I may be a little behind the times with this, but I have just noticed a tool on Goodreads which generates a list of your ‘Most-Read Authors’. I was intrigued to see who would be at the top of mine, and so decided to click on it.
I was quite surprised, in a way, at the numbers of books which I have read by the same authors; my ‘Most-Read’ of these is Jacqueline Wilson, with 56 books on my shelf. I adored her work when I was younger, and made sure that I saved my pocket money up to buy each of her hardbacks as soon as they were released.
Whilst my Goodreads shelves are not as comprehensive as other people’s, and certainly miss out a lot of the tomes which I read as a child and teenager, it still seems that children’s authors dominate my list. Second on my list was Enid Blyton, with 42 books (and I am certain that I have read much more than this of her oeuvre), and third Roald Dahl, with 41 books.
Only my fourth author is one who wrote solely for adults; it is, perhaps unsurprisingly,
Virginia Woolf, who has 38 read books on my shelves. Fifth is Agatha Christie with 35, sixth Daphne du Maurier with 31, and seventh William Shakespeare with 26 (again, I have read many more of his plays than this). Tove Jansson comes in eighth place with 25 books on my shelf, Carol Ann Duffy has 24, and F. Scott Fitzgerald 22.
I have copied part of the list out below, and will be interested to see if it changes much in the next few years.
11. Ali Smith (19)
12. Jeanette Winterson, Elizabeth Taylor, Lemony Snicket, Muriel Spark (16)
13. May Sinclair, Katherine Mansfield, Nina Bawden, Dick King-Smith, Janet Ahlberg (15)
14. Rudyard Kipling, Alice Hoffman, Alice Munro, Mary Stewart, Elizabeth von Arnim (14)
15. Arthur Conan Doyle, Astrid Lindgren, Oscar Wilde (13)
16. Nick Hornby, Tennessee Williams, Rumer Godden, Helen Dunmore, Sylvia Plath (12)
17. Vita Sackville-West, Truman Capote, John Steinbeck, C.S. Lewis, Hilary Mantel, Stephen Fry, Angela Carter, Charles Dickens, Terry Deary (11)
18. Kate Atkinson, Jane Austen, J.K. Rowling, Louise Rennison, Colette, Dr. Seuss, Margaret Atwood (10)
19. Irene Nemirovsky, Penelope Fitzgerald, Penelope Lively, Susan Hill, A. A. Milne,
Fyodor Dostoevsky, Catherynne M. Valente, Anita Brookner, E.M. Delafield, Shirley Jackson, Judith Kerr, Marjane Satrapi, Winifred Holtby (9)
20. Willa Cather, Alan Bradley, Carol Shields, Esther Freud, Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth Gaskell, Thomas Hardy, Ted Hughes, Bryan Lee O’Malley, Jodi Picoult, Maggie O’Farrell, Henry James, Wilkie Collins, Carson McCullers, Lewis Carroll (8)
Who are your most read authors? Do we have any in common?