Readers find new novelists in so many ways including best seller lists, book reading groups,
family and friends, browsing new and used bookstores, public libraries, etc.
As I have mentioned before, early in my collecting days, I made the decision to only buy fine
copies of first editions and my hunting grounds are new and used bookstores including thrift
However, this approach is limiting and problematic. The limiting is obvious, the problematic not
quite so. When I pick up a book that catches my eye, I look at the front of the book and then to
the title page to see when the book was written and then the following page where you can
determine whether the book is a first edition or not.
Then I read the back of the book and then the blurbs. So, this tells me what the book is about,
something about the author and there are usually notations from various sources about previous
works written by the author. This leads me to the listing of previous works by the author that
usually appears just before the title page.
Many authors write serial novels. So, if the book in hand is not the first book in a series what to
do? One option is to make a note of the author, the title and date of the first novel and put the
book in my hand back on the shelf, knowing that the book won’t be there indefinitely and maybe
I need something to read right now – as happened while on vacation.
Fine, first edition copies of books of successful authors typically are more scarce than
subsequent works and can be much more expensive. And what if I don’t like the author! So, I
will buy the book in hand. One downside is that when you finish the book you know the cast of
characters and in murder mysteries when one of those characters is in a perilous situation in an
earlier title you know that person survives. So, you need to treat previous titles as prequels.
This series will include:
- Found author #1 – British writer of spooky mysteries set in Wales
- Found author #2 – Japanese American writer of medieval Japanese mysteries
- Found author #3 – American author of lawyer mysteries – not courtroom
- Found author #4 – Canadian author of lawyer mysteries – not courtroom
In every case, I then bought the first book and started to read the series, in order. I am building
collections of all 4 authors. I think that you may find them enjoyable and, just maybe you will
want to start with the first book. And maybe in the paperback edition.
I don’t know if I will do all of these in succession but for sure I will start off with Found author #1