I recently read this Glamour Magazine listicle of 11 “female-authored reads” they are looking forward to in 2016. Some of these books I have heard great things about and am looking forward to myself, but the list is very limited, and ends on this note:
“The Girl With The Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer
We know almost nothing about this lit debut by Amy, other than that she received a seven-figure advance for the collection of essays. But we are very excited.”
The problem I have with this is that the article, along with several others published over the last couple of weeks, is it reads like a list of recommended reads, but has been written based solely on publishers’ press releases. And can you really recommend a book based on the size of the advance it earned the author?
At the end of this blog post, therefore, I’d like to point you towards three articles from some very well read women who have 2016 books to recommend to you based on their EXTENSIVE reading.
On the other hand I do like preview articles like The Guardian’s 2016 Literary Calendar (and the children’s version here) which don’t pretend to recommend books based on having read them, but set out some highlights of what we can look forward to over the year ahead. And in that spirit, and to redress the balance a little (I’m sure that Amy’s book is going to be witty and entertaining, but there are so many other great books coming out from female authors that deserve a shout out), here are 11 other female authors that you might not read about in the round-ups but who I think you should be looking out for in 2016:
Jackie Buxton – Glass Houses (Urbane Publications). Jackie’s non-fiction Tea And Chemo is wonderful. Next, her debut novel!
Joanna Cannon – The Trouble with Goats & Sheep (Borough Press). There’s already a LOT of buzz online for this debut.
Emma Geen – The Many Selves of Katherine North (Bloomsbury). Look at this beautiful cover:
Rebecca McKenzie – In a Land of Paper Gods (Tinder Press). I had the luck to read an advance copy, and loved this book.
Fiona Melrose – Midwinter (Corsair/Little Brown)
Catherine Ryan Howard – Distress Signals (Corvus)
Holly Seddon – Try Not To Breathe (Corvus)
Second and subsequent novels from writers with amazing debuts:
Carys Bray – I loved A Song for Issey Bradley. Can’t wait to read The Museum of You
Emma Chapman – The Last Photograph (Picador) sounds intriguing. How will it compare to How to be a Good Wife?
Sarah Perry – Following the mesmerising After Me Comes The Flood is The Essex Serpent, out in July (Serpent’s Tail).
Caroline Wallace – The Finding Of Martha Lost (Transworld) I’m a big fan of Caroline’s work under her other name Caroline Smailes, so can’t wait for this.
And Many More!
As promised above, here are three great 2016 previews whose authors have read all the books they are recommending:
Please have a look at Isabel Costello’s amazing Literary Sofa 2016 Hot Picks for some wonderfully diverse selections which I haven’t mentioned here.
And here is a 2016 top ten from the lovely Cathy Retzenbrink in Stylist who also picks out three of the books mentioned in the Glamour piece, but does also highlight The Essex Serpent (and tips Sarah Perry for great things!), the new Maggie O’Farrell and My Name is Leon (see comments below).
Naomi Frisby lists her diverse (first half) female authored recommendations here and tells us why, for her, they have the Wow Factor.
Also, I’ve started compiling a twitter list of authors with novels being published next year, 27 in total (so far all female on my radar!) and of course it doesn’t include non-tweeting authors like Maggie O’Farrell. Let me know of suggested additions.