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Gah. I hate the wording of that topic. :(

msmoat gave me the Letter A from the Book Meme. Sorry this response is so late. (BTW I will still take prompts from that, if people want to give them to me.)

As many people said on byslantedlight's post, the easy winner has to be Enid Blyton. Noddy and Naughty Amelia-Jane, fairy stories, re-tellings of Bible stories, myths and legends for children, the Farm books, Mallory Towers, St Clare's, the Naughtiest Girl books, the Mystery series (I vastly preferred the Five Find-Outers (and dog) to the Famous Five or Secret Seven)...

But I also read most of (I could never find them all) Elinor M. Brent-Dyer's Chalet School series, too. (I *loved* school stories and my second childhood book attempt (after trying to write-up the family story I played with my Barbies, Kens and Sindys) was my own school series - I drew up school lists, designed and made a uniform for my Skipper out of felt and wrote "adventures") That must be around about 50 books.

And I had a whole shelf-full of Roald Dahl.

In adulthood and teens, though? The only YA I ever read was Judy Blume's Forever (I think there was a law about reading that) - I went straight from Puffin Classics to Penguin Popular Classics (Austen and the Brontes) and historical novels and family sagas borrowed from my Mum and Nan. So right up there must be Jean Plaidy and all her novelised lives of monarchs; she also wrote a family saga as Philippa Carr - The Daughters of England - following one family (in the female line) from Tudor times. I didn't read any of her Victoria Holt books, though. (Talk about prolific - so many pen names!) And Winston Graham's Poldark novels.

There has been rather a lot of P. G. Wodehouse, too, since then.

Other than Classics, most of my fiction reading these days is Fantasy Genre: the author I've read most must be all 15 books of Katharine Kerr's (aberwyn) Deverry Cycle, which I adore. (She even persuaded me to non-human "races" of people - Elves, Dwarves etc - which even in Tolkein I tend to struggle with, because pondering the biology can pull me right out of the story. But her world-building and characters totally won me over. The use of Celtic-tradition reincarnation (and language) combined with mediaeval-level "science" of Elements and Humours is so well developed and worked out, in my opinion, and the complex blending of history and myth create an alternate world that never punctures the fictive dream. And the characters! For me that's the most important thing in fiction - give me people I can like, empathise with and want to spend time with, so that I will re-read your story/novel in order to spend time with old friends.)

I find this a bit of an odd question, to be honest, though. If I like a writer I will read a lot of their books - if the premises appeal - but if your favourite author has only written four books, or the "author you read the most books from" was before you were twenty what does it really have to say about your reading habits or tastes? The author I will read *anything* by is Alison Weir - but at the moment I've only read eleven of her books, partly because I want to own them and therefore have to budget. So at this stage, I've only read her historical biographies and not her historical novels. And, while I do read fiction (and adore some fiction), I'm more likely to spend what I can spare to my book-budget on volumes for pleasure research - History, Theology, Bible Study, Psychology...

Maybe next year I should plan it better.


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 21st, 2014 03:27 pm (UTC)
I agree it's a weird question. It really weights it towards prolific writers. There's no sense in that. One perfect book far outweighs forty mediocre books. I mean, I went through a Barbara Cartland period, for goodness' sake. And a Louis L'Amour period, for that matter. *g*

I really ought to have read the Jean Plaidy books. Maybe one day. My mother did, and had many of them, along with Phillippa Carr and Victoria Holt. *g* I read some of Katharine Kerr's books, but not the Deverry Cycle. You know, fan fiction and writing, especially, completely derailed my reading. I tend to read non-fiction the most now, with dips into fiction. No, it wasn't just those things, it was the Internet as well. I used to always have a book to hand. Now I have a computer to hand. Hmm.

On the other hand, I get to discover new friends and read about their interesting times with books! *g* Seriously, this is great. Thanks for answering the question, as tricky as it was!
Sep. 21st, 2014 03:50 pm (UTC)
You know, fan fiction and writing, especially, completely derailed my reading.

Oh thank god it's not just me. Same here.

And yes, my bookcase is now full of factual things and reference stuff. And poetry. Haven't found fan poetry that really does it for me, to be honest.
Sep. 21st, 2014 04:21 pm (UTC)
There was one fannish poet who I loved to read. She was a friend of mine, which is why I read it, but it actually really worked. Sadly, not in Pros. Oh, wait, she did write one Pros poem, I think it might be in Roses and Lavender 1… At any rate, yes. And you don't see much poetry these days, do you? I see drabbles quite often but, gosh, can't remember the last time I saw poetry.

I never finished the novel I was reading when I first discovered zines… *g*
Sep. 21st, 2014 04:46 pm (UTC)
*digs out R&L*

I can remember a couple by Maddalia for T&SR prompts, moth2fic did a bunch for a Christmas DIALJ, and Mads and I had some fun capping verses to form drabbles once.

Sep. 21st, 2014 09:19 pm (UTC)
In fact, here you go. I did like this, now I remember it:

Sonnet at http://maddalia.livejournal.com/11409.html (the prompt was a picture of trees in autumn, I think)
Oh, and if you look at T&SR's "genre: poetry" tag, there's several more (including the verse-capping one, which was prompt 148 - why yes, I am showing off) - here is a linky for you.

And moth2fic's Christmas poems are all at http://discoveredinalj.livejournal.com/tag/moth2fictree

No poem in Roses and Lavender, but I expect I shall stumble over the one you remember one day!

(We now return you to your actually-scheduled book meme discussion. Ahem.)
Sep. 22nd, 2014 05:26 pm (UTC)
My first ever *published* fan-writing (I wrote a lot of fan-fiction before I knew it was a Thing) was poetry - going back to my first fandom, these many years ago. :D It wasn't great poetry, but poems were and are something I write almost accidentally and, like watercolours, editing usually results in an overworked mess.

I still always have books to hand, though. Usually, however they are no longer fiction, but my bedside table and coffee table positively groan under the weight of current reading and To Be Read piles.
Sep. 21st, 2014 04:12 pm (UTC)
Agreed on the question. Even 'author you have read the most of' might do better, because you could say 'author whose work you have read the greatest proportion of'. Or, if you care about the preposition/end of sentence thing (I don't, quite often :)), 'author of whose work you have read the greatest proportion'...

I'm another Enid Blyton graduate, and I started out by preferring the Five Find-outers too! I had to ask my parents what the big deal was about 'Clear orf' instead of 'Clear off'. Didn't get that at all. And the names were strange. All the Elizabeths I knew were Lizzes and Lizzies. Never knew a Bets. And it was only years later that I learned that Daisy was short for Margaret because the French for daisy is marguerite...

As an adult, the most prolific author I have read most of is Agatha Christie - but Ed McBain must run a close second. Dozens and dozens of them, which I read at an age when - I realise, re-reading them now - I simply did not understand a lot of what I was reading, and so some of the plotlines passed completely over my head.

I wonder: can I cheat and claim the author I have read the most by is 'anon'? Myths and legends made up a huge, huge part of my childhood reading, from the fairly common Greek and Roman ones to the less usual Mabinogion and Norse to the further-flung Chinese...

You mention YA. I think that's a category that's really quite recent. I mean, these days I bet people would put things like Children of the New Forest or a lot of RL Stevenson in there, with their teen protagonists out and active in the world. I have seen a lot of Americans refer to Rosemary Sutcliff as 'young adult'. But she wasn't. Or wasn't then. She was described as a children's author, or a a children's historical novelist. The teen and young adult categories didn't exist.

Wasn't so keen on the Deverry cycle, and I can't remember why, now. I remember wanting to like them because it was so unusual to find Welsh names and references in fantasy rather than Irish.
Sep. 22nd, 2014 05:40 pm (UTC)
I classify Forever - and this is how the classification seemed to be used in my teens - as YA/Teen because it is a story of first love and first *sex* between teenaged protagonists. It's full of sentences like "Ralph was hard again" where Ralph is the name the male protagonist gave his penis. So very much neither children's fiction, nor general Romance as I think a 30-something would be a bit squicked.

Agree with you on myths and legends - though without the Mabinogion - Robin Hood, King Arthur, Tales of the Greek Heroes, Romans (and by GCSEs I was reading Vergil and Ovid in Latin), Nordic and Germanic, not to mention Jeudeo-Christian and from the Bible stories to Egypt and Babylonia, and from friends to Japanese, Hindu, Turkish, Bangladeshi...
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )


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