awarding ceremony, I have not heard of the Tanzanian writer nor have I encountered any of his works before. Even the Nobel Committee recognized that not many have read his works. I have yet to gain a copy of any of his works; this is always a challenge I guess. I am hoping that my local bookstore will soon have available copies of his works like when Ishiguro won the 2007 Prize. I have also surmised that his works will be a great starting point for more works of Tanzanian writers, well, for most of East Africa. Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, in his neighboring Kenya, is another writer whose works I can’t wait to read. Like popular writers Haruki Murakami, and Margaret Atwood, Thiong’o has long been touted as a probable winner for the prestigious literary prize.