Discussion

Is It Compulsory to Read Everything by A Favorite Author?

We all have authors we swear by. We believe in them to always put out excellent content, we’re the first in line in the bookstore when their new book releases, and are ready to argue for as long as possible to prove their amazingness. They’re, basically, ‘favorite authors’.

So, my question is,

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I have definitely not. And truth is, I’m not even guilty of it. I can give you tons of examples of authors I absolutely love and adore – but haven’t read everything by them. And on top of that, I’m not even planning on reading these other books by them.

Off the top of my head : Laini Taylor. I recently read Strange the Dreamer by her and she’s definitely a new favorite author to me, but I have absolutely no interest in reading her previous trilogy Daughter of Smoke and Bone. I know for a fact that I won’t be reading it anytime soon. Take Maggie Stiefvater for example, I adored The Raven Cycle (it’s my second favorite YA fantasy series) but I know for surity that I won’t be picking up Stiefvater’s previous works (because they don’t interest me). Or, Leigh Bardugo. The Six of Crows duology is my favorite YA fantasy series, but I have no interest in picking up her Grisha trilogy.

Moving away from fantasy, let’s move on to other genres. Even though I vehemently talk about my dislike for YA contemporary on this blog, I do have a select few favorites. Say, Rainbow Rowell. I loved her Eleanor and Park and Fangirl though I absolutely disliked Attachments and Landline. However, I still consider her one of my favorites, but I’m no way interested in reading Carry On. Or Jojo Moyes, whose Me Before You I absolutely adored but am not at all interested in her other works. Or, or, OR, take the legend J.K.Rowling. Loved Harry Potter and the Cormoran Strike books but probably will never pick up The Casual Vacancy. Which, brings me to the question :

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I always believe that the primary reason for reading a book is your interest in it. Yes, there may be other reasons, like picking up something by your favorite author, or picking up something your friend recommended, but that never stumps the primary reason, for me. No matter who recommends the book to me, and even if the book is written by Khaled Hosseini himself (who’s my number one favorite author) : I wouldn’t read it unless it interests me at least mildly.

I know a lot of people consider not reading everything by a favorite author to be an offense, or literally a crime, but to be honest, according to me it’s fine. If you’re not interested in some book your favorite author has written, then that’s fine. I don’t understand this unnecessary pressure which people assume when it comes to favorite authors.

I feel like you should read something only if you’re interested in it genuinely, and never be obliged to pick up a book just for the sake of it being written by your favorite author. That’s insane pressure, because reading something you’re not interested in only because it’s written by a favorite author is something I cannot imagine doing.

I think it’s totally okay for authors to write something that absolutely blows your mind, and then also write something which you dislike/doesn’t even mildly excite you. Authors are but humans, and every person is different, right? Also, it’s not always necessary for an author to write the similar type of books, or to write books which are of the same level of amazingness. Thus, it’s very much likely that some books by an author you love, and some you don’t.

So that was it for my basic discussion today. This is just something I’ve been meaning to let off my chest lately, and talk to you guys about. I read so many blog posts where people complain about not having read everything by their favorite author, and that slightly scares me (because I know I won’t ever read every single book by my favorite authors ).

Share your thoughts on this topic below! Who are your favorite authors? Have you read everything by them? What books by your favorite authors have you not read? Do you plan to read them anytime soon?

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20 thoughts on “Is It Compulsory to Read Everything by A Favorite Author?

  1. I feel like we are constantly at an impasse where we can’t possibly read EVERYTHING all the time. And I feel like it’s okay to like an author but not have read some of their work because it doesn’t interest you. Life is too short to read books you don’t love, and being able to critique your favorite author is just a sign you’ve learned more about yourself rather than trying to be the adoring sycophant.

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    1. Exactly, it’s not possible to read every single book and that’s true – life is too short to read books that don’t interest you at all. Also, I too think that being able to critique your favorites shows maturity and that you’ve learnt something :)

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      1. Yes exactly! Being able to objectively say: “I like this character because of XYZ” and “this character rubbed me the wrong way because of ABC” doesn’t make someone a bad fan. It shows that they are able to think and provide a critique informed by their experiences and preferences. Also, if a writer can craft a character I love, and then another character I don’t then I think it says something to their characterization. Just because I don’t like a character doesn’t mean the writing is bad. It may just not be the right time for me and that book.

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  2. My favorites, currently, are Brandon Sanderson and Rick Riordan. I have not, and do not intend to, read everything they’ve ever written. Sanderson writes some YA superhero stuff on the side, but I’m only interested in (obsessed with) his Cosmere books. Period. As for Riordan, apparently he started out with mystery novels, but I will only ever read his middle grade stuff (I know you don’t like him, but to each their own). Anyway, I’ve felt no pressure outwards or inwards to read everything by an author I enjoy; to be honest, even Sanderson’s disappointed me. Of course you don’t have to read all books by a favorite author. Would you watch every single movie that stars your favorite actor? Or go to every restaurant that serves your favorite food?
    Basically, I totally agree with you.

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    1. Completely agree. I also think it’s absolutely okay to dislike something your favorite author has written. And woah, I never knew Riordian wrote mystery novels (though I’m not willing to try those either :P) And yes, there definitely shouldn’t be any pressure regarding reading everything by a favorite author :)

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  3. Excellent post! I agree that it is absolutely unnecessary to read everything by a favourite author. The sad truth is, sometimes an author only writes one good book, and everything else they write is disappointing in comparison (*cough* John-Green-in-my-opinion *cough*). In those cases, however, I don’t usually list the author among my favourite authors, even though the book may be one of my favourite books. I feel like it’s misleading, to use my earlier example, to say that John Green is one of my favourite authors when I only liked The Fault in Our Stars.

    People who get snobby because you say you like an author even though you haven’t read all of their books are just one step away from those people who ridicule you if you say you like a band when there’s one obscure song that you’re not familiar with. And honestly those kind of people just need to find something else to care about. :) Anyway, again, really enjoyed this post!

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    1. Oh yess…how disappointing are authors who write only one good book and the rest of their stuff is disappinting :/ And yes I totally agree that if such is the case, I don’t list that author among my favorites. For example, for me that would be David Nicholls. His book One Day is one of my favorites, but I’ve heard terrible things about his other books.
      And yes! Snobby people like that need to shut up and find something else to care about :D
      Thank you!

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  4. For my very, very favorite authors, I will definitely read everything they write. But most of these are dead authors and were pretty prolific, so I know they wrote multiple books I loved. If it’s an author I just really like, I won’t necessarily read all their books. It depends on how interesting they sound to me.

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  5. OH this is such an interesting blog post….makes me think about my favorite authors now, ahah. I think that most of the time, I have read all the books by my favorite authors (John Green, Morgan Matson for instance) ; but some new favorite authors of mine such as Schwab, I only read her Shades of Magic trilogy and I’m still unsure about reading her other books for now. I think you’re right in the sense that it’s totally fine not to want to read all of the books if you’re not interested in the synopsis or anything – there is no pressure to have about that, I think we all should read whatever books we want to and it should be okay, it doesn’t make us “less” of a fan, somehow. Or at least I don’t think so? :)

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  6. I definitely think it’s okay not to read everything from a favourite author. I agree; if the book doesn’t sound interesting, you shouldn’t feel obligated to read it just because your favourite author wrote it. Like you said, I LOVE J.K. Rowling too but I haven’t / won’t read the Casual Vacancy either. I just doesn’t appeal to me and that’s okay :)

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  7. I totally understand not wanting to read all of the books by your favorite author I love a lot of authors but that doesn’t mean all of there books appeal to me. My favorite authors are Sarah Dessen, J.k rowling, Stephen king, and laini Taylor

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  8. It’s much harder to read everything by your favorite author if you were introduced to them later into their career, as opposed to picking up a debut author. I’ve been a fan of Juliet Marillier for years, but I still haven’t picked up everything by her. I still have at least half a dozen novels (maybe more) to read, but I’m not necessarily in a real hurry. There are a few authors whose books I loved, but their later work really didn’t do it for me. I feel like I’m more of a fan of a series/book than the authors. Interesting discussion!

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    1. Oh yes..I definitely agree that when you pick up a debut author, it is much easier to keep up with all his/her works. For example, I recently read THUG by Angie Thomas, and I know that I’ll probably read all her books because I started with her debut novel the year she came out with it. However, with authors whose career started way before I picked up their books, it’s difficult to read all their books. Even I’m more of a fan of books/series than the authors who wrote them :)

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