For That Artsy Reader Girl’s Top Ten Tuesday:
Today’s topic is:
July 7: Authors I’ve Read the Most Books By
But since Goodreads got rid their Most Read Authors page, I can’t be sure. So I decided to add a “probably”, since this isn’t really scientific.
1. Ann M. Martin- As a kid I was a Babysitter’s Club addict. I also read her Little Sister spin off series. Since they came out with a new book every month or so (in retrospect I think a ghost writer might have had something to do with it) I’m sure it added up to a lot. Yes, I also watched the film and TV series. I’ve also watched the new netflix series and plan to blog about it soon. At heart, I’m still very much a nine year old girl!
2. Francine Pascal– I also read a lot of Sweet Valley books in my childhood. There were Sweet Valley Kids, Sweet Valley Twins and Sweet Valley High. I was too young for the Sweet Valley University books that emerged at some point. But I’m sure it added up to a lot. And yes, I think a lot of these were from a ghost writer too.
3. Carolyn Keene– Nancy Drew was another favorite series in my childhood. I read the old school series and the newer ones. I’ve since learned that “Carolyn Keene” was the pseudonym that the Stratmeyer Syndicate authors used. Many of the Nancy Drew books were written by Mildred Wirt Benson, but other ghostwriters used the name as well. So I suppose I should say that I’ve read a lot of books by the various authors who used that name.
3.RL Stine– Yet another one from me youth. I read the Goosebumps books when I was little and the Fear Street series when I got a little bit older.
4.Dean Koontz– I had a whole shelf full of his books at one point. I think he was the first “adult” author I read, when I was about 12. I was really interested in scary stuff and someone recommended them to me. I think I was as enthralled with reading “grown up” stuff as I was with the books themselves. I haven’t read anything by Koontz in years.
5.VC Andrews– These were my 12 year old guilty pleasure. I devoured them! Though VC Andrews herself only wrote the Dollangager series, My Sweet Audrina (the sequel to this one was written by the ghostwriter), and the first books in the Casteel series (Heaven, Dark Angel, Fallen Hearts) before her death. The rest of the books were penned by a ghostwriter hired by her family after she died. Supposedly the ghostwriter had a lot of notes and drafts for other books to work from. I used to imagine exactly when he/she ran out of material is when the quality declined sharply. I’d try to identify where that was. Again, I haven’t looked at most of these in years.
6.Sidney Sheldon– I stayed with my Grandmother one summer when I was about thirteen and she had a lot of these books. I devoured them and then sought out more! I remember very little about them except that everyone was beautiful and had evil secret plans. According to wiki he wrote 18 books but it feels like I read more than that… It’s been many years since I’ve read one of these though.
7. Lisa Gardner- For years Lisa Gardner has been a go to writer for me when I want a fast moving plot that will absorb me while I read it, but not as too much of me in the way of outside investment. I think she’s got about 25 total. She also writes romance under the name Alicia Scott but I haven’t read any of those yet.
8. Karin Slaughter– I got to this author for the same reasons as the author above. The quality of her work has been pretty consistent over the years. But she does sometimes get a littler darker than I’d like for “mindless reading.” I think I stopped reading her Grant County series at one point when I was upset about a plot development but I picked the series back up and went along with it as it morphed into the Will Trent series) According to wiki she’s written 18 novels, but again it feels like more.
9.LM Montgomery– I’ve loved LM Montgomery since I was a kid, and that love has continued into adulthood. In this case I’ve read most of her novels (she wrote 20: 8 “Anne” books, 3 “Emily” books, 2 “Pat” books and several stand alones) but I also have several volumes of her short fiction. I still love her work.
10.Sophie Kinsella– I think Sophie Kinsella might also deserve a place on this list. I gave up on the Shopaholic series about 5 books in (around the time when the main characters antics crossed the line from cute to grating, IMO) but I’ve also read most of her stand alone titles and the books that she wrote under her real name (Madeline Wickham) She’s good for a laugh and an escape from reality, which is why I find myself returning to her often over the years.
I exported my Goodreads library (I was doing that anyway to update my poor neglected LibraryThing catalogue) and used that to count. I had forgotten they used to have a page specifically for most read authors!
Carolyn Keene should probably be on my list also, but I have no actual memory of how many of the Nancy Drew books I read, other than “lots”. Same for the Hardy Boys books and Beverly Cleary’s work.
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Good thinking. I just made rough guesses.
It’s true, I think a lot of childhood series take up space on a lot of people’s lists because there are a LOT of books in those series and they’re intentionally quick reads (made for people with short attention spans)
Children’s books are usually shorter reads, good point! Someone else mentioned novellas helping to up the book count, and (even though several of the works in my list are novella length or shorter) that’s not really something I stopped to consider.
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No I didn’t really consider that either. But I suppose that If I’d included authors of picture books they’d dominate much of the list too.
Oh man! What a blast from the past! I read quite a few of the Babysitters’ Club and Sweet Valley … never met anyone else who remembers those. My sister was into Goosebumps, and I can remember seeing girls at school bingeing on V.C. Andrews. At least Flowers in the Attic, that was one was the one that everyone read. And everyone was reading Stephen King in middle school.
I also read a lot of The Three Investigators. I missed out on Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys, but TTI were sort of like The Hardy Boys but set in Rocky Beach, CA and they’d always have a debrief with Alfred Hitchcock at the end of the book. All of the mysteries appeared to be paranormal but always turned out to be crime rings, sort of like in Scooby Doo but with chapters.
At 13, my friend and I also read Dragonlance and Jean M. Auel’s Clan of the Cave Bear series, which was probably a little old for us in retrospect.
For me as an adult, it would be Agatha Christie, Dick Francis, Ellis Peters, Tony Hillerman, Dorothy Sayers, G.K. Chesterton’s Father Brown stories, P.G. Wodehouse. I also like Jennifer Weiner but I’ve only read two or three books by her. Just discovered Susan Hill.
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I never heard of The Three Investigators. It sounds cool though. I probably would have liked it!
I also read the Clan of the Cave Bear series in high school, but I felt like the quality of the books declined with each one. I liked that first one a lot, the second was pretty good, the third was OK, and it was downhill from here. And yes, I was also a bit younger than the intended audience for those, I think.
I actually met Jennifer Weiner once. She gave a talk at my local library. At the time I had only read one or two of her books, but I had a lot of questions for her about writing and publishing. In retrospect I probably was a bit annoying, but she was very polite about it!