Ten Authors I Read For The First Time In 2015

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they post a new Top Ten list and everyone is welcome to join. This week’s theme is “Ten Authors I Read For The First Time In 2015”. This year was full of new authors for me, so this list was pretty easy. In no particular order:

  1. Chimamanda Negozi Adichie (I read Americanah & Half of a Yellow Sun, can’t wait to read Purple Hibiscus)
  2. Neil Gaiman – American Gods
  3. Margaret Atwood – The Handmaid’s Tale
  4. Haruki Murakami – Norwegian Wood
  5. Reza Azlan – Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth
  6. Roxane Gay – Bad Feminist
  7. Zadie Smith – White Teeth (looking forward to reading On Beauty next)
  8. Mary Roach – Stiff
  9. Gabriel Garcia Marquez – One Hundred Years of Solitude (planning to read Love in the Time of Cholera next)
  10. Marilynne Robinson – Gilead (I need to finish the trilogy)

There were a few more authors that I read for the first time this year, but these were the ones that stood out to me the most. I’m pretty happy with this list and I plan on exploring many more authors in 2016. What authors did you read for the first time this year? Let me know in the comments below!

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Becoming a stronger reader.

I’ve been putting a lot of thought into the fact that I have not read many books by Latino writers, and I have only read one book in Spanish (Como Agua Para Chocolate by Laura Esquivel). I’ve read a couple of books by Junot Diaz and one by Sandra Cisneros. That’s all that comes to mind when I think of the books I’ve read by Latino writers. That’s disappointing.

In the following year I plan to work on this. I would like to explore books by authors like Isabel Allende, Daniel Jose Older, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and Julia Alvarez. I would also like to read at last one book in Spanish next year. I’ve been thinking about reading Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone in Spanish because it is a book I am very familiar with. This means I can use context clues if I get lost or confused when reading it in Spanish. I’m not quite sure where to find a Spanish version of this book, so if y’all have any suggestions please let me know.

I really want to make an effort to support Latino writers. This will also strengthen me as a reader and as a person. I’m not sure what’s been holding me back, but I really have no excuses. Is there anything you’d like to work on to improve yourself as a reader? Let me know in the comments below!

Comic books.

I was never exposed to comic books while growing up, and as a result I perceived comic books as just something that young boys liked to read and tat were usually about male superheroes like Superman, Spiderman, and Batman. Last year, I began to hear about different comic books through Book Riot and BookTube. I was pleasantly surprised to find out about all the different kinds of comics with female leads and complex plots that are out there. Based on what I heard, I decided to read Ms. Marvel earlier this year. Ms. Marvel was the first comic book I had ever read and I really enjoyed it. Two other comic books that I hear about over and over from different people I follow are Bitch Planet and Saga. I was very intrigued by the things I’ve heard about these two books, so I decided to go ahead and purchase the first volumes while visiting a bookstore today. I’m very excited to read them.

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Another comic book I’ve heard great things about is ODY-C, so I will probably be picking that one up as well. Are there any comic books you’d like to recommend? Let me know in the comments below!

Current reading choices.

I have found myself being very deliberate with the books I choose to read this year. I recently noticed that I’ve been staying away from books that belong in a series (for the most part). In March, I did read the second and third books of the Shades of London series by Maureen Johnson, and Gilead by Marilyne Robinson—the first book in her Gilead trilogy.

Other than those three books, I’ve only read stand-alones this year. I’ve chosen to do this because I feel like I have so many great books on my TBR lists that I’d like to get to ASAP. And most of them are stand-alones. Also, reading a series takes much more time than reading a stand-alone. It’s not that I don’t like to read books that belong in a series, because I do very much. In fact, I plan on finishing the two series mentioned previously along with the If I Stay collection by Gayle Forman (I haven’t read the second book), and the Divergent series by Veronica Roth (I never finished reading Allegiant). I’m just prioritizing stand-alones for the time being, at least until I get to a point where I feel like I’m “caught up”. The important thing to remember is that I’m finally getting to where I want to be in my reading life, and choosing to temporarily stay away from series is helping me get there.

Are there any specific choices you find yourself making in your reading life? Let me know in the comments below!