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Best Author of All Time

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    1
    Lawrence Durrell

    Lawrence Durrell

    • Works written: Justine
    Lawrence George Durrell (February 27, 1912 – November 7, 1990), was an expatriate British novelist, poet, dramatist, and travel writer, though he resisted affiliation with Britain and preferred to be considered cosmopolitan. It has been posthumously suggested that Durrell never had British citizenship, though more accurately, he became defined as a non-patrial in 1968, due to the amendment to the Commonwealth Immigrants Act 1962. Hence, he was denied the right to enter or settle in Britain under new laws and had to apply for a visa for each entry. His most famous work is the tetralogy the Alexandria Quartet. Durrell was born in Jallandhar, British India, the eldest son of Indian-born British colonials Louisa and Lawrence Samuel Durrell. His first school was St. Joseph's College, North Point, Darjeeling. At the age of eleven, he was sent to England where he briefly attended St. Olave's Grammar School before being sent to St. Edmund's School, Canterbury. His formal education was unsuccessful and he failed his university entrance examinations, but he began seriously writing poetry at the age of fifteen and his first collection of poetry, Quaint Fragment, was published in 1931. On
    8.13
    8 votes
    2
    Neal Stephenson

    Neal Stephenson

    • Works written: The Big U
    • School or Movement: Cyberpunk
    Neal Town Stephenson (born October 31, 1959) is an American writer known for his works of speculative fiction. His novels have been variously categorized as science fiction, historical fiction, cyberpunk, and "postcyberpunk." Other labels, such as "baroque," often appear. Stephenson explores subjects such as mathematics, cryptography, philosophy, currency, and the history of science. He also writes non-fiction articles about technology in publications such as Wired. He has worked part-time as an advisor for Blue Origin, a company (funded by Jeff Bezos) developing a manned sub-orbital launch system, and is also a cofounder of Subutai Corporation, whose first offering is the interactive fiction project The Mongoliad. He has also written novels with his uncle, George Jewsbury ("J. Frederick George"), under the collective pseudonym Stephen Bury. Born on October 31, 1959 in Fort Meade, Maryland, Stephenson came from a family of engineers and hard scientists; his father is a professor of electrical engineering whose father was a physics professor. His mother worked in a biochemistry laboratory, and her father was a biochemistry professor. Stephenson's family moved to Champaign-Urbana,
    6.75
    8 votes
    3
    David Alan Mack

    David Alan Mack

    • Works written: Harbinger
    This article is about the Star Trek and Wolverine novelist. For the comic book artist, see David W. Mack. David Alan Mack is a writer best known for his freelance Star Trek novels. Mack also has had a Star Trek script produced, and worked on a Star Trek comic book. Mack attended New York University's Tisch School of the Arts as an undergraduate, from 1987 to 1991. There he majored in film and television production and screenwriting. After receiving several rejections on early spec-script submissions to Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Mack teamed up with John J. Ordover, then an editor in Pocket Books' Star Trek Department. Working together, the pair combined Ordover's ability to arrange pitch meetings with the shows' producers with Mack's training in screenwriting. In 1995, the pair made their first story sale, to Star Trek: Voyager, though the project was never produced. A few weeks later they made another sale, this time to Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, for the fourth-season episode "Starship Down". Another story pitched by the pair during that same meeting was bought three years later, as the basis for the seventh-season episode "It's Only a Paper
    7.57
    7 votes
    4
    Frederik Pohl

    Frederik Pohl

    • Works written: The Space Merchants
    • Contributing author to: Nebula Awards Showcase 2010
    Frederik George Pohl, Jr. (born November 26, 1919) is an American science fiction writer, editor and fan, with a career spanning over seventy years — from his first published work, "Elegy to a Dead Planet: Luna" (1937), to his most recent novel, All the Lives He Led (2011). From about 1959 until 1969, Pohl edited Galaxy and its sister magazine If; the latter won three successive annual Hugo Awards as the year's best professional magazine. His 1977 novel Gateway won four "year's best novel" awards: the Hugo voted by convention participants, the Locus voted by magazine subscribers, the Nebula voted by American science fiction writers, and the juried academic John W. Campbell Memorial Award. He won the Campbell Memorial Award again for the 1984 collection of novellas Years of the City, the only repeat winner in forty years. For his 1979 novel Jem, Pohl won a U.S. National Book Award in the one-year category Science Fiction. It was a finalist for three other year's best novel awards. In all he has won four Hugo and three Nebula Awards. Pohl became a Nebula Grand Master in 1993 and he was inducted by the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 1998. He won the Hugo Award for Best Fan Writer in
    7.00
    7 votes
    5
    Kazuo Ishiguro

    Kazuo Ishiguro

    • Works written: The Remains of the Day
    Kazuo Ishiguro OBE (Japanese: カズオ・イシグロ (Kazuo Ishiguro) or 石黒 一雄 (Ishiguro Kazuo); born 8 November 1954) is a Japanese-born British novelist. He was born in Nagasaki, Japan, and his family moved to England in 1960. Ishiguro obtained his Bachelor's degree from University of Kent in 1978 and his Master's from the University of East Anglia's creative writing course in 1980. He became a British citizen in 1982. Ishiguro is one of the most celebrated contemporary fiction authors in the English-speaking world, having received four Man Booker Prize nominations, and winning the 1989 for his novel The Remains of the Day. In 2008, The Times ranked Ishiguro 32nd on their list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". Recently, his novel Never Let Me Go has been adapted to film. Ishiguro was born in Nagasaki on 8 November 1954, the son of Shizuo Ishiguro, a physical oceanographer, and his wife Shizuko. In 1960 his family, including his two sisters, moved to Guildford, Surrey so that his father could begin research at the National Institute of Oceanography. He attended Stoughton Primary School and then Woking County Grammar School in Surrey. After finishing school he took a 'gap year'
    7.50
    6 votes
    6
    John Updike

    John Updike

    • Works written: Terrorist
    • Contributing author to: Burn This Book
    John Hoyer Updike (18 March 1932 – 27 January 2009) was an American novelist, poet, short story writer, art critic, and literary critic. Updike's most famous work is his Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom series (the novels Rabbit, Run; Rabbit Redux; Rabbit Is Rich; Rabbit At Rest; and the novella "Rabbit Remembered"), which chronicles Rabbit's life over the course of several decades, from young adulthood to his death. Both Rabbit Is Rich (1981) and Rabbit At Rest (1990) received the Pulitzer Prize. Updike is one of only three authors (the others were Booth Tarkington and William Faulkner) to win the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction more than once. He published more than twenty novels and more than a dozen short story collections, as well as poetry, art criticism, literary criticism and children's books. Hundreds of his stories, reviews, and poems appeared in The New Yorker, starting in 1954. He also wrote regularly for The New York Review of Books. Describing his subject as "the American small town, Protestant middle class," Updike was well recognized for his careful craftsmanship, his unique prose style, and his prolificity. He wrote on average a book a year. Updike populated his fiction with
    8.20
    5 votes
    7
    Armistead Maupin

    Armistead Maupin

    • Works written: The Night Listener
    Armistead Jones Maupin, Jr. (born May 13, 1944) is an American writer, best known for his Tales of the City series of novels, set in San Francisco. Maupin was born to a conservative Christian family in Washington, D.C.. Soon afterwards, his family moved to North Carolina, where he was raised. He says he has had storytelling instincts since he was eight years old. He attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he became involved in journalism through writing for The Daily Tar Heel. After earning his undergraduate degree, Maupin enrolled in law school, but later resigned from it. Maupin worked at WRAL-TV (Channel 5) in Raleigh, a station then managed by future U.S. Senator Jesse Helms, who also delivered the station's well-known editorial segments throughout his management of the station in the 1960s. Helms nominated Maupin for a patriotic award, which he won. Maupin says he was a typical conservative and even a segregationist at this time and admired Helms, a family friend, as a "hero figure." He later changed his opinions dramatically — "I've changed and he hasn't" — and condemned Helms at a gay pride parade on the steps of the North Carolina State Capitol.
    9.00
    4 votes
    8
    Toni Morrison

    Toni Morrison

    • Works written: Song of Solomon
    • School or Movement: PEN American Center
    Toni Morrison (born Chloe Ardelia Wofford; February 18, 1931) is an American novelist, editor, and professor. Her novels are known for their epic themes, vivid dialogue, and richly detailed characters. Among her best known novels are The Bluest Eye, Sula, Song of Solomon and Beloved. She also was commissioned to write the libretto for a new opera, Margaret Garner, first performed in 2005. She won the Nobel Prize in 1993 and in 1987 the Pulitzer Prize for Beloved. On 29 May 2012, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Toni Morrison was born in Lorain, Ohio, to Ramah (née Willis) and George Wofford. She is the second of four children in a working-class family. As a child, Morrison read fervently; among her favorite authors were Jane Austen and Leo Tolstoy. Morrison's father told her numerous folktales of the black community (a method of storytelling that would later work its way into Morrison's writings). In 1949 Morrison entered Howard University, where she received a B.A. in English in 1953. She earned a Master of Arts degree in English from Cornell University in 1955, for which she wrote a thesis on suicide in the works of William Faulkner and Virginia Woolf. After
    9.00
    4 votes
    9
    Henry Fielding

    Henry Fielding

    • Works written: Amelia
    • School or Movement: Augustan literature
    Henry Fielding (22 April 1707 – 8 October 1754) was an English novelist and dramatist known for his rich earthy humour and satirical prowess, and as the author of the novel Tom Jones. Aside from his literary achievements, he has a significant place in the history of law-enforcement, having founded (with his half-brother John) what some have called London's first police force, the Bow Street Runners, using his authority as a magistrate. His younger sister, Sarah, also became a successful writer. Fielding was born at Sharpham and was educated at Eton College, where he established a lifelong friendship with William Pitt the Elder. After a romantic episode with a young woman that ended in his getting into trouble with the law, he went to London where his literary career began. In 1728, he travelled to Leiden to study classics and law at the University. However, due to lack of money, he was obliged to return to London and he began writing for the theatre, some of his work being savagely critical of the contemporary government under Sir Robert Walpole. The Theatrical Licensing Act of 1737 is alleged to be a direct response to his activities. The particular play that triggered the
    5.86
    7 votes
    10
    Jon Courtenay Grimwood

    Jon Courtenay Grimwood

    • Works written: 9tail Fox
    Jon Courtenay Grimwood is a British science fiction and fantasy author. He was born in Valletta, Malta, grew up in Britain, Southeast Asia and Norway in the 1960s and 1970s. He studied at Kingston College, then worked in publishing and as a freelance writer for magazines and newspapers including The Guardian, The Telegraph and The Independent. He now lives in London and Winchester and is married to the journalist and novelist Sam Baker, with a son, Jamie, from a previous marriage. Much of his early work can be described as post-cyberpunk. He won a British Science Fiction Association award for Felaheen in 2003, was short-listed for the Arthur C Clarke Award for Pashazade the year before, and won the 2006 BSFA award for Best Novel with End of the World Blues. He was short-listed for the John W. Campbell Memorial Award in 2002 for Pashazade. His fourth book is loosely based on Stanley Weyman's Victorian novel Under the Red Robe. End of the World Blues was also short-listed for the 2007 Arthur C Clarke Award. The following were nominated in the SF novel category in the Locus Awards - Felaheen, The Third Arabesk, 2004; Stamping Butterflies, 2005; 9Tail Fox, 2006; End of the World Blues,
    8.75
    4 votes
    11
    Anthony Burgess

    Anthony Burgess

    • Works written: Enderby Outside
    • School or Movement: Modernism
    John Anthony Burgess Wilson FRSL (/ˈbɜrdʒɛs/; 25 February 1917 – 22 November 1993) – who published under the pen name Anthony Burgess – was an English writer and composer. Burgess was predominantly seen as a comic writer, and although this was how his works were read, he claimed that his works weren't intended to be humorous. The dystopian satire A Clockwork Orange is Burgess's most famous novel, though he dismissed it as one of his lesser works, and it is in many ways an atypical Burgess work. It was adapted into a highly controversial 1971 film by Stanley Kubrick, which Burgess said was chiefly responsible for the popularity of the book. Burgess produced numerous other novels, including the Enderby quartet, and Earthly Powers, regarded by most critics as his greatest novel. Burgess was a prominent literary critic and journalist, writing acclaimed studies of classic writers such as William Shakespeare, James Joyce, D. H. Lawrence and Ernest Hemingway. Burgess was also an accomplished musician and linguist. He composed over 250 musical works, including a first symphony around age 18, wrote a number of libretti, and translated, among other works, Cyrano de Bergerac, Oedipus the King
    8.50
    4 votes
    12
    H. G. Wells

    H. G. Wells

    • Works written: The Wheels of Chance
    Herbert George "H. G." Wells (21 September 1866 – 13 August 1946) was an English author, now best known for his work in the science fiction genre. He was also a prolific writer in many other genres, including contemporary novels, history, politics and social commentary, even writing textbooks and rules for war games. Together with Jules Verne and Hugo Gernsback, Wells has been referred to as "The Father of Science Fiction". His most notable science fiction works include The War of the Worlds, The Time Machine, The Invisible Man and The Island of Doctor Moreau. Wells's earliest specialised training was in biology, and his thinking on ethical matters took place in a specifically and fundamentally Darwinian context. He was also from an early date an outspoken socialist, often (but not always, as the beginning of the First World War) sympathising with pacifist views. His later works became increasingly political and didactic, and he sometimes indicated on official documents that his profession was that of "Journalist." Most of his later novels were not science fiction. Some described lower-middle class life (Kipps; The History of Mr Polly), leading him to be touted as a worthy
    8.50
    4 votes
    13
    A. A. Attanasio

    A. A. Attanasio

    • Works written: Radix
    Alfred Angelo Attanasio, born on September 20, 1951 in Newark, New Jersey, is an author of fantasy and science fiction. His science-fiction novel Radix was nominated for the 1981 Nebula Award for Best Novel and was followed by three other novels, the four books, together, comprising the critically acclaimed 'Radix Tetrad.' The 'Tetrad' is being re-issued by Phoenix Pick Publishers. He also writes under the name Adam Lee. "A(lfred) A(ngelo) Attanasio" in Contemporary Authors Online. The Gale Group, 2001. Entry updated May 4, 2001
    9.67
    3 votes
    14
    Jonathan Lethem

    Jonathan Lethem

    • Works written: Motherless Brooklyn
    Jonathan Allen Lethem (born February 19, 1964) is an American novelist, essayist and short story writer. His first novel, Gun, with Occasional Music, a genre work that mixed elements of science fiction and detective fiction, was published in 1994. It was followed by three more science fiction novels. In 1999, Lethem published Motherless Brooklyn, a National Book Critics Circle Award-winning novel that achieved mainstream success. In 2003, he published The Fortress of Solitude, which became a New York Times Best Seller. In 2005, he received a MacArthur Fellowship. Lethem was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Judith Lethem, a political activist, and Richard Brown Lethem, an avant-garde painter. He was the eldest of three children. He is half-Jewish. His brother Blake became an artist, and his sister Mara became a photographer and writer. The family lived in a commune in the pre-gentrified Brooklyn neighborhood of North Gowanus (now called Boerum Hill). Despite the racial tensions and conflicts, he later described his bohemian childhood as “thrilling” and culturally wide-reaching. He gained an encyclopedic knowledge of the music of Bob Dylan, saw Star Wars twenty-one times during its
    9.67
    3 votes
    15
    Douglas Hofstadter

    Douglas Hofstadter

    • Works written: The Mind's I
    Douglas Richard Hofstadter (born February 15, 1945) is an American professor of cognitive science whose research focuses on consciousness, analogy-making, artistic creation, literary translation, and discovery in mathematics and physics. He is best known for his book Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid, first published in 1979. It won both the Pulitzer Prize for general non-fiction and a National Book Award (at that time called The American Book Award) for Science. His 2007 book I Am a Strange Loop won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Science and Technology. Hofstadter was born in New York City, the son of Nobel Prize-winning physicist Robert Hofstadter. He grew up on the campus of Stanford University, where his father was a professor, and he attended the International School of Geneva in 1958–1959. He graduated with Distinction in Mathematics from Stanford University in 1965. He continued his education and received his Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Oregon in 1975, where his study of the Quantum Hall effect led to his discovery of the fractal known as Hofstadter's butterfly. Hofstadter is College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor of Cognitive
    7.20
    5 votes
    16
    James Joyce

    James Joyce

    • Works written: Dubliners
    • School or Movement: Modernism
    James Augustine Aloysius Joyce (2 February 1882 – 13 January 1941) was an Irish novelist and poet, considered to be one of the most influential writers in the modernist avant-garde of the early 20th century. Joyce is best known for Ulysses (1922), a landmark work in which the episodes of Homer's Odyssey are paralleled in an array of contrasting literary styles, perhaps most prominently the stream of consciousness technique he perfected. Other major works are the short-story collection Dubliners (1914), and the novels A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916) and Finnegans Wake (1939). His complete oeuvre includes three books of poetry, a play, occasional journalism, and his published letters. Joyce was born to a middle class family in Dublin, where he excelled as a student at the Jesuit schools Clongowes and Belvedere, then at University College Dublin. In his early twenties he emigrated permanently to continental Europe, living in Trieste, Paris and Zurich. Though most of his adult life was spent abroad, Joyce's fictional universe does not extend beyond Dublin, and is populated largely by characters who closely resemble family members, enemies and friends from his time there;
    7.20
    5 votes
    17
    Robert Anton Wilson

    Robert Anton Wilson

    • Works written: Masks of the Illuminati
    Robert Anton Wilson (born Robert Edward Wilson, January 18, 1932 – January 11, 2007), known to friends as "Bob", was an American author and polymath who became at various times a novelist, philosopher, psychologist, essayist, editor, playwright, poet, futurist, civil libertarian and self-described agnostic mystic. Recognized as an episkopos, pope, and saint of Discordianism, Wilson helped publicize the group through his writings, interviews, and strolls. Wilson described his work as an "attempt to break down conditioned associations, to look at the world in a new way, with many models recognized as models or maps, and no one model elevated to the truth". His goal being "to try to get people into a state of generalized agnosticism, not agnosticism about God alone but agnosticism about everything" (cf. solipsism, acatalepsia, Pyrrhonism). "Is", "is." "is"—the idiocy of the word haunts me. If it were abolished, human thought might begin to make sense. I don't know what anything "is"; I only know how it seems to me at this moment. — Robert Anton Wilson, The Historical Illuminatus, as spoken by Sigismundo Celine. Wilson, born Robert Edward Wilson in Methodist Hospital, in Brooklyn, New
    8.25
    4 votes
    18
    Terry Brooks

    Terry Brooks

    • Works written: Running with the Demon
    Terence Dean "Terry" Brooks (born January 8, 1944) is an American writer of fantasy fiction. He writes mainly epic fantasy, and has also written two movie novelizations. He has written 23 New York Times bestsellers during his writing career, and has over 21 million copies of his books in print. He is one of the biggest-selling living fantasy writers. Brooks was born in the rural midwestern town of Sterling, Illinois, and spent a large part of his life living there. He is an alumnus of Hamilton College, earning his B.A. in English literature in 1966. He later obtained a J.D. from Washington and Lee University. He was a practicing attorney before becoming a full-time author and now resides in Seattle, Washington, with his wife, Judine. Brooks' thorough familiarity with and love for the city of Seattle are clearly expressed in "A Knight of the Word" whose plot is set in that city. Brooks had been a writer since high school, writing mainly in the genres of science fiction, western, fiction, and non-fiction. One day, in his early college life, he was given a copy of The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien, which inspired him to write in one genre. While Tolkien inspired the genre,
    6.17
    6 votes
    19
    Chris Morris

    Chris Morris

    • Works written: Threshold
    • Contributing author to: Tempus Unbound
    • School or Movement: Heroic fiction
    Christopher Crosby Morris (born 1946) is an American author of fiction and non-fiction, as well as a lyricist, musical composer, and singer-songwriter. He is married to author Janet Morris. He is a defense policy and strategy analyst and a principal in M2 Technologies, Inc. He writes primarily as Chris Morris, a shortened form of his name, but occasionally uses pseudonyms. Chris Morris began writing music in 1966, fiction in 1984, and nonfiction in 1989. Much of his fiction and nonfiction literary work, including all of his book-length science fiction and fantasy, has been written in collaboration with his wife Janet Morris, with whom he has also written two novels under the joint pseudonym of Daniel Stryker and one novel under the pseudonym of Casey Prescott. He has contributed short fiction to the shared universe series Thieves' World, Heroes in Hell, and Merovingen Nights. He has also co-authored with Janet Morris four titles in The Sacred Band of Stepsons saga. Chris Morris has also authored song lyrics and melodies. Notably, Chris served as chief songwriter, singer, and leader of the "Christopher Morris Band", formed in 1976, whose first members were Chris Morris, Janet
    7.00
    5 votes
    20
    Frederick Forsyth

    Frederick Forsyth

    • Works written: The Shepherd
    Frederick Forsyth, CBE (born 25 August 1938) is an English author and occasional political commentator. He is best known for thrillers such as The Day of the Jackal, The Odessa File, The Fourth Protocol, The Dogs of War, The Devil's Alternative, The Fist of God, Icon, The Veteran, Avenger, The Afghan and The Cobra. The son of a furrier, Forsyth was born in Ashford, Kent. He was educated at Tonbridge School and later attended the University of Granada in Spain. Before becoming a journalist, he joined the RAF and was a jet fighter pilot. He joined Reuters in 1961 and later the BBC in 1965, where he served as an assistant diplomatic correspondent. In A BBC Documentary on the Nigerian Civil War, Forsyth reported on his early activities as a journalist. His early career was spent covering French affairs and the attempted assassination of Charles De Gaulle. He had never been to what he termed "black Africa" until he was made BBC correspondent reporting on the Nigerian Civil War between Biafra and Nigeria as a BBC correspondent. He was there for the first six months of 1967, but few expected the war to last very long considering the poor weaponry and preparation of the Biafrans when
    7.00
    5 votes
    21
    Libba Bray

    Libba Bray

    • Works written: A Great and Terrible Beauty
    Libba Bray (born Martha E. Bray; March 11, 1964) is an American author of young adult novels, including the books A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, The Sweet Far Thing and Going Bovine. She lived in Texas until she was 26 years old. After that she moved to New York City, New York, where she now lives with her husband and nine-year-old son. Her father was a preacher and her mother, a teacher. In her autobiography on her official site she states: Bray was born in Alabama. At the age of eighteen, Bray was involved in a serious car accident and had to undergo thirteen surgeries in six years to reconstruct her face. She has an artificial left eye because of this accident. Bray graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 1988 as a Theatre major. As a budding playwright, she felt it important to be in New York. When her childhood best friend, already living in Manhattan, called saying she was looking for a roommate, Bray was soon on her way to New York. Her first job was in the publicity department of Penguin Putnam, followed by three years at Spier, an advertising agency specializing in book advertising. Bray was encouraged to write a young adult novel by her husband,
    9.33
    3 votes
    22
    Martin Amis

    Martin Amis

    • Works written: London Fields
    Martin Louis Amis (25 August 1949) is a British novelist. His best-known novels are Money (1984) and London Fields (1989). He was the Professor of Creative Writing at the Centre for New Writing at the University of Manchester until 2011. The Times named him in 2008 as one of the 50 greatest British writers since 1945. Amis's raw material is what he sees as the absurdity of the postmodern condition and the excesses of late-capitalist Western society with its grotesque caricatures. He has thus been portrayed as the undisputed master of what the New York Times called "the new unpleasantness". Influenced by Saul Bellow, Vladimir Nabokov, and James Joyce, as well as by his father, Kingsley Amis, he has inspired a generation of writers with his distinctive style, including Will Self and Zadie Smith. The Guardian writes that his critics have noted what Kingsley Amis called a "terrible compulsive vividness in his style...that constant demonstrating of his command of English," and that the "Amis-ness of Amis will be recognisable in any piece before he reaches his first full stop". Amis was born in Swansea, South Wales. His father, Sir Kingsley Amis, was the son of a mustard manufacturer's
    8.00
    4 votes
    23
    William Faulkner

    William Faulkner

    • Works written: Absalom, Absalom!
    • School or Movement: Modernist literature
    William Cuthbert Faulkner (born Falkner, September 25, 1897 – July 6, 1962) was a writer and Nobel Prize laureate from Oxford, Mississippi. Faulkner worked in a variety of media; he wrote novels, short stories, a play, poetry, essays and screenplays during his career. He is primarily known and acclaimed for his novels and short stories, many of which are set in the fictional Yoknapatawpha County, a setting Faulkner created based on Lafayette County, where he spent most of his life, and Holly Springs/Marshall County. Faulkner is one of the most important writers of the Southern literature of the United States, along with Mark Twain, Robert Penn Warren, Flannery O'Connor, Truman Capote, Eudora Welty, Thomas Wolfe, Harper Lee and Tennessee Williams. Though his work was published as early as 1919, and largely during the 1920s and 1930s, Faulkner was relatively unknown until receiving the 1949 Nobel Prize in Literature. Two of his works, A Fable (1954) and his last novel The Reivers (1962), won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. In 1998, the Modern Library ranked his 1929 novel The Sound and the Fury sixth on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century; also on the
    8.00
    4 votes
    24
    Terry Goodkind

    Terry Goodkind

    • Works written: Soul of the Fire
    Terry Goodkind (born in 1948) is an American writer and author of the epic fantasy The Sword of Truth series as well as the contemporary suspense novel The Law of Nines, which has ties to his fantasy series, and The Omen Machine, which is a direct sequel thereof. Before his success as an author, Goodkind worked primarily as a painter, as well as doing carpentry and woodworking. Goodkind is a proponent of Ayn Rand's philosophical approach of Objectivism, with references to Rand's ideas and novels in his works. The Sword of Truth series sold twenty-five million copies worldwide and was translated into more than twenty languages. It was adapted into a television series called Legend of the Seeker; it premiered on November 1, 2008 and ran for two seasons, ending in May, 2010. Goodkind was born in 1948, and his home town was Omaha, Nebraska. In 1983 Goodkind moved with his wife Jeri to a house he built in Maine, later making his residence on the coast of Lake Las Vegas, Nevada his primary home. Goodkind has dyslexia, which initially dissuaded him from any interest in writing. Before starting his career as a writer, Goodkind built cabinets and violins and was a marine and wildlife
    6.80
    5 votes
    25
    Anne McCaffrey

    Anne McCaffrey

    • Works written: Dragonsblood
    Anne Inez McCaffrey (1 April 1926 – 21 November 2011) was an American-born Irish writer, best known for her Dragonriders of Pern series. During McCaffrey's 46-year career, she won Hugo and Nebula Awards. Her book The White Dragon became one of the first science-fiction novels to appear on the New York Times Best Seller list. In 2005 the Science Fiction Writers of America named McCaffrey the 22nd Grand Master, an annual award to living writers of fantasy and science fiction. She was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame on 17 June 2006. Anne Inez McCaffrey was born in Cambridge, Middlesex, Massachusetts, the second of three children of Anne Dorothy (née McElroy) and Col. George Herbert McCaffrey. She had two brothers: Hugh ("Mac", died 1988) and Kevin Richard McCaffrey ("Kevie"). Her father had Irish and English ancestry, and her mother was of Irish descent. She attended Stuart Hall (a girls' boarding school in Staunton, Virginia), and graduated from Montclair High School in New Jersey. In 1947 she graduated cum laude from Radcliffe College with a degree in Slavonic Languages and Literature. In 1950 she married Horace Wright Johnson (died 2009), who shared her interests in
    9.00
    3 votes
    26
    Kurt Vonnegut

    Kurt Vonnegut

    • Works written: Slaughterhouse-Five
    Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. ( /ˈvɒnɨɡət/; November 11, 1922 – April 11, 2007) was a 20th-century American writer. His works such as Cat's Cradle (1963), Slaughterhouse-Five (1969), and Breakfast of Champions (1973) blend satire, gallows humor, and science fiction. As a citizen he was a lifelong supporter of the American Civil Liberties Union and a critical leftist intellectual. He was known for his humanist beliefs and was honorary president of the American Humanist Association. Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, to third-generation German-American parents, Kurt Vonnegut, Sr. and Edith (Lieber). Both his father and his grandfather Bernard Vonnegut attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology and were architects in the Indianapolis firm of Vonnegut & Bohn. His great-grandfather Clemens Vonnegut, Sr. was the founder of the Vonnegut Hardware Company, an Indianapolis institution. Vonnegut graduated from Shortridge High School in Indianapolis in May 1940 and matriculated into Cornell University that fall. Though majoring in chemistry, he was Assistant Managing Editor and Associate Editor of The Cornell Daily Sun. He was a member of the Delta Upsilon Fraternity, as was his
    9.00
    3 votes
    27
    Raymond Chandler

    Raymond Chandler

    • Works written: Playback
    Raymond Thornton Chandler (July 23, 1888 – March 26, 1959) was an American novelist and screenwriter. In 1932, at age forty-four, Raymond Chandler decided to become a detective fiction writer after losing his job as an oil company executive during the Depression. His first short story, "Blackmailers Don't Shoot", was published in 1933 in Black Mask, a popular pulp magazine. His first novel, The Big Sleep, was published in 1939. In addition to his short stories, Chandler published just seven full novels during his lifetime (though an eighth in progress at his death was completed by Robert B. Parker). All but Playback have been realized into motion pictures, some several times. In the year before he died, he was elected president of the Mystery Writers of America. He died on March 26, 1959, in La Jolla, California. Chandler had an immense stylistic influence on American popular literature, and is considered by many to be a founder, along with Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain and other Black Mask writers, of the hard-boiled school of detective fiction. His protagonist, Philip Marlowe, along with Hammett's Sam Spade, is considered by some to be synonymous with "private detective," both
    9.00
    3 votes
    28
    A. A. Milne

    A. A. Milne

    • Works written: The Red House Mystery
    Alan Alexander Milne  /ˈmɪln/ (18 January 1882 – 31 January 1956) was an English author, best known for his books about the teddy bear Winnie-the-Pooh and for various children's poems. Milne was a noted writer, primarily as a playwright, before the huge success of Pooh overshadowed all his previous work. A. A. Milne was born in Kilburn, London, to parents Vince Milne, who was Scottish, and Sarah Marie Milne (née Heginbotham) and grew up at Henley House School, 6/7 Mortimer Road (now Crescent), Kilburn, a small public school run by his father. One of his teachers was H. G. Wells who taught there in 1889–90. Milne attended Westminster School and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he studied on a mathematics scholarship. While there, he edited and wrote for Granta, a student magazine. He collaborated with his brother Kenneth and their articles appeared over the initials AKM. Milne's work came to the attention of the leading British humour magazine Punch, where Milne was to become a contributor and later an assistant editor. Milne joined the British Army in World War I and served as an officer in the Royal Warwickshire Regiment and later, after a debilitating illness, the Royal Corps of
    7.75
    4 votes
    29
    Judy Blume

    Judy Blume

    • Works written: Summer Sisters
    • School or Movement: PEN American Center
    Judy Blume (born Judith Sussman; February 12, 1938) is an American author. She has written many novels for children and young adults which have exceeded sales of 80 million and been translated into 31 languages. Blume's novels for teenagers were among the first to tackle racism (Iggie's House), menstruation (Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret.), divorce (It's Not the End of the World, Just As Long As We're Together), bullying (Blubber), masturbation (Deenie, Then Again, Maybe I Won't, and originally Tiger Eyes) and teen sex (Forever). Blume has used these subjects to generate discussion, but they have also been the source of controversy regarding age-appropriate reading. The film version of Blume’s 1981 novel Tiger Eyes, directed by the author's son Lawrence Blume, stars Willa Holland as Davey and Amy Jo Johnson as Gwen Wexler. The film has a projected release date of 2012. Blume was born and raised in Elizabeth, New Jersey, to Esther (née Rosenfeld), a homemaker, and Ralph Sussman, a dentist. She has a brother, David, who is five years older. Her family was Jewish. Blume has recalled, "I spent most of my childhood making up stories inside of my head." She graduated from Battin
    7.75
    4 votes
    30
    Leonard Cohen

    Leonard Cohen

    • Works written: The Favourite Game
    Leonard Norman Cohen, CC GOQ (born 21 September 1934) is a Canadian singer-songwriter, musician, poet, and novelist. His work often explores religion, isolation, sexuality, and interpersonal relationships. Cohen has been inducted into the American Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and both the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame. He is also a Companion of the Order of Canada, the nation's highest civilian honour. While giving the speech at Cohen's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on March 10, 2008, Lou Reed described Cohen as belonging to the "highest and most influential echelon of songwriters." The critic Bruce Eder wrote an assessment of Cohen's overall career in popular music, writing, "[Cohen is] one of the most fascinating and enigmatic. . .singer/songwriters of the late '60s. . . [and] has retained an audience across four decades of music-making. . . Second only to Bob Dylan (and perhaps Paul Simon) [in terms of influence], he commands the attention of critics and younger musicians more firmly than any other musical figure from the 1960s who is still working at the outset of the 21st century." The Academy of American Poets has
    7.75
    4 votes
    31
    Ian Fleming

    Ian Fleming

    • Works written: The Spy Who Loved Me
    Ian Lancaster Fleming (28 May 1908 – 12 August 1964) was an English author, journalist and Naval Intelligence Officer, best known for his James Bond series of spy novels. Fleming came from a wealthy family connected to the merchant bank Robert Fleming & Co., and his father was the Member of Parliament for Henley from 1910 until his death on the Western Front in 1917. Educated at Eton, Sandhurst and the universities of Munich and Geneva, Fleming moved through a number of jobs before he started writing. While working in British Naval Intelligence during Second World War, Fleming was involved in the planning stages of Operation Mincemeat and Operation Golden Eye. He was also involved in the planning and oversight of two intelligence units, 30 Assault Unit and T-Force. His wartime service and his career as a journalist provided much of the background, detail and depth of the James Bond novels. Fleming wrote his first Bond novel, Casino Royale, in 1952. It was a success, with three print runs being commissioned to cope with the demand. Eleven Bond novels and two short-story collections followed between 1953 and 1966. The novels revolved around James Bond, an officer in the Secret
    6.60
    5 votes
    32
    Herman Melville

    Herman Melville

    • Works written: Moby-Dick; or, The Whale
    • School or Movement: Romanticism
    Herman Melville (August 1, 1819 – September 28, 1891) was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist, and poet. He is best known for his novel Moby-Dick. His first three books gained much contemporary attention (the first, Typee, becoming a bestseller), and after a fast-blooming literary success in the late 1840s, his popularity declined precipitously in the mid-1850s and never recovered during his lifetime. When he died in 1891, he was almost completely forgotten. It was not until the "Melville Revival" in the early 20th century that his work won recognition, especially Moby-Dick, which was hailed as one of the literary masterpieces of both American and world literature. He was the first writer to have his works collected and published by the Library of America. Herman Melville was born in New York City on August 1, 1819, the third of eight children of Allan and Maria Gansevoort Melvill. After her husband Allan died, between 1832 and 1834, Maria added an "e" to the family surname — seemingly at the behest of her son Gansevoort. Part of a well-established and colorful Boston family, Melville's father spent a good deal of time abroad as a commission merchant and an importer
    7.50
    4 votes
    33
    Jeffrey Archer

    Jeffrey Archer

    • Works written: Kane and Abel
    Jeffrey Howard Archer, Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare (born 15 April 1940) is a best-selling English author and former politician whose political career ended with his conviction and subsequent imprisonment (2001–03) for perjury and perverting the course of justice. Alongside his literary work, Archer was a Member of Parliament (1969–74), and deputy chairman of the Conservative Party (1985–86). He was made a life peer in 1992. Jeffrey Howard Archer was born in the City of London Maternity Hospital. He was two weeks old when his family moved to the seaside town of Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, where he spent most of his early life. He has an older brother born out of wedlock, also originally called Jeffrey, who was put up for adoption at an early age. The brother assumed the name David Brown and only discovered his relationship to Archer in 1980, even though Archer already apparently knew this, according to the journalist Michael Crick. His father, William (died 1956), was sixty-four when Archer was born. In 1951, he won a scholarship to Wellington School, in Somerset (not to be confused with the public school Wellington College, which is possible from the ambiguous biography in
    7.50
    4 votes
    34
    R. L. Stine

    R. L. Stine

    • Works written: Under the Magician's Spell
    Robert Lawrence Stine (born October 8, 1943), known as R. L. Stine, and Jovial Bob Stine, is an American writer. Stine, who is called the "Stephen King of children's literature," is the author of hundreds of horror fiction novels, including the books in the Fear Street, Goosebumps, Rotten School, Mostly Ghostly, and The Nightmare Room series. Some of his other works include a Space Cadets trilogy, two Hark gamebooks, and dozens of joke books. R. L. Stine's books have sold over 400 million copies as of 2008. Stine was born in Columbus, Ohio on October 8, 1943 to Jewish parents, Anne Stine, a homemaker and Lewis Stine, a shipping clerk. He began writing at age 9 when he found a typewriter in his attic, subsequently beginning to type stories and joke books. He graduated from The Ohio State University (OSU) in 1965 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. While at OSU, R. L. Stine edited the OSU humor magazine, The Sundial, for three out of his four years there. He later moved to New York City to pursue his career as a writer. He wrote dozens of humor books for kids under the pen name Jovial Bob Stine and created the humor magazine Bananas. In 1986, Stine wrote his first horror
    7.50
    4 votes
    35
    Rob Grant

    Rob Grant

    • Works written: Colony
    Robert Grant is a British comedy writer and television producer, who was born in Salford and studied Psychology at Liverpool University for two years. In the mid-1980s, Grant collaborated with co-writer Doug Naylor on radio programmes such as Cliché and its sequel Son Of Cliché, Wrinkles for Radio 4 and television programmes such as Spitting Image, The 10 Percenters, and various projects for Jasper Carrott. The 'Grant Naylor' collaboration, as it had become known, was best known for the creation of the cult science-fiction comedy series, Red Dwarf, which evolved from Dave Hollins: Space Cadet, a recurring sketch within Son Of Cliché. Grant was briefly seen (uncredited) in an episode of Red Dwarf entitled "Backwards" (1989), as a man who 'un-smoked' a cigarette. In the mid-1990s, the 'Grant Naylor' collaboration was ended when Grant left Red Dwarf after the sixth series, citing creative differences ("... it was basically 'musical differences' ...") with Doug Naylor. His main reason however, he said, was that he 'wished to have more on his 'tombstone' than Red Dwarf on its own'. Since Red Dwarf, Grant has written two television series, The Strangerers and Dark Ages, and four solo
    7.50
    4 votes
    36
    Nikos Kazantzakis

    Nikos Kazantzakis

    • Works written: The Last Temptation of Christ
    Nikos Kazantzakis (Greek: Νίκος Καζαντζάκης; February 18, 1883 – October 26, 1957) was a Greek writer and philosopher, celebrated for his novel Zorba the Greek, considered his magnum opus. He became known globally after the 1964 release of the Michael Cacoyannis film Zorba the Greek, based on the novel. He gained renewed fame with the 1988 Martin Scorsese adaptation of his book The Last Temptation of Christ. When Kazantzakis was born in 1883 in Heraklion, Crete had not yet joined the modern Greek state, (which had been established in 1832) and was still under the rule of the Ottoman Empire. From 1902 Kazantzakis studied law at the University of Athens, then went to Paris in 1907 to study philosophy. Here he fell under the influence of Henri Bergson. His 1909 dissertation was titled "Friedrich Nietzsche on the Philosophy of Right and the State." Upon his return to Greece, he began translating works of philosophy. In 1914 he met Angelos Sikelianos. Together they travelled for two years in places where Greek Orthodox Christian culture flourished, largely influenced by the enthusiastic nationalism of Sikelianos. Kazantzakis married Galatea Alexiou in 1911; they divorced in 1926. He
    8.67
    3 votes
    37
    Ian Irvine

    Ian Irvine

    • Works written: Facing the Demon of Noontide
    • Contributing author to: 'Fire' (UK) 'Special International Double Issue' (Nos 29-30)
    • School or Movement: Australian Contemporary Poetry
    Ian Irvine (also writing as Ian Hobson) is an Australian-based poet, writer and lecturer/teacher currently living near Bendigo, Victoria. He earned a PhD in Human Relations from La Trobe University in 1999 for his work on chronic ennui and has taught across the Humanities, Creative Arts and Social Sciences at various public education institutes for adults since 1994 (e.g. La Trobe University (Bendigo campus), Bendigo TAFE and Victoria University). Courses taught include: Medieval and Early Modern History, Contemporary Social Issues, Psychology, Novel Writing, Poetry, Literature for Writers, Myths and Symbols for Writers, etc. Current coordination duties encompass Professional Writing and Editing and Music/Sound Production courses at Bendigo Tafe. Ian is the author of Dream-Dust Parasites (a novel - 2003), The Angel of Luxury and Sadness (non-fiction book - 2001) and Facing the Demon of Noontide (poetry book - 2000) and his essays, poems and short stories have appeared in many literary and professional journals. He was also coeditor of the innovative online literary ezine 'The Animist' from 1998 until 2001. More recently he has co-edited Scintillae 2012 an anthology of 52 Central Victorian writers, poets and creative thinkers (launched at the inaugural Bendigo Writers Festival in August 2012). A growing interest in 20th Century avant garde poetries led him to formulate 'Transpersonal Relational Poetics' (TRP) - an approach to the creative arts that merges insights drawn from Quantum physics and contemporary cosmology with Biosemiotic, Jungian, Groffian and Relational Cultural perspectives concerning the place of creativity in personal and social life. In the early 1990s he was lead singer and co-songwriter for the Central Victorian alternative rock band "Goya's Child". Between 1980 and 1984 he also had a brief career as a semi-professional cricketer representing various Auckland province and Worcestershire Country sides as well New Zealand's national Under-19 side (1981-82 and 1982-83). See the international 'Cricket Archive' site for further details. For examples of his writing and lists of publications and public performances etc. follow the link to his Authorsden.com site. Current research interests include: the archetypes of the trickster and Hermes-mercury as related to the information revolution, chronic ennui and other pathologies of subjectivity and social wholes in contemporary society, quantum physics and creativity, relational-cultural psychology as a model for a relational poetics, and ways of confronting the species parasite that is hyper-capitalism, etc.
    10.00
    2 votes
    38
    Saul Bellow

    Saul Bellow

    • Works written: The Adventures of Augie March
    • Contributing author to: Razgovori by Dejan Stojanovic
    Saul Bellow (June 10, 1915 – April 5, 2005) was a Canadian-born American writer. For his literary contributions, Bellow was awarded the Pulitzer Prize, the Nobel Prize for Literature, and the National Medal of Arts. He is the only writer to win the National Book Award for Fiction three times and he received the Foundation's lifetime Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters in 1990. In the words of the Swedish Nobel Committee, his writing exhibited "the mixture of rich picaresque novel and subtle analysis of our culture, of entertaining adventure, drastic and tragic episodes in quick succession interspersed with philosophic conversation, all developed by a commentator with a witty tongue and penetrating insight into the outer and inner complications that drive us to act, or prevent us from acting, and that can be called the dilemma of our age." His best-known works include The Adventures of Augie March, Henderson the Rain King, Herzog, Mr. Sammler's Planet, Seize the Day, Humboldt's Gift and Ravelstein. Widely regarded as one of the 20th century's greatest authors, Bellow has had a "huge literary influence." Bellow said that of all his characters Eugene Henderson, of
    10.00
    2 votes
    39
    Aberjhani

    Aberjhani

    • Works written: The Bridge of Silver Wings
    • Contributing author to: The Hanging Man Dreams
    • School or Movement: Harlem Renaissance
    Aberjhani is an American historian, columnist, novelist, poet, and editor. Although well known for his blog articles on literature and politics, he is perhaps best known as co-author of Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance and author of I Made My Boy Out of Poetry. The encyclopedia won a Choice Academic Title Award in 2004. Aberjhani grew up in Savannah, Georgia. Upon graduating from Savannah High School in 1975, he studied journalism, creative writing, and the American community at a variety of colleges: Savannah State College (now University); Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida; Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota; Temple University in Philadelphia; and the New College of California in San Francisco. He completed additional studies in journalism at the Fort Benjamin Harrison School of Journalism in Indianapolis, Indiana. He served a two-year tour of duty with the U.S. Air Force in Fairbanks, Alaska; four years in Suffolk, England; and another two years with the USAF Reserves in [[Charleston, South Carolina. He studied Equal Opportunity and Human Relations Counseling at the DEOMI Institute at Tyndale AFB, Florida. Aberjhani, the name he assumed for publication as
    7.25
    4 votes
    40
    Louis Sachar

    Louis Sachar

    • Works written: Holes
    Louis Sachar ( /ˈsækər/ SAK-ər; born March 20, 1954) is an American author of children's books. He is best known for the series Sideways Stories From Wayside School and for the novel Holes which he has followed with two companion novels. Holes won the 1998 U.S. National Book Award for Young People's Literature and the 1999 Newbery Medal for the year's "most distinguished contribution to American literature for children". Lo He grew up in "a happy, normal suburban family," and though he enjoyed school, he did not become interested in reading and writing until high school, when he was inspired by the work of J. D. Salinger and Kurt Vonnegut. After graduating from high school, Sachar attended Antioch College for a semester before transferring to University of California, Berkeley, during which time he began working at an elementary school to earn college credit. Sachar later recalled, Sachar graduated from UC Berkeley in 1976 with a degree in Economics, and began working on Sideways Stories From Wayside School, a children's book set at an elementary school with supernatural elements. Although the book's students were named after children from Hillside and there is a presumably
    7.25
    4 votes
    41
    Simon Scarrow

    Simon Scarrow

    • Works written: The Eagle's Conquest
    Simon Scarrow is a UK-based author, born in Nigeria and now based in Norfolk. He completed a master's degree at the University of East Anglia after working at the Inland Revenue, and then went into teaching as a lecturer, firstly at East Norfolk Sixth Form College, then at City College Norwich. He is best known for his Eagle Series of Roman Military fiction set in the territories of the Roman Empire, covering the second invasion of Britain and the subsequent prolonged campaign undertaken by the rump of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. To date there are eleven books in the series, with the 11th released recently in November 2011, Praetorian. He has also written another series, Revolution, focusing on Wellington and Napoleon, whose first title, Young Bloods, was published in 2006. The second volume, The Generals, was released on the 31 May 2007 and the third volume Fire and Sword was released in January 2009. The fourth and final novel of the series was released in Jun 2010 and is called The Fields of Death. He has now started writing a new series titled Gladiator: The fight for freedom. The Eagle Series centres around two main protagonists; Quintus Licinius Cato and Lucius Cornelius
    7.25
    4 votes
    42
    Dorothy L. Sayers

    Dorothy L. Sayers

    • Works written: The Nine Tailors
    Dorothy Leigh Sayers (usually pronounced /ˈseɪ.ərz/, although Sayers herself preferred [ˈsɛːz] and encouraged the use of her middle initial to facilitate this pronunciation; 13 June 1893 – 17 December 1957) was a renowned English crime writer, poet, playwright, essayist, translator and Christian humanist. She was also a student of classical and modern languages. She is best known for her mysteries, a series of novels and short stories set between World War I and World War II that feature English aristocrat and amateur sleuth Lord Peter Wimsey, that remain popular to this day. However, Sayers herself considered her translation of Dante's Divine Comedy to be her best work. She is also known for her plays, literary criticism and essays. Sayers, an only child, was born on 13 June 1893 at the Head Master's House, Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, her father, the Rev. Henry Sayers, M.A., being a chaplain of Christ Church and headmaster of the Choir School. (When she was six he started teaching her Latin.) She grew up in the tiny village of Bluntisham-cum-Earith in Huntingdonshire, after her father was given the living there as rector. The Regency rectory is an elegant building, while the
    6.20
    5 votes
    43
    Michael Ondaatje

    Michael Ondaatje

    • Works written: The English Patient
    Philip Michael Ondaatje ( /ɒnˈdɑːtʃiː/; born September 12, 1943), OC, is a Sri Lankan-born Canadian novelist. He won the Booker Prize for his novel The English Patient, which was adapted into an Academy Award-winning film. Ondaatje was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka (then Ceylon) in 1943 and moved to England in 1954. He attended Dulwich College. After relocating to Canada in 1962, Ondaatje became a Canadian citizen. He studied for a time at Bishop's College School and Bishop's University in Lennoxville, Quebec, but moved to Toronto, where he received his BA from the University of Toronto and his MA from Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario. He then began teaching at the University of Western Ontario in London. In 1970, he settled in Toronto and, from 1971 to 1990, taught English literature at York University and Glendon College. Ondaatje's work includes fiction, autobiography, poetry and film. He has published 13 books of poetry, and won the Governor General's Award for The Collected Works of Billy the Kid (1970) and There's a Trick With a Knife I'm Learning to Do: Poems 1973-1978 (1979). Anil's Ghost was the winner of the 2000 Giller Prize, the Prix Médicis, the Kiriyama Pacific Rim
    6.20
    5 votes
    44
    Cecilia Dart-Thornton

    Cecilia Dart-Thornton

    • Works written: The Ill-Made Mute
    Cecilia Dart-Thornton is an Australian author of fantasy novels, most notably the Bitterbynde Trilogy. Cecilia Dart-Thornton was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, graduating from Monash University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology. She became a schoolteacher before working as an editor, bookseller, illustrator and book designer. She started and ran her own business, but became a full-time writer in 2000 after her work was ‘discovered’ on the Internet and published by Time Warner (New York). A keen supporter of animal rights and wilderness conservation, she has also branched out into such diverse industries as clay sculpting, performing in folk music bands, and digital media. Her books are published around the world and have been translated into several languages. 'This series follows the journey of a mute, amnesiac foundling through a world of beauty and peril, teeming with faerie creatures. Also available as audio books. A four-part epic fantasy describing the adventures that befall a cursed and gifted family. Short Stories
    9.50
    2 votes
    45
    Edgar Rice Burroughs

    Edgar Rice Burroughs

    • Works written: The Gods of Mars
    Edgar Rice Burroughs (September 1, 1875 – March 19, 1950) was an American author, best known for his creation of the jungle hero Tarzan and the heroic Mars adventurer John Carter, although he produced works in many genres. Burroughs was born on September 1, 1875, in Chicago, Illinois (he later lived for many years in the suburb of Oak Park), the fourth son of businessman and Civil War veteran Major George Tyler Burroughs (1833–1913) and his wife Mary Evaline (Zieger) Burroughs (1840–1920). His middle name is from his paternal grandmother, Mary Rice Burroughs (1802-ca. 1870). Burroughs was educated at a number of local schools, and during the Chicago influenza epidemic in 1891, he spent a half year at his brother's ranch on the Raft River in Idaho. He then attended the Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, and then the Michigan Military Academy. Graduating in 1895, and failing the entrance exam for the United States Military Academy (West Point), he ended up as an enlisted soldier with the 7th U.S. Cavalry in Fort Grant, Arizona Territory. After being diagnosed with a heart problem and thus found ineligible to serve, he was discharged in 1897. Some seemingly unrelated short
    9.50
    2 votes
    46
    Jonathan Carroll

    Jonathan Carroll

    • Works written: Bones of the Moon
    Jonathan Samuel Carroll (born January 26, 1949) is an American author primarily known for novels, which can be characterized as magic realist, slipstream or modern fantasy. He also writes short stories. Carroll was born in New York City to Sidney Carroll, a film writer whose credits included The Hustler, and June Carroll (née Sillman), an actress and lyricist who appeared in numerous Broadway shows and two films. He is the half brother of composer Steve Reich and nephew of Broadway producer Leonard Sillman. His parents were Jewish, but Carroll was raised in the Christian Science religion. A self-described "troubled teenager," he finished primary education at the Loomis School in Connecticut and graduated with honors from Rutgers University in 1971, marrying artist Beverly Schreiner in the same year. He relocated to Vienna, Austria a few years later and began teaching literature at the American International School, and has made his home in Austria ever since. His first novel, The Land of Laughs (1980), is indicative of his general style and subject matter. Told through realistic first person narration, the novel concerns a young schoolteacher searching for meaning through
    9.50
    2 votes
    47
    Joseph Conrad

    Joseph Conrad

    • Works written: The Secret Agent
    • School or Movement: Modernist literature
    Joseph Conrad (born Józef Teodor Konrad ‪Nałęcz‬ Korzeniowski; 3 December 1857  – 3 August 1924) was a Polish novelist who wrote in English, after settling in England. Conrad is regarded as one of the great novelists in English, though he did not speak the language fluently until he was in his twenties (and always with a marked Polish accent). He wrote stories and novels, often with a nautical setting, that depict trials of the human spirit in the midst of an indifferent universe. He was a master prose stylist who brought a distinctly non-English tragic sensibility into English literature. While some of his works have a strain of romanticism, he is viewed as a precursor of modernist literature. His narrative style and anti-heroic characters have influenced many authors, including D. H. Lawrence, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell, Graham Greene, Malcolm Lowry, William Golding, William S. Burroughs, Joseph Heller, Italo Calvino, Gabriel García Márquez, J. G. Ballard, John le Carré, V.S. Naipaul, Hunter S. Thompson and J.M. Coetzee. Films have been adapted from or inspired by Conrad's Almayer's Folly, An Outcast of the Islands, Heart of Darkness, Lord Jim, Nostromo,
    9.50
    2 votes
    48
    Rudy Rucker

    Rudy Rucker

    • Works written: White Light
    • Contributing author to: The Ware Tetralogy
    • School or Movement: Cyberpunk
    Rudolf von Bitter Rucker (born March 22, 1946) is an American mathematician, computer scientist, science fiction author, and philosopher, and is one of the founders of the cyberpunk literary movement. The author of both fiction and non-fiction, he is best known for the novels in the Ware Tetralogy, the first two of which (Software and Wetware) both won Philip K. Dick Awards. At present he edits the science fiction webzine Flurb. Rucker was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky. He is the great-great-great-grandson of the philosopher G. W. F. Hegel. Rucker attended St. Xavier High School before earning a B.A. in mathematics from Swarthmore College in 1967 and M.S. (1969) and Ph.D. (1973) degrees in mathematics from Rutgers University. Rucker taught at the State University of New York at Geneseo from 1972–1978. Thanks to a grant from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Rucker taught math at the Ruprecht Karl University of Heidelberg from 1978–1980. He then taught at Randolph-Macon Women's College in Lynchburg, Virginia from 1980–1982, before trying his hand as a full-time author for four years. Inspired by an interview with Stephen Wolfram, Rucker became a computer science
    9.50
    2 votes
    49
    Alexandre Dumas

    Alexandre Dumas

    • Works written: The Count of Monte Cristo
    • School or Movement: Romanticism
    Alexandre Dumas (pronounced: [a.lɛk.sɑ̃dʁ dy.ma], born Dumas Davy de la Pailleterie, [dy.ma da.vi də pa.jət.ʁi], 24 July 1802 – 5 December 1870), also known as Alexandre Dumas, père, was a French writer, best known for his historical novels of high adventure. Translated into nearly 100 languages, these have made him one of the most widely read French authors in the world. Many of his novels, including The Count of Monte Cristo, The Three Musketeers, Twenty Years After, and The Vicomte de Bragelonne were originally published as serials. His novels have been adapted since the early twentieth century for nearly 200 films. Dumas' last novel, The Knight of Sainte-Hermine, unfinished at his death, was completed by a scholar and published in 2005, becoming a bestseller. It was published in English in 2008 as The Last Cavalier. Prolific in several genres, Dumas began his career by writing plays, which were successfully produced from the first. He also wrote numerous magazine articles and travel books; his published works totaled 100,000 pages. In the 1840s, Dumas founded the Théâtre Historique in Paris. Born and raised in poverty, as his father died when he was four, Dumas faced
    7.00
    4 votes
    50

    Felipe de Ortego y Gasca

    • Works written: The Stamp of One Defect: A Study of Hamlet
    • Contributing author to: The Greenwood Encyclopedia of American Poets and Poetry
    • School or Movement: Post Colonial and Critical Theory
    Dr. Felipe de Ortego y Gasca (born 1926), professor emeritus of English in the Texas State University System (Sul Ross), and Scholar in Residence at Western New Mexico University, Silver City, NM, has long been regarded as one of the most persuasive of American Hispanic social and literary critics, at the forefront of many Hispanic initiatives. Considered the founder of Chicano literary history and one of the early Quinto Sol writers of "The Chicano Renaissance" (1966–1975), he is principal scholar of that literary movement, coining the term for it in Backgrounds of Mexican American Literature (University of New Mexico, 1971), first historic and taxonomic study in the field. His insights in that work are seminal on the "forgotten pages of American literature." In 1969, he taught the first course in Chicano literature in the United States at the University of New Mexico. When he started grade school he was ”Felipe” but the name was changed quickly to “Philip” despite the name “Felipe” on his birth certificate. Changing his name to “Philip” was part of the Americanization process practiced by American schools then. Subsequently, his official records–schools, military service, public
    7.00
    4 votes
    51
    Frank Herbert

    Frank Herbert

    • Works written: Heretics of Dune
    • School or Movement: New Wave
    Franklin Patrick Herbert, Jr. (October 8, 1920 – February 11, 1986) was a critically acclaimed and commercially successful American science fiction author. Though also a short story author, he is best known for his novels, most notably Dune and its five sequels. The Dune saga, set in the distant future and taking place over millennia, deals with themes such as human survival and evolution, ecology, and the intersection of religion, politics and power. Dune itself is the "best-selling science fiction novel of all time," and the series is widely considered to be among the classics in the genre. Frank Herbert was born on October 8, 1920, in Tacoma, Washington, to Frank Patrick Herbert Sr. and Eileen (McCarthy) Herbert. Due to a poor home environment, he ran away from home in 1938 to live with an aunt and uncle in Salem, Oregon. He enrolled in high school at Salem High School (now North Salem High School), where he graduated the next year. In 1939 he lied about his age to get his first newspaper job at the Glendale Star. Herbert then returned to Salem in 1940 where he worked for the Oregon Statesman newspaper (now Statesman Journal) in a variety of positions, including photographer. He
    7.00
    4 votes
    52
    John Steinbeck

    John Steinbeck

    • Works written: The Moon Is Down
    John Ernst Steinbeck, Jr. (February 27, 1902 – December 20, 1968) was an American writer. He is widely known for the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel The Grapes of Wrath (1939) and East of Eden (1952) and the novella Of Mice and Men (1937). As the author of twenty-seven books, including sixteen novels, six non-fiction books and five collections of short stories, Steinbeck received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962. John Ernst Steinbeck, Jr. was born on February 27, 1902, in Salinas, California. He was of German, English, and Irish descent. Johann Adolf Großsteinbeck, Steinbeck's paternal grandfather, had shortened the family name to Steinbeck when he immigrated to the United States. The family farm in Heiligenhaus, Mettmann, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, is still today named "Großsteinbeck." His father, John Ernst Steinbeck, served as Monterey County treasurer. John's mother, Olive Hamilton, a former school teacher, shared Steinbeck's passion of reading and writing. The Steinbecks were members of the Episcopal Church. Steinbeck lived in a small rural town that was essentially a frontier settlement, set amid some of the world's most fertile land. He spent his summers working on
    7.00
    4 votes
    53
    Stephen Baxter

    Stephen Baxter

    • Works written: Time's Eye
    Stephen Baxter (born 13 November 1957 in Liverpool, England) is a prolific British hard science fiction author. He has degrees in mathematics and engineering. Strongly influenced by SF pioneer H. G. Wells, Baxter has been a distinguished Vice-President of the international H. G. Wells Society since 2006. His fiction falls into three main categories, each with a different basis, style and tone. Baxter's "Future History" mode is based on research into hard science. It encompasses the monumental Xeelee Sequence, which as of July 2009 is composed of seven novels (including the Destiny's Children series), plus four novellas and 46 short pieces, all of which fit into a single timeline stretching from the Big Bang singularity of the past to his Timelike Infinity singularity of the future. These stories begin in the present day and end when the Milky Way galaxy collides with Andromeda five billion years in the future. The central narrative is that of Humanity rising and evolving to become the second most powerful race in the universe, next to the god-like Xeelee. Character development tends to take second place to the depiction of advanced theories and ideas, such as the true nature of the
    7.00
    4 votes
    54
    Alexander McCall Smith

    Alexander McCall Smith

    • Works written: The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency
    R. Alexander "Sandy" McCall Smith, CBE, FRSE, (born 24 August 1948) is a Rhodesian-born Scottish writer and Emeritus Professor of Medical Law at the University of Edinburgh. In the late twentieth century, McCall Smith became a respected expert on medical law and bioethics and served on British and international committees concerned with these issues. He has since become internationally known as a writer of fiction. He is most widely known as the creator of the The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. R. Alexander McCall Smith was born in Bulawayo, in what was then Southern Rhodesia (present-day Zimbabwe). His father worked as a public prosecutor in what was then a British colony. He was educated at the Christian Brothers College before moving to Scotland to study law at the University of Edinburgh, where he earned his PhD in law. He soon taught at Queen's University Belfast, and while teaching there he entered a literary competition: one a children's book and the other a novel for adults. He won in the children's category, and published thirty books in the 1980s and 1990s. He returned to southern Africa in 1981 to help co-found and teach law at the University of Botswana. While
    8.00
    3 votes
    55
    Beatrix Potter

    Beatrix Potter

    • Works written: The Tailor of Gloucester
    Helen Beatrix Potter (28 July 1866 – 22 December 1943) was an English author, illustrator, natural scientist and conservationist best known for her imaginative children’s books featuring animals such as those in The Tale of Peter Rabbit which celebrated the British landscape and country life. Born into a privileged Unitarian family, Potter, along with her younger brother, Walter Bertram (1872–1918), grew up with few friends outside her large extended family. Her parents were artistic, interested in nature and enjoyed the countryside. As children, Beatrix and Bertram had numerous small animals as pets which they observed closely and drew endlessly. Summer holidays were spent in Scotland and in the English Lake District where Beatrix developed a love of the natural world which was the subject of her painting from an early age. She was educated by private governesses until she was eighteen. Her study of languages, literature, science and history was broad and she was an eager student. Her artistic talents were recognized early. Although she was provided with private art lessons, Potter preferred to develop her own style, particularly favouring watercolour. Along with her drawings of
    8.00
    3 votes
    56
    Dan Simmons

    Dan Simmons

    • Works written: The Rise of Endymion
    Dan Simmons (born April 4, 1948) is an American author most widely known for his Hugo Award-winning science fiction series, known as the Hyperion Cantos, and for his Locus-winning Ilium/Olympos cycle. He spans genres such as science fiction, horror and fantasy, sometimes within the same novel: a typical example of Simmons' ability to intermingle genres is Song of Kali (1985), winner of World Fantasy Award. He is also a respected author of mysteries and thrillers, some of which feature the continuing character Joe Kurtz. Born in Peoria, Illinois, Simmons received an A.B. in English from Wabash College in 1970, and, in 1971, a Masters in Education from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. He subsequently worked in elementary education until 1989. He soon started to write short stories, although his career did not take off until 1982, when, through Harlan Ellison's help, his short story "The River Styx Runs Upstream" was published and awarded first prize in a Twilight Zone Magazine story competition. His first novel, Song of Kali, was released in 1985. Summer of Night (1991) recounts the childhood of a group of pre-teens who band together in the 1960s to defeat a
    8.00
    3 votes
    57
    David Baldacci

    David Baldacci

    • Works written: Absolute Power
    David Baldacci (born August 5, 1960) is a bestselling American novelist. Baldacci received a B.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University and a law degree from the University of Virginia. As a student, Baldacci wrote short stories in his spare time, and later practiced law for nine years near Washington, D.C.. While living in Alexandria, Virginia, Baldacci wrote short stories and screenplays without much success. He turned to novel writing, taking three years to write Absolute Power. When it was published in 1996 it was an international best seller. David Baldacci serves as a national ambassador for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and participates in numerous charities as well as founding his own foundation for literacy, Wish You Well Foundation. Baldacci was raised in Virginia and still resides there (in Vienna, Virginia) with his wife, Michelle Baldacci (Mikki), and two children. His second cousin, John Baldacci, was the Democratic Governor of Maine from 2003 to 2011. In 1997, People magazine named him one of the 51 most beautiful people in the world. He is of Italian descent. In 1996, his first novel Absolute Power was published and became an immediate bestseller. It tells
    8.00
    3 votes
    58
    Ken Kesey

    Ken Kesey

    • Works written: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
    Kenneth Elton "Ken" Kesey ( /ˈkiːziː/; September 17, 1935 – November 10, 2001) was an American author, best known for his novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1962) and as a counter-cultural figure who considered himself a link between the Beat Generation of the 1950s and the hippies of the 1960s. "I was too young to be a beatnik, and too old to be a hippie," Kesey said in a 1999 interview with Robert K. Elder. Ken Kesey was born in La Junta, Colorado, to dairy farmers Frederick A. Kesey and Geneva (Smith). In 1946, the family moved to Springfield, Oregon. Kesey was a champion wrestler in both high school and college in the 174 pound weight division, and he almost qualified to be on the Olympic team until a serious shoulder injury stopped his wrestling career. He graduated from Springfield High School in 1953. An avid reader and filmgoer, the young Kesey took John Wayne, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and Zane Grey as his role models (later naming a son Zane) and toyed with magic, ventriloquism, and hypnotism. In 1956, while attending college at the University of Oregon in neighboring Eugene, Kesey eloped with his high-school sweetheart, Norma "Faye" Haxby, whom he had met in seventh
    8.00
    3 votes
    59
    Murasaki Shikibu

    Murasaki Shikibu

    • Works written: The Tale of Genji
    Murasaki Shikibu (紫 式部, English: Lady Murasaki) (c. 973 – c. 1014 or 1025) was a Japanese novelist, poet and lady-in-waiting at the Imperial court during the Heian period. She is best known as the author of The Tale of Genji, written in Japanese between about 1000 and 1012. Murasaki Shikibu is a nickname; her real name is unknown, but she may have been Fujiwara Takako, who was mentioned in a 1007 court diary as an imperial lady-in-waiting. Heian women were traditionally excluded from learning Chinese, the written language of government, but Murasaki, raised in her erudite father's household, showed a precocious aptitude for the Chinese classics and managed to acquire fluency. She married in her mid to late twenties and gave birth to a daughter before her husband died, two years after they were married. It is uncertain when she began to write The Tale of Genji, but it was probably while she was married or shortly after she was widowed. In about 1005, Murasaki was invited to serve as a lady-in-waiting to Empress Shōshi at the Imperial court, probably because of her reputation as a writer. She continued to write during her service, adding scenes from court life to her work. After five
    8.00
    3 votes
    60
    Pearl S. Buck

    Pearl S. Buck

    • Works written: The Good Earth
    Pearl Sydenstricker Buck (June 26, 1892 – March 6, 1973), also known by her Chinese name Sai Zhenzhu (Chinese: 賽珍珠; pinyin: Sài Zhēnzhū), was an American writer who spent most of her time until 1934 in China. Her novel The Good Earth was the best-selling fiction book in the U.S. in 1931 and 1932, and won the Pulitzer Prize in 1932. In 1938, she was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, "for her rich and truly epic descriptions of peasant life in China and for her biographical masterpieces." Pearl Buck was born in Hillsboro, West Virginia, to Caroline Stulting (1857–1921) and Absalom Sydenstricker. Her parents, Southern Presbyterian missionaries, traveled to China soon after their marriage on July 8, 1880, but returned to the United States for Pearl's birth. When Pearl was three months old, the family returned to China to be stationed first in Zhenjiang (then often known as Jingjiang or, in the Postal Romanization, Tsingkiang), (this is near Nanking). Pearl was raised in a bilingual environment, tutored in English by her mother and in classical Chinese by a Mr. Kung. The Boxer Uprising greatly affected Pearl and family; their Chinese friends deserted them, and Western visitors
    8.00
    3 votes
    61
    Steve Martin

    Steve Martin

    • Works written: The Pleasure of My Company
    Stephen Glenn "Steve" Martin (born August 14, 1945) is an American actor, comedian, author, playwright, producer, musician and composer. Martin came to public notice as a writer for the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and later became a frequent guest on The Tonight Show. In the 1970s, Martin performed his offbeat, absurdist comedy routines before packed houses on national tours. In 2004, Comedy Central ranked Martin at sixth place in a list of the 100 greatest stand-up comics. Since the 1980s, having branched away from stand-up comedy, Martin has become a successful actor in both comedic and dramatic roles, as well as an author, playwright, pianist, and banjo player, eventually earning Emmy, Grammy, and American Comedy awards, among other honors. Martin was born in Waco, Texas, on August 14, 1945, the son of Mary Lee (née Stewart) and Glenn Vernon Martin, a real estate salesman and aspiring actor. Martin was raised in Inglewood, California, and then later in Garden Grove, California, in a Baptist family. Martin was a cheerleader of Garden Grove High School. One of his earliest memories is of seeing his father, as an extra, serving drinks onstage at the Call Board Theatre on Melrose
    8.00
    3 votes
    62
    Tad Williams

    Tad Williams

    • Works written: The War of the Flowers
    Robert Paul "Tad" Williams (born 14 March 1957 in San Jose, California) is an American writer. He is the author of several fantasy and science fiction novels, including Tailchaser's Song, the Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn series, the Otherland series, and The War of the Flowers. He published the first volume of his Shadowmarch series in November 2004. The second volume, Shadowplay, was published in March 2007. The third volume, Shadowrise, was published in March 2010, and the fourth volume, "Shadowheart" completed the series in November 2010. In July 2006, Williams started publishing a new six issue comic mini-series called The Next through DC Comics. A second series for DC Comics called The Factory is currently in planning stages. In addition, Tad wrote Aquaman: Sword of Atlantis for DC Comics starting with issue #50, a project which began in March 2007 and ended with issue #57. Tad Williams is also currently working on a series of young-adult books co-written with his wife Deborah Beale called Ordinary Farm. The first volume, The Dragons of Ordinary Farm was published in June 2009 and a second book, The Secrets of Ordinary Farm is expected June 2011. Three more volumes are
    8.00
    3 votes
    63
    Isaac Asimov

    Isaac Asimov

    • Works written: The Caves of Steel
    Isaac Asimov (/ˈaɪzɨk ˈæzɨmɒv/ EYE-zək AZ-ə-mov; born Isaak Yudovich Ozimov, Russian: Исаак Юдович Озимов; c. January 2, 1920 – April 6, 1992) was an American author and professor of biochemistry at Boston University, best known for his works of science fiction and for his popular science books. Asimov was one of the most prolific writers of all time, having written or edited more than 500 books and an estimated 90,000 letters and postcards. His works have been published in all ten major categories of the Dewey Decimal System (although his only work in the 100s—which covers philosophy and psychology—was a foreword for The Humanist Way). Asimov is widely considered a master of hard science fiction and, along with Robert A. Heinlein and Arthur C. Clarke, he was considered one of the "Big Three" science fiction writers during his lifetime. Asimov's most famous work is the Foundation Series; his other major series are the Galactic Empire series and the Robot series. The Galactic Empire novels are explicitly set in earlier history of the same fictional universe as the Foundation Series. Later, beginning with Foundation's Edge, he linked this distant future to the Robot and Spacer
    6.75
    4 votes
    64
    James Thurber

    James Thurber

    • Works written: The 13 Clocks
    James Grover Thurber (December 8, 1894 – November 2, 1961) was an American author, cartoonist and celebrated wit. Thurber was best known for his cartoons and short stories, published mainly in The New Yorker magazine then collected in his numerous books. One of the most popular humorists of his time, Thurber celebrated the comic frustrations and eccentricities of ordinary people. Thurber was born in Columbus, Ohio, to Charles L. Thurber and Mary Agnes (Mame) Fisher Thurber on December 8, 1894. Both of his parents greatly influenced his work. His father, a sporadically employed clerk and minor politician who dreamed of being a lawyer or an actor, is said to have been the inspiration for the small, timid protagonist typical of many of his stories. Thurber described his mother as a "born comedian" and "one of the finest comic talents I think I have ever known." She was a practical joker, on one occasion pretending to be crippled and attending a faith healer revival, only to jump up and proclaim herself healed. Thurber had two brothers, William and Robert. Once, while playing a game of William Tell, his brother shot James in the eye with an arrow, and Thurber lost that eye. This injury
    6.75
    4 votes
    65
    Kathy Reichs

    Kathy Reichs

    • Works written: Death du Jour
    Kathleen Joan Toelle "Kathy" Reichs ( /ˈraɪks/; born 1950) is an American crime writer, forensic anthropologist and academic. She is a professor of anthropology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, but is currently on indefinite leave. She divides her work time between the Laboratoire des Sciences Judiciaires et de Médecine Légale for the province of Quebec and her professorship at UNC Charlotte. She is one of the eighty-eight forensic anthropologists certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology and is on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences. Her schedule also involves a number of speaking engagements around the world. Reichs has been a producer for the TV series Bones. She has two daughters, Kerry and Courtney; and one son, Brendan. Reichs earned her Bachelors of Arts degree with a major in anthropology from American University in 1971. In 1972, she completed her Master of Arts in physical anthropology from Northwestern University, and in 1975 she completed her Ph.D. in physical anthropology from Northwestern University. Since then, Reichs has taught at Northern Illinois University, University of Pittsburgh, Concordia
    6.75
    4 votes
    66
    Mark Gatiss

    Mark Gatiss

    • Works written: The Vesuvius Club
    Mark Gatiss ( /ˈɡeɪ.tɪs/ GAY-tis; born 17 October 1966) is an English actor, screenwriter and novelist. He is best known as a member of the comedy team The League of Gentlemen alongside Reece Shearsmith, Steve Pemberton and co-writer Jeremy Dyson, and has both written for and acted in the TV series Doctor Who and Sherlock. Gatiss was born in Sedgefield, County Durham England, where he grew up opposite the Edwardian psychiatric hospital where both his parents worked. His childhood passions included watching Doctor Who and Hammer Horror films on television, reading Sherlock Holmes and H.G. Wells, and collecting fossils. All of these interests have fuelled his creative work as an adult. He attended Heighington CE Primary School and Woodham Comprehensive School in Newton Aycliffe; at the latter, he was two years ahead of Paul Magrs, who would also go on to write Doctor Who fiction. He is openly gay and was featured on The Independent on Sunday's Pink List of influential gay people in the UK in 2010 and 2011. He is in a civil partnership with actor Ian Hallard, and has a Labrador Retriever called Bunsen. He once built a Victorian laboratory in their West London home, as the fulfilment
    6.75
    4 votes
    67
    Michael Crichton

    Michael Crichton

    • Works written: Eaters of the Dead
    John Michael Crichton ( /ˈkraɪtən/; rhymes with frighten; October 23, 1942 – November 4, 2008) was an American best-selling author, producer, director, and screenwriter, best known for his work in the science fiction, medical fiction, and thriller genres. His books have sold over 200 million copies worldwide, and many have been adapted into films. In 1994, Crichton became the only creative artist ever to have works simultaneously charting at No. 1 in television, film, and book sales (with ER, Jurassic Park, and Disclosure, respectively). His literary works are usually based on the action genre and heavily feature technology. His novels epitomize the techno-thriller genre of literature, often exploring technology and failures of human interaction with it, especially resulting in catastrophes with biotechnology. Many of his future history novels have medical or scientific underpinnings, reflecting his medical training and science background. He was the author of, among others, Jurassic Park, The Andromeda Strain, Congo, Travels, Sphere, Rising Sun, Disclosure, The Lost World, Airframe, Timeline, Prey, State of Fear, Next (the final book published before his death), Pirate Latitudes
    6.75
    4 votes
    68
    Richard Morgan

    Richard Morgan

    • Works written: Broken Angels
    Richard K. Morgan (born 1965) is an English science fiction author. Born in London, and brought up in a village near Norwich, Morgan studied history at Queens' College, Cambridge. After graduating he started teaching English in order to travel the world. After fourteen years and a post at Strathclyde University, his first novel was published and he became a full-time writer. Morgan's books are generally set in a dystopian world. Morgan described his "takeaway" of one of his books as [s]ociety is, always has been and always will be a structure for the exploitation and oppression of the majority through systems of political force dictated by an élite, enforced by thugs, uniformed or not, and upheld by a willful ignorance and stupidity on the part of the very majority whom the system oppresses. In 2002 Morgan's first novel Altered Carbon was published, combining elements of cyberpunk and hardboiled detective fiction and featuring the anti-hero Takeshi Kovacs. The film rights for the book sold for a reported figure of $1,000,000 to film producer Joel Silver, enabling Morgan to become a full-time writer. In 2003 the U.S. edition received the Philip K. Dick Award. In 2003 Broken Angels
    6.75
    4 votes
    69
    Umberto Eco

    Umberto Eco

    • Works written: Baudolino
    Umberto Eco Knight Grand Cross (born 5 January 1932) is an Italian semiotician, essayist, philosopher, literary critic, and novelist. He is best known for his groundbreaking 1980 novel Il nome della rosa (The Name of the Rose), an intellectual mystery combining semiotics in fiction, biblical analysis, medieval studies and literary theory. He has since written further novels, including Il pendolo di Foucault (Foucault's Pendulum) and L'isola del giorno prima (The Island of the Day Before). His most recent novel Il cimitero di Praga (The Prague Cemetery), released in 2010, was a best-seller. Eco has also written academic texts, children's books and many essays. He is founder of the Dipartimento di Comunicazione at the University of the Republic of San Marino, President of the Scuola Superiore di Studi Umanistici, University of Bologna, member of the Accademia dei Lincei (since November 2010) and an Honorary Fellow of Kellogg College, University of Oxford. Eco was born in the city of Alessandria in the region of Piedmont in northern Italy. His father, Giulio, was an accountant before the government called upon him to serve in three wars. During World War II, Umberto and his mother,
    6.75
    4 votes
    70
    H. L. Mencken

    H. L. Mencken

    • Works written: George Bernard Shaw: His Plays
    Henry Louis "H. L." Mencken (September 12, 1880 – January 29, 1956) was an American journalist, essayist, magazine editor, satirist, critic of American life and culture, and a scholar of American English. Known as the "Sage of Baltimore", he is regarded as one of the most influential American writers and prose stylists of the first half of the twentieth century. Many of his books remain in print. Mencken is known for writing The American Language, a multi-volume study of how the English language is spoken in the United States, and for his satirical reporting on the Scopes trial, which he dubbed the "Monkey Trial". He commented widely on the social scene, literature, music, prominent politicians, pseudo-experts, the temperance movement, and uplifters. A keen cheerleader of scientific progress, he was very skeptical of economic theories and particularly critical of anti-intellectualism, bigotry, populism, Fundamentalist Christianity, creationism, organized religion, the existence of God, and osteopathic/chiropractic medicine. In addition to his literary accomplishments, Mencken was known for his controversial ideas. A frank admirer of Nietzsche, he was not a proponent of
    9.00
    2 votes
    71
    Henryk Sienkiewicz

    Henryk Sienkiewicz

    • Works written: Quo Vadis
    Henryk Adam Aleksander Pius Sienkiewicz (Polish pronunciation: [ˈxɛnrɨk ˈadam alɛˈksandɛr ˈpʲus ɕɛŋˈkʲevʲit͡ʂ]; also known as "Litwos" [ˈlitfɔs]; May 5, 1846 – November 15, 1916) was a Polish journalist and Nobel Prize-winning novelist. A Polish szlachcic (noble) of the Oszyk coat of arms, he was one of the most popular Polish writers at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, and received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1905 for his "outstanding merits as an epic writer." Born into an impoverished noble family in Russian-ruled Poland, Sienkiewicz wrote historical novels set during the Rzeczpospolita (Polish Republic, or Commonwealth). Many of his novels were first serialized in newspapers, and even today are still in print. In Poland, he is best known for his historical novels "With Fire and Sword", "The Deluge", and "Fire in the Steppe" (The Trilogy) set during the 17th-century Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, while internationally he is best known for Quo Vadis, set in Nero's Rome. Quo Vadis has been filmed several times, most notably the 1951 version. Sienkiewicz was born in Wola Okrzejska, a village in eastern Poland, that was part of the Russian Empire at the time. His was
    9.00
    2 votes
    72
    Jimmy Breslin

    Jimmy Breslin

    • Works written: The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight
    Jimmy Breslin (born October 17, 1930) is an American journalist and author. He currently writes a column for the New York Daily News' Sunday edition. He has written numerous novels, and columns of his have appeared regularly in various newspapers in his hometown of New York City. He served as a regular columnist for the Long Island, NY newspaper Newsday until his retirement on November 2, 2004, though he still publishes occasional pieces for the paper. Born in Jamaica, New York, Breslin was a columnist for the New York Herald Tribune, the Daily News, the New York Journal American, Newsday, and other venues. When the Sunday supplement of the Tribune was reworked into New York magazine by editor Clay Felker in 1962, Breslin appeared in the new edition, which became "the hottest Sunday read in town." He has been married twice. His first marriage, to Rosemary Dattolico, ended with her death in 1981. They had six children together: sons Kevin, James, Patrick and Christopher, and daughters Rosemary and Kelly. His daughter Rosemary died June 14, 2004 from a rare blood disease and his daughter Kelly, 44, died on April 21 2009, four days after a cardiac arrhythmia in a New York City
    9.00
    2 votes
    73
    Mark Twain

    Mark Twain

    • Works written: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
    Samuel Langhorne Clemens (November 30, 1835 – April 21, 1910), better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. He is most noted for his novel The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), the latter often called "the Great American Novel." Twain grew up in Hannibal, Missouri, which would later provide the setting for Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer. He apprenticed with a printer. He also worked as a typesetter and contributed articles to his older brother Orion's newspaper. After toiling as a printer in various cities, he became a master riverboat pilot on the Mississippi River before heading west to join Orion. He was a failure at gold mining, so he next turned to journalism. While a reporter, he wrote a humorous story, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County," which became very popular and brought nationwide attention. His travelogues were also well received. Twain had found his calling. He achieved great success as a writer and public speaker. His wit and satire earned praise from critics and peers, and he was a friend to presidents, artists, industrialists, and European royalty. He lacked
    5.80
    5 votes
    74
    Daphne du Maurier

    Daphne du Maurier

    • Works written: My Cousin Rachel
    Dame Daphne du Maurier, Lady Browning DBE ( /ˈdæfni duː ˈmɒri.eɪ/; 13 May 1907 – 19 April 1989) was an English author and playwright. Many of her works have been adapted into films, including the novels Rebecca (which won the Best Picture Oscar in 1941) and Jamaica Inn and the short stories The Birds and Don't Look Now. The first three were directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Her elder sister was the writer Angela du Maurier. Her father was the actor Gerald du Maurier. Her grandfather was the writer George du Maurier. Daphne du Maurier was born in London, the second of three daughters of the prominent actor-manager Sir Gerald du Maurier and actress Muriel Beaumont (maternal niece of William Comyns Beaumont). Her grandfather was the author and Punch cartoonist George du Maurier, who created the character of Svengali in the novel Trilby. These connections helped her in establishing her literary career, and du Maurier published some of her very early work in Beaumont's Bystander magazine. Her first novel, The Loving Spirit, was published in 1931. Du Maurier was also the cousin of the Llewelyn Davies boys, who served as J.M. Barrie's inspiration for the characters in the play Peter Pan, or
    7.67
    3 votes
    75
    Leopold von Sacher-Masoch

    Leopold von Sacher-Masoch

    • Works written: Venus in Furs
    Leopold Ritter von Sacher-Masoch (27 January 1836 — 9 March 1895) was an Austrian writer and journalist, who gained renown for his romantic stories of Galician life. The term masochism is derived from his name. During his lifetime, Sacher-Masoch was well-known as a man of letters, a utopian thinker who espoused socialist and humanist ideals in his fiction and non-fiction. Most of his works remain untranslated into English. The novel Venus in Furs is his only book commonly available in English. Von Sacher-Masoch was born in the city then known as Lemberg, the capital of the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria, at the time a province of the Austrian Empire (now Lviv, Ukraine), into the Roman Catholic family of an Austrian police director of Spanish descent and Charlotte von Masoch, a Ukrainian noblewoman. He began learning German at age 12. He studied law, history and mathematics at Graz University, and after graduating moved back to Lemberg where he became a professor. His early, non-fictional publications dealt mostly with Austrian history. At the same time, Masoch turned to the folklore and culture of his homeland, Galicia. Soon he abandoned lecturing and became a free man of
    7.67
    3 votes
    76
    Wilkie Collins

    Wilkie Collins

    • Works written: The Moonstone
    William Wilkie Collins (8 January 1824 – 23 September 1889) was an English novelist, playwright, and author of short stories. He was very popular during the Victorian era and wrote 30 novels, more than 60 short stories, 14 plays, and over 100 non-fiction pieces. His best-known works are The Woman in White, The Moonstone, Armadale and No Name. Collins was a lifelong friend of Charles Dickens. A number of Collins's works were first published in Dickens's journals All the Year Round and Household Words. The two collaborated on several dramatic and fictional works, and some of Collins's plays were performed by Dickens's acting company. Collins predicted the deterrence concept of mutually assured destruction that defined the Cold War nuclear era. Writing at the time of the Franco-Prussian War in 1870 he stated, "I begin to believe in only one civilising influence – the discovery one of these days of a destructive agent so terrible that War shall mean annihilation and men's fears will force them to keep the peace." Collins was born at 11 New Cavendish Street, Marylebone, London, the son of a well-known Royal Academician landscape artist, William Collins. Named after his father, he
    7.67
    3 votes
    77
    Agatha Christie

    Agatha Christie

    • Works written: The A.B.C. Murders
    Dame Agatha Mary Clarissa Christie, DBE (née Miller; 15 September 1890 – 12 January 1976) was a British crime writer of novels, short stories, and plays. She also wrote romances under the name Mary Westmacott, but she is best remembered for her 66 detective novels and more than 15 short story collections, most of which revolve around the investigations of such characters as Hercule Poirot, Miss Jane Marple and Tommy and Tuppence. Born to a wealthy upper-middle-class family in Torquay, Devon, Christie served in a hospital during the First World War before settling into married life with her first child in London. Although initially unsuccessful at getting her work published, in 1920, The Bodley Head press published her novel The Mysterious Affair at Styles, featuring the character of Poirot. This launched her literary career. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, Christie is the best-selling novelist of all time. Her novels have sold roughly four billion copies, and her estate claims that her works rank third, after those of William Shakespeare and the Bible, as the world's most widely published books. According to Index Translationum, Christie is the most translated
    10.00
    1 votes
    78
    Bharati Mukherjee

    Bharati Mukherjee

    • Works written: Leave It to Me
    Bharati Mukherjee (born July 27, 1940) is an award-winning Indian-born American writer. She is currently a professor in the department of English at the University of California, Berkeley. Of Bengali origin, Mukherjee was born in Calcutta (now called Kolkata), West Bengal, India. She later travelled with her parents to Europe after Independence, only returning to Calcutta in the early 1950s. There she attended the Loreto School. She received her B.A. from the University of Calcutta in 1959 as a student of Loreto College, and subsequently earned her M.A. from the University of Baroda in 1961. She next travelled to the United States to study at the University of Iowa. She received her M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers' Workshop in 1963 and her Ph.D. in 1969 from the department of Comparative Literature. After more than a decade living in Montreal and Toronto in Canada, Mukherjee and her husband, Clark Blaise returned to the United States. She wrote of the decision in "An Invisible Woman," published in a 1981 issue of Saturday Night. Mukherjee and Blaise co-authored Days and Nights in Calcutta (1977). They also wrote the 1987 work, The Sorrow and the Terror: The Haunting Legacy of the Air
    10.00
    1 votes
    79
    Harry Harrison

    Harry Harrison

    • Works written: Make Room! Make Room!
    • Contributing author to: Nebula Awards Showcase 2010
    Harry Harrison (born Henry Maxwell Dempsey; March 12, 1925 – August 15, 2012) was an American science fiction (SF) author, best known for his character the Stainless Steel Rat and for his novel Make Room! Make Room! (1966). The latter was the rough basis for the motion picture Soylent Green (1973). Harrison was (with Brian Aldiss) the co-president of the Birmingham Science Fiction Group. Aldiss called him "a constant peer and great family friend". His friend Michael Carroll said, "Imagine Pirates of the Caribbean or Raiders of the Lost Ark, and picture them as science-fiction novels. They're rip-roaring adventures, but they're stories with a lot of heart." Novelist Christopher Priest wrote in an obituary, On learning of his death, Harlan Ellison said, "It's a day without stars in it." Before becoming an editor and a writer, Harrison started in the science fiction field as an illustrator, notably with EC Comics two science fiction comic book series, Weird Fantasy and Weird Science. He used house pen names such as Wade Kaempfert and Philip St. John to edit magazines, and published other fiction under the pen names of Felix Boyd, Leslie Charteris, and Hank Dempsey (but see Personal
    10.00
    1 votes
    80
    Lewis Mumford

    Lewis Mumford

    • Works written: The City in History
    Lewis Mumford (October 19, 1895 – January 26, 1990) was an American historian, sociologist, philosopher of technology, and influential literary critic. Particularly noted for his study of cities and urban architecture, he had a broad career as a writer. Mumford was influenced by the work of Scottish theorist Sir Patrick Geddes. Mumford was also a contemporary and friend of Frank Lloyd Wright, Clarence Stein, Frederic Osborn, Edmund N. Bacon, and Vannevar Bush. Mumford was born in Flushing, Queens, New York, and graduated from Stuyvesant High School in 1912. He studied at the City College of New York and The New School for Social Research, but became ill with tuberculosis and never finished his degree. In 1918 he joined the navy to serve in World War I and was assigned as a radio electrician. He was discharged in 1919 and became associate editor of The Dial, an influential modernist literary journal. He later worked for The New Yorker where he wrote architectural criticism and commentary on urban issues. Mumford's earliest books in the field of literary criticism have had a lasting impact on contemporary American literary criticism. The Golden Day contributed to a resurgence in
    10.00
    1 votes
    81
    Rebecca St. James

    Rebecca St. James

    • Works written: 40 Days with God: A Devotional Journey
    Rebecca St. James (born Rebecca Jean Smallbone; July 26, 1977), is a Christian pop rock singer, songwriter, musician, author, and actor. She began performing in Australia in the late 1980s and released her first full-length studio album in 1991. In 1993 she was signed to the record label ForeFront Records and released her major label debut a year later. St. James rose to fame in the late 1990s with her RIAA certified Gold albums God and Pray, the latter of which won a Grammy Award in 1999 for Best Rock Gospel Album. The albums spawned multiple singles including "God", "Pray", and "Yes, I Believe in God". Since then she has established herself as one of the most prominent musical artists in CCM with four additional full-length studio albums; Transform, Worship God, If I Had One Chance to Tell You Something, and I Will Praise You. Staple songs such as "Wait for Me", "Reborn", "Song of Love", "I Thank You", "Alive", and "Shine Your Glory Down" have all been derived from these releases. Since the beginning of her career, St. James has sold a total of two million albums. Outside of her musical career, St. James is an accomplished author and actress. To date, she has released nine
    10.00
    1 votes
    82
    Terry Pratchett

    Terry Pratchett

    • Works written: Good Omens
    Sir Terence David John "Terry" Pratchett, OBE (born 28 April 1948) is an English novelist, known for his frequently comical work in the fantasy genre. He is best known for his popular and long-running Discworld series of comic fantasy novels. Pratchett's first novel, The Carpet People, was published in 1971, and since his first Discworld novel (The Colour of Magic) was published in 1983, he has written two books a year on average. His latest Discworld book, Snuff is the third fastest selling novel since records began in the United Kingdom selling 55,000 copies in the first three days. Pratchett was the UK's best-selling author of the 1990s, and as of August 2010 had sold over 65 million books worldwide in thirty-seven languages. He is currently the second most-read writer in the UK, and seventh most-read non-US author in the US. Pratchett was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) "for services to literature" in 1998. In addition, he was knighted in the 2009 New Year Honours. In 2001 he won the Carnegie Medal for his young adult novel The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents. In December 2007, Pratchett publicly announced that he was suffering from
    10.00
    1 votes
    83
    Thomas Hughes

    Thomas Hughes

    • Works written: Tom Brown at Oxford
    Thomas Hughes (20 October 1822 – 22 March 1896) was an English lawyer and author. He is most famous for his novel Tom Brown's School Days (1857), a semi-autobiographical work set at Rugby School, which Hughes had attended. It had a lesser-known sequel, Tom Brown at Oxford (1861). Hughes was the second son of John Hughes, editor of the Boscobel Tracts (1830). Thomas Hughes was born in Uffington, Berkshire (now Oxfordshire). He had six brothers, and one sister, Jane Senior who later became Britain's first female civil servant. At the age of eight he was sent to Twyford School, a preparatory public school near Winchester, where he remained until the age of eleven. In February 1834 he went to Rugby School, which was then under Dr Thomas Arnold, a contemporary of his father at Oriel College, Oxford, and the most influential British schoolmaster of the 19th century. Though never a member of the sixth form, his impressions of the headmaster were intensely reverent, and Arnold was afterwards idealised as the perfect schoolmaster in Hughes's novel. Hughes excelled at sports rather than in scholarship, and his school career culminated in a cricket match at Lord's Cricket Ground. In 1842 he
    10.00
    1 votes
    84
    William Gibson

    William Gibson

    • Works written: Neuromancer
    • Contributing author to: The Ware Tetralogy
    • School or Movement: Cyberpunk
    William Ford Gibson (born March 17, 1948) is an American-Canadian speculative fiction novelist who has been called the "noir prophet" of the cyberpunk subgenre. Gibson coined the term "cyberspace" in his short story "Burning Chrome" (1982) and later popularized the concept in his debut novel, Neuromancer (1984). In envisaging cyberspace, Gibson created an iconography for the information age before the ubiquity of the Internet in the 1990s. He is also credited with predicting the rise of reality television and with establishing the conceptual foundations for the rapid growth of virtual environments such as video games and the World Wide Web. Having changed residence frequently with his family as a child, Gibson became a shy, ungainly teenager who often read science fiction. After spending his adolescence at a private boarding school in Arizona, Gibson evaded the draft during the Vietnam War by emigrating to Canada in 1968, where he became immersed in the counterculture and after settling in Vancouver eventually became a full-time writer. He retains dual citizenship. Gibson's early works are bleak, noir near-future stories about the effect of cybernetics and computer networks on
    10.00
    1 votes
    85
    William Shakespeare

    William Shakespeare

    • Works written: A Midsummer Night's Dream
    • Contributing author to: Shakespeare's Tragedy of Julius Caesar, 9th Edition
    • School or Movement: Iambic pentameter
    William Shakespeare (26 April 1564 (baptised) – 23 April 1616) was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon". His surviving works, including some collaborations, consist of about 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright. Shakespeare was born and brought up in Stratford-upon-Avon. At the age of 18, he married Anne Hathaway, with whom he had three children: Susanna, and twins Hamnet and Judith. Between 1585 and 1592, he began a successful career in London as an actor, writer, and part owner of a playing company called the Lord Chamberlain's Men, later known as the King's Men. He appears to have retired to Stratford around 1613 at age 49, where he died three years later. Few records of Shakespeare's private life survive, and there has been considerable speculation about such matters as his physical appearance, sexuality, religious beliefs, and whether the works attributed
    10.00
    1 votes
    86
    Graham Edwards

    Graham Edwards

    • Works written: Dragoncharm
    Graham Edwards (born 1965) is an English author of fantasy and crime novels. His most popular books have generally featured dragons as their central characters. Born in Somerset and raised in Bournemouth, Edwards studied art and design. He went on to work as a graphic designer and animator before developing his writing career in the 1990s. An accomplished artist, he often includes illustrations with his novels. They can be viewed in the gallery section of his website. Edwards now lives in Nottingham with his wife and two children. Edwards' major body of work consists of two related fantasy trilogies: the Ultimate Dragon Saga trilogy and the Stone trilogy (also known as the Amara trilogy). The former series of books is a fantasy work set in times before humans, and as such there are no human characters in the novels. The dragons are sentient and, much like the rabbits and moles in Richard Adams' Watership Down and William Horwood's Duncton Wood respectively, they are anthropomorphised, displaying a large array of human characteristics, relationships and emotions. The latter series is set - although not in an actual Earthly time period - parallel to the late 19th century. Its events
    6.50
    4 votes
    87
    Ruth Rendell

    Ruth Rendell

    • Works written: Blood Lines
    Ruth Barbara Rendell, Baroness Rendell of Babergh, CBE, (born 17 February 1930), who also writes under the pseudonym Barbara Vine, is an English crime writer, author of psychological thrillers and murder mysteries. In addition to police procedurals starring her most iconic creation, Chief Inspector Wexford, Rendell writes psychological crime novels exploring such themes as romantic obsession, misperceived communication, the impact of chance and coincidence, and the humanity of the criminals involved. Among such books are A Judgement In Stone, The Face of Trespass, Live Flesh, Talking to Strange Men, The Killing Doll, Going Wrong and Adam and Eve and Pinch Me. Many credit her and close friend P. D. James for upgrading the entire genre of whodunit, shaping it more into a whydunit. Rendell's protagonists are often socially isolated, suffer from mental illness, and/or are otherwise disadvantaged; she explores the adverse impacts of their circumstances on these characters as well as on their victims. Rendell created a third strand of writing with the publication in 1986 of A Dark-Adapted Eye under her pseudonym Barbara Vine (the name derives from her own middle name and her
    6.50
    4 votes
    88
    Steven T. Seagle

    Steven T. Seagle

    • Works written: It's a bird--
    Steven T. Seagle (born on March 31, 1965) is an American writer who works in the comic book, television, film, live theater, video game, and animation, industries. He is best known for his nationally acclaimed graphic novel memoir It's a Bird (Vertigo, May 2004), and as part of his Man of Action Studios (with Duncan Rouleau, Joe Casey and Joe Kelly) which created the animated Cartoon Network series Ben 10 responsible for both Cartoon Network's highest-rated single program and highest rated series premiere. Seagle is also a founding member of Speak Theater Arts, creators of innovative live stage productions and is a former college instructor having taught at Ball State University, Pasadena City College and Mt. San Antonio College, where he also served as a coach for the Forensics team during many of their national championship seasons. Seagle's father, Jack, was in the United States Air Force, and as a result, the family moved many times. The family twice lived in Colorado Springs, Colorado, near the United States Air Force Academy where Jack was stationed. Seagle recalls watching the moon landing on television in their apartment by what is today the Chapel Hills Mall. Seagle's
    6.50
    4 votes
    89
    Thomas L. Friedman

    Thomas L. Friedman

    • Works written: The World Is Flat
    Thomas Lauren Friedman (born July 20, 1953) is an American journalist, columnist and author. He writes a twice-weekly column for The New York Times. He has written extensively on foreign affairs including global trade, the Middle East,Globalization, and environmental issues and has won the Pulitzer Prize three times. Thomas Friedman was born in St. Louis Park, Minnesota — a suburb of Minneapolis — on July 20, 1953. He is the son of Harold and Margaret Friedman. Harold Friedman, who was vice president of a ball-bearing company, United Bearing, died of a heart attack in 1973, when Tom was nineteen years old. Margaret Friedman, who served in the U.S. Navy in World War II and studied home economics at the University of Wisconsin, was a housewife and a part-time bookkeeper. She also was a Senior Life Master duplicate bridge player and died in 2008. Friedman has two older sisters, Shelly and Jane. From an early age, Friedman, whose father often brought him to the golf course for a round after work, wanted to be a professional golfer. He played a lot of sports, becoming serious about tennis and golf. He caddied at a local country club; in 1970 he caddied for the legendary Chi Chi
    6.50
    4 votes
    90
    Kevin J. Anderson

    Kevin J. Anderson

    • Works written: Hunters of Dune
    • Contributing author to: Nebula Awards Showcase 2010
    Kevin J. Anderson (born March 27, 1962) is an American science fiction author with over forty bestsellers. He has written spin-off novels for Star Wars, StarCraft, Titan A.E., and The X-Files, and with Brian Herbert is the co-author of the Dune prequels. His original works include the Saga of Seven Suns series and the Nebula Award-nominated Assemblers of Infinity. He has also written several comic books including the Dark Horse Star Wars collection Tales of the Jedi written in collaboration with Tom Veitch, Predator titles (also for Dark Horse), and X-Files titles for Topps. Some of Anderson's superhero novels include Enemies & Allies, about the first meeting of Batman and Superman and 'The Last Days of Krypton', telling the story of how Krypton came to be destroyed and the choice two parents had to make for their son. Anderson serves as a judge in the Writers of the Future contest. He is also participating in the The Stellar Guild series published by Phoenix Pick. The series pairs bestselling authors like Anderson with lesser known authors in science fiction and fantasy to help provide additional visibility to them. His wife is author Rebecca Moesta. They currently reside near
    5.60
    5 votes
    91
    Earl Derr Biggers

    Earl Derr Biggers

    • Works written: The Chinese Parrot
    Earl Derr Biggers (August 24, 1884 – April 5, 1933) was an American novelist and playwright. He is remembered primarily for adaptations of his novels, especially those featuring the Chinese-American detective Charlie Chan. The son of Robert J. and Emma E. (Derr) Biggers, Earl Derr Biggers was born in Warren, Ohio, and graduated from Harvard University in 1907. Many of his plays and novels were made into movies. He was posthumously inducted into the Warren City Schools Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame. His novel Seven Keys to Baldpate led to seven films of the same title and at least two with different titles (House of the Long Shadows, Haunted Honeymoon) but essentially equivalent plots. George M. Cohan adapted the novel as an occasionally revived stage play of the same name. Cohan starred in the 1917 film version (one of his rare screen appearances) and the film version he later wrote (released in 1935) is perhaps the best known of the seven film versions. Biggers lived in San Marino, California, and died in a Pasadena, California, hospital after suffering a heart attack in Palm Springs, California. He was 48.
    8.50
    2 votes
    92
    James Patterson

    James Patterson

    • Works written: Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment
    James B. Patterson (born March 22, 1947) is an American author of thriller novels, largely known for his series about fictional psychologist Alex Cross. Patterson also wrote the Michael Bennett, Women's Murder Club, Maximum Ride, Daniel X, and Witch & Wizard series, as well as many stand-alone thrillers, nonfiction and romance novels. Patterson was born in Newburgh, New York on March 22, 1947 and received a Bachelor of Arts in English from Manhattan College, along with a Master of Arts in English from Vanderbilt University. After Patterson retired from advertising in 1996, he devoted his time to writing. The novels featuring his character Alex Cross, a forensic psychologist formerly of the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police and Federal Bureau of Investigation who now works as a private psychologist and government consultant, are his most popular and the top-selling U.S. detective series in the past ten years. Patterson has written 71 novels in 33 years. He has had 19 consecutive #1 New York Times bestselling novels, and holds The New York Times record for most bestselling hardcover fiction titles by a single author, a total of 63, which is also a Guinness World Record. His novels
    8.50
    2 votes
    93
    Jean Baudrillard

    Jean Baudrillard

    • Works written: Simulacra and Simulation
    Jean Baudrillard (French: [ʒɑ̃ bodʁijaʁ]; 27 July 1929 – 6 March 2007) was a French sociologist, philosopher, cultural theorist, political commentator, and photographer. His work is frequently associated with postmodernism and specifically post-structuralism. Baudrillard was born in Reims, northeastern France, on July 27, 1929. He told interviewers that his grandparents were peasants and his parents were civil servants. During his high school studies at the Reims Lycée, he came into contact with pataphysics (via the philosophy professor Emmanuel Peillet), which is said to be crucial for understanding Baudrillard's later thought. He became the first of his family to attend university when he moved to Paris to attend Sorbonne University. There he studied German language and literature, which led him to begin teaching the subject at several different lycées, both Parisian and provincial, from 1960 until 1966. While teaching, Baudrillard began to publish reviews of literature and translated the works of such authors as Peter Weiss, Bertolt Brecht, Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, and Wilhelm Emil Mühlmann. During his time as a teacher of German language and literature, Baudrillard began to
    8.50
    2 votes
    94
    Kage Baker

    Kage Baker

    • Works written: In The Garden of Iden
    Kage Baker (June 10, 1952 – January 31, 2010) was an American science fiction and fantasy writer. Baker was born in Hollywood, California and lived there and in Pismo Beach most of her life. Before becoming a professional writer she spent many years in theater, including teaching Elizabethan English as a second language. Her unusual first name (pronounced like the word "cage") is a combination of the names of her two grandmothers, Kate and Genevieve. She is best known for her "Company" series of historical time travel science fiction. Her first stories were published in Asimov's Science Fiction in 1997, and her first novel, In the Garden of Iden, by Hodder & Stoughton in the same year. Other notable works include Mendoza in Hollywood (novel, 2000) and "The Empress of Mars" (novella, 2003), which won the Theodore Sturgeon Award and was nominated for a Hugo Award. In 2008, she donated her archive to the department of Rare Books and Special Collections at Northern Illinois University. In 2009, her short story "Caverns of Mystery" and her novel House of the Stag were both nominated for World Fantasy Awards, but neither piece won. In January 2010, it was reported that Baker was
    8.50
    2 votes
    95
    Paul Auster

    Paul Auster

    • Works written: The Music of Chance
    • Contributing author to: Burn This Book
    • School or Movement: Postmodernism
    Paul Benjamin Auster (born February 3, 1947) is an American author known for works blending absurdism, existentialism, crime fiction, and the search for identity and personal meaning in works such as The New York Trilogy (1987), Moon Palace (1989), The Music of Chance (1990), The Book of Illusions (2002), and The Brooklyn Follies (2005). Auster was born in Newark, New Jersey, to Jewish middle class parents of Polish descent, Queenie and Samuel Auster. He grew up in South Orange, New Jersey and Newark and graduated from Columbia High School in Maplewood. After graduating from Columbia University in 1970, he moved to Paris, France where he earned a living translating French literature. Since returning to the U.S. in 1974, he has published poems, essays, novels of his own, as well as translations of French writers such as Stéphane Mallarmé and Joseph Joubert. He and his second wife, writer Siri Hustvedt, were married in 1981, and they live in Brooklyn. Together they have one daughter, Sophie Auster. Previously, Auster was married to the acclaimed writer, Lydia Davis. They have one son together, Daniel Auster. He is also the vice-president of PEN American Center. In 2012, Auster was
    8.50
    2 votes
    96
    Sebastian Faulks

    Sebastian Faulks

    • Works written: Charlotte Gray
    Sebastian Charles Faulks CBE (born 20 April 1953) is a British novelist, journalist and broadcaster. He is best known for his historical novels set in France, The Girl at the Lion d'Or, Birdsong, and Charlotte Gray. He has also published novels with a contemporary setting (most recently A Week In December (2009)), and a James Bond sequel, Devil May Care. He is a team captain on BBC Radio 4 literary quiz The Write Stuff. Faulks was born on 20 April 1953 in Donnington, Berkshire to Peter Faulks and Pamela (née Lawless). His father was a decorated soldier (he won the Military Cross), who later became a solicitor and judge. His brother Edward Faulks, Baron Faulks is a QC. He was educated at Elstree School, Reading and went on to Wellington College, Berkshire. He studied English at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, of which he was made an Honorary Fellow in 2007. After graduating, Faulks lived in France for a year. When he returned to England he worked as a teacher at a private school in Camden Town, and then as a journalist. Faulks' first novel, A Trick of the Light, was published in 1984. He continued to work as a journalist, becoming the first literary editor of The Independent in 1986.
    8.50
    2 votes
    97
    Tom Wolfe

    Tom Wolfe

    • Works written: A Man in Full
    • School or Movement: New Journalism
    Thomas Kennerly "Tom" Wolfe, Jr. (born March 2, 1931) is an American author and journalist, best known for his association and influence over the New Journalism literary movement in which literary techniques are used in objective, even-handed journalism. Beginning his career as a reporter he soon became one of the most culturally significant figures of the sixties after the publication of books such as The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, a highly experimental account of Ken Kesey and his Merry Prankster, and his collections of articles and essays, Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers and The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby. His first novel, The Bonfire of the Vanities, released in 1987 was met with critical acclaim and was a great commercial success. He is also known, in recent years, for his spats and public disputes with other writers, including John Updike, Norman Mailer, Gore Vidal and John Irving. Wolfe was born in Richmond, Virginia, the son of Louise (née Agnew), a landscape designer, and Thomas Kennerly Wolfe, Sr., an agronomist. Wolfe was student council president, editor of the school newspaper and a star baseball player at St. Christopher's School, an
    8.50
    2 votes
    98
    Donald Knuth

    Donald Knuth

    • Works written: 3:16 Bible Texts Illuminated
    Donald Ervin Knuth ( /kəˈnuːθ/ kə-NOOTH; born January 10, 1938) is a computer scientist and Professor Emeritus at Stanford University. He is the author of the seminal multi-volume work The Art of Computer Programming. Knuth has been called the "father" of the analysis of algorithms. He contributed to the development of the rigorous analysis of the computational complexity of algorithms and systematized formal mathematical techniques for it. In the process he also popularized the asymptotic notation. In addition to fundamental contributions in several branches of theoretical computer science, Knuth is the creator of the TeX computer typesetting system, the related METAFONT font definition language and rendering system, and the Computer Modern family of typefaces. As a writer and scholar, Knuth created the WEB/CWEB computer programming systems designed to encourage and facilitate literate programming, and designed the MIX/MMIX instruction set architectures. Knuth was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where his father owned a small printing business and taught bookkeeping at Milwaukee Lutheran High School, where he enrolled, earning achievement awards. He applied his intelligence in
    7.33
    3 votes
    99
    Iain Banks

    Iain Banks

    • Works written: The Business
    Iain Banks (born on 16 February 1954 in Dunfermline, Fife) is a Scottish writer. He writes mainstream fiction under the name Iain Banks, and science fiction as Iain M. Banks, including the initial of his adopted middle name Menzies. In 2008, The Times named Banks in their list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". Banks's father was an officer in the Admiralty and his mother was a professional ice skater. Banks studied English, philosophy, and psychology at the University of Stirling. After attending the University of Stirling, Banks moved to London and lived in the south of England until 1988 when he returned to Scotland, living in Edinburgh and then Fife. Banks met his future wife Annie in London, before the 1984 release of his first book. They married in Hawaii in 1992. It was announced in early 2007 that, after 15 years of marriage, they had separated. Annie died in 2009, two months after their divorce had become final. Banks currently lives in North Queensferry, a village on the north side of the Firth of Forth, with the published author and founder of the Dead by Dawn film festival Adèle Hartley. The two have been together since 2006. In February 2007, Banks sold
    7.33
    3 votes
    100
    Pat Cadigan

    Pat Cadigan

    • Works written: Pretty Boy Crossover
    • Contributing author to: Slow Dancing Through Time
    • School or Movement: Cyberpunk
    Pat Cadigan (born September 10, 1953) is an American-born science fiction author, whose work is described as part of the cyberpunk movement. Her novels and short stories all share a common theme of exploring the relationship between the human mind and technology. Cadigan was born in Schenectady, New York, and grew up in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. She was educated at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the University of Kansas, where she studied with James Gunn. She met her first husband Rufus Cadigan while in college; they divorced after she graduated from KU in 1975. That same year Cadigan joined the convention committee for MidAmeriCon, the 34th World Science Fiction Convention being held in Kansas City, Missouri over Labor Day weekend 1976; she served on the committee as the convention's guest liaison to writer guest of honor Robert A. Heinlein, while also working for fantasy writer Tom Reamy at his Nickelodeon Graphics typesetting and graphic design firm. Following Reamy's death in 1977, Cadigan went to work as a writer for Kansas City's Hallmark Cards. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, she also edited the small press fantasy and science fiction magazines Chacal and
    7.33
    3 votes
    101
    Tom Clancy

    Tom Clancy

    • Works written: Without Remorse
    Thomas Leo "Tom" Clancy, Jr. (born April 12, 1947) is an American author, best known for his technically-detailed espionage, military science, and techno thriller storylines set during and in the aftermath of the Cold War, along with video games on which he did not work, but which bear his name for licensing and promotional purposes. His name is also a brand for similar movie scripts written by ghost writers and many series of non-fiction books on military subjects and merged biographies of key leaders. He is Vice Chairman of Community Activities and Public Affairs, as well as a part-owner of the MLB Baltimore Orioles. Clancy was born in Baltimore, Maryland. He attended Loyola Blakefield in Towson, Maryland, graduating with the class of 1965. He then attended Loyola College in Baltimore, graduating in 1969. Before making his literary debut, he spent some time running an independent insurance agency. This agency thrived for a few years before joining a group of investors. Clancy and his first wife Wanda married in 1969, separated briefly in 1995, and permanently separated in December 1996. Clancy filed for divorce in November 1997, which became final in January 1999. In 1993, Tom
    7.33
    3 votes
    102
    Willa Cather

    Willa Cather

    • Works written: My Ántonia
    • School or Movement: Jazz Age
    Willa Sibert Cather (December 7, 1873 – April 24, 1947) was an American author who achieved recognition for her novels of frontier life on the Great Plains, in works such as O Pioneers!, My Ántonia, and The Song of the Lark. In 1923 she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for One of Ours (1922), a novel set during World War I. Cather grew up in Nebraska and graduated from the University of Nebraska. She lived and worked in Pittsburgh for ten years, then at the age of 33 she moved to New York, where she lived for the rest of her life. She was born Wilella Sibert Cather in 1873 on her maternal grandmother's farm in the Back Creek Valley near Winchester, Virginia (see Willa Cather Birthplace). Her father was Charles Fectigue Cather (d. 1928), whose family had lived on land in the valley for six generations. Her mother was Mary Virginia Boak (d. 1931), a former school teacher. Within a year of Cather's birth, the family moved to Willow Shade, a Greek Revival-style home on 130 acres given to them by her paternal grandparents. The Cathers moved to Nebraska in 1883, joining Charles' parents, when Willa was nine years old. Her father tried his hand at farming for eighteen months; then he moved
    7.33
    3 votes
    103
    Wolfgang Hohlbein

    Wolfgang Hohlbein

    • Works written: Magic Moon
    Wolfgang Hohlbein (born August 15, 1953 in Weimar, Thuringia) is a German writer of science fiction, fantasy and horror fiction who lives near Neuss, North Rhine-Westphalia. His wife, Heike, is also a writer and often works with her husband. She often comes up with the story ideas and therefore is generally credited as co-author. He is quoted saying it is she who brings the "fairytale-magic" to his works. Writing short stories since age 15, Hohlbein was first recognized as an author after sending in a manuscript he and his wife had written at a fantasy and science fiction writing contest in 1982. They won and their book, Märchenmond (English title: "Magic Moon"), was published by Ueberreuter Publishing, soon becoming a bestseller and winning several awards. It is one of their greatest successes till today. Many of his more than 200 books are translated and published in many European countries as well as in South Korea. Yet for many years none of his works had been translated into English, not even the eight Indiana Jones novels he wrote. In 2006, Magic Moon was translated into English and published in the United States. He says that Hagen von Tronje, his adaptation of the Germanic
    7.33
    3 votes
    104
    Laurell K. Hamilton

    Laurell K. Hamilton

    • Works written: Blue Moon
    Laurell Kaye Hamilton (born February 19, 1963) is an American fantasy and romance writer. She is best known as the author of two series of stories. Her New York Times–bestselling Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter series centers on Anita Blake, a professional zombie raiser, vampire executioner and supernatural consultant for the police, which includes novels, short story collections, and comic books. Six million copies of Anita Blake novels are in print. Her Merry Gentry series centers on Meredith Gentry, Princess of the Unseelie court of Faerie, a private detective facing repeated assassination attempts. Both fantasy series follow their protagonists as they gain in power and deal with the dangerous "realities" of worlds in which creatures of legend live. Laurell Kaye Hamilton was born Laurell Kaye Klein in Heber Springs, Arkansas but grew up in Sims, Indiana with her grandmother Laura Gentry. Her education includes degrees in English and biology from Marion (now Indiana Wesleyan University), a private Evangelical Christian liberal arts college in Marion, Indiana that is affiliated with the Wesleyan Church denomination. She met Gary Hamilton, whom she married, there. They had one daughter
    6.25
    4 votes
    105
    Vernor Vinge

    Vernor Vinge

    • Works written: A Deepness in the Sky
    Vernor Steffen Vinge ( /ˈvɪndʒiː/; born October 2, 1944, in Waukesha, Wisconsin, U.S.) is a retired San Diego State University (SDSU) Professor of Mathematics, computer scientist, and science fiction author. He is best known for his Hugo Award-winning novels and novellas A Fire Upon the Deep (1992), A Deepness in the Sky (1999), Rainbows End (2006), Fast Times at Fairmont High (2002) and The Cookie Monster (2004), as well as for his 1984 novel The Peace War and his 1993 essay "The Coming Technological Singularity", in which he argues that the creation of superhuman artificial intelligence will mark the point at which "the human era will be ended," such that no current models of reality are sufficient to predict beyond it. Vinge published his first short story, "Bookworm, Run!", in the March 1966 issue of Analog Science Fiction, then edited by John W. Campbell. The story explores the theme of artificially augmented intelligence by connecting the brain directly to computerised data sources. He became a moderately prolific contributor to SF magazines in the 1960s and early 1970s. In 1969, he expanded the story "Grimm's Story" (Orbit 4, 1968) into his first novel, Grimm's World. His
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    4 votes
    106
    Walter Scott

    Walter Scott

    • Works written: Quentin Durward
    • Contributing author to: Stories by English Authors: Scotland (Selected by Scribners)
    • School or Movement: Romanticism
    Sir Walter Scott, 1st Baronet (15 August 1771 – 21 September 1832) was a Scottish historical novelist, playwright, and poet, popular throughout much of the world during his time. Scott was the first English-language author to have a truly international career in his lifetime, with many contemporary readers in Europe, Australia, and North America. His novels and poetry are still read, and many of his works remain classics of both English-language literature and of Scottish literature. Famous titles include Ivanhoe, Rob Roy, The Lady of the Lake, Waverley, The Heart of Midlothian and The Bride of Lammermoor. Born in College Wynd in the Old Town of Edinburgh in 1771, the son of a solicitor, Scott survived a childhood bout of polio in 1773 that left him lame. To cure his lameness he was sent in 1773 to live in the rural Borders region at his paternal grandparents' farm at Sandyknowe, adjacent to the ruin of Smailholm Tower, the earlier family home. Here he was taught to read by his aunt Jenny, and learned from her the speech patterns and many of the tales and legends that characterised much of his work. In January 1775 he returned to Edinburgh, and that summer went with his aunt Jenny
    6.25
    4 votes
    107
    Alan Dean Foster

    Alan Dean Foster

    • Works written: Nor Crystal Tears
    Alan Dean Foster (born November 18, 1946) is an American author of fantasy and science fiction, with many series to his credit as well as a large number of single novels. He is especially prolific in his novelizations of film scripts. He earned a bachelor's degree in political science and a MFA from the University of California, Los Angeles and currently resides in Prescott, Arizona, with his wife. He is best known for his science fiction novels set in the Humanx Commonwealth, an interstellar ethical/political union of species including humankind and the insectoid Thranx. Many of these novels feature Philip Lynx ("Flinx"), an empathic young man who has found himself involved in something which threatens the survival of the Galaxy. Flinx's constant companion since childhood is a minidrag named Pip, a flying, empathic snake capable of spitting a highly corrosive and violently neurotoxic venom. One of Foster's best-known fantasy works is the Spellsinger series, in which a young musician is summoned into a world populated by talking creatures where his music allows him to do real magic whose effects depends on the lyrics of the popular songs he sings (although with somewhat
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    3 votes
    108
    Danny Hillis

    Danny Hillis

    • Works written: The Pattern on the Stone: The Simple Ideas That Make Computers Work
    • Contributing author to: What Do You Believe is True Even if You Cannot Prove it?
    William Daniel "Danny" Hillis (born September 25, 1956, in Baltimore, Maryland) is an American inventor, scientist, engineer, entrepreneur, and author. He co-founded Thinking Machines Corporation, a company that developed the Connection Machine, a parallel supercomputer designed by Hillis at MIT. He is also co-founder of the Long Now Foundation, Applied Minds, Metaweb Technologies, Applied Proteomics, and author of The Pattern on the Stone: The Simple Ideas That Make Computers Work. Danny Hillis was born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1956. His father, William Hillis, was a US Air Force epidemiologist studying hepatitis in Africa and relocated with his family through Rwanda, Burundi, Republic of the Congo, and Kenya. He spent a brief part of his childhood in Calcutta, India when his father was a visiting faculty at ISI, Calcutta. During these years the young Hillis was home schooled by his mother Aryge Briggs Hillis, a biostatistician, and developed an early appreciation for mathematics and biology. His younger brother is David Hillis, a professor of evolutionary biology at the University of Texas at Austin, and his sister is Argye E. Hillis, a professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins
    7.00
    3 votes
    109
    John Irving

    John Irving

    • Works written: The 158-Pound Marriage
    John Winslow Irving (born John Wallace Blunt, Jr.; March 2, 1942) is an American novelist and Academy Award-winning screenwriter. Irving achieved critical and popular acclaim after the international success of The World According to Garp in 1978. Some of Irving's novels, such as The Cider House Rules and A Prayer for Owen Meany, have been bestsellers. Five of his novels have been adapted to film. Several of Irving's books (Garp, Meany, A Widow for One Year) and short stories have been set in and around Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, New Hampshire. He won the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay in 1999 for his script The Cider House Rules. Irving was born John Wallace Blunt, Jr. in Exeter, New Hampshire, the son of Helen Frances (née Winslow) and John Wallace Blunt, Sr., a writer and executive recruiter. Irving grew up in Exeter, as the stepson of an Exeter faculty member, Colin F.N. Irving (1941), and nephew of another, H. Hamilton "Hammy" Bissell (1929). Irving was in the Exeter wrestling program both as a student athlete and as an assistant coach, and wrestling features prominently in his books, stories and life. Irving's biological father, whom he never met, had been a
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    3 votes
    110
    Khushwant Singh

    Khushwant Singh

    • Works written: The Company of Women
    Khushwant Singh ; born 2 February 1915) is a prominent Indian novelist and journalist. Singh's weekly column, "With Malice towards One and All", carried by several Indian newspapers, is among the most widely-read columns in the country. An important Indo-Anglian novelist, Singh is best known for his trenchant secularism, his humor, and an abiding love of poetry. His comparisons of social and behavioral characteristics of Westerners and Indians are laced with acid wit. He served as editor of several well-known literary and news magazines, as well as two major broadsheet newspapers, through the 1970s and 1980s. He is a recipient of the Padma Vibhushan the second highest civilian award in India. the western angloindian Begger in his own words, with utmost biased notions for all communities. He was born in Hadali District Sargodha, Punjab (which now lies in Pakistan), in a Sikh family. His father, Sir Sobha Singh, was a prominent builder in Lutyens' Delhi.His uncle Sardar Ujjal Singh(1895–1983) was Ex. Governor of Punjab & Tamil Nadu. He was educated at Modern School, New Delhi, Government College, Lahore, St. Stephen's College in Delhi and King's College, London, before reading for
    7.00
    3 votes
    111
    Paulo Coelho

    Paulo Coelho

    • Works written: The Manual of the Warrior of Light
    Paulo Coelho (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈpawlu koˈeʎu]; born August 24, 1947) is a Brazilian lyricist and novelist. He has become one of the most widely read authors in the world today. He is the recipient of numerous prestigious international awards, amongst them the Crystal Award by the World Economic Forum and France's Légion d'honneur. Paulo Coelho was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He attended a Jesuit school. As a teenager, Coelho wanted to become a writer. Upon telling his mother this, she responded with "My dear, your father is an engineer. He's a logical, reasonable man with a very clear vision of the world. Do you actually know what it means to be a writer?" After researching, Coelho concluded that a writer "always wears glasses and never combs his hair" and has a "duty and an obligation never to be understood by his own generation," amongst other things. At 16, Coelho's introversion and opposition to following a traditional path led to his parents committing him to a mental institution from which he escaped three times before being released at the age of 20. Coelho later remarked that "It wasn't that they wanted to hurt me, but they didn't know what to do... They did
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    3 votes
    112
    Peter Farrelly

    Peter Farrelly

    • Works written: Outside Providence
    Peter John Farrelly (born December 17, 1956) is an American film director, screenwriter, producer and novelist. The Farrelly brothers are mostly famous for directing and producing gross-out humor romantic comedy films such as Dumb and Dumber, Shallow Hal, Me, Myself and Irene, There's Something About Mary and the 2007 remake of The Heartbreak Kid. In addition to his extensive film career, Peter is also an acting board member of the online media company DeskSite. Farrelly was born in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, the son of Mariann, a nurse practitioner, and Robert Leo Farrelly, a doctor. He was raised in Cumberland, Rhode Island and graduated from Providence College. Farrelly decided to take a plunge and pursue writing full time, which prompted him to quit his job and head to Cape Cod, Massachusetts where he got a job as a waiter. On one of the tables he was waiting, Farrelly struck up a conversation with a writing professor from UMass Amherst, who encouraged Farrelly to apply to graduate school. Farrelly said he did not think his chances were good, considering he did poorly in college but the professor said not everything is judged by grades. With what would later be Outside
    7.00
    3 votes
    113
    Roald Dahl

    Roald Dahl

    • Works written: Matilda
    Roald Dahl ( /ˈroʊ.ɑːl ˈdɑːl/, Norwegian: [ˈɾuːɑl dɑl]; 13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990) was a British novelist, short story writer, poet, fighter pilot and screenwriter. Born in Wales to Norwegian parents, he served in the British Royal Air Force during World War II, in which he became a flying ace and intelligence officer, rising to the rank of Wing Commander. Dahl rose to prominence in the 1940s, with works for both children and adults, and became one of the world's best-selling authors. He has been referred to as "one of the greatest storytellers for children of the 20th century". In 2008 The Times placed Dahl 16th on its list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". His short stories are known for their unexpected endings, and his children's books for their unsentimental, often very dark humour. Some of his notable works include James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The Witches, Fantastic Mr Fox, The Twits, George's Marvellous Medicine and The BFG. Roald Dahl was born at Villa Marie, Fairwater Road in Llandaff, Cardiff, Wales, in 1916, to Norwegian parents, Harald Dahl and Sofie Magdalene Dahl (née Hesselberg). Dahl's father had
    7.00
    3 votes
    114
    Tim Powers

    Tim Powers

    • Works written: Last Call
    • School or Movement: Steampunk
    Timothy Thomas "Tim" Powers (born February 29, 1952, in Buffalo, New York) is an American science fiction and fantasy author. Powers has won the World Fantasy Award twice for his critically acclaimed novels Last Call and Declare. His 1988 novel On Stranger Tides served as inspiration for the Monkey Island franchise of video games and was optioned for adaptation into the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean film. Most of Powers's novels are "secret histories": he uses actual, documented historical events featuring famous people, but shows another view of them in which occult or supernatural factors heavily influence the motivations and actions of the characters. Typically, Powers strictly adheres to established historical facts. He reads extensively on a given subject, and the plot develops as Powers notes inconsistencies, gaps and curious data; regarding his award-winning 2000 novel Declare, Powers stated, He studied English Literature at Cal State Fullerton, where he first met James Blaylock and K. W. Jeter, both of whom remained close friends and occasional collaborators; the trio have half-seriously referred to themselves as "steampunks" in contrast to the prevailing cyberpunk genre
    7.00
    3 votes
    115
    C. J. Cherryh

    C. J. Cherryh

    • Works written: The Collected Short Fiction of C. J. Cherryh
    • Contributing author to: The Dead of Winter (Thieves World 7)
    Carolyn Janice Cherry (born September 1, 1942), better known by the pen name C. J. Cherryh, is a United States science fiction and fantasy author. She has written more than 60 books since the mid-1970s, including the Hugo Award winning novels Downbelow Station (1981) and Cyteen (1988), both set in her Alliance-Union universe. Cherryh (pronounced "Cherry") appended a silent "h" to her real name because her first editor, Donald A. Wollheim, felt that "Cherry" sounded too much like a romance writer. Her initials, C.J., were used to disguise the fact that she was female at a time when almost all science fiction authors were male. Her middle name is  /dʒəˈniːs/, with the accent on the second syllable (and not the more common pronunciation /ˈdʒænɪs/). The author has an asteroid, 77185 Cherryh, named after her. Referring to this honor, the asteroid's discoverers wrote of Cherryh: "She has challenged us to be worthy of the stars by imagining how mankind might grow to live among them." Cherryh was the Guest of Honor at FenCon IX in Dallas/Fort Worth on September 21-23, 2012. Cherryh was born in 1942 in St. Louis, Missouri and raised primarily in Lawton, Oklahoma. She began writing stories
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    4 votes
    116
    Fred Vargas

    Fred Vargas

    • Works written: The Three Evangelists
    Fred Vargas is the pseudonym of the French historian, archaeologist and writer Frédérique Audoin-Rouzeau (born 1957 in Paris). Her crime fiction policiers have won three International Dagger Awards from the Crime Writers Association, for three successive novels: in 2006, 2008 and 2009. She is the first author to achieve such an honor. In each case her translator into English was Sîan Reynolds, who was also recognized by the international award. Audoin-Rouzeau worked at the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), which she joined in 1988. She later joined the Institut Pasteur, as a eukaryotic archaeologist. She has undertaken a project on the epidemiology of the Black Death and bubonic plague, the result of which was a work considered definitive in the research area: Les chemins de la peste (Routes of the Plague) (2003). Fred is the diminutive of her given name, Frédérique, while Vargas derives from the Ava Gardner character in the film The Barefoot Contessa. Her twin sister Joëlle, a painter, adopted the pseudonym of Jo Vargas. Vargas writes mostly police thrillers (policiers). She found writing was a way to combine her interests and relax from her job as an
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    2 votes
    117
    Ja A. Jahannes

    Ja A. Jahannes

    • Works written: Savannah Literary Journal 1997
    • Contributing author to: WordSong Poets: A Memoir Anthology
    • School or Movement: Modern Literature
    Dr. Ja A. Jahannes is a poet, cultural critic, writer of fiction and nonfiction, psychologist, and composer. His work has appeared in numerous diverse publications and anthologies.
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    2 votes
    118
    Jerome K. Jerome

    Jerome K. Jerome

    • Works written: Three Men on the Bummel
    Jerome Klapka Jerome (2 May 1859 – 14 June 1927) was an English writer and humorist, best known for the comic travelogue Three Men in a Boat (1889). Other works include the essay collections Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow (1886) and Second Thoughts of an Idle Fellow; Three Men on the Bummel, a sequel to Three Men in a Boat; and several other novels. Jerome was born in Caldmore, Walsall, England. He was the fourth child of Jerome Clapp (who later renamed himself Jerome Clapp Jerome), an ironmonger and lay preacher who dabbled in architecture, and Marguerite Jones. He had two sisters, Paulina and Blandina, and one brother, Milton, who died at an early age. Jerome was registered, like his father's amended name, as Jerome Clapp Jerome, and the Klapka appears to be a later variation (after the exiled Hungarian general György Klapka). Owing to bad investments in the local mining industry, the family suffered poverty, and debt collectors often visited, an experience Jerome described vividly in his autobiography My Life and Times (1926). The young Jerome attended St Marylebone Grammar School. He wished to go into politics or be a man of letters, but the death of his father at age 13, and
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    2 votes
    119
    John Maxwell Coetzee

    John Maxwell Coetzee

    • Works written: Dusklands
    John Maxwell "J. M." Coetzee (/kʊtˈsiːə/ kuut-SEE-ə; born 9 February 1940) is a novelist, essayist, linguist, translator and recipient of the 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature. Of South African origin, he is now an Australian citizen and lives in Adelaide, South Australia. Prior to receiving the 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature, Coetzee twice won the Booker Prize. Coetzee was born in Cape Town, Cape Province, Union of South Africa, on 9 February 1940 to parents of Afrikaner descent. His father was an occasional lawyer, government employee and sheep farmer, and his mother a schoolteacher. The family spoke English at home, but Coetzee spoke Afrikaans with other relatives. Coetzee is descended from early Dutch immigrants dating to the 17th century, and also has Polish ancestry from his maternal great-grandfather, Baltazar Dubiel. Coetzee spent most of his early life in Cape Town and in Worcester in Cape Province (modern-day Western Cape) as recounted in his fictionalized memoir, Boyhood (1997). The family moved to Worcester when Coetzee was eight after his father lost his government job due to disagreements over the state's apartheid policy. Coetzee attended St. Joseph's College, a
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    2 votes
    120
    Robert Bloch

    Robert Bloch

    • Works written: Psycho
    Robert Albert Bloch (April 5, 1917 – September 23, 1994) was a prolific American writer, primarily of crime, horror and science fiction. He is best known as the writer of Psycho, the basis for the film of the same name by Alfred Hitchcock. He wrote that "Despite my ghoulish reputation, I really have the heart of a small boy. I keep it in a jar on my desk," (a quote borrowed by Stephen King and often misattributed to him). His fondness for a pun is evident in the titles of his story collections such as Tales in a Jugular Vein, Such Stuff as Screams Are Made Of and Out of the Mouths of Graves. Bloch wrote hundreds of short stories and over 30 novels. He was one of the youngest members of the Lovecraft Circle. H. P. Lovecraft was Bloch's mentor and one of the first to seriously encourage his talent. However, while Bloch started his career by emulating Lovecraft and his brand of cosmic horror, he later specialized in crime and horror stories dealing with the inner workings of the human mind. Bloch was a contributor to pulp magazines such as Weird Tales in his early career, and was also a prolific screenwriter and a major contributor to science fiction fanzines and fandom in general. He
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    2 votes
    121
    Stephen Jay Gould

    Stephen Jay Gould

    • Works written: The Structure of Evolutionary Theory
    • Contributing author to: Alexis Rockman
    Stephen Jay Gould (September 10, 1941 – May 20, 2002) was an American paleontologist, evolutionary biologist, and historian of science. He was also one of the most influential and widely read writers of popular science of his generation. Gould spent most of his career teaching at Harvard University and working at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. In the latter years of his life, Gould also taught biology and evolution at New York University near his home in SoHo. Gould's most significant contribution to science was the theory of punctuated equilibrium, which he developed with Niles Eldredge in 1972. The theory proposes that most evolution is marked by long periods of evolutionary stability, which is punctuated by rare instances of branching evolution. The theory was contrasted against phyletic gradualism, the popular idea that evolutionary change is marked by a pattern of smooth and continuous change in the fossil record. Most of Gould's empirical research was based on the land snail genera Poecilozonites and Cerion. He also contributed to evolutionary developmental biology, and has received wide praise for his book Ontogeny and Phylogeny. In evolutionary theory
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    2 votes
    122
    Theodore Dreiser

    Theodore Dreiser

    • Works written: The Financier
    Theodore Herman Albert Dreiser (August 27, 1871 – December 28, 1945) was an American novelist and journalist of the naturalist school. His novels often featured main characters who succeeded at their objectives despite a lack of a firm moral code, and literary situations that more closely resemble studies of nature than tales of choice and agency. Dreiser's best known novels include Sister Carrie (1900) and An American Tragedy (1925). Dreiser was born in Terre Haute, Indiana, to Sarah and John Paul Dreiser, a strict Catholic family. John Paul Dreiser was a German immigrant from Mayen in the Eifel region, and Sarah was from the Mennonite farming community near Dayton, Ohio; she was disowned for marrying John and converting to Roman Catholicism. Theodore was the twelfth of thirteen children (the ninth of the ten surviving). The popular songwriter Paul Dresser (1857–1906) was his older brother. After graduating from high school in Warsaw, IN, Theodore attended Indiana University in the years 1889-1890 before dropping out. Within several years, he was writing for the Chicago Globe newspaper and then the St. Louis Globe-Democrat. He wrote several articles on writers such as Nathaniel
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    2 votes
    123

    Vaughnette Goode-Walker

    • Works written: Going Home
    • Contributing author to: Savannah, Immortal City Photography Exhibit
    • School or Movement: contemporary poetry
    A native of Savannah, Georgia, Vaughnette Goode-Walker, known also as "Sista V", is the creator of the Footprints of Savannah Walking Tour, which covers the “complete story of slavery in Savannah,” and the director of cultural diversity for the world-famous Telfair Art Museum. In addition, she is a former journalist for CNN and a renowned poet whose first book, Going Home, is scheduled for publication in Spring 2010. Her resume also includes work as a broadcast journalist and producer for Chicago’s WVON Radio, and serving as a news writer for ABC Radio Network. In recent years, she has published articles in the Savannah Morning News and was among the contributing authors for the Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance (Facts On File).
    8.00
    2 votes
    124
    Al Franken

    Al Franken

    • Works written: Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them
    Alan Stuart "Al" Franken (born May 21, 1951) is the junior United States Senator from Minnesota. He first achieved fame as a writer and performer for the television show Saturday Night Live from its conception in 1975 before moving to writing and acting in films and television. He then became a political commentator, author of five books, and hosted his nationally syndicated radio talk show The Al Franken Show on the Air America Radio network. He is a member of the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party, which affiliates with the national Democratic Party, and in 2008, he narrowly defeated incumbent Republican Senator Norm Coleman by 312 votes. After the results of a statewide manual recount and subsequent lawsuit by Coleman, the Minnesota Supreme Court unanimously upheld Franken's victory on June 30, 2009, and he was sworn into the Senate on July 7, 2009. Franken was born in New York City to his mother, Phoebe G. (née Kunst), a homemaker and real estate agent, and his father, Joseph P. Franken, a printing salesman. The family first moved to Albert Lea, Minnesota in 1955, when he was four, then to St. Louis Park, Minnesota, a suburb near Minneapolis. Franken had a Jewish
    9.00
    1 votes
    125
    Brian Herbert

    Brian Herbert

    • Works written: Hunters of Dune
    Brian Patrick Herbert (born in Seattle, Washington, June 29, 1947) is an American author who lives in Washington state. He is the elder son of science fiction author Frank Herbert. Brian Herbert's novels include Sidney's Comet, Prisoners of Arionn, Man of Two Worlds (written with his father), and Sudanna Sudanna. In 2003, Herbert wrote a biography of his father: Dreamer of Dune: The Biography of Frank Herbert. The younger Herbert has edited The Songs of Muad'dib and the Notebooks of Frank Herbert's Dune. Brian has also created a concordance for the Dune universe based on his father's notes, though, according to the younger Herbert, there are no immediate plans to publish it. Brian is most famous for his collaborations with author Kevin J. Anderson, with whom he has written multiple prequels to his father's landmark 1965 science fiction novel, Dune, all of which have made the New York Times Best Seller list. The duo began with the trilogies Prelude to Dune (1999–2001) and Legends of Dune (2002–2004). Brian and Anderson next published Hunters of Dune (2006) and Sandworms of Dune (2007), two sequels to Frank Herbert's original Dune series which was left incomplete after his 1986
    9.00
    1 votes
    126
    E. M. Forster

    E. M. Forster

    • Works written: A Passage to India
    Edward Morgan Forster OM, CH (1 January 1879 – 7 June 1970) was an English novelist, short story writer, essayist and librettist. He is known best for his ironic and well-plotted novels examining class difference and hypocrisy in early 20th-century British society. Forster's humanistic impulse toward understanding and sympathy may be aptly summed up in the epigraph to his 1910 novel Howards End: "Only connect." Forster was born into an Anglo-Irish and Welsh middle-class family at 6 Melcombe Place, Dorset Square, London NW1, in a building that no longer exists. He was the only child of Alice Clara "Lily" (née Whichelo) and Edward Morgan Llewellyn Forster, an architect. His name was officially registered as Henry Morgan Forster, but at his baptism he was accidentally named Edward Morgan Forster. To distinguish him from his father, he was always called Morgan. His father died of tuberculosis on 30 October 1880, before Morgan's second birthday. Among Forster's ancestors were members of the Clapham Sect, a social reform group within the Church of England. He inherited £8,000 (£659,300 as of 2012), from his paternal great-aunt Marianne Thornton (daughter of the abolitionist Henry
    9.00
    1 votes
    127
    Greg Rucka

    Greg Rucka

    • Works written: Perfect Dark: Initial Vector
    Gregory "Greg" Rucka (born November 29, 1969) is an American comic book writer and novelist, known for his work on such comics as Action Comics, Batwoman, Detective Comics, and the miniseries Superman: World of New Krypton for DC Comics, and for novels such as his Queen & Country series. Rucka's writing career began with the Atticus Kodiak series. Kodiak is a bodyguard whose jobs are rarely as uncomplicated as they at first appear. The series to date consists of: Keeper, Finder, Smoker, Shooting at Midnight, Critical Space, Patriot Acts, and Walking Dead. These works garnered Rucka much critical acclaim and comparisons to the elite writers of crime/suspense fiction. The "Atticus" novels are notable for their realism and attention to detail, which are partly a product of Rucka's fight training and experience as an EMT. He has also written three non-Atticus books: Fistful of Rain, A Gentleman's Game and Private Wars; the latter two are tie-ins to his comic book series Queen & Country. In the 1990s, Rucka would hop onto the comic scene with his highly praised Whiteout, published through Oni Press. Whiteout focuses on a murder in an Antarctic base. It was followed by a sequel,
    9.00
    1 votes
    128
    R. K. Narayan

    R. K. Narayan

    • Works written: Swami and Friends
    R. K. Narayan (10 October 1906 – 13 May 2001), (shortened from Rasipuram Krishnaswami Iyer Narayanaswami) was an Indian author whose works of fiction include a series of books about people and their interactions in an imagined town in India called Malgudi. He is one of three leading figures of early Indian literature in English, along with Mulk Raj Anand and Raja Rao. He is credited with bringing Indian literature in English to the rest of the world, and is regarded as one of India's greatest English language novelists. Narayan broke through with the help of his mentor and friend, Graham Greene, who was instrumental in getting publishers for Narayan’s first four books, including the semi-autobiographical trilogy of Swami and Friends, The Bachelor of Arts and The English Teacher. Narayan’s works also include The Financial Expert, hailed as one of the most original works of 1951, and Sahitya Akademi Award winner The Guide, which was adapted for films in Hindi and English languages, and for Broadway. The setting for most of Narayan's stories is the fictional town of Malgudi, first introduced in Swami and Friends. His narratives highlight social context and provide a feel for his
    9.00
    1 votes
    129
    Dejan Stojanović

    Dejan Stojanović

    • Works written: Krugovanje: 1978-1987 (First edition)
    • Contributing author to: The Shape by Dejan Stojanovic
    • School or Movement: Contemporary literature
    Dejan Stojanović (Serbian: Дејан Стојановић, pronounced [dejan stojanoʋitɕ]; born 11 March 1959) is a Serbian-American poet, writer, essayist, philosopher, businessman, and former journalist. His poetry is characterized by a recognizable system of thought and poetic devices, bordering on philosophy, and, overall, it has a highly reflective tone. According to the critic Petar V. Arbutina, “Stojanović belongs to the small and autochthonous circle of poets who have been the main creative and artistic force of the Serbian poetry in the last several decades." About two centuries ago, ancestors of the Stojanovic family moved from Čevo (near Cetinje, Montenegro) to Orasi (Lješanska Nahija, Crna Gora). According to the oral tradition, they descended from one of the most famous Serbian noblemen, Strahinjić Ban (Strahinja Banović, Banović Strahinja). Some members of the original family moved to Kosovo in the early 1930s. Stojanović’s paternal grandmother, Anđa, was from a distinguished Montenegrin family, the Lubarda family, of which the most prominent member was Petar Lubarda, arguably the best and most celebrated painter of the former Yugoslavia (about whom Sir Herbert Read wrote with
    6.67
    3 votes
    130
    Douglas Coupland

    Douglas Coupland

    • Works written: Microserfs
    • School or Movement: Postmodern literature
    Douglas Coupland (pronounced COPE-lund) (born December 30, 1961) is a Canadian novelist. His fiction is complemented by recognized works in design and visual art arising from his early formal training. His first novel, the 1991 international bestseller Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture, popularized terms such as McJob and Generation X. He has published thirteen novels, two collections of short stories, seven non-fiction books, and a number of dramatic works and screenplays for film and television. Coupland has been described as "...possibly the most gifted exegete of North American mass culture writing today." and "one of the great satirists of consumerism". A specific feature of Coupland's novels is their synthesis of postmodern religion, Web 2.0 technology, human sexuality, and pop culture. Coupland lives in West Vancouver, British Columbia with his partner David Weir. He published his twelfth novel Generation A in 2009. He also released an updated version of City of Glass and a biography on Marshall McLuhan for Penguin Canada in their Extraordinary Canadians series, called Extraordinary Canadians: Marshall McLuhan. He is the presenter of the 2010 Massey Lectures,
    6.67
    3 votes
    131
    Gene Wolfe

    Gene Wolfe

    • Works written: A Walking Tour of the Shambles
    Gene Wolfe (born May 7, 1931) is an American science fiction and fantasy writer. He is noted for his dense, allusive prose as well as the strong influence of his Catholic faith, to which he converted after marrying into the religion. He is a prolific short story writer and novelist and has won many science fiction and fantasy literary awards (below). Wolfe is most famous for The Book of the New Sun (1980ff), the first part of his Solar Cycle. In 1998, Locus magazine ranked it third-best fantasy novel before 1990, based on a poll of subscribers that considered it and several other series as single entries. Wolfe was born in New York. He had polio as a small child. While attending Texas A&M University, he published his first speculative fiction in The Commentator, a student literary journal. Wolfe dropped out during his junior year, and was drafted to fight in the Korean War. After returning to the United States he earned a degree from the University of Houston and became an industrial engineer. He edited the journal Plant Engineering for many years before retiring to write full-time, but his most famous professional engineering achievement is a contribution to the machine used to
    6.67
    3 votes
    132
    Steven Erikson

    Steven Erikson

    • Works written: Blood Follows
    Steven Erikson (born October 7, 1959) is the pseudonym of Steve Rune Lundin, a Canadian novelist, who was educated and trained as both an archaeologist and anthropologist. His best-known work is the ten-volume fantasy series Malazan Book of the Fallen, which by 2006 had sold over 250,000 copies. SF Site has called the series "the most significant work of epic fantasy since Donaldson’s Chronicles of Thomas Covenant," and Fantasy Book Review described it as "the best fantasy series of recent times." Fellow fantasy author Stephen Donaldson, refers to Erikson as "an extraordinary writer". In an interview with sffworld.com, Erikson acknowledged that he originally doubted the series would become "mainstream", and was subsequently surprised at how successful the series has been. He also noted how people "either hate the series or love it". Steven Erikson was born in Toronto, Canada, and grew up in Winnipeg. He subsequently lived in the UK with his wife and son, but has since returned to Winnipeg. He is an anthropologist and archaeologist by training and is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop. For his thesis at the Iowa Writers' Workshop, Erikson wrote a "story cycle" of short stories
    6.67
    3 votes
    133
    Theodor Fontane

    Theodor Fontane

    • Works written: Effi Briest
    Theodor Fontane (German: [ˈtʰeːodoɐ̯ fɔnˈtaːnə]; 30 December 1819 – 20 September 1898) was a German novelist and poet, regarded by many as the most important 19th-century German-language realist writer. Fontane was born in Neuruppin into a Huguenot family. At the age of sixteen he was apprenticed to an apothecary, his father's profession. He became an apothecary himself, and in 1839, at the age of 20, wrote his first work (Heinrichs IV. erste Liebe, now lost). His further education was in Leipzig where he came into contact with the progressives of the Vormärz. Fontane's first published work, the novella Geschwisterliebe ("Sibling Love"), appeared in the Berlin Figaro in December 1839. His biographer Gordon A. Craig observes that this work gave few indications of his promise as a gifted writer: "Although the theme of incest, which was to occupy Fontane on later occasions, is touched upon here, the mawkishness of the tale... is equaled by the lameness of its plot and the inertness of the style in which it is told, and [the characters] Clärchen and her brother are both so colorless that no one could have guessed that their creator had a future as a writer." His first job as apothecary
    6.67
    3 votes
    134
    Carrie Fisher

    Carrie Fisher

    • Works written: The Best Awful There Is
    Carrie Frances Fisher (born October 21, 1956) is an American actress, novelist, screenwriter, and performance artist. She is best known for her portrayal of Princess Leia in the original Star Wars trilogy and for voicing Angela in Family Guy. She is also known for her bestselling novel Postcards from the Edge and screenplay for a film of the same name, and her autobiographical one-woman play, Wishful Drinking. Fisher was born in Beverly Hills, California, the daughter of singer Eddie Fisher and actress Debbie Reynolds. Her father was Jewish, the son of immigrants from Russia, and her mother was Protestant, of Scots-Irish and English ancestry. Her younger brother is producer and actor Todd Fisher, and her half-sisters are actresses Joely Fisher and Tricia Leigh Fisher, whose mother is the singer and actress Connie Stevens. When Fisher was two, her parents divorced after her father left Reynolds for her best friend, actress Elizabeth Taylor, the widow of her father's best friend Mike Todd. The following year, her mother married shoe store chain owner Harry Karl, who secretly spent her life savings. Her family assumed that Carrie would go into show business, and she began appearing
    5.75
    4 votes
    135
    Holly Black

    Holly Black

    • Works written: Tithe : A Modern Faerie Tale
    Holly Black née Riggenbach (born November 10, 1971) is an American writer and editor, best known for writing The Spiderwick Chronicles, a series of children's fantasy books she created with illustrator Tony DiTerlizzi. Black was born in West Long Branch, New Jersey in 1971, and during her early years her family lived in a "decrepit Victorian house." Black graduated with a B.A. in English from The College of New Jersey in 1994. She worked as a production editor on medical journals including The Journal of Pain while studying at Rutgers University. She considered becoming a librarian as a backup career, but writing drew her away. She married her high school sweetheart, Theo Black, himself an accomplished illustrator and web designer, in 1999. In 2008, Black was described as residing in Amherst, Massachusetts. Black edited and contributed to the role-playing culture magazine d8 in 1996. Her first novel, Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale, was published in 2002. Her novella The Wrath of Mulgarath reached the top of the New York Times Bestseller list in 2004. Valiant : A Modern Tale of Faerie was a finalist for the Mythopoeic Award, and the recipient of the 2005 Andre Norton Award. Other
    5.75
    4 votes
    136
    Mary Shelley

    Mary Shelley

    • Works written: Frankenstein
    • School or Movement: Romanticism
    Mary Shelley (née Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin; 30 August 1797 – 1 February 1851) was an English novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer, and travel writer, best known for her Gothic novel Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus (1818). She also edited and promoted the works of her husband, the Romantic poet and philosopher Percy Bysshe Shelley. Her father was the political philosopher William Godwin, and her mother was the philosopher and feminist Mary Wollstonecraft. Mary Godwin's mother died when she was eleven days old; afterwards, she and her older half-sister, Fanny Imlay, were raised by her father. When Mary was four, Godwin married his neighbour, Mary Jane Clairmont. Godwin provided his daughter with a rich, if informal, education, encouraging her to adhere to his liberal political theories. In 1814, Mary Godwin began a romantic relationship with one of her father’s political followers, the married Percy Bysshe Shelley. Together with Mary's stepsister, Claire Clairmont, they left for France and travelled through Europe; upon their return to England, Mary was pregnant with Percy's child. Over the next two years, she and Percy faced ostracism, constant
    5.75
    4 votes
    137
    David Brin

    David Brin

    • Works written: The Postman
    Glen David Brin, Ph.D. (born October 6, 1950) is an American scientist and award-winning author of science fiction. He has received the Hugo, Locus, Campbell and Nebula Awards. Brin was born in Glendale, California in 1950. In 1973, he graduated from the California Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Science in astrophysics. He followed this with a Master of Science in applied physics in 1978 and a Doctor of Philosophy in space science in 1981, both from the University of California, San Diego. Brin is a 2010 fellow of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies. He currently lives in southern California with his children. His ancestors come from Poland, from the area around Konin. His grandfather was drafted into the Russian army and fought in the Russian-Japanese War of 1905. Brin's body of science fiction, when taken as a whole, is normally categorized as hard science fiction. About half of Brin's works are in his Uplift Universe. These have won a large following in the SF community, twice winning the international Science Fiction Achievement Award (Hugo Award) in the Best Novel category. This future history depicts a huge galactic civilization responsible for
    7.50
    2 votes
    138
    Gavin Baddeley

    Gavin Baddeley

    • Works written: The Gospel of Filth
    Gavin Baddeley is an ordained Reverend in the Church of Satan, and an experienced journalist who has worked for The Observer and Metal Hammer. He is the occult authority for the BBC and Channel 4, has addressed Cambridge University, and has been profiled in The Independent and The London Evening Standard. His books have provoked controversy and media attention, but he still remains a popular figure among Goths, Satanists, and Pagans alike. He made an appearance in the documentary film Metal: A Headbanger's Journey. His style of writing is journalistic in nature, covering subjects which are tangential but relevant to the topic at hand. He has a noticeably dry wit and observant humor in his writing.
    7.50
    2 votes
    139
    James Blish

    James Blish

    • Works written: The Quincunx of Time
    James Benjamin Blish (May 23, 1921 – July 30, 1975) was an American author of fantasy and science fiction. Blish also wrote literary criticism of science fiction using the pen-name William Atheling, Jr. Blish was born at East Orange, New Jersey. In the late 1930s to the early 1940s, Blish was a member of the Futurians. Blish trained as a biologist at Rutgers and Columbia University, and spent 1942–1944 as a medical technician in the United States Army. After the war he became the science editor for the Pfizer pharmaceutical company. His first published story appeared in 1940, and his writing career progressed until he gave up his job to become a professional writer. He is credited with coining the term gas giant, in the story "Solar Plexus" as it appeared in the anthology Beyond Human Ken, edited by Judith Merril. (The story was originally published in 1941, but that version did not contain the term; Blish apparently added it in a rewrite done for the anthology, which was first published in 1952.) Blish was married to the literary agent Virginia Kidd from 1947 to 1963. From 1962 to 1968, he worked for the Tobacco Institute. Between 1967 and his death from lung cancer in 1975, Blish
    7.50
    2 votes
    140
    Kingsley Amis

    Kingsley Amis

    • Works written: Colonel Sun
    Sir Kingsley William Amis, CBE (16 April 1922 – 22 October 1995) was an English novelist, poet, critic, and teacher. He wrote more than 20 novels, six volumes of poetry, a memoir, various short stories, radio and television scripts, along with works of social and literary criticism. According to his biographer, Zachary Leader, Amis was "the finest English comic novelist of the second half of the twentieth century." He was the father of English novelist Martin Amis. In 2008, The Times ranked Kingsley Amis ninth on their list of the 50 greatest British writers since 1945. Kingsley Amis was born in Clapham, south London, the son of William Robert Amis, a mustard manufacturer's clerk in the City of London and his wife Rosa Annie, née Lucas. He was educated at the City of London School on a scholarship after his first year, and in April 1941 was admitted to St. John's College, Oxford, also on a scholarship, where he read English. It was there that he met Philip Larkin, with whom he formed the most important friendship of his life. While at Oxford, in June 1941, Amis joined the Communist Party of Great Britain. After only a year, in July 1942, he was called up for national service. After
    7.50
    2 votes
    141
    Margaret Haddix

    Margaret Haddix

    • Works written: Among the Hidden
    Margaret Peterson Haddix (born April 9, 1964) is an American author. She is best known for writing The Missing series and the Shadow Children sequence. She also wrote the tenth volume in The 39 Clues series, published by Scholastic. Margaret Peterson Haddix was born in 1964 in Washington Court House, Ohio, where she grew up on a farm. Her father was farmer, who grew corn, soybeans, wheat, hogs and cattle. Her mother's occupation was being a nurse. She received a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and journalism from Miami University in 1987. She worked as a newspaper copy editor in Fort Wayne, Indiana; as a newspaper reporter in Indianapolis; and as a community college instructor and freelance writer in Danville, Illinois. Haddix and her husband, Doug, a newspaper editor, now live in Columbus, Ohio, with their two children. In 2004, Simon & Schuster, threatened to sue the makers of M. Night Shyamalan's film The Village over alleged similarities with the plotline of her first novel Running Out of Time. The filmmakers wrote off the similarities as "meritless". Haddix has received the International Reading Association Children's Book Award, the American Library Association Best
    7.50
    2 votes
    142
    Robert Jordan

    Robert Jordan

    • Works written: The Eye of the World
    Robert Jordan was the pen name of James Oliver Rigney, Jr. (October 17, 1948 – September 16, 2007) He used this pseudonym for fantasy novels, including the bestselling The Wheel of Time series for which he was best known. He also wrote historical fiction as Reagan O'Neal, a western as Jackson O'Reilly, and dance criticism as Chang Lung, and he had ghostwritten an "international thriller" that is still believed to have been written by someone else. Jordan was born in Charleston, South Carolina. He served two tours in Vietnam (from 1968 to 1970) with the United States Army as a helicopter gunner. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with oak leaf cluster, the Bronze Star with "V" and oak leaf cluster, and two Vietnamese Gallantry Crosses with palm. After returning from Vietnam he attended The Citadel where he received an undergraduate degree in physics. After graduating he was employed by the United States Navy as a nuclear engineer. He began writing in 1977. He was a history buff and enjoyed hunting, fishing, sailing, poker, chess, pool, and pipe collecting. He described himself as a "High Church" Episcopalian and received communion more than once a week. He lived with his
    7.50
    2 votes
    143
    J. M. Barrie

    J. M. Barrie

    • Works written: Peter Pan
    • Contributing author to: Stories by English Authors: Scotland (Selected by Scribners)
    • School or Movement: Kailyard school
    Sir James Matthew Barrie, 1st Baronet, OM (9 May 1860 – 19 June 1937) was a Scottish author and dramatist, best remembered today as the creator of Peter Pan. The child of a family of small-town weavers, he was educated in Scotland. He moved to London, where he developed a career as a novelist and playwright. There he met the Llewelyn Davies boys who inspired him in writing about a baby boy who has magical adventures in Kensington Gardens (included in The Little White Bird), then to write Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up, a "fairy play" about this ageless boy and an ordinary girl named Wendy who have adventures in the fantasy setting of Neverland. This play quickly overshadowed his previous work and although he continued to write successfully, it became his best-known work, credited with popularising the name Wendy, which was very uncommon previously. Barrie unofficially adopted the Davies boys following the deaths of their parents. Before his death, he gave the rights to the Peter Pan works to Great Ormond Street Hospital, which continues to benefit from them. Barrie was born in Kirriemuir, Angus, to a conservative Calvinist family. His father David Barrie was a modestly
    6.33
    3 votes
    144
    Clive Barker

    Clive Barker

    • Works written: The Great and Secret Show
    Clive Barker (born 5 October 1952) is an English author, film director and visual artist best known for his work in both fantasy and horror fiction. Barker came to prominence in the mid-1980s with a series of short stories which established him as a leading young horror writer. He has since written many novels and other works, and his fiction has been adapted into motion pictures, notably the Hellraiser and Candyman series. Clive Barker was born in Liverpool, England, the son of Joan Ruby (née Revill), a painter and school welfare officer, and Leonard Barker, a personnel director for an industrial relations firm. Educated at Dovedale Primary School and the former Quarry Bank High School now Calderstones Quarry Bank High School, he studied English and Philosophy at Liverpool University. As a four-year-old child, Barker witnessed the death of Léo Valentin, a French skydiver who plummeted to his death during a performance at an air show in Liverpool. Barker would later allude to Valentin in many of his stories. In 2003, Barker received The Davidson/Valentini Award at the 15th GLAAD Media Awards, presented "to an openly lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender individual who has made a
    8.00
    1 votes
    145
    Dan Brown

    Dan Brown

    • Works written: The Lost Symbol
    Dan Brown (born June 22, 1964) is an American author of thriller fiction, best known for the 2003 bestselling novel, The Da Vinci Code. Brown's novels, which are treasure hunts set in a 24-hour time period, feature the recurring themes of cryptography, keys, symbols, codes, and conspiracy theories. His books have been translated into over 40 languages, and as of 2009, sold over 80 million copies. Two of them, The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons, have been adapted into feature films. The former opened amid great controversy and poor reviews, while the latter did only slightly better with critics. Brown's novels that feature the lead character Robert Langdon also include historical themes and Christianity as recurring motifs, and as a result, have generated controversy. Brown states on his website that his books are not anti-Christian, though he is on a 'constant spiritual journey' himself, and says that his book The Da Vinci Code is simply "an entertaining story that promotes spiritual discussion and debate" and suggests that the book may be used "as a positive catalyst for introspection and exploration of our faith." Dan Brown was born and raised in Exeter, New Hampshire, USA,
    8.00
    1 votes
    146
    Albert Camus

    Albert Camus

    • Works written: The Fall
    Albert Camus (French: [albɛʁ kamy] ( listen); 7 November 1913 – 4 January 1960) was a French pied-noir author, journalist, and philosopher. His views contributed to the rise of the philosophy known as absurdism. He wrote in his essay "The Rebel" that his whole life was devoted to opposing the philosophy of nihilism while still delving deeply into individual freedom. Although often cited as a proponent of existentialism, the philosophy with which Camus was associated during his own lifetime, he rejected this particular label. In an interview in 1945, Camus rejected any ideological associations: "No, I am not an existentialist. Sartre and I are always surprised to see our names linked..." In 1949, Camus founded the Group for International Liaisons within the Revolutionary Union Movement after his split with Garry Davis' movement Citizens of the World, which the surrealist André Breton was also a member. The formation of this group, according to Camus, was to "denounce two ideologies found in both the USSR and the USA" regarding their idolatry of technology. Camus was awarded the 1957 Nobel Prize for Literature "for his important literary production, which with clear-sighted
    5.25
    4 votes
    147
    Orson Scott Card

    Orson Scott Card

    • Works written: The Crystal City
    Orson Scott Card (born August 24, 1951) is an American author, critic, public speaker, essayist, columnist, and political activist. He writes in several genres, but is primarily known for his science fiction. His novel Ender's Game (1985) and its sequel Speaker for the Dead (1986) both won Hugo and Nebula Awards, making Card the only author to win both science fiction's top U.S. prizes in consecutive years. He is also known as an advocate for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, of which he has been a lifelong practicing member, and as a political commentator on many issues, including opposition to homosexual behavior and the legalization of same-sex marriage. A film adaptation of Ender's Game is currently in development, and is set for release on 1 November 2013. Card is co-producing the film. Card is the son of Willard and Peggy Card, third of six children and the older brother of composer and arranger Arlen Card. Card was born in Richland, Washington, and grew up in Santa Clara, California as well as Mesa, Arizona and Orem, Utah. He served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) in Brazil and graduated from Brigham Young
    5.25
    4 votes
    148
    Chuck Palahniuk

    Chuck Palahniuk

    • Works written: Survivor
    • School or Movement: Postmodern literature
    Charles Michael "Chuck" Palahniuk ( /ˈpɔːlənɪk/; born February 21, 1962) is an American novelist and freelance journalist, who describes his work as transgressional fiction. He is best known as the author of the award-winning novel Fight Club, which also was made into a feature film. He maintains homes in the states of Oregon and Washington. Palahniuk was born in Pasco, Washington, the son of Carol and Fred Palahniuk, and he grew up living in a mobile home in nearby Burbank, Washington with his family. His parents separated when he was fourteen and subsequently they divorced, often leaving him and his three siblings to live with their maternal grandparents at their cattle ranch in Eastern Washington. His paternal grandfather was Ukrainian and immigrated to New York from Canada in 1907. Palahniuk's father began a relationship with a woman, whose ex-boyfriend murdered the couple. Later, Palahniuk's mother died of cancer. In his twenties, Palahniuk attended the University of Oregon School of Journalism, and graduated in 1986. While attending college he worked as an intern for National Public Radio member station KLCC in Eugene, Oregon. He moved to Portland soon afterward. After
    7.00
    2 votes
    149
    Robin Hobb

    Robin Hobb

    • Works written: Assassin's Quest
    Robin Hobb is the second pen name of novelist Margaret Astrid Lindholm Ogden (born 1952 in California) who produces primarily fantasy fiction, although she has published some science fiction. From 1983 to 1992, she wrote exclusively under the pseudonym Megan Lindholm. Fiction under that pseudonym tends to be contemporary fantasy. In 1995, she began use of the pseudonym Robin Hobb for works of epic traditional European Medieval and American Frontier Fantasy. She currently publishes under both names, and she currently lives in Tacoma, Washington. As of 2003 she had sold over 1 million copies of her first nine Robin Hobb novels. She has recently finished writing a four-volume novel called The Rain Wild Chronicles. The volumes are named The Dragon Keeper, Dragon Haven and City of Dragons with Blood of Dragons forthcoming in 2013. Her second latest release, The Inheritance, is a collection of short fiction by both Robin Hobb and Megan Lindholm. Ogden was born in California in 1952, but was raised in Alaska. After graduating from high school, she studied at Denver University for a year and then returned to Alaska. After marrying at eighteen, she moved to Kodiak, an island in
    7.00
    2 votes
    150
    Vikram Seth

    Vikram Seth

    • Works written: The Golden Gate
    Vikram Seth ([ˈʋɪkrəm ˈseːʈʰ]; born 20 June 1952) is an Indian author and poet. Vikram Seth was born on 20 June 1952 in a Punjabi family to Leila and Prem Seth in Calcutta (now Kolkata). His family lived in many cities including the Bata Shoe Company town of Batanagar, Danapur near Patna, and in London. His younger brother, Shantum, leads Buddhist meditational tours. His younger sister, Aradhana, is a film-maker married to an Austrian diplomat, and has worked on Deepa Mehta's movies Earth and Fire. (Compare the characters Haresh, Lata, Savita and two of the Chatterji siblings in A Suitable Boy: Seth has been candid in acknowledging that many of his fictional characters are drawn from life; he has said that only the dog Cuddles in A Suitable Boy has his real name — "Because he can't sue". Justice Leila Seth has said in her memoir On Balance that other characters in A Suitable Boy are composites but Haresh is a portrait of her husband Prem.) Seth spent part of his youth in London but returned to his homeland in 1957. After receiving primary and commencing secondary education at the [[Welham Boys School ]] in Dehradun in India, Seth returned to England to Tonbridge School. While at
    7.00
    2 votes
    151
    Eric Flint

    Eric Flint

    • Works written: 1634: The Galileo Affair
    Eric Flint (born 1947) is an American author, editor, and e-publisher. The majority of his main works are alternate history science fiction, but he also writes humorous fantasy adventures. Flint worked on a Ph.D. in history specializing in southern African history. He left his doctoral program over political issues and supported himself from that time until age 50 in a variety of jobs, including longshoreman, truck driver, and machinist, and as a labor union organizer. A long-time leftist political activist, Flint worked as a member of the Socialist Workers Party. After winning the 1993 Writers of the Future contest, he published his first novel in 1997 and moved to full-time writing in 1999. Shortly afterwards, he became the first librarian of the Baen Free Library and a prominent anti-copy protection activist. He has edited the works of several classic SF authors, repackaging their short stories into collections and fix-up novels. This project has met commercial success, and has returned several out-of-print authors to print. In 2004, faced with a persistent drain on his time by fan-fiction authors seeking comment on the four years old 1632 Tech Manual web forum focused on his
    6.00
    3 votes
    152
    Francine Prose

    Francine Prose

    • Works written: Reading Like a Writer
    • Contributing author to: Burn This Book
    • School or Movement: PEN American Center
    Francine Prose (born April 1, 1947, Brooklyn, New York) is an American writer. Since March 2007 she has been the president of PEN American Center. She graduated from Radcliffe College in 1968 and received a Guggenheim fellowship in 1991. She sat on the board of judges for the PEN/Newman's Own Award. Her novel, Blue Angel, a satire about sexual harassment on college campuses, was a finalist for the National Book Award. She is a Visiting Professor of Literature at Bard College. One of her novels, Household Saints, was adapted for a movie by Nancy Savoca. Another, The Glorious Ones, has been adapted into a musical with the same title by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty. It ran at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theatre at Lincoln Center in New York City in the fall of 2007. Prose received the PEN Translation Prize in 1988. Francine Prose's 2009 non-fiction work is a critique of the "Diary of Anne Frank", taking a decidedly literary approach. It discusses the history of the world-famous diary, Anne Frank's literary style, and her reason for writing the diary.
    6.00
    3 votes
    153
    Jack Kerouac

    Jack Kerouac

    • Works written: The Town and the City
    • School or Movement: Beat generation
    Jean-Louis "Jack" Kerouac ( /ˈkɛruːæk/ or /ˈkɛrɵæk/; March 12, 1922 – October 21, 1969) was an American novelist and poet. He is considered a literary iconoclast and, alongside William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, a pioneer of the Beat Generation. Kerouac is recognized for his spontaneous method of writing, covering topics such as Catholic spirituality, jazz, promiscuity, Buddhism, drugs, poverty, and travel. Kerouac became an underground celebrity and, with other beats, a progenitor of the hippie movement, although he remained antagonistic toward some of its politically radical elements. In 1969, at age 47, Kerouac died from internal bleeding due to long-standing abuse of alcohol. Since his death Kerouac's literary prestige has grown and several previously unseen works have been published. All of his books are in print today, among them: On the Road, Doctor Sax, The Dharma Bums, Mexico City Blues, The Subterraneans, Desolation Angels, Visions of Cody, The Sea is My Brother, and Big Sur. Jack Kerouac was born in Lowell, Massachusetts, to French-Canadian parents, Léo-Alcide Kéroack and Gabrielle-Ange Lévesque, of St-Hubert-de-Rivière-du-Loup in the province of Quebec, Canada.
    6.00
    3 votes
    154
    Tom Robbins

    Tom Robbins

    • Works written: Another Roadside Attraction
    Thomas Eugene "Tom" Robbins (born July 22, 1936) is an American author. His best-selling novels are "seriocomedies" (also known as "comedy-drama"), often wildly poetic stories with a strong social and philosophical undercurrent, an irreverent bent, and scenes extrapolated from carefully researched bizarre facts. He is probably best known for his novel Even Cowgirls Get the Blues which was made into a movie in 1993 by Gus Van Sant and starring Uma Thurman, Lorraine Bracco and Keanu Reeves. Robbins was born in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, United States (US), to George Thomas Robbins and Katherine Belle Robinson. Both of his grandfathers were Southern Baptist preachers. The Robbins family resided in Blowing Rock before moving to Warsaw, Virginia in 1942. Robbins graduated in 1950 from Hargrave Military Academy in Chatham, Virginia, where he won the Senior Essay Medal. The following year he enrolled at Washington and Lee University to major in journalism, leaving at the end of his sophomore year after being disciplined by his fraternity for bad behavior and failing to earn a letter in basketball. In 1953, he enlisted in the Air Force after receiving his draft notice, spending a year
    5.00
    4 votes
    155
    Bruce Sterling

    Bruce Sterling

    • Works written: Schismatrix
    • School or Movement: Cyberpunk
    Michael Bruce Sterling (born April 14, 1954) is an American science fiction author who is best known for his novels and his work on the Mirrorshades anthology. This work helped to define the cyberpunk genre. Sterling, along with William Gibson, Rudy Rucker, John Shirley, Lewis Shiner, and Pat Cadigan, is one of the founders of the cyberpunk movement in science fiction. In addition, he is one of the sub-genre's chief ideological promulgators. This has earned him the nickname "Chairman Bruce." He was also one of the first organizers of the Turkey City Writer's Workshop, and is a frequent attendee at the Sycamore Hill Writer's Workshop. He won Hugo Awards for his novelettes Bicycle Repairman and Taklamakan. His first novel, Involution Ocean, published in 1977, features the world, Nullaqua where all the atmosphere is contained in a single, miles-deep crater. The story concerns a ship sailing on the ocean of dust at the bottom, which hunts creatures called dustwhales that live beneath the surface. It is partially a science-fictional pastiche of Moby-Dick by Herman Melville. From the late 1970s onwards, Sterling wrote a series of stories set in the Shaper/Mechanist universe: the solar
    5.67
    3 votes
    156
    Donald Keene

    Donald Keene

    • Works written: Travelers of a Hundred Ages
    Kiin Donarudo (キーン・ドナルド), formerly Donald Lawrence Keene (born June 18, 1922 in New York City), is a Japanologist, scholar, teacher, writer, translator and interpreter of Japanese literature and culture. Keene was University Professor Emeritus and Shincho Professor Emeritus of Japanese Literature at Columbia University, where he taught for over fifty years. Soon after the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, Keene retired from Columbia and moved to Japan with the intention of living out the remainder of his life there. He acquired his Japanese citizenship, and introducing pseudonym 鬼怒鳴門(キーン・ドナルド) on March 8th, 2012. Keene is well known and respected in Japan and his move there in the aftermath of the earthquake crises was widely lauded. Keene gave a lecture in Sendai in October 2011. Keene has published about 25 books in English on Japanese topics, including both studies of Japanese literature and culture and translations of Japanese classical and modern literature, including a four-volume history of Japanese literature which has become the standard work. Keene has also published about 30 books in Japanese (some translated from English). Keene is the president of the Donald Keene
    5.67
    3 votes
    157
    Kevin Kelly

    Kevin Kelly

    • Works written: Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, and the Economic World
    Kevin Kelly (born 1952) is the founding executive editor of Wired magazine, and a former editor/publisher of the Whole Earth Catalog. He has also been a writer, photographer, conservationist, and student of Asian and digital culture. Kelly was born in Pennsylvania in 1952 August 14 and graduated from Westfield High School, Westfield, New Jersey in 1970. He dropped out of University of Rhode Island after only one year. Kelly lives in Pacifica, California, a small coastal town just south of San Francisco. He is a devout Christian. He is married and has three children; Tywen, Ting and Kaileen. Among Kelly's personal involvements is a campaign to make a full inventory of all living species on earth, an effort also known as the Linnaean enterprise. The goal is to make an attempt at an "all species" web-based catalog in one generation (25 years). He is also sequencing his genome and co-organizes the Bay Area Quantified Self Meetup Group. Kelly's writings have appeared in the New York Times, Esquire, The Economist and other periodicals —in addition to the books he has authored and the magazines he either edited, founded, or helped to found. When he was 27 Kevin Kelly was a freelance photo
    5.67
    3 votes
    158
    Tracy Hickman

    Tracy Hickman

    • Works written: Time of the Twins
    Tracy Raye Hickman (born November 26, 1955, Salt Lake City, Utah, United States) is a best-selling fantasy author, best known for his work on Dragonlance as a game designer and co-author with Margaret Weis, while he worked for TSR. He married Laura Curtis in 1977, and together they have four children. Tracy Hickman was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, on November 26, 1955, where he grew up. He graduated from Provo High School in 1974, where his major interests were in drama, music, and Air Force JROTC. In 1975, Hickman began two years of service as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. His initial posting was for six months in Hawaii before his visa was approved, and he moved on to Indonesia. There, he served as a missionary in Surabaya, Djakarta, and the mountain city of Bandung before leaving in 1977. Hickman returned to marry his high school sweetheart, Laura Curtis, in 1977, within four months of his return to the United States. They are the parents of four children: Angel, Curtis, Tasha, and Jarod. Laura Hickman was the inspiration for Lauranlanthalasa (Laurana) Kanan. He eventually attended Brigham Young University. Hickman has worked as a
    5.67
    3 votes
    159
    Christopher Paolini

    Christopher Paolini

    • Works written: Eldest
    Christopher Paolini (born November 17, 1983, in Los Angeles, California) is an American author. He is best known as the author of the Inheritance Cycle, which consists of the books Eragon, Eldest, Brisingr and Inheritance. He lives in Paradise Valley, Montana, where he wrote his first book. Christopher Paolini was raised in the area of Paradise Valley, Montana. His family members include his parents, Kenneth Paolini and Talita Hodgkinson, and his sister, Angela Paolini. Home schooled for the duration of his education, Paolini graduated from high school at the age of 15 through a set of accredited correspondence courses from American School of Correspondence in Lansing, Illinois. Following graduation, he started his work on what would become the novel Eragon, the first of a series set in the mythical land of Alagaësia. In 2002, Eragon was published by Paolini International LLC, Paolini's parents' company. To promote the book, Paolini toured over 135 schools and libraries, discussing reading and writing, all the while dressed in "a medieval costume of red shirt, billowy black pants, lace-up boots, and a jaunty black cap." His sister Angela Paolini created the cover art for the first
    6.50
    2 votes
    160
    Edith Wharton

    Edith Wharton

    • Works written: Ethan Frome
    • School or Movement: Jazz Age
    Edith Wharton (/ ˈiːdɪθ ˈwɔːrtən/; born Edith Newbold Jones, January 24, 1862 – August 11, 1937) was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist, short story writer, and designer. Wharton was born to George Frederic Jones and Lucretia Stevens Rhinelander in New York City. She had two brothers, Frederic Rhinelander and Henry Edward. The saying "Keeping up with the Joneses" is said to refer to her father's family. She was also related to the Rensselaer family, the most prestigious of the old patroon families. She had a lifelong friendship with her Rhinelander niece, landscape architect Beatrix Farrand of Reef Point in Bar Harbor, Maine, and often traveled with Henry James in Europe. Wharton combined her insider's view of America's privileged classes with a brilliant, natural wit to write humorous, incisive novels and short stories of social and psychological insight. She was well acquainted with many of her era's other literary and public figures, including Theodore Roosevelt. In 1885, at 23 years of age, she married Edward (Teddy) Robbins Wharton, who was 12 years older. From a well-established Boston family, he was a sportsman and gentleman of the same social class and shared her
    6.50
    2 votes
    161
    John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir

    John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir

    • Works written: The Thirty-nine Steps
    John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir PC GCMG GCVO CH (26 August 1875 – 11 February 1940) was a Scottish novelist, historian and Unionist politician who served as Governor General of Canada, the 15th since Canadian Confederation. After a brief career in law, Buchan simultaneously began writing and his political and diplomatic career, serving as a private secretary to the colonial administrator of various colonies in Southern Africa, and eventually wrote propaganda for the British war effort in First World War. Once back in civilian life, Buchan was elected Member of Parliament for the Combined Scottish Universities, but spent most of his time on his writing career. He wrote The Thirty-Nine Steps and other adventure fiction. He was in 1935 appointed as governor general by George V, king of Canada, on the recommendation of Prime Minister of Canada Richard Bennett, to replace the Earl of Bessborough as viceroy, and occupied that post until his death in 1940. Buchan proved to be enthusiastic about literacy, as well as the evolution of Canadian culture, and he received a state funeral in Canada before his ashes were returned to the United Kingdom. Buchan was the first child of John Buchan—
    6.50
    2 votes
    162
    Julia Child

    Julia Child

    • Works written: Julia Child and More Company
    Julia Child (née McWilliams; August 15, 1912 – August 13, 2004) was an American chef, author, and television personality. She is recognized for bringing French cuisine to the American public with her debut cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and her subsequent television programs, the most notable of which was The French Chef, which premiered in 1963. Child was born Julia Carolyn McWilliams in Pasadena, California, the daughter of John McWilliams, Jr., a Princeton University graduate and prominent land manager, and his wife, the former Julia Carolyn ("Caro") Weston, a paper-company heiress whose father, Byron Curtis Weston, served as lieutenant governor of Massachusetts. The eldest of three children, she had a brother, John III (1914–2002), and a sister, Dorothy Dean (1917–2006). Child attended Westridge School, Polytechnic School from fourth grade to ninth grade, then the Katherine Branson School in Ross, California, which was at the time a boarding school. At six feet, two inches (1.88 m) tall, Child played tennis, golf, and basketball as a child and continued to play sports while attending Smith College, from which she graduated in 1934 with a major in English. A
    6.50
    2 votes
    163
    Neal Asher

    Neal Asher

    • Works written: Brass Man
    Neal Asher (born February 4, 1961 in Billericay, Essex, England) is an English science fiction writer. Both his parents are educators and science fiction fans. Although he began writing Science Fiction and Fantasy in secondary school, Asher did not turn seriously to writing till he was 25. He worked as a machinist and machine programmer from 1979 to 1987 and as a gardener from 1979 to 1987. He published his first short story in 1989. His novel Gridlinked was published in 2001, the first in a series of novels made up of Gridlinked, The Line of Polity, Brass Man, Polity Agent, and Line War. The majority of Asher's novels and most of his short fiction are all set within one future history, known as the "Polity" universe. The Polity encompasses many classic science fiction tropes including world-ruling artificial intelligences, androids, hive minds and aliens. His novels are characterized by fast paced action and violent encounters. While his work is frequently epic in scope and thus nominally space opera, its graphic and aggressive tone is more akin to cyberpunk. When combined with the way that Asher's main characters are usually acting to preserve social order or improve their
    6.50
    2 votes
    164
    Sarah Waters

    Sarah Waters

    • Works written: Fingersmith
    Sarah Waters (born 21 July 1966) is a Welsh novelist. She is best known for her novels set in Victorian society and featuring lesbian protagonists, such as Tipping the Velvet and Fingersmith. Sarah Waters was born in Neyland, Pembrokeshire, Wales in 1966. She grew up in a family that included her father Ron, mother Mary, and a sister. Her mother was a housewife and her father an engineer who worked on oil refineries. She describes her family as "pretty idyllic, very safe and nurturing". Her father, "a fantastically creative person", encouraged her to build and invent. Waters said, "When I picture myself as a child, I see myself constructing something, out of plasticine or papier-mâché or Meccano; I used to enjoy writing poems and stories, too." She wrote stories and poems that she describes as "dreadful gothic pastiches", but had not planned her career. Despite her obvious enjoyment of writing, she did not feel any special calling or preference for becoming a novelist in her youth. After Milford Haven Grammar School, Waters attended university, and earned degrees in English literature. She received a BA from the University of Kent, an MA from Lancaster University, and a PhD from
    6.50
    2 votes
    165
    Ann Brashares

    Ann Brashares

    • Works written: The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants
    Ann Brashares (born July 30, 1967) is an American writer of young adult fiction. She is best known as the author of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series of books. Brashares was born in Alexandria, Virginia and grew up in Chevy Chase, Maryland. She attended elementary and high school at the Sidwell Friends School in Washington D.C. After studying philosophy at Barnard College, she worked as an editor for 17th Street Productions. 17th Street was acquired by Alloy Entertainment, and following the acquisition she worked briefly for Alloy. After leaving Alloy she wrote The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, which became an international best seller. It was followed with three more titles in the "Pants" series, the last of which, Forever in Blue, was released in January 2007. The first book in the series was made into a film in 2005, and a second film based on the other three titles in the series was released in August 2008. Brashares's first adult novel, The Last Summer (of You and Me) was released in 2007. A companion book to the Sisterhood series, 3 Willows: The Sisterhood Grows was published in 2009. A second novel for adults, My Name is Memory was published in 2010 and has
    7.00
    1 votes
    166
    Barry Sheehy

    Barry Sheehy

    • Works written: Be quick or die
    • Contributing author to: Savannah, Immortal City Photography Exhibit
    • School or Movement: History
    Barry Sheehy is the author or contributing author of several books and over fifty published papers and articles. His writings have appeared in anthologies alongside of those of Presidents Clinton and Bush, former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan and business leaders such as Lou Gerstner, Jack Welch and Michael Dell. He holds degrees from Loyola and McGill Universities. Mr. Sheehy’s lifelong passion for history has continued since his early years as a decorated officer in the Canadian Armed Forces. His focus eventually turned to America’s most complete, surviving, antebellum southern city – Savannah, Georgia. After many years of exhaustive research, Sheehy began the task of developing the four-volume Civil War Savannah series in 2005. With rigorous cross-checking from both previously published works and newly discovered original materials, Sheehy has written the most extensive historical study of Civil War Savannah ever undertaken. Now, just in time for the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War, the first volume, Savannah, Immortal City, was published in February 2011, and the second, Brokers, Bankers, and Bay Lane: Inside the Savannah Slave Trade, is scheduled for publication in the spring of 2011.
    7.00
    1 votes
    167
    F. Paul Wilson

    F. Paul Wilson

    • Works written: Harbingers
    Francis Paul Wilson (b. May 17, 1946 in Jersey City, New Jersey) is an American author, primarily in the science fiction and horror genres. His debut novel was Healer (1976). Wilson is also a part-time practicing family physician. He made his first sales in 1970 to Analog while still in medical school (graduating in 1973), and continued to write science fiction throughout the seventies. In 1981 he ventured into the horror genre with the international bestseller, The Keep, and helped define the field throughout the rest of the decade. In the 1990s he became a true genre hopper, moving from science fiction to horror to medical thrillers and branching into interactive scripting for Disney Interactive and other multimedia companies. He, along with Matthew J. Costello, created and scripted FTL Newsfeed which ran daily on the Sci-Fi Channel from 1992-1996. Among Wilson's best-known characters is the anti-hero Repairman Jack, an urban mercenary introduced in the 1984 New York Times bestseller, The Tomb. Unwilling to start a series character at the time, Wilson refused to write a second Repairman Jack novel until Legacies in 1998. Since then he has written one per year along with side
    7.00
    1 votes
    168
    George R. R. Martin

    George R. R. Martin

    • Works written: A Feast for Crows
    George Raymond Richard Martin (born September 20, 1948), sometimes referred to as GRRM, is an American screenwriter and author of fantasy, horror, and science fiction. He is best known for A Song of Ice and Fire, his bestselling series of epic fantasy novels that HBO adapted for their dramatic pay-cable series Game of Thrones. Martin was selected by Time magazine as one of the "2011 Time 100", a list of the "most influential people in the world". George R. R. Martin was born on September 20, 1948, in Bayonne, New Jersey, the son of a longshoreman. The family lived in a federal housing project near to the Bayonne docks. Being poor the young Martin lived in his imagination and began writing and selling monster stories for pennies to other neighborhood children, dramatic readings included. He also wrote stories about a mythical kingdom populated by his pet turtles; the turtles died frequently in their toy castle, so he finally decided they were killing off each other in "sinister plots." Martin attended Mary Jane Donohoe School and then later Marist High School. While there he became a comic book fan, developing a strong interest in the innovative superheroes being published by Marvel
    7.00
    1 votes
    169
    J. G. Ballard

    J. G. Ballard

    • Works written: Concrete Island
    • School or Movement: New Wave
    James Graham "J. G." Ballard (15 November 1930 – 19 April 2009) was an English novelist, short story writer, and prominent member of the New Wave movement in science fiction. His best-known books are Crash (1973), adapted into a film by David Cronenberg, and the semi-autobiographical Empire of the Sun (1984), made into a film by Steven Spielberg, based on Ballard's boyhood in the Shanghai International Settlement and internment by the Japanese Imperial Army during the Second World War. The literary distinctiveness of his work has given rise to the adjective "Ballardian", defined by the Collins English Dictionary as "resembling or suggestive of the conditions described in J. G. Ballard’s novels and stories, especially dystopian modernity, bleak man-made landscapes and the psychological effects of technological, social or environmental developments." Ballard was diagnosed with prostate cancer in June 2006, from which he died in London in April 2009. In 2008, The Times included Ballard on its list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". Ballard's father was a chemist at a Manchester-based textile firm, the Calico Printers' Association, and became chairman and managing
    7.00
    1 votes
    170
    Jim Crace

    Jim Crace

    • Works written: Quarantine
    James "Jim" Crace (born 1 March 1946) is a contemporary English writer. The winner of numerous awards, Crace also has a large popular following. He currently lives in the Moseley area of Birmingham with his wife. They have two children, Thomas Charles Crace (born 1981) and the actress Lauren Rose Crace, who played Danielle Jones in EastEnders. Crace was born in St Albans, Hertfordshire, and grew up with his siblings, Richard, Cyril, and Graham in Forty Hill, an area at the far northern point of Greater London, close to Enfield, where Crace attended Enfield Grammar School. He studied for a degree at the Birmingham College of Commerce (now part of Birmingham City University), where he was enrolled as an external student of the University of London. After securing a BA (Hons) in English Literature in 1968, he travelled overseas with the UK organization Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO), working in Sudan. Two years later he returned to the UK, and worked with the BBC, writing educational programmes. From 1976 to 1987 he worked as a freelance journalist for The Daily Telegraph and other newspapers. In 1974 he published his first work of prose fiction, Annie, California Plates in The New
    7.00
    1 votes
    171
    Joan Didion

    Joan Didion

    • Works written: The Last Thing He Wanted
    Joan Didion (born December 5, 1934) is an American author best known for her novels and her literary journalism. Her novels and essays explore the disintegration of American morals and cultural chaos, where the overriding theme is individual and social fragmentation. A sense of anxiety or dread permeates much of her work. Joan Didion was born in Sacramento, to parents Frank Reese and Eduene (née Jerrett) Didion. Didion recalls writing things down as early as age five, though she claims that she never saw herself as a writer until after being published. She read everything she could get her hands on after learning how to read and even needed written permission from her mother to borrow adult books, biographies especially, from the library at a young age. With this, she identified herself as being a "shy, bookish child", who pushed herself to overcome these personal obstacles through acting and public speaking. As a child, Didion attended kindergarten and first grade. Because her father was in the Army Air Corps during World War II, her family was constantly relocated and she did not attend school on a regular basis. Then, at the age of nine or ten, in 1943 or early 1944, her family
    7.00
    1 votes
    172
    Kelley Armstrong

    Kelley Armstrong

    • Works written: Stolen
    Kelley Armstrong (b. 14 December 1968 in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada) is a Canadian writer, primarily of fantasy novels since 2001. She has published eighteen fantasy novels to date, set in the world of the Women of the Otherworld and the Darkest Powers series, also two crime novels in 2007 and 2009. Armstrong has confirmed contracts with her American, British and Canadian publishers for novels eleven through thirteen in the Women of the Otherworld series, and novels three through to six of Darkest Powers series. She has also written several serial novellas and short stories for the Otherworld series, some of which are available free from her website. Kelley Armstrong was born on 14 December 1968, the oldest of four siblings in a "typical middle class family" in London, Ontario. After graduating with a degree in psychology from The University of Western Ontario, Armstrong then switched to studying computer programming at Fanshawe College so she would have time to write. Her first novel Bitten was sold in 1999, and it was released in 2001. Following her first success she has written a total of 12 novels and a number of novellas in the world of the Women of the Otherworld series, and
    7.00
    1 votes
    173
    Max Barry

    Max Barry

    • Works written: Syrup
    Max Barry (born 18 March 1973) is a contemporary Australian author. He also maintains a blog on various topics, including writing, marketing and politics. When he published his first novel, Syrup, he spelled his name "Maxx", but subsequently has used "Max". Barry is also the creator of NationStates, a game created to help advertise Jennifer Government, and is the owner of the website 'Tales of Corporate Oppression'. He lives in Melbourne with his wife and daughters and worked as a marketer for Hewlett-Packard before he became a novelist. In early 2004 Barry converted his web site to a weblog and began regularly posting to it. In the November 2004 issue of the magazine Fast Company the novel Company was ranked at number 8 on a list of the top 100 “people, ideas, and trends that will change how we work and live in 2005.” Barry has recently finished writing the screenplay for Syrup, which was optioned by Fortress Entertainment. Universal Pictures has acquired screen rights to Company, which will be adapted by Steve Pink. Jennifer Government was optioned by Steven Soderbergh and George Clooney's now defunct Section Eight Productions. His book, Machine Man, initially was an online
    7.00
    1 votes
    174
    Ray Bradbury

    Ray Bradbury

    • Works written: Death Is a Lonely Business
    Ray Douglas Bradbury (August 22, 1920 – June 5, 2012) was an American fantasy, science fiction, horror and mystery fiction writer. Best known for his dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451 (1953) and for the science fiction and horror stories gathered together as The Martian Chronicles (1950) and The Illustrated Man (1951), Bradbury was one of the most celebrated 20th-century American writers. Many of Bradbury's works have been adapted into television shows or films. Bradbury was born in 1920 in Waukegan, Illinois, to Esther (Moberg) Bradbury, a Swedish immigrant, and Leonard Spaulding Bradbury, a power and telephone lineman of English descent. He was given the middle name "Douglas," after the actor, Douglas Fairbanks. Ray Bradbury was surrounded by a loving extended family during his early childhood and formative years in Waukegan. This period provided foundations for both the author and his stories. In Bradbury's works of fiction, 1920s Waukegan becomes "Green Town," Illinois. In his stories, Green Town is a symbol of safety and home, which is often juxtaposed as a contrasting backdrop to tales of fantasy or menace. It serves as the setting of his modern classics Dandelion Wine,
    7.00
    1 votes
    175
    Dave Barry

    Dave Barry

    • Works written: Peter and the Shadow Thieves
    David "Dave" Barry (born July 3, 1947) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American author and columnist, who wrote a nationally syndicated humor column for The Miami Herald from 1983 to 2005. He has also written numerous books of humor and parody, as well as comedic novels. Barry was born in Armonk, New York, where his father—also named David Barry—was a Presbyterian minister. He was educated at Wampus Elementary School and Harold C. Crittenden Junior High School (both in Armonk), and Pleasantville High School where he was elected "Class Clown" in 1965. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Haverford College in 1969. In his book, Dave Barry's Greatest Hits, he stated that during college he was in a band called "The Federal Duck." As the son of a minister and an alumnus of a Quaker-affiliated college, Barry avoided military service during the Vietnam War by registering as a religious conscientious objector. After divorcing his college sweetheart, Barry married his second wife, Beth Lenox, in 1976 and they had one child, Robert, in 1980. Barry and Beth worked together at the Daily Local News in West Chester, PA, where they began their journalism careers on the same day in
    5.33
    3 votes
    176
    Frank Miller

    Frank Miller

    • Works written: Elektra Lives Again
    Frank Miller (born January 27, 1957) is an American writer, artist, and film director best known for his dark, film noir-style comic book stories and graphic novels Ronin, Daredevil: Born Again, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Sin City and 300. He also directed the film version of The Spirit, shared directing duties with Robert Rodriguez on Sin City and produced the film 300. Miller was born in Olney, Maryland, and raised in Montpelier, Vermont, the fifth of seven children of a nurse mother and a carpenter/electrician father. His family was Irish Catholic. Living in New York City's Hell's Kitchen influenced Miller's material in the 1980s. Miller lived in Los Angeles, California in the 1990s, which influenced Sin City. Miller moved back to Hell's Kitchen by 2001 and was creating Batman: The Dark Knight Strikes Again as the 9/11 terrorist attacks occurred about 4 miles from that neighborhood. Miller was formerly married to colorist Lynn Varley, who colored many of his noted works (from Ronin (1984) through 300 (1998), and the backgrounds to the movie 300 (2007)). Miller and Varley divorced in 2005. He has since been romantically linked to New York-based Shakespearean scholar
    5.33
    3 votes
    177
    Gary Paulsen

    Gary Paulsen

    • Works written: The River
    Gary James Paulsen (born May 17, 1939) is an American writer who writes many young adult coming of age stories about the wilderness. He is the author of more than 200 books (many of which are out of print), 200 magazine articles and short stories, and several plays, all primarily for young adults and teens. Gary Paulsen was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where his extended family resided, to Oscar and Eunice H. (née Moen), Paulsen has two siblings: a full sister, Paulette, and a half brother Bill who was born to his father from a previous marriage. His father was a career Army officer, on Patton's staff, who spent most of World War II overseas. Gary did not meet his father until he was 9 years old. He spent time throughout his childhood with his grandmother, aunts and various other relatives. When he was seven he and his mother joined his father in the Philippines where he lived for two years. He then returned to Minnesota. At the age of 14, Gary ran away and joined a carnival. Paulsen has written some fragmented autobiographical works. One such work is Eastern Sun, Winter Moon: An Autobiographical Odyssey. The book, which is written in first person, begins when Paulsen was seven,
    5.33
    3 votes
    178
    Richard Dawkins

    Richard Dawkins

    • Works written: The God Delusion
    Clinton Richard Dawkins, FRS, FRSL (born 26 March 1941) is an English ethologist, evolutionary biologist and author. He is an emeritus fellow of New College, Oxford, and was the University of Oxford's Professor for Public Understanding of Science from 1995 until 2008. Dawkins came to prominence with his 1976 book The Selfish Gene, which popularised the gene-centred view of evolution and introduced the term meme. In 1982, he introduced into evolutionary biology the influential concept that the phenotypic effects of a gene are not necessarily limited to an organism's body, but can stretch far into the environment, including the bodies of other organisms; this concept is presented in his book, The Extended Phenotype. Dawkins is an atheist, a vice president of the British Humanist Association, and a supporter of the Brights movement. He is well known for his criticism of creationism and intelligent design. In his 1986 book The Blind Watchmaker, he argues against the watchmaker analogy, an argument for the existence of a supernatural creator based upon the complexity of living organisms. Instead, he describes evolutionary processes as analogous to a blind watchmaker. He has since
    5.33
    3 votes
    179
    Tahar Ben Jelloun

    Tahar Ben Jelloun

    • Works written: The Sand Child
    Tahar ben Jelloun (Arabic: الطاهر بن جلون‎) (born in Fes, French Morocco, 1 December 1944) is a Moroccan poet and writer. The entirety of his work is written in French, although his first language is Arabic. After attending a bilingual (Arabic-French) elementary school, Ben Jelloun studied French in Tangier, Morocco, until he was 18 years old. He continued his studies in philosophy at Mohammed V University in Rabat, where he composed his first poems (collected in Hommes sous linceul de silence (1971). After that point, Ben Jelloun worked as a professor in Morocco, teaching philosophy first in Tétouan and then in Casablanca. However, he left Morocco in 1971, after the Arabization of the philosophy department, unable or unwilling to teach in Arabic. He moved to Paris to continue his studies in psychology, and began to write more extensively. Starting in 1972, Ben Jelloun began to write articles and reviews for the French newspaper Le Monde, and in 1975 he received his doctorate in social psychiatry. Using his experience with psychotherapy as both a reference and an inspiration, he wrote the book La Réclusion solitaire in 1976. In 1985, Ben Jelloun published the novel L'Enfant de
    5.33
    3 votes
    180
    George Orwell

    George Orwell

    • Works written: Down and Out in Paris and London
    Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 – 21 January 1950), known by his pen name George Orwell, was an English novelist and journalist. His work is marked by clarity, intelligence and wit, awareness of social injustice, opposition to totalitarianism, and belief in democratic socialism. Considered perhaps the 20th century's best chronicler of English culture, Orwell wrote literary criticism, poetry, fiction and polemical journalism. He is best known for the dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) and the allegorical novella Animal Farm (1945), which together have sold more copies than any two books by any other 20th-century author. His book Homage to Catalonia (1938), an account of his experiences in the Spanish Civil War, is widely acclaimed, as are his numerous essays on politics, literature, language and culture. In 2008, The Times ranked him second on a list of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945". Orwell's work continues to influence popular and political culture, and the term Orwellian—descriptive of totalitarian or authoritarian social practices—has entered the vernacular with several of his neologisms, such as doublethink, thoughtcrime, and thought police. Eric Arthur
    6.00
    2 votes
    181
    Harry Turtledove

    Harry Turtledove

    • Works written: Worldwar: Upsetting the Balance
    • School or Movement: Science Fiction
    Harry Norman Turtledove (born June 14, 1949) is an American novelist, who has produced works in several genres including alternate history, historical fiction, fantasy, and science fiction. Turtledove was born in Los Angeles, California, and grew up in nearby Gardena. His paternal grandparents, Romanian immigrants, first settled in Winnipeg, Canada, before making their permanent home on the US West Coast. After dropping out during his freshman year at Caltech, he attended UCLA, where he received a Ph.D. in Byzantine history in 1977. His dissertation was entitled The Immediate Successors of Justinian: A Study of the Persian Problem and of Continuity and Change in Internal Secular Affairs in the Later Roman Empire During the Reigns of Justin II and Tiberius II Constantine (AD 565–582). In 1979, Turtledove published his first two novels, Wereblood and Werenight, under the pseudonym "Eric G. Iverson." Turtledove later explained that his editor at Belmont Tower did not think people would believe the author's real name was "Turtledove" and came up with something more Nordic. He continued to use the "Iverson" name until 1985, when he published his "Herbig-Haro" and "And So to Bed" under
    6.00
    2 votes
    182
    Meg Cabot

    Meg Cabot

    • Works written: The Princess Diaries, Volume II: Princess in the Spotlight
    Meg Cabot (born Meggin Patricia Cabot on February 1, 1967 in Bloomington, Indiana, United States) is an American author of romantic and paranormal fiction for teens and adults and used to write under several pen names, but now writes exclusively under her real name, Meg Cabot. She has written and published over fifty books, and is best known for The Princess Diaries, later made by Walt Disney Pictures into two feature films of the same name. Meg's books have been the recipients of numerous awards, including the New York Public Library Books for the Teen Age, the American Library Association Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers, the Tennessee Volunteer State TASL Book Award, the Book Sense Pick, the Evergreen Young Adult Book Award, the IRA/CBC Young Adult Choice - as well as many others (see awards section for specific book wins). She has had numerous #1 New York Times bestsellers. Cabot has more than fifteen million copies of her books—children's, young adult, and adult—in print worldwide. After Meg graduated from Indiana University, Cabot moved to New York City, with the original aim of pursuing a career as an illustrator. in 1991. However, she soon quit this job and started working
    6.00
    2 votes
    183
    P. G. Wodehouse

    P. G. Wodehouse

    • Works written: Sam the Sudden
    Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse, KBE ( /ˈwʊd.haʊs/; 15 October 1881 – 14 February 1975) was an English humorist, whose body of work includes novels, short stories, plays, poems, song lyrics, and numerous pieces of journalism. He enjoyed enormous popular success during a career that lasted more than seventy years and his many writings continue to be widely read. Despite the political and social upheavals that occurred during his life, much of which was spent in France and the United States, Wodehouse's main canvas remained that of a pre- and post-World War I English upper-class society, reflecting his birth, education and youthful writing career. An acknowledged master of English prose, Wodehouse has been admired both by contemporaries such as Hilaire Belloc, Evelyn Waugh and Rudyard Kipling and by recent writers such as Stephen Fry, Christopher Hitchens, Douglas Adams, J. K. Rowling, and John Le Carré. Best known today for the Jeeves and Blandings Castle novels and short stories, Wodehouse was also a playwright and lyricist who was part author and writer of 15 plays and of 250 lyrics for some 30 musical comedies, many of them produced in collaboration with Jerome Kern and Guy
    6.00
    2 votes
    184
    William S. Burroughs

    William S. Burroughs

    • Works written: Nova Express
    • School or Movement: Beat generation
    William Seward Burroughs II ( /ˈbʌroʊz/; also known by his pen name William Lee; (1914-02-05)February 5, 1914 – August 2, 1997(1997-08-02)) was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist and spoken word performer. A primary figure of the Beat Generation and a major postmodernist author, he is considered to be "one of the most politically trenchant, culturally influential, and innovative artists of the 20th century." His influence is considered to have affected a range of popular culture as well as literature. Burroughs wrote 18 novels and novellas, six collections of short stories and four collections of essays. Five books have been published of his interviews and correspondences. He also collaborated on projects and recordings with numerous performers and musicians, and made many appearances in films. He was born to a wealthy family in St. Louis, Missouri, grandson of the inventor and founder of the Burroughs Corporation, William Seward Burroughs I, and nephew of public relations manager Ivy Lee. Burroughs began writing essays and journals in early adolescence. He left home in 1932 to attend Harvard University, studying English, and anthropology as a postgraduate, and
    6.00
    2 votes
    185
    Christopher Golden

    Christopher Golden

    • Works written: Child of the Hunt
    Christopher Golden (born July 15, 1967) is an American author of horror, fantasy, and suspense novels for adults, teens, and young readers. Golden was born and raised in Massachusetts, where he still lives with his family. He is a graduate of Tufts University. As well as novels, Golden has also written comic books and video games and co-written the online animated series Ghosts of Albion with actress/writer/director Amber Benson. He wrote the introduction to the now collectible 200 only copies slipcased edition to Joe Hill's book of short stories titled 20th Century Ghosts. The Hidden Cities series all co-authored with Tim Lebbon The Menagerie series all co-authored with Tom Sniegoski Ghosts of Albion related books are co-authored with Amber Benson. Hellboy related books with cover and other illustrations by Mike Mignola All co-authored with Tom Sniegoski Buffy the Vampire Slayer related books. Young Adult series co-authored with Ford Lytle Gilmore. The series is based on Washington Irving's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. Young Adult series written under the pseudonym "Thomas Randall" Young Adult series co-authored with "Tim Lebbon" Battlestar Galactica Daredevil Gen¹³ Justice
    5.00
    3 votes
    186
    Graham Greene

    Graham Greene

    • Works written: The Quiet American
    Henry Graham Greene, OM, CH (2 October 1904 – 3 April 1991) was an English author, playwright and literary critic. His works explore the ambivalent moral and political issues of the modern world. Greene was notable for his ability to combine serious literary acclaim with widespread popularity. Although Greene objected strongly to being described as a Roman Catholic novelist rather than as a novelist who happened to be Catholic, Catholic religious themes are at the root of much of his writing, especially the four major Catholic novels: Brighton Rock, The Power and the Glory, The Heart of the Matter and The End of the Affair. Several works such as The Confidential Agent, The Third Man, The Quiet American, Our Man in Havana and The Human Factor also show an avid interest in the workings of international politics and espionage. Greene suffered from bipolar disorder, which had a profound effect on his writing and personal life. In a letter to his wife Vivien, he told her that he had "a character profoundly antagonistic to ordinary domestic life", and that "unfortunately, the disease is also one's material". William Golding described Greene as "the ultimate chronicler of
    5.50
    2 votes
    187
    Ian Rankin

    Ian Rankin

    • Works written: Dead Souls
    Ian Rankin, OBE, DL (born 28 April 1960) is a Scottish crime writer. His best known books are the Inspector Rebus novels. He has also written several pieces of literary criticism. Born 28 April 1960 in Cardenden, Fife, Rankin attended Beath High School, Cowdenbeath. After graduating from the University of Edinburgh, he moved to Tottenham, London for four years and then rural France for six while he developed his career as a novelist. He was a literature tutor at the University of Edinburgh, where he retains an involvement with the James Tait Black Memorial Prize. Before becoming a full-time novelist he worked as a grape-picker, swineherd, taxman, alcohol researcher, hi-fi journalist, college secretary and punk musician. Rankin did not set out to be a crime writer. He thought his first novels Knots and Crosses and Hide and Seek were mainstream books, more in keeping with the Scottish traditions of Robert Louis Stevenson and even Muriel Spark (the subject of Rankin's uncompleted Ph.D. thesis). He was disconcerted by their classification as genre fiction. Scottish novelist Allan Massie, who tutored Rankin while Massie was writer-in-residence at the University of Edinburgh, reassured
    5.50
    2 votes
    188
    Margaret Weis

    Margaret Weis

    • Works written: Time of the Twins
    Margaret Edith Weis (born March 16, 1948 in Independence, Missouri, United States) is a fantasy novelist who, along with Tracy Hickman, is one of the original creators of the Dragonlance game world and has written numerous novels and short stories set in fantastic worlds. Margaret Weis was born in 1948 in Independence, Missouri, and later attended the University of Missouri. She discovered heroic fantasy fiction while in college, “I read Tolkien when it made its first big sweep in the colleges back in 1966. A girlfriend of mine gave me copy of the books while I was in summer school at MU. I literally couldn’t put them down! I never found any other fantasy I liked, and just never read any fantasy after Tolkien.” She graduated with a bachelor's degree of Arts, and went to work for a small publishing company in Independence and became an editor there. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Weis wrote children's books, including a biography of notorious frontier bandits Jesse and Frank James. Weis wrote about subjects such as computer graphics, robots, the history of Thanksgiving, and an adventure book written at a 2nd-grade reading level (intended for prisoners), but eventually decided
    5.50
    2 votes
    189
    Stewart Brand

    Stewart Brand

    • Works written: The Clock of the Long Now: Time and Responsibility: The Ideas Behind the World's Slowest Computer
    Stewart Brand (born December 14, 1938 in Rockford, Illinois) is an American writer, best known as editor of the Whole Earth Catalog. He founded a number of organizations, including The WELL, the Global Business Network, and the Long Now Foundation. He is the author of several books, most recently Whole Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist Manifesto. Brand attended Phillips Exeter Academy, before studying biology at Stanford University, from which he graduated in 1960. He was married to Lois Jennings, an Ottawa Native American and mathematician. As a soldier in the U.S. Army, he was a parachutist and taught infantry skills; he was later to express the view that his experience in the military had fostered his competence in organizing. A civilian again, in 1962 he studied design at San Francisco Art Institute, photography at San Francisco State College, and participated in a legitimate scientific study of then-legal LSD, in Menlo Park, California. Brand has lived in California ever since. He and his wife, Ryan Phelan, live on Mirene, a 64-foot (20 m)-long working tugboat. Built in 1912, the boat is moored in a former shipyard in Sausalito, California. He works in Mary Heartline, a
    5.50
    2 votes
    190
    Upton Sinclair, Jr.

    Upton Sinclair, Jr.

    • Works written: Mental Radio
    Upton Beall Sinclair Jr. (September 20, 1878 – December 25, 1968), was an American author and one-time candidate for governor of California who wrote close to one hundred books in many genres. He achieved popularity in the first half of the twentieth century, acquiring particular fame for his classic muckraking novel, The Jungle (1906). It exposed conditions in the U.S. meat packing industry, causing a public uproar that contributed in part to the passage a few months later of the 1906 Pure Food and Drug Act and the Meat Inspection Act. Time magazine called him "a man with every gift except humor and silence." Sinclair was born in Baltimore, Maryland to Upton Beall Sinclair and Priscilla Harden. His father was a liquor salesman whose alcoholism shadowed his son's childhood. Priscilla Harden Sinclair was a strict Episcopalian who disliked alcohol, tea, and coffee. Sinclair did not get along with her when he became older because of her strict rules and refusal to allow him independence. Sinclair told his son David that around his sixteenth year he decided not to have anything to do with her and stayed away from her for 35 years because a controversy would start if they met. Her
    5.50
    2 votes
    191
    Witold Gombrowicz

    Witold Gombrowicz

    • Works written: Ferdydurke
    Witold Marian Gombrowicz (August 4, 1904 in Małoszyce, Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship, Congress Poland, Russian Empire – July 24, 1969 in Vence, near Nice, France) was a Polish novelist and dramatist. His works are characterized by deep psychological analysis, a certain sense of paradox and an absurd, anti-nationalist flavor. In 1937 he published his first novel, Ferdydurke, which presented many of his usual themes: the problems of immaturity and youth, the creation of identity in interactions with others, and an ironic, critical examination of class roles in Polish society and culture. He gained fame only during the last years of his life, but is now considered one of the foremost figures of Polish literature. Gombrowicz was born in Małoszyce, in Congress Poland, Russian Empire to a wealthy gentry family. He was the youngest of four children of Jan and Antonina (née Kotkowska.) In 1911 his family moved to Warsaw. After completing his education at Saint Stanislaus Kostka's Gymnasium in 1922, he studied law at Warsaw University (in 1927 he obtained a master’s degree in law.) Gombrowicz spent a year in Paris where he studied at the Institut des Hautes Etudes Internationales; although he
    5.50
    2 votes
    192
    William Goldman

    William Goldman

    • Works written: Marathon Man
    William Goldman (born August 12, 1931) is an American novelist, playwright, and Academy Award-winning screenwriter. Goldman grew up in a Jewish family in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park, Illinois, the son of Marion (née Weil) and Maurice Clarence Goldman, who worked in business. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from Oberlin College in 1952 and a Master of Arts degree from Columbia University in 1956. He and his brother James, the playwright, shared an apartment with their friend John Kander (also Oberlin and Columbia MA) and helped out Kander, a composer, by writing the libretto for his dissertation. All three later won separate Academy Awards. (Kander was the composer of Cabaret, Chicago and a dozen other famous musicals.) Goldman lives in a penthouse apartment in New York City. His brother, James Goldman, who died in 1998, was a playwright and screenwriter. According to his memoir, Adventures in the Screen Trade (1983), Goldman began writing when he took a creative-writing course in college. His grades in the class were "horrible". An editor of Oberlin's literary magazine, he would submit short stories to the magazine anonymously; he recalls that the other editors, upon
    4.67
    3 votes
    193
    Gaston Leroux

    Gaston Leroux

    • Works written: The Mystery of the Yellow Room
    Gaston Louis Alfred Leroux (6 May 1868 – 15 April 1927) was a French journalist and author of detective fiction. In the English-speaking world, he is best known for writing the novel The Phantom of the Opera (Le Fantôme de l'Opéra, 1911), which has been made into several film and stage productions of the same name, notably the 1925 film starring Lon Chaney; and Andrew Lloyd Webber's 1986 musical. Gaston Louis Alfred Leroux was born in Paris in 1868. He went to school in Normandy and studied law in Paris, graduating in 1889. He inherited millions of francs and lived wildly until he nearly reached bankruptcy. Subsequently in 1890, he began working as a court reporter and theater critic for L'Écho de Paris. His most important journalism came when he began working as an international correspondent for the Paris newspaper Le Matin. In 1905, he was present at, and covered, the Russian Revolution. Another case he was present at involved the investigation and in-depth coverage of the former Paris Opera (presently housing the Paris Ballet). The basement contained a cell that held prisoners of the Paris Commune. He suddenly left journalism in 1907, and began writing fiction. In 1909, he and
    6.00
    1 votes
    194
    Jack London

    Jack London

    • Works written: A Daughter of the Snows
    John Griffith "Jack" London (born John Griffith Chaney, January 12, 1876 – November 22, 1916) was an American author, journalist, and social activist. He was a pioneer in the then-burgeoning world of commercial magazine fiction and was one of the first fiction writers to obtain worldwide celebrity and a large fortune from his fiction alone. He is best remembered as the author of The Call of the Wild and White Fang, both set in the Klondike Gold Rush, as well as the short stories "To Build a Fire", "An Odyssey of the North", and "Love of Life". He also wrote of the South Pacific in such stories as "The Pearls of Parlay" and "The Heathen", and of the San Francisco Bay area in The Sea Wolf. London was a passionate advocate of unionization, socialism, and the rights of workers and wrote several powerful works dealing with these topics such as his dystopian novel, The Iron Heel and his non-fiction exposé, The People of the Abyss. Jack London's mother, Flora Wellman, was the fifth and youngest child of Pennsylvania Canal builder Marshall Wellman and his first wife, Eleanor Garrett Jones. Marshall Wellman was descended from Thomas Wellman, an early Puritan settler in the Massachusetts Bay
    6.00
    1 votes
    195
    Michael de Larrabeiti

    Michael de Larrabeiti

    • Works written: Jeeno, Heloise and Igamor, the Long, Long Horse
    Michael de Larrabeiti (18 August 1934 – 18 April 2008) was an English novelist and travel writer. He is best known for writing The Borrible Trilogy, which has been cited as an influence by writers in the New Weird movement. One of five children, de Larrabeiti was born in St Thomas' Hospital and was mostly brought up in Battersea, South London. His mother was of Irish descent and lived most of her life in the Lavender Hill area of London; his father was a Basque from Bilbao and was often absent. In 1939 he was evacuated to Arundel in West Sussex, before returning to London in 1940, only to be evacuated again to Askern, a mining village near Doncaster in Yorkshire, in the winter. At the end of the Second World War he returned to London and, after failing the eleven plus, was educated at Clapham Central Secondary School. The teachers he had here, often men who had returned from fighting in the war determined to make a better world, were a great influence on de Larrabeiti, something he would later fictionalise in Journal of a Sad Hermaphrodite. After leaving school at sixteen, de Larrabeiti initially worked as a librarian at a public library on Magdalen Road in Earlsfield, south
    6.00
    1 votes
    196
    Nicholson Baker

    Nicholson Baker

    • Works written: Room Temperature
    Nicholson Baker (born January 7, 1957) is a contemporary American writer of fiction and non-fiction. As a novelist, he often focuses on minute inspection of his characters' and narrators' stream of consciousness, and has written about poetry, literature, library systems, history, politics, time manipulation, youth and sex. His fiction generally de-emphasizes narrative in favor of careful description and characterization. Nicholson Baker was born in 1957 in New York City, and spent much of his youth in the Rochester, New York, area. He studied briefly at the Eastman School of Music and received a B.A. in philosophy from Haverford College. He lives today with his wife and two children in South Berwick, Maine. He received a National Book Critics Circle Award in 2001 for his nonfiction book Double Fold: Libraries and the Assault on Paper. Baker has been a fervent critic of what he perceives as libraries' unnecessary destruction of paper-based media. He wrote several vehement articles in The New Yorker critical of the San Francisco Public Library for sending thousands of books to a landfill, the elimination of card catalogs, and the destruction of old books and newspapers in favor of
    6.00
    1 votes
    197
    Orhan Pamuk

    Orhan Pamuk

    • Works written: My Name is Red
    • Contributing author to: Burn This Book
    • School or Movement: Postmodern literature
    Ferit Orhan Pamuk (generally known simply as Orhan Pamuk; born on 7 June 1952) is a Turkish novelist, screenwriter, academic and recipient of the 2006 Nobel Prize in Literature. One of Turkey's most prominent novelists, his work has sold over eleven million books in sixty languages, making him the country's best-selling writer. Born in Istanbul, Pamuk is Robert Yik-Fong Tam Professor in the Humanities at Columbia University, where he teaches comparative literature and writing. His novels include The White Castle, The Black Book, The New Life, My Name Is Red and Snow. As well as the Nobel Prize in Literature (the first Nobel Prize to be awarded to a Turkish citizen), Pamuk is the recipient of numerous other literary awards. My Name Is Red won the 2002 Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger, 2002 Premio Grinzane Cavour and 2003 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. The European Writers' Parliament came about as a result of a joint proposal by Pamuk and José Saramago. In 2005, Pamuk was put on trial in Turkey after he made a statement regarding the Armenian Genocide and mass killing of Kurds in the Ottoman Empire. His intention, according to the author himself, had been to highlight
    6.00
    1 votes
    198
    Ridley Pearson

    Ridley Pearson

    • Works written: Peter and the Shadow Thieves
    Ridley Pearson, born on March 13, 1953 in Glen Cove, New York, is an author of suspense and thriller novels for adults, and adventure books for children. Some of his books have appeared on the The New York Times Best Seller list. Pearson became the first American to receive the Raymond Chandler-Fulbright Fellowship at Oxford University in 1991. Pearson's novels for adults include: Novels featuring characters John Knox & Grace Chu--The Risk Agent (2012); Novels featuring the character Walt Fleming--In Harm's Way (2010), Killer Summer (2009), Killer View (2008), and Killer Weekend (2007); Novels featuring the character Lou Boldt and Daphne Matthews--The Body of David Hayes (2004), The Art of Deception (2002), Middle of Nowhere (2000), The Fist Victim (1999), The Pied Piper (1998), Beyond Recognition (1997), No Witnesses (1994), The Angel Maker (1993), and Undercurrents (1988); Standalone Novels include: Cut and Run (2005), The Diary of Ellen Rimbauer (2001)--(this novel produced under the pseudonym of Joyce Readon, Ph.D), Parallel Lies (2001), Chain of Evidence (1995), Hard Fall (1992), Probable Cause (1990), The Seizing of Yankee Green Mall (1987), Blood of the Albatross (1986), and
    6.00
    1 votes
    199
    Sergio Troncoso

    Sergio Troncoso

    • Works written: The Nature of Truth
    Sergio Troncoso is an American author of short stories, essays and novels. Troncoso, the son of Mexican immigrants, was born in El Paso, Texas. He grew up in Ysleta, an unincorporated neighborhood or colonia, on the east side of El Paso. His parents built their own adobe house, and the family lived with kerosene lamps and stoves and an outhouse in the backyard during their first years in Texas. Troncoso attended South Loop School and Ysleta High School, and later graduated from Harvard College and received two graduate degrees in international relations and philosophy from Yale University. He won a Fulbright Scholarship to Mexico, and was inducted into the Hispanic Scholarship Fund's Alumni Hall of Fame. In 1999, his book of short stories, The Last Tortilla and Other Stories (University of Arizona Press), won the Premio Aztlán Literary Prize for the best book by a new Chicano writer, and the Southwest Book Award from the Border Regional Library Association. In his story "Angie Luna," the tale of a feverish love affair in which a young man from El Paso rediscovers his Mexican heritage, Troncoso explores questions of self-identity and the ephemeral quality of love. "A Rock Trying to
    6.00
    1 votes
    200
    Shobha De

    Shobha De

    • Works written: Socialite Evenings
    Shobha Rajadhyaksha, also known as Shobhaa Dé (born 7 January 1948), is an Indian columnist and novelist. Shobhaa De was born in a Maharashtrian Goud Saraswat Brahmin family in Mumbai, India. She completed her schooling from Queen Mary School, Mumbai and graduated from St. Xavier's College, Mumbai with a degree in psychology. After making her name as a model, she began a career in journalism in 1970, during the course of which she founded and edited three magazines – Stardust, Society, and Celebrity. Stardust magazine, published by Mumbai-based Magna Publishing Co. Ltd., was started by Nari Hira in 1971. and became popular under the editorship of Shobhaa De. In the 1980s, she contributed to the Sunday magazine section of The Times of India. In her columns, she used to explore the socialite life in Mumbai lifestyles of the celebrities. At present, she is a freelance writer and columnist for several newspapers and magazines. Shobhaa De is one of India’s top best-selling authors. All her 17 books have topped the charts and created records. Spouse – The Truth About Marriage, that examines the urban institution of marriage, sold 20,000 copies on the day of its official launch in Delhi
    6.00
    1 votes
    201
    Brian Jacques

    Brian Jacques

    • Works written: Outcast of Redwall
    James Brian Jacques (pronounced "Jakes") (15 June 1939 – 5 February 2011) was an English author best known for his Redwall series of novels and Castaways of the Flying Dutchman series. He also completed two collections of short stories entitled The Ribbajack & Other Curious Yarns and Seven Strange and Ghostly Tales. Brian Jacques was born in Liverpool, England, on 15 June 1939. His parents were James Alfred Jacques, a Haulage Contractor, and Ellen Ryan. James Alfred Jacques was born in Liverpool in 1907. His parents, Thomas Jacques and Ada Smith, moved to Liverpool from the St Helens area in the 1890s. The Jacques family had Lancashire roots; there is no record of them having French ancestry. Ellen Ryan was born in Liverpool in 1908. She came from a Liverpool Irish family with roots in a number of different Irish counties. Ellen's father, Matthew Ryan, was born in County Wexford, Ireland in 1872. Ellen's mother, Elizabeth "Cissy" McGuinness, was born in Liverpool in 1882. Brian grew up in Kirkdale near to the Liverpool Docks. He was known by his middle name 'Brian' because his father and a brother were also named James. His father loved literature and read his boy stories by Sir
    4.33
    3 votes
    202
    Alison Bechdel

    Alison Bechdel

    • Works written: More Dykes to Watch Out For
    • Contributing author to: Dyke Strippers: Lesbian Cartoonists from A to Z
    Alison Bechdel ( /ˈbɛkdəl/ BEK-dəl; born September 10, 1960) is an American cartoonist. Originally best known for the long-running comic strip Dykes to Watch Out For, in 2006 she became a best-selling and critically acclaimed author with her graphic memoir Fun Home. Alison Bechdel was born in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania to Roman Catholic parents who were teachers. Bechdel's brother is keyboard player John Bechdel, who has worked with many bands including Ministry. Her family also owned and operated a funeral home. She attended Simon's Rock College and then Oberlin College, graduating in 1981. Bechdel moved to New York City and applied to many art schools but was rejected and worked in a number of office jobs in the publishing industry. She began Dykes to Watch Out For as a single drawing labeled "Marianne, dissatisfied with the morning brew: Dykes to Watch Out For, plate no. 27". An acquaintance recommended she send her work to Womannews, a feminist newspaper, which published her first work in its June 1983 issue. Bechdel gradually moved from her early single-panel drawings to multi-paneled strips. After a year, other outlets began running the strip. In the first years, Dykes to Watch
    5.00
    2 votes
    203
    Connie Willis

    Connie Willis

    • Works written: To Say Nothing of the Dog
    Constance Elaine Trimmer Willis (born 31 December 1945) is an American science fiction writer. She has won eleven Hugo Awards and seven Nebula Awards. Willis most recently won a Hugo Award for Blackout/All Clear (August 2011). She was inducted to the Science Fiction Museum and Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2009. Willis's first published story, "The Secret of Santa Titicaca," appeared in Worlds of Fantasy in 1971. After receiving an NEA grant in 1982, she left her teaching job and became a full-time writer. Willis is known for her accessible prose and likable characters. She has written several pieces involving time travel by history students at a faculty of the future University of Oxford. These pieces include her Hugo Award-winning novels Doomsday Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog, the short story "Fire Watch" (found in the short story collection of the same name), and the two-volume novel Blackout/All Clear. All but one of the Oxford University Time Travel tales have won both the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award. The odd-man out, To Say Nothing of the Dog, won the Hugo Award but lost the Nebula. Willis tends to the comedy of manners style of writing. Her protagonists are
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    2 votes
    204
    Garth Nix

    Garth Nix

    • Works written: Lord Sunday
    Garth Nix (born 19 July 1963) is an Australian author of young adult fantasy novels, most notably the Old Kingdom series, The Seventh Tower series, and The Keys to the Kingdom series. He has frequently been asked if his name is a pseudonym, to which he has responded, "I guess people ask me because it sounds like the perfect name for a writer of fantasy. However, it is my real name." Born in Melbourne, Nix was raised in Canberra. Subsequent to a period working for the Australian Government, he traveled in Europe before returning to Australia in 1983 and undertaking a BA in professional writing between 1984 and 1986 at the University of Canberra. He worked in a Canberra bookshop after graduation, before moving to Sydney in 1987, where he worked his way up in the publishing field. He was a sales rep and publicist before becoming a Senior editor at HarperCollins. In 1993 he commenced further travel in Asia, the Middle East and Eastern Europe before becoming a full-time marketing consultant, founding his own company Gotley Nix Evans Pty Ltd. In addition to his work as a fantasy novelist, Nix has written a number of scenarios and articles for the role playing field, including those for
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    2 votes
    205

    George Alec Effinger

    • Works written: When Gravity Fails
    • Contributing author to: Prophets in Hell
    • School or Movement: Cyberpunk
    George Alec Effinger (January 10, 1947 – April 27, 2002) was an American science fiction author, born in 1947 in Cleveland, Ohio. Effinger was a part of the Clarion class of 1970 and had three stories in the first Clarion anthology. His first published story was "The Eight-Thirty to Nine Slot" in Fantastic in 1971. During his early period, he also published under a variety of pseudonyms. His first novel, What Entropy Means to Me (1972), was nominated for the Nebula Award. He achieved his greatest success with the trilogy of Marîd Audran novels set in a 22nd century Middle East, with cybernetic implants and modules allowing individuals to change their personalities or bodies. The novels are in fact set in a thinly veiled version of the French Quarter of New Orleans, telling the fictionalized stories of the transvestites and other people Effinger knew in the bars of that city. The three published novels were When Gravity Fails (1987), A Fire in the Sun (1989), and The Exile Kiss (1991). He began a fourth Budayeen novel, Word of Night, but completed only the first two chapters. Those two chapters were reprinted in the anthology Budayeen Nights (2003) which has all of Effinger's short
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    206
    J. Neil Schulman

    J. Neil Schulman

    • Works written: The Rainbow Cadenza
    Joseph Neil Schulman (born April 16, 1953 in Forest Hills, New York, U.S.) is a novelist who wrote Alongside Night (published 1979) and The Rainbow Cadenza (published 1983) which both received the Prometheus Award, a libertarian science fiction award. His third novel, Escape from Heaven, was also a finalist for the 2002 Prometheus Award. In addition, Schulman is the author of nine other books currently in print, including a short story collection, Nasty, Brutish, and Short Stories, Stopping Power: Why 70 Million Americans Own Guns, and The Robert Heinlein Interview and Other Heinleiniana. He is writer of the Twilight Zone episode "Profile in Silver" first broadcast on CBS March 7, 1986. Schulman was the writer, director, executive producer (along with Nichelle Nichols) of the film, Lady Magdalene's which was produced by Schulman's own company Jesulu Productions. The film won three film-festival awards: "Best Cutting Edge Film" at the 2008 San Diego Film Festival, "Audience Choice -- Feature-Length Narrative Film" at the 2008 Cinema City International Film Festival held on the Universal Hollywood Citywalk, and "Special Jury Prize for Libertarian Ideals" at the 2011 Anthem Film
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    207
    Jules Verne

    Jules Verne

    • Works written: The Begum's Millions
    Jules Gabriel Verne (French pronunciation: [ʒyl vɛʁn]; February 8, 1828 – March 24, 1905) was a French author who pioneered the science fiction genre. He is best known for his novels Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (1870), Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864), and Around the World in Eighty Days (1873). Verne wrote about space, air, and underwater travels before air travel and practical submarines were invented, and before practical means of space travel had been devised. He is the second most translated author in the world (after Agatha Christie). Some of his books have also been made into live-action and animated films and television shows. Verne is often referred to as the "Father of Science Fiction", a title sometimes shared with Hugo Gernsback and H. G. Wells. Jules Verne was born in Nantes, in France, to Pierre Verne, an attorney, and his wife, Sophie Allote de la Fuÿe. Jules spent his early years at home with his parents in the bustling harbor city of Nantes. The family spent summers in a country house just outside the city, in Brains on the banks of the Loire River. Here Jules and his brother Paul would often rent a boat for one franc a day. The sight of the many
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    208
    Tamora Pierce

    Tamora Pierce

    • Works written: Wolf-Speaker
    Tamora Pierce (born December 13, 1954) is an author of fantasy literature for young adults. She is an alumna of the University of Pennsylvania. Best known for writing stories involving young heroines, she made a name for herself with her first quartet The Song of the Lioness, which followed the main character Alanna through the trials and triumphs of training as a knight. Many of her books contain feminist themes. Pierce was born in South Connellsville, Pennsylvania in Fayette County, on December 13, 1954. Her mother wanted to name her "Tamara" but the nurse who filled out her birth certificate misspelled it as "Tamora". When she was five her sister Kimberly (whom she based Alanna on) was born and a year later her second sister, Melanie, was born. From the time she was five until she was eight, she lived in Dunbar. In June 1963 she and her family moved to California. They first lived in San Mateo on El Camino Real and then moved to the other side of the San Francisco Peninsula, in Miramar. They lived there for half a year, in El Granada a full year, and then three years in Burlingame. She began reading when she was very young and started writing at about 6 years old. Her interest
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    209
    Tobias Wolff

    Tobias Wolff

    • Works written: This Boy's Life: A Memoir
    Tobias Jonathan Ansell Wolff (born June 19, 1945) is an American author. He is known for his memoirs, particularly This Boy's Life (1989), and his short stories. He has also written two novels. Wolff was born in 1945 in Birmingham, Alabama. After attending Concrete High School in Concrete, Washington, Wolff applied to, and was accepted by, The Hill School under the self-embellished name Tobias Jonathan von Ansell-Wolff, III. He was later expelled. He served in the US Army during the Vietnam War era. He holds a First Class Honours degree in English from Hertford College, Oxford (1972) and an M.A. from Stanford University. In 1975 he was awarded a Wallace Stegner Fellowship in Creative Writing at Stanford. Wolff is the Ward W. and Priscilla B. Woods Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences at Stanford University, where he has taught classes in English and creative writing since 1997. He also served as the director of the Creative Writing Program at Stanford from 2000 to 2002. Prior to his current appointment at Stanford, Wolff taught at Syracuse University from 1980 to 1997. While at Syracuse he served on the faculty with Raymond Carver and was an instructor in the graduate
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    210
    Adam Roberts

    Adam Roberts

    • Works written: Gradisil
    Adam Charles Roberts (born June 30, 1965) is an academic, critic and novelist. He also writes parodies under the pseudonyms of A.R.R.R. Roberts, A3R Roberts and Don Brine. He has a degree in English from the University of Aberdeen and a PhD from Cambridge University on Robert Browning and the Classics. He teaches English literature and creative writing at Royal Holloway, University of London. Adam Roberts has been nominated three times for the Arthur C. Clarke Award: in 2001 for his debut novel, Salt, in 2007 for Gradisil and in 2010 for Yellow Blue Tibia.
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    211
    Alberto Moravia

    Alberto Moravia

    • Works written: The Conformist
    Alberto Moravia, born Alberto Pincherle (November 28, 1907 – September 26, 1990) was an Italian novelist and journalist. His novels explored matters of modern sexuality, social alienation, and existentialism. He is best known for his debut novel Gli indifferenti (published in 1929), and for the anti-fascist novel Il Conformista (The Conformist), the basis for the film The Conformist (1970) by Bernardo Bertolucci. Other novels of his translated to the cinema are Il Disprezzo (A Ghost at Noon or Contempt) filmed by Jean-Luc Godard as Le Mépris (Contempt) (1963); La Noia (Boredom), filmed with that title by Damiano Damiani in 1963 and released in the US as The Empty Canvas in 1964; and La Ciociara filmed by Vittorio de Sica as Two Women (1960). Cedric Kahn's L'Ennui (1998) is another version of La Noia. He was an atheist. Alberto Pincherle (the pen-name "Moravia" is the surname of his maternal grandfather) was born on Via Sgambati in Rome, Italy, to a wealthy middle-class family. His Jewish Venetian father, Carlo, was an architect and a painter. His Catholic Anconitan mother, Teresa Iginia de Marsanich, was of Dalmatian origin. Her brother Augusto De Marsanich, Moravia's uncle, was an
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    212
    J. R. R. Tolkien

    J. R. R. Tolkien

    • Works written: The Lord of the Rings
    John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, CBE ( /ˈtɒlkiːn/; 3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973) was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor, best known as the author of the classic high fantasy works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion. Tolkien was Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Pembroke College, Oxford, from 1925 to 1945 and Merton Professor of English Language and Literature there from 1945 to 1959. He was at one time a close friend of C. S. Lewis—they were both members of the informal literary discussion group known as the Inklings. Tolkien was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II on 28 March 1972. After his death, Tolkien's son Christopher published a series of works based on his father's extensive notes and unpublished manuscripts, including The Silmarillion. These, together with The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings form a connected body of tales, poems, fictional histories, invented languages, and literary essays about a fantasy world called Arda, and Middle-earth within it. Between 1951 and 1955, Tolkien applied the term legendarium to the larger part of these writings. While many other
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    213
    John Fowles

    John Fowles

    • Works written: The French Lieutenant's Woman
    John Robert Fowles (/faʊls/; 31 March 1926 – 5 November 2005) was an English novelist, much influenced by Sartre, and critically positioned between modernism and postmodernism. After leaving Oxford, Fowles taught at a school on the Greek island of Spetsai, a sojourn that inspired The Magus, an instant bestseller that was directly in tune with 1960's 'hippie' anarchism and experimental philosophy. This was followed by The French Lieutenant's Woman, a period romance set in Lyme Regis, Dorset, another location in which Fowles was deeply absorbed. Later fictional works include The Ebony Tower, Daniel Martin, Mantissa, and A Maggot. Fowles was named by the Times newspaper as one of the 50 greatest British writers since 1945. Fowles was born in Leigh-on-Sea in Essex, England, the son of Gladys May Richards and Robert John Fowles. Robert Fowles came from a family of middle-class merchants of London. Robert's father Reginald was a partner of the firm Allen & Wright, a tobacco importer. Robert's mother died when he was 6 years old. At age 26, after receiving legal training, Robert enlisted in the Honourable Artillery Company and spent three years in the trenches of Flanders during World War
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    214
    Tracy Kidder

    Tracy Kidder

    • Works written: The Soul of a New Machine
    • School or Movement: Creative nonfiction
    John Tracy Kidder (born November 12, 1945) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American writer of the 1981 nonfiction narrative The Soul of a New Machine, about the creation of a new computer at Data General Corporation. He also received much praise for his biography of Paul Farmer, Mountains Beyond Mountains. Kidder is considered a literary journalist because of the strong story line and personal voice in his writing. He has cited as his writing influences John McPhee, A. J. Liebling, and George Orwell. In a 1984 interview he said, "McPhee has been my model. He's the most elegant of all the journalists writing today, I think." Kidder wrote in a 1994 essay, "In fiction, believability may have nothing to do with reality or even plausibility. It has everything to do with those things in nonfiction. I think that the nonfiction writer's fundamental job is to make what is true believable." Kidder was born November 12, 1945, in New York City. He graduated from Phillips Academy in 1963. He attended Harvard University, originally majoring in political science but switching to English after taking a course in creative writing from Robert Fitzgerald. He received an AB degree from Harvard in 1967. He
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    215
    Charlotte Perkins Gilman

    Charlotte Perkins Gilman

    • Works written: Herland
    Charlotte Perkins Gilman (July 3, 1860 – August 17, 1935) was a prominent American sociologist, novelist, writer of short stories, poetry, and nonfiction, and a lecturer for social reform. She was a utopian feminist during a time when her accomplishments were exceptional for women, and she served as a role model for future generations of feminists because of her unorthodox concepts and lifestyle. Her best remembered work today is her semi-autobiographical short story The Yellow Wallpaper which she wrote after a severe bout of postpartum psychosis. Gilman was born on July 3, 1860 in Hartford, Connecticut, to Mary Perkins (formerly Mary Fitch Westcott) and Frederick Beecher Perkins. She had only one brother, Thomas Adie, who was fourteen months older, because a physician advised Mary Perkins that she might die if she bore other children. During Charlotte's infancy, her father moved out and abandoned his wife and children, leaving them in an impoverished state. Since their mother was unable to support the family on her own, the Perkinses were often in the presence of aunts on her father's side of the family, namely Isabella Beecher Hooker, a suffragist, Harriet Beecher Stowe (author
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    216
    Diana Gabaldon

    Diana Gabaldon

    • Works written: Drums of Autumn
    Diana J. Gabaldon (b. January 11, 1952 in Arizona) is an American author of Mexican-American and English ancestry, best known for the Outlander Series. Her books contain elements of romantic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, adventure, and science fiction. Diana J. Gabaldon was born on January 11, 1952, in Arizona, (U.S.A.). Her father, Tony Gabaldon (1931–1998) was an Arizona state senator from Flagstaff.. Her mother's family were originally from Yorkshire (England). Gabaldon grew up in Flagstaff, Arizona. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Zoology from Northern Arizona University, 1970–1973, a Master of Science in Marine Biology from the University of California, San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, 1973–1975, and a Ph.D. in Ecology from Northern Arizona University, 1975-1978. Gabaldon received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters (DHL) degree from Northern Arizona University in 2007. As a full-time assistant professor in the Center for Environmental Studies at Arizona State University in the 1980s, Gabaldon did research, was a scientific computing and database expert, and taught university classes in anatomy and other subjects. She was the founding editor of
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    217
    E. B. White

    E. B. White

    • Works written: The Trumpet of the Swan
    Elwyn Brooks White (July 11, 1899 – October 1, 1985), usually known as E. B. White, was an American writer. He was a contributor to The New Yorker magazine and a co-author of the English language style guide, The Elements of Style, which is commonly known as "Strunk & White." He also wrote books for children, including Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little. White was born in Mount Vernon, New York, the youngest child of Samuel Tilly White, a piano manufacturer, and Jessie Hart. He served in the army before going to college. White graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1921. He picked up the nickname "Andy" at Cornell, where tradition confers that moniker on any male student surnamed White, after Cornell co-founder Andrew Dickson White. While at Cornell, he worked as editor of The Cornell Daily Sun with classmate Allison Danzig, who later became a sportswriter for The New York Times. White was also a member of the Aleph Samach and Quill and Dagger societies and Phi Gamma Delta (FIJI). He worked for the United Press International and the American Legion News Service in 1921 and 1922 and then became a reporter for the Seattle Times in 1922 and 1923. White then
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    218
    Ian Maclaren

    Ian Maclaren

    • Works written: The Potter's Wheel
    • Contributing author to: Stories by English Authors: Scotland (Selected by Scribners)
    • School or Movement: Kailyard school
    Ian Maclaren (pseudonym of Rev. John Watson; 3 November 1850 – 6 May 1907) was a Scottish author and theologian. He was the son of John Watson, a civil servant. He was born at Manningtree, Essex, and educated at Stirling and at Edinburgh University, later studying theology at New College, Edinburgh, and at Tübingen. During 1874 he became a minister of the Free Church of Scotland and became assistant minister of Edinburgh Barclay Church. Subsequently he was minister at Logiealmond in Perthshire and at Glasgow, and in 1880 he became minister of Sefton Park Presbyterian Church, Liverpool, from which he retired during 1905. In 1896 he was Lyman Beecher lecturer at Yale University, and in 1900 he was moderator of the synod of the English Presbyterian Church. While travelling in the United States he died from blood poisoning, following a bout with tonsilitis, at Mount Pleasant, Iowa. Maclaren's first stories of rural Scottish life, Beside the Bonnie Brier Bush (1894), achieved extraordinary popularity, selling more than 3/4 of a million copies, and were succeeded by other successful books, The Days of Auld Lang Syne (1895), Kate Carnegie and those Ministers (1896), and Afterwards and
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    219
    Lawrence M. Krauss

    Lawrence M. Krauss

    • Works written: The Physics of Star Trek
    Lawrence Maxwell Krauss (born May 27, 1954) is a Canadian-American theoretical physicist who is a professor of physics, Foundation Professor of the School of Earth and Space Exploration, and director of the Origins Project at Arizona State University. He is the author of several bestselling books, including The Physics of Star Trek and A Universe from Nothing. He is an advocate of scientific skepticism, science education, and the science of morality. Krauss was born in New York City and shortly thereafter moved to Toronto, Canada, where he spent his childhood. On January 19, 1980 he married Katherine Kelley, a native of Nova Scotia. Their daughter, Lilli, was born November 23, 1984. Krauss and Kelley separated in 2010 and were divorced in 2012. Krauss received undergraduate degrees in mathematics and physics with first class honours from Carleton University in 1977, and was awarded a Ph.D. in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1982. After some time in the Harvard Society of Fellows, he became an assistant professor at Yale University in 1985 and associate professor in 1988. He was named the Ambrose Swasey Professor of Physics, professor of astronomy, and was
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    220
    Susanna Clarke

    Susanna Clarke

    • Works written: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
    Susanna Mary Clarke (born 1 November 1959) is a British author best known for her debut novel Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (2004), a Hugo Award-winning alternate history. Clarke began Jonathan Strange in 1993 and worked on it during her spare time. For the next decade, she published short stories from the Strange universe, but it was not until 2003 that Bloomsbury bought her manuscript and began work on its publication. The novel became a bestseller. Two years later, she published a collection of her short stories, The Ladies of Grace Adieu and Other Stories (2006). Both Clarke's novel and her short stories are set in a magical England and written in a pastiche of the styles of 19th-century writers such as Jane Austen and Charles Dickens. While Strange focuses on the relationship of two men, Jonathan Strange and Gilbert Norrell, the stories in Ladies focus on the power women gain through magic. Clarke was born on 1 November 1959 in Nottingham, England, the eldest daughter of a Methodist minister and his wife. Due to her father's posts, she spent her childhood in various towns across Northern England and Scotland, and enjoyed reading the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Charles
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    221
    Brandon Sanderson

    Brandon Sanderson

    • Works written: Mistborn: The Final Empire
    Brandon Sanderson (born December 19, 1975) is an American fantasy author. He is best known for his work in finishing Robert Jordan's epic fantasy series, The Wheel of Time, and his own Mistborn series. Sanderson worked as an editor for the semi-professional magazine, Leading Edge, while attending school at Brigham Young University, and he now teaches creative writing there. A Nebraska native, Sanderson currently resides in American Fork, Utah. He earned his Master's degree in Creative Writing in 2005 from Brigham Young University, where he was on the staff of Leading Edge, a semi-professional speculative fiction magazine published by the university. He was a college roommate of Jeopardy! champion Ken Jennings. Sanderson was married on July 7, 2006. He is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served as a missionary in Seoul, Korea. He currently teaches creative writing at Brigham Young University, in addition to working on his own writing. He is a participant in the weekly podcast Writing Excuses with authors Dan Wells, Mary Robinette Kowal, and web cartoonist Howard Tayler. Sanderson published his first novel, Elantris, through Tor Books on April 21, 2005,
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    222
    Haruki Murakami

    Haruki Murakami

    • Works written: The Elephant Vanishes
    Haruki Murakami (村上 春樹, Murakami Haruki, born January 12, 1949) is a Japanese writer and translator. His works of fiction and non-fiction have garnered critical acclaim and numerous awards, including the Franz Kafka Prize and the Jerusalem Prize, among others. Murakami's fiction, often criticized by Japan's literary establishment, is humorous and surreal, focusing on themes of alienation and loneliness. He is considered an important figure in postmodern literature. The Guardian praised Murakami as "among the world's greatest living novelists" for his works and achievements. Murakami was born in Japan during the post–World War II baby boom. Although born in Kyoto, he spent his youth in Shukugawa (Nishinomiya), Ashiya and Kobe. His father was the son of a Buddhist priest, and his mother the daughter of an Osaka merchant. Both taught Japanese literature. Since childhood, Murakami has been heavily influenced by Western culture, particularly Western music and literature. He grew up reading a wide range of works by American writers, such as Kurt Vonnegut and Richard Brautigan. These Western influences often distinguish Murakami from other Japanese writers. Murakami studied drama at
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    223
    Langston Hughes

    Langston Hughes

    • Works written: Not Without Laughter
    • Contributing author to: WordSong Poets: A Memoir Anthology
    • School or Movement: Harlem Renaissance
    James Mercer Langston Hughes (February 1, 1902 – May 22, 1967) was an American poet, social activist, novelist, playwright, and columnist. He was one of the earliest innovators of the then-new literary art form jazz poetry. Hughes is best known for his work during the Harlem Renaissance. He famously wrote about the period that "the negro was in vogue" which was later paraphrased as "when Harlem was in vogue". Both of Hughes' paternal great-grandmothers were African-American and both of his paternal great-grandfathers were white slave owners of Kentucky. One of these men was Sam Clay, a Scottish-American whiskey distiller of Henry County and supposedly a relative of Henry Clay, and the other was Silas Cushenberry, a Jewish-American slave trader of Clark County. Hughes's maternal grandmother Mary Patterson was of African-American, French, English and Native American descent. One of the first women to attend Oberlin College, she first married Lewis Sheridan Leary, also of mixed race. Lewis Sheridan Leary subsequently joined John Brown's Raid on Harper's Ferry in 1859 and died from his wounds. In 1869 the widow Mary Patterson Leary married again, into the elite, politically active
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    224
    Arthur C. Clarke

    Arthur C. Clarke

    • Works written: Time's Eye
    Sir Arthur Charles Clarke, CBE, FRAS, Sri Lankabhimanya, (16 December 1917 – 19 March 2008) was a British science fiction author, inventor, and futurist, famous for his short stories and novels, among them 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), and as a host and commentator in the British television series Mysterious World. For many years, Robert A. Heinlein, Isaac Asimov, and Clarke were known as the "Big Three" of science fiction. Clarke served in the Royal Air Force as a radar instructor and technician from 1941 to 1946. In 1945, he proposed a satellite communication system—an idea that, in 1963, won him the Franklin Institute Stuart Ballantine Gold Medal. He was the chairman of the British Interplanetary Society from 1947–1950 and again in 1953. In 1956, Clarke emigrated to Sri Lanka, largely to pursue his interest in scuba diving. That year, he discovered the underwater ruins of the ancient Koneswaram temple in Trincomalee. He lived in Sri Lanka until his death. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1998, and was awarded Sri Lanka's highest civil honour, Sri Lankabhimanya, in 2005. Clarke was born in Minehead, Somerset, England. As a boy, he grew up on a farm enjoying stargazing and
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    225
    Arthur Conan Doyle

    Arthur Conan Doyle

    • Works written: Sir Nigel
    Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle DL (22 May 1859 – 7 July 1930) was a Scottish physician and writer, most noted for his stories about the detective Sherlock Holmes, generally considered a milestone in the field of crime fiction, and for the adventures of Professor Challenger. He was a prolific writer whose other works include science fiction stories, plays, romances, poetry, non-fiction and historical novels. Arthur Conan Doyle was born on 22 May 1859 at 11 Picardy Place, Edinburgh, Scotland. His father, Charles Altamont Doyle, was English of Irish descent, and his mother, born Mary Foley, was Irish. They married in 1855. In 1864 the family dispersed due to Charles's growing alcoholism and the children were temporarily housed across Edinburgh. In 1867, the family came together again and lived in the squalid tenement flats at 3 Sciennes Place. Although he is now referred to as "Conan Doyle", the origin of this compound surname is uncertain. The entry in which his baptism is recorded in the register of St Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh gives "Arthur Ignatius Conan" as his Christian name, and simply "Doyle" as his surname. It also names Michael Conan as his godfather. Supported by
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    226
    Gore Vidal

    Gore Vidal

    • Works written: Myra Breckinridge
    • School or Movement: Postmodern literature
    Eugene Luther Gore Vidal ( /ˌɡɔr vɨˈdɑːl/;, born Eugene Louis Vidal, October 3, 1925 – July 31, 2012) was an American writer known for his essays, novels, screenplays, and Broadway plays. He was also known for his patrician manner, Transatlantic accent, and witty aphorisms. Vidal came from a distinguished political lineage; his grandfather was the U.S. Senator Thomas Gore of Oklahoma. Vidal was a lifelong Democrat; he ran for political office twice and was a longtime political commentator. As well known for his essays as his novels, Vidal wrote for The Nation, the New Yorker, the New York Review of Books and Esquire. Through his essays and media appearances, Vidal was a longtime critic of American foreign policy. In addition to this, he characterised the United States as a decaying empire from the 1980s onwards. He was also known for his well-publicized spats with such figures as Norman Mailer, William F. Buckley, Jr., and Truman Capote. His most widely regarded social novel was Myra Breckinridge; his best known historical novels included Julian, Burr, and Lincoln. His third novel, The City and the Pillar (1948), outraged conservative critics as one of the first major American
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    227
    Henry James

    Henry James

    • Works written: Daisy Miller
    Henry James, OM ((1843-04-15)15 April 1843 – 28 February 1916(1916-02-28)) was an American-born writer, regarded as one of the key figures of 19th-century literary realism. He was the son of Henry James, Sr. and the brother of philosopher and psychologist William James and diarist Alice James. James alternated between America and Europe for the first 20 years of his life, after which he settled in England, becoming a British subject in 1915, one year before his death. He is primarily known for the series of novels in which he portrays the encounter of Americans with Europe and Europeans. His method of writing from the point of view of a character within a tale allows him to explore issues related to consciousness and perception, and his style in later works has been compared to impressionist painting. James contributed significantly to literary criticism, particularly in his insistence that writers be allowed the greatest possible freedom in presenting their view of the world. James claimed that a text must first and foremost be realistic and contain a representation of life that is recognisable to its readers. Good novels, to James, show life in action and are, most importantly,
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    Janet Evanovich

    Janet Evanovich

    • Works written: Ten Big Ones
    Janet Evanovich (born Janet Schneider; April 22, 1943) is an American writer. She began her career writing short contemporary romance novels under the pen name Steffie Hall, but gained fame authoring a series of contemporary mysteries featuring Stephanie Plum, a lingerie buyer from Trenton, New Jersey, who becomes a bounty hunter to make ends meet after losing her job. The 18 novels in this series consistently top the New York Times and Amazon bestseller lists, most recently with Explosive Eighteen. Evanovich is a second-generation American. She was born and raised in South River, New Jersey to a machinist and housewife. Evanovich attended South River High School. She became the first in her family to attend college when she enrolled at Douglass College, part of Rutgers University, to study art. When Evanovich had children, she chose to become a housewife like her mother. In her thirties, she began writing novels. To learn the art of writing dialog, Evanovich took lessons in improv acting. For ten years, she attempted to write the Great American Novel, finishing three manuscripts that she was unable to sell. After someone suggested she try writing romance novels, Evanovich read
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    229
    Malcolm Gladwell

    Malcolm Gladwell

    • Works written: The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
    Malcolm T. Gladwell, CM (born September 3, 1963) is a British-Canadian journalist, bestselling author, and speaker. He is currently based in New York City and has been a staff writer for The New Yorker since 1996. He has written four books, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Make a Big Difference (2000), Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking (2005), Outliers: The Story of Success (2008), and What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures (2009), a collection of his journalism. All four books were New York Times Bestsellers. Gladwell's books and articles often deal with the unexpected implications of research in the social sciences and make frequent and extended use of academic work, particularly in the areas of sociology, psychology, and social psychology. Gladwell was appointed to the Order of Canada on June 30, 2011. Gladwell was born in Fareham, Hampshire, England. His mother is Joyce Gladwell, a Jamaican-born psychotherapist. His father, Graham Gladwell, is a British mathematics professor. Gladwell has said that his mother is his role model as a writer. When he was six his family moved to Elmira, Ontario, Canada. Gladwell’s father noted that Malcolm was an unusually
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    230
    Melina Marchetta

    Melina Marchetta

    • Works written: Looking For Alibrandi
    Melina Marchetta (born 25 March 1965) is an Australian writer and teacher. She is the middle child of three daughters. Melina is best known as the author of novels, Looking for Alibrandi, Saving Francesca and On the Jellicoe Road. She has twice been awarded the CBCA Children's Book of the Year Award: Older Readers, in 1993 and 2004 and her novel Jellicoe Road won the Michael L. Pintz Award, one of the most prestigious awards for excellence in YA Fiction. Marchetta holds a name for being one of the more prominent Australian Authors of present time in Young-Adult Fiction. Melina Marchetta was born in Sydney on 25 March 1965. She is of Italian descent. Marchetta attended high school at Rosebank College in the Sydney suburb of Five Dock. She left school at age fifteen as she was not confident in her academic ability. She then enrolled in a business school which helped her gain employment with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and later at a travel agency. This work gave her confidence to return to school and gain a teaching degree. She then got a job teaching at St Mary's Cathedral College, Sydney in the heart of the Sydney CBD until 2006. She now writes full time. Her first novel,
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    231
    Bill Bryson

    Bill Bryson

    • Works written: Made In America
    William McGuire "Bill" Bryson, OBE, (born December 8, 1951) is a best-selling American author of humorous books on travel, as well as books on the English language and on science. Born an American, he was a resident of Britain for most of his adult life before returning to the US in 1995. In 2003 Bryson moved back to Britain, living in the old rectory of Wramplingham, Norfolk, and was appointed Chancellor of Durham University. Bryson shot to prominence in the United Kingdom with the publication of Notes From A Small Island (1995), an exploration of Britain, for which he made an accompanying television series. He received widespread recognition again with the publication of A Short History of Nearly Everything (2003), which popularised scientific questions for a general audience. Bill Bryson was born in Des Moines, Iowa, the son of William and Mary Bryson. (In 2006 Bryson published The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid, a humorous account of his childhood years in Des Moines.) His mother was of Irish stock. He has an older brother, Michael and a sister, Mary Jane Elizabeth. Bryson attended Drake University for two years before dropping out in 1972, deciding to instead backpack
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    232
    Candace Bushnell

    Candace Bushnell

    • Works written: Sex and the City
    Candace Bushnell (born December 1, 1958) is an American author and columnist based in New York City. She is best known for writing a column that was anthologized in a book, Sex and the City, which in turn became the basis for a popular television series and its subsequent film adaptations. Bushnell was born in Glastonbury, Connecticut. While attending high school there, she was accompanied to her senior prom by Mike O'Meara, now a nationally syndicated radio host, who also dated Candace's sister, "Lolly". She attended Rice University and New York University in the 1970s, and became known in New York City as a socialite and party-goer. She often frequented Studio 54. In 1995, she met publishing executive Ron Galotti, who became the inspiration for Sex and The City's Mr. Big. In 2002, Bushnell married Charles Askegard, a principal dancer with the New York City Ballet. The couple lived in Manhattan but have filed for divorce. At age 19, Bushnell moved to New York City and sold a children’s story to Simon & Schuster, which was never published. She continued writing and worked as a freelance journalist for various publications, struggling to make ends meet for many years. Bushnell began
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    233
    Daniel Handler

    Daniel Handler

    • Works written: The Bad Beginning
    Daniel Handler (born February 28, 1970) is an American author, screenwriter and accordionist. He is best known for his work under the pen name Lemony Snicket. Handler was born in San Francisco, California, the son of Sandra Handler Day (née Walpole), an opera singer and retired City College of San Francisco Dean, and Lou Handler, an accountant. His father was a Jewish refugee from Germany, and his mother is distantly related to British writer Hugh Walpole. He has a younger sister, Rebecca Handler. He attended Commodore Sloat Elementary, Herbert Hoover Middle School and Lowell High School. Handler graduated from Wesleyan University in 1992. He is an alumnus of the San Francisco Boys Chorus. Mr. Handler is married to Lisa Brown, a graphic artist whom he met in college. They have a son, Otto Handler, born in 2003. They live in an old Victorian architecture house in San Francisco. Handler is politically active and helped form LitPAC. In the June 10, 2007 edition of The New York Times Magazine, Handler reveals ambivalence toward his wealth, and the expectations it creates. He states he is often asked for money for charitable causes and often gives. He has supported the Occupy Wall
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    234
    F. Scott Fitzgerald

    F. Scott Fitzgerald

    • Works written: This Side of Paradise
    • School or Movement: Jazz Age
    Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940) was an American author of novels and short stories, whose works are the paradigm writings of the Jazz Age, a term he coined himself. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation" of the 1920s. He finished four novels: This Side of Paradise, The Beautiful and Damned, Tender Is the Night, and his most famous, The Great Gatsby. A fifth, unfinished novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon, was published posthumously. Fitzgerald also wrote many short stories that treat themes of youth and promise along with despair and age. The Great Gatsby has been the basis for numerous films of the same name, spanning nearly 90 years; 1926, 1949, 1974, 2000, and an upcoming 2013 adaption. In 1958 his life from 1937–1940 was dramatized in Beloved Infidel. Born in 1896 in Saint Paul, Minnesota to an upper middle class Irish Catholic family, Fitzgerald was named after his famous second cousin, three times removed, Francis Scott Key, but was referred to as "Scott." He was also named after his deceased sister, Louise Scott, one of two sisters who
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    235
    Glen Cook

    Glen Cook

    • Works written: Deadly Quicksilver Lies
    Glen Cook (born July 9, 1944) is a contemporary American science fiction and fantasy author, best known for his fantasy series, The Black Company. Cook currently resides in St. Louis, Missouri. Glen Cook's love of writing began in grade school, and in high school he wrote the occasional article for his school's newspaper. After high school, Cook spent time in the United States Navy and later worked his way through college, leaving little time for his writing endeavors. Cook began to write in earnest while working for General Motors at an auto assembly plant in a job which was "hard to learn, but [involved] almost no mental effort", writing as many as three books per year. It was during this time that Cook wrote his first novel of The Black Company, a gritty fantasy series that follows an elite mercenary unit through several decades of their history. The series, currently 10 novels long, has become something of a cult classic, especially among current and former members of the military. When asked about the series' popularity among soldiers, Cook replied: "The characters act like the guys actually behave. It doesn't glorify war; it's just people getting on with the job. The
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    236
    Ian Irvine

    Ian Irvine

    • Works written: Tetrarch
    Ian Irvine (born 1950) is an Australian fantasy and eco-thriller author and marine scientist. To date Irvine has written 27 novels, including fantasy, eco-thrillers and books for children. He has had books published in at least 12 countries and continues to write full-time. Irvine was born in Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia, in 1950. He was educated at Chevalier College and the University of Sydney where he received a PhD in marine science, studying the management of contaminated sediments. Setting up his own environmental consulting firm in 1986, Irvine has worked in many countries in the Asia-Pacific region, including Australia, Indonesia, Singapore, Philippines, South Korea, Papua-New Guinea, Mauritius, Bali, Fiji and Western Samoa. During the course of his career he played a role in developing Australia's national guidelines for protection of the oceanic environment and still works in this field. He was the principal author of Australia’s National Environmental Assessment Guidelines for Dredging, 2009. During 1987 Irvine began writing the first in his The View from the Mirror series. He continued working full-time as an environmental scientist and so wrote the series in
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    237
    Ivan Turgenev

    Ivan Turgenev

    • Works written: Home of the Gentry
    Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev (Russian: Ива́н Серге́евич Турге́нев; IPA: [ɪˈvan sʲɪrˈɡʲeɪvʲɪtɕ tʊrˈɡʲenʲɪf]; November 9 [O.S. October 28] 1818 – September 3, 1883) was a Russian novelist, short-story writer, and playwright. His first major publication, a short-story collection entitled A Sportsman's Sketches(1852), was a milestone of Russian Realism, and his novel Fathers and Sons (1862) is regarded as one of the major works of 19th-century fiction. Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev was born into a family of Russian land-owners in Oryol, Russia, on November 9, 1818 (October 28 Old Style). His father, Sergei Nikolaevich Turgenev, a colonel in the Russian cavalry, was a chronic philanderer. Ivan's mother, Varvara Petrovna Lutovinova, was a wealthy heiress, who had had an unhappy childhood and suffered in her marriage. Ivan's father died when Ivan was sixteen, leaving him and his brother Nicolas to be brought up by their abusive mother. Ivan's childhood was a lonely one, in constant fear of his mother who beat him often. After the standard schooling for a son of a gentleman, Turgenev studied for one year at the University of Moscow and then moved to the University of Saint Petersburg from 1834 to
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    238
    J. D. Salinger

    J. D. Salinger

    • Works written: The Catcher in the Rye
    Jerome David Salinger ( /ˈsælɪndʒər/ SAL-in-jər; January 1, 1919 – January 27, 2010) was an American author, best known for his novel, The Catcher in the Rye (1951), and his reclusive nature. He last published an original work in 1965, and gave his last interview in 1980. Raised in Manhattan, Salinger began writing short stories while in secondary school, and published several in Story magazine in the early 1940s before serving in World War II. In 1948 his critically acclaimed story "A Perfect Day for Bananafish" appeared in The New Yorker magazine, which became home to much of his later work. In 1951 his novel The Catcher in the Rye was an immediate popular success. His depiction of adolescent alienation and loss of innocence in the protagonist Holden Caulfield was influential, especially among adolescent readers. The novel remains widely read and controversial, selling around 250,000 copies a year. The success of The Catcher in the Rye led to public attention and scrutiny: Salinger became reclusive, publishing new work less frequently. He followed Catcher with a short story collection, Nine Stories (1953), a volume containing a novella and a short story, Franny and Zooey (1961),
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    239
    Jane Austen

    Jane Austen

    • Works written: Emma
    Jane Austen (16 December 1775 – 18 July 1817) was an English novelist whose works of romantic fiction, set among the landed gentry, earned her a place as one of the most widely read writers in English literature. Her realism and biting social commentary have gained her historical importance among scholars and critics. Austen lived her entire life as part of a close-knit family located on the lower fringes of the English landed gentry. She was educated primarily by her father and older brothers as well as through her own reading. The steadfast support of her family was critical to her development as a professional writer. Her artistic apprenticeship lasted from her teenage years into her thirties. During this period, she experimented with various literary forms, including the epistolary novel which she tried then abandoned, and wrote and extensively revised three major novels and began a fourth. From 1811 until 1816, with the release of Sense and Sensibility (1811), Pride and Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814) and Emma (1816), she achieved success as a published writer. She wrote two additional novels, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, both published posthumously in 1818, and
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    240
    Janet Morris

    Janet Morris

    • Works written: Explorers in Hell
    • Contributing author to: Tempus Unbound
    • School or Movement: Heroic fiction
    Janet Ellen Morris (born May 25, 1946) is an American author of fiction and nonfiction, best known for her fantasy and science fiction and her authorship of a nonlethal weapons concept for the U.S. military. Janet Morris began writing in 1976 and has since published more than 20 novels, many co-authored with her husband Chris Morris or others. Her first novel, written as Janet E. Morris, was High Couch of Silistra, the first in a quartet of novels with a very strong female protagonist. She has contributed short fiction to the shared universe fantasy series Thieves World, in which she created the Sacred Band of Stepsons, a mythical unit of ancient fighters modeled on the Sacred Band of Thebes. She created, orchestrated, and edited the Bangsian fantasy series Heroes in Hell, writing stories for the series as well as co-writing the related novel, The Little Helliad, with Chris Morris. Most of her fiction work has been in the fantasy and science fiction genres, although she has also written historical and other novels. Her 1983 book "I, the Sun", a detailed biographical novel about the Hittite King Suppiluliuma I was praised for its historical accuracy; O.M. Gurney, Hittite scholar and
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    241
    Jef Raskin

    Jef Raskin

    • Works written: The Humane Interface
    Jef Raskin (March 9, 1943 – February 26, 2005) was an American human–computer interface expert best known for starting the Macintosh project for Apple in the late 1970s. Raskin was born in New York City to a secular Jewish family. (The surname "Raskin" is a matronymic from "Raske", Yiddish nickname for Rachel.) He received degrees in mathematics (B.S. 1964) and philosophy (B.A. 1965) at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. In 1967 he earned a master's degree in computer science at Pennsylvania State University. His first computer program, a music program, was part of his master's thesis. Raskin later enrolled in a graduate music program at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), but stopped to teach art, photography and computer science there, working as an assistant professor in the Visual Arts dept from 1968 until 1974. He was awarded a National Science Foundation grant to establish a Computer and Humanities center which used a 16 bit Data General Nova computer and graphic display terminals rather than the teletypes which were in use at that time. Along with his undergraduate student Jonathan (Jon) Collins, Jef developed the Flow Programming Language for use
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    242
    Miguel de Cervantes

    Miguel de Cervantes

    • Works written: La Galatea
    Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (Spanish: [miˈɣel de θerˈβantes saaˈβeðɾa]; 29 September 1547 – 22 April 1616) was a Spanish novelist, poet, and playwright. His magnum opus, Don Quixote, considered the first modern European novel, is a classic of Western literature, and is regarded amongst the best works of fiction ever written. His influence on the Spanish language has been so great that the language is often called la lengua de Cervantes ("the language of Cervantes"). He was dubbed El Príncipe de los Ingenios ("The Prince of Wits"). In 1569, Cervantes moved to Rome, where he served as a valet to Giulio Acquaviva, a wealthy priest who was elevated to cardinal the next year. By then, Cervantes had enlisted as a soldier in a Spanish Navy infantry regiment and continued his military life until 1575, when he was captured by Algerian corsairs. After five years of slavery he was released on ransom from his captors by his parents and the Trinitarians, a Catholic religious order. He subsequently returned to his family in Madrid. In 1585, Cervantes published a pastoral novel named La Galatea. Because of financial problems, Cervantes worked as a purveyor for the Spanish Armada, and later as a
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    243
    Myla Goldberg

    Myla Goldberg

    • Works written: Bee Season: A Novel
    Myla Goldberg (born November 19, 1971) is an American novelist and musician. Goldberg was born into a Jewish family. She was raised in Laurel, Maryland, and graduated from Eleanor Roosevelt High School. She majored in English at Oberlin College, graduating in 1993. She spent a year teaching and writing in Prague (providing the germ of her book of essays Time's Magpie, which explores her favorite places within the city), then moved to Brooklyn, New York, where she still lives with her husband (Jason Little) and two daughters. Goldberg is an accomplished amateur musician. She plays the banjo and accordion in a Brooklyn-based indie rock quartet, The Walking Hellos. She has performed with The Galerkin Method and the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus. She collaborates with the New York art collective Flux Factory. She has contributed song lyrics to the musical group One Ring Zero. While in Prague, Goldberg completed her first novel, Kirkus, a story of an Eastern European circus troupe engulfed by the onset of World War II. She gave it to an agent who shopped it for 18 months, but it was not published by the time she had begun working on Bee Season, so it was shelved. After returning to Brooklyn
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    244
    Neil Gaiman

    Neil Gaiman

    • Works written: Good Omens
    Neil Richard Gaiman ( /ˈɡeɪmən/; born 10 November 1960) is an English author of short fiction, novels, comic books, graphic novels, audio theatre and films. His notable works include the comic book series The Sandman and novels Stardust, American Gods, Coraline, and The Graveyard Book. He has won numerous awards, including Hugo, Nebula, Bram Stoker, Newbery Medal, and Carnegie Medal in Literature. He is the first author to win both the Newbery and the Carnegie medals for the same work. Gaiman's family is of Polish and other Eastern European Jewish origins; his great-grandfather emigrated from Antwerp before 1914 and his grandfather eventually settled in the Hampshire city of Portsmouth and established a chain of grocery stores. His father, David Bernard Gaiman, worked in the same chain of stores; his mother, Sheila Gaiman (née Goldman), was a pharmacist. He has two younger sisters, Claire and Lizzy. After living for a period in the nearby town of Portchester, Hampshire, where Neil was born in 1960, the Gaimans moved in 1965 to the West Sussex town of East Grinstead where his parents studied Dianetics at the Scientology centre in the town; one of Gaiman's sisters works for the
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    245
    Patricia Cornwell

    Patricia Cornwell

    • Works written: Predator
    Patricia Cornwell (born Patricia Carroll Daniels; June 9, 1956) is a contemporary American crime writer. She is widely known for writing a popular series of novels featuring the heroine Dr. Kay Scarpetta, a medical examiner. A descendant of abolitionist and writer Harriet Beecher Stowe, Cornwell was born in Miami, Florida to Marilyn and Sam Daniels. Her father was one of the leading appellate lawyers in the United States and served as a law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black. Cornwell later traced her own motivations in life to the emotional abuse she says she suffered from her father, who walked out on the family on Christmas Day 1961. She has said, "He was on his deathbed. We knew it was the last time we’d see each other; he grabbed my brother's hand and mouthed 'I love you,' but he never touched me. All he did was write on a legal pad 'How's work?'" In 1961, Cornwell's family moved to Montreat, North Carolina, where her mother was hospitalized for depression. Cornwell and her brothers, Jim and John, were placed in the foster care system. Cornwell attended King College in Bristol, Tennessee, before transferring to Davidson College, where she graduated with a B.A. in
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    246
    Ralph Ellison

    Ralph Ellison

    • Works written: Invisible Man
    Ralph Waldo Ellison (March 1, 1914 – April 16, 1994) was an American novelist, literary critic, scholar and writer. He was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Ellison is best known for his novel Invisible Man, which won the National Book Award in 1953. He also wrote Shadow and Act (1964), a collection of political, social and critical essays, and Going to the Territory (1986). Ralph Ellison, named after Ralph Waldo Emerson, was born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, to Lewis Alfred Ellison and Ida Millsap. Research by Lawrence Jackson, one of Ellison's biographers, has established that he was born a year earlier than had been previously thought. He had one brother named Herbert Millsap Ellison, who was born in 1916. Lewis Alfred Ellison, a small-business owner and a construction foreman, died when Ralph was three years old from stomach ulcers he received from an ice-delivering accident. Many years later, Ellison would find out that his father hoped he would grow up to be a poet. In 1933, Ellison entered the Tuskegee Institute on a scholarship to study music. Tuskegee's music department was perhaps the most renowned department at the school, headed by the conductor William L. Dawson. Ellison
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    247
    Richard Feynman

    Richard Feynman

    • Works written: Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!
    Richard Phillips Feynman ( /ˈfaɪnmən/; May 11, 1918 – February 15, 1988) was an American theoretical physicist known for his work in the path integral formulation of quantum mechanics, the theory of quantum electrodynamics, and the physics of the superfluidity of supercooled liquid helium, as well as in particle physics (he proposed the parton model). For his contributions to the development of quantum electrodynamics, Feynman, jointly with Julian Schwinger and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga, received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1965. He developed a widely used pictorial representation scheme for the mathematical expressions governing the behavior of subatomic particles, which later became known as Feynman diagrams. During his lifetime, Feynman became one of the best-known scientists in the world. In a 1999 poll of 130 leading physicists worldwide by the British journal Physics World he was ranked as one of the ten greatest physicists of all time. He assisted in the development of the atomic bomb and was a member of the panel that investigated the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. In addition to his work in theoretical physics, Feynman has been credited with pioneering the field of quantum
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    248
    Robert A. Heinlein

    Robert A. Heinlein

    • Works written: I Will Fear No Evil
    Robert Anson Heinlein ( /ˈhaɪnlaɪn/ HYN-lyn; July 7, 1907 – May 8, 1988) was an American science fiction writer. Often called the "dean of science fiction writers", he was one of the most influential and controversial authors of the genre in his time. He set a standard for scientific and engineering plausibility, and helped to raise the genre's standards of literary quality. He was one of the first science fiction writers to break into mainstream magazines such as The Saturday Evening Post in the late 1940s. He was one of the best-selling science fiction novelists for many decades. He, Isaac Asimov, and Arthur C. Clarke are known as the "Big Three" of science fiction. Heinlein, a notable writer of science fiction short stories, was one of a group of writers who came to prominence under the editorship of John W. Campbell, Jr. in his Astounding Science Fiction magazine—though Heinlein denied that Campbell influenced his writing to any great degree. Within the framework of his science fiction stories, Heinlein repeatedly addressed certain social themes: the importance of individual liberty and self-reliance, the obligation individuals owe to their societies, the influence of organized
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    249
    Samuel Richardson

    Samuel Richardson

    • Works written: Clarissa
    Samuel Richardson (19 August 1689 – 4 July 1761) was an 18th-century English writer and printer. He is best known for his three epistolary novels: Pamela: Or, Virtue Rewarded (1740), Clarissa: Or the History of a Young Lady (1748) and The History of Sir Charles Grandison (1753). Richardson was an established printer and publisher for most of his life and printed almost 500 different works, with journals and magazines. Richardson lost his first wife along with their five sons, and eventually remarried. Although with his second wife he had four daughters who lived to become adults, they had no male heir to continue running the printing business. While his print shop slowly ran down, at the age of 51 he wrote his first novel and immediately became one of the most popular and admired writers of his time. He knew leading figures in 18th century England, including Samuel Johnson and Sarah Fielding. In the London literary world, he was a rival of Henry Fielding, and the two responded to each other's literary styles in their own novels. Richardson has been one of the authors of the Index Librorum Prohibitorum, a list established by the pope containing the names of books that Catholics were
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    250
    Samuel Rutherford Crockett

    Samuel Rutherford Crockett

    • Works written: Joan of the Sword Hand
    • Contributing author to: Stories by English Authors: Scotland (Selected by Scribners)
    • School or Movement: Kailyard school
    Samuel Rutherford Crockett (24 September 1859 – 16 April 1914) was a Scottish novelist. He was born at Duchrae, Balmaghie, Kirkcudbrightshire, the illegitimate grandson of a farmer. He was raised on his grandfather's Galloway farm, and graduated from Edinburgh University during 1879. After some years of travel, he became in 1886 minister of Penicuik. During that year he produced his first publication, Dulce Cor (Latin: Sweet Heart), a collection of verse. He eventually abandoned the Free Church ministry for novel-writing. The success of J. M. Barrie and the Kailyard school of sentimental, homey writing had created a demand for stories in Lowland Scots, when Crockett published his successful story of The Stickit Minister during 1893. It was followed by a rapidly produced series of popular novels frequently featuring the history of Scotland or his native Galloway. Crockett made considerable sums of money from his writing and was a friend and correspondent of R. L. Stevenson. During 1900, Crockett wrote a booklet published by the London camera manufacturer, Newman & Guardia, comparing cameras favourably to pen and pencil and explaining how he encountered the N and G
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