Discover Authors in Collaboration - Wonder at These Ten Novels Created by Duos of Authors Working Hand in Hand

Here we feature twelve novels where more than one author has had a hand in the writing. I find collaborative fiction absolutely fascinating, just how, how on earth do they do it? How do they make decisions on the writing style, plot, and characters, do they frequently discuss ideas, do they take on different characters or chapters, do they write separately or together? These questions don’t crop up while I’m reading as the end result of the collaboration is seamless, it’s only afterwards that I start to wonder how they actually wrote the book. With some of these novels it’s not immediately obvious that two authors are responsible for the words that flow across the paper. Lars Kepler, Ambrose Parry, and Nicci French are actually married couples writing under pseudonyms. While other author teams such as Thomas Enger and Jorn Lier Horst, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, and Raymond E Feist and Jenny Wurts are clear to see on the cover. Another fascinating set of books for me is the Wild Cards series edited by George RR Martin. Here a group of friends write different chapters in contribution to the overall book, and a main character in one chapter will be a passer-by in another, ensuring a really wide range of distinct and diverse viewpoints. So, over to the books to do the talking, here are some authors who have collaborated to create some truly wonderful storytelling.

Wild Cards

Wild Cards

Author: George R. R. Martin, Richard Glyn Jones Format: Paperback Release Date: 08/11/2012

When you start to read you may doubt, as you get used to the set-up you may wonder, as you settle in you may find yourself well and truly addicted. Wake up to an alternative reality, where an alien virus turns the world upside down; death for most, survival for few, extraordinary afflictions for the Jokers, incredible superhuman abilities for the Aces. Different chapters are written by different authors (including Martin), however the world exists as a whole, as one, which leads to a fabulous range of distinct and diverse voices and viewpoints. A main character for one chapter, will pop up as a passer-by in another. You may well prefer some stories, some characters over others, however all, even the most abhorrent, feel so very real, this is by no means a fairy-tale world. Originally published in 1987, this expanded edition, following history from the end of World War Two, is a heavy-weight of a knock out. You do not have to be a science fiction and fantasy buff to enjoy this novel, George RR Martin has proven his more mainstream appeal with the ‘Game of Thrones’ series. Recommended for anyone who appreciates the unusual and bizarre side of life.

eBooks of the Month
The Art of Dying

The Art of Dying

Author: Ambrose Parry Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/01/2021

Discover a vividly seductive historical crime novel sitting within Victorian Edinburgh. A plan to discredit Dr James Simpson is afoot, while a bid by two of his employees to clear his name encounters a string of unsolved deaths. Ambrose Parry is a pseudonym for award-winning author Chris Brookmyre and consultant anaesthetist Dr Marisa Haetzman. Research for her masters uncovered the material for this series which began with The Way of All Flesh. You could read this as a standalone novel, but I recommend starting at the beginning in order to fully enjoy this reading experience. The mix of fiction and fact is a fascinating one, with the historical background twisting and melding with intense vitality into the most compelling story. The social resistance to new medicine, the struggles of the woman’s movement, and individuals grasping for power confirms that the circles of humanity continue through the ages. The attraction between Will and Sarah adds to the energy rather than detracts, while the unknown voice that appears throughout builds suspense and intrigue before the full impact of the ending hits. The Art of Dying is a vivid, almost visual feast of a story that I can highly recommend.

Books of the Month
The Rabbit Hunter

The Rabbit Hunter

Author: Lars Kepler Format: Hardback Release Date: 03/05/2018

It begins with a nursery rhyme. Nineteen minutes later you die... The sixth gripping thriller in Lars Kepler's internationally bestselling series featuring Joona Linna. Perfect for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbo.   A hard-hitting rocket of a ride, if you’re squeamish, you may well be peeking between your fingers as you read. Superintendent Saga Bauer enlists the help of Joona Lina, who is serving time in prison, in order stop to a killer named the Rabbit Hunter. The authors are a well established, internationally best-selling writing duo, they seemlessly blend their skills into a story that blasts with fury and intensity. This is the sixth in the series, and if you’ve not come across Lars Kepler before, I would advise you start at the beginning with ‘The Hypnotist’, purely because it’s such a cracking series. I love the feeling of danger and menace that stalks the policing team themselves, who is to be trusted, who will survive, my heart was in my mouth on more than one occasion. As a nursery rhyme plays, the killer stalks his prey, violent, creepy and addictive, the tension in ‘The Rabbit Hunter’ sky-rockets through to the utterly gripping conclusion… and left me wanting more. ~ Liz Robinson

eBooks of the Month
Unhinged

Unhinged

Author: Thomas Enger & Jørn Lier Horst Format: Paperback Release Date: 17/02/2022

An all-in all-out absolute belter of a read, and I’m still coming down from the most amazing reading high. Bear with me, as it’s also one of those books where I don’t want to say too much in case I inadvertently include spoilers! Police Officer Alexander Blix and news blogger Emma Ramm investigate a murder which hits too close to home. This is the third in the superb Blix and Ramm series by Jorn Lier Horst and Thomas Enger. As with the previous novel, translator Megan Turney ensures you only realise just how good the translation has been once you’ve finished and come up for air. Do start with Death Deserved and Smoke Screen as they most definitely warrant your attention before starting on Unhinged. One of the things I love about this series is that Blix and Emma aren’t an obvious duo and their individual stories carry as much weight as the joined. Put plenty of reading time aside, as I hit top gear from the whammy of a start and didn’t want to put it down, even for a second. Short chapters, shifts in focus, and rapid changes in time frames kept me on my toes and high alert. The storytelling is just superb, I’d love to know how these two writers created such a seamless and fast-moving plot. Once I’d finished, and my mind had stopped racing around, I had to have some time out to recover. Chosen as a LoveReading Star Book, Unhinged is pure, unadulterated and absolutely thrilling reading pleasure! The LoveReading LitFest invited Jørn Lier Horst & Thomas Enger to the festival to talk about Unhinged. The digitally native, all year round, online literature and books festival, with new content released every week is a free-for-all-users festival. What are you waiting for? Check out a preview of the event and sign up to become a member.

Star Books
Good Omens

Good Omens

Author: Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman Format: Paperback Release Date: 01/05/1991

Good Omens sits on my list of all time favourite novels, and I regularly re-read or just give it a pat as I pass. The joining of the minds of Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman is one that I still stand up and applaud. The world is due to end, a demon and an angel join forces, the Antichrist grows up with the wrong family in a small village, while the Horsemen of the Apocalypse almost steal the show. With a whole cast of unforgettable characters, a thought-provoking story that just buzzes along with plenty of wit and humour, this is one heck of a must-read book.

eBooks of the Month
House of Correction

House of Correction

Author: Nicci French Format: Paperback Release Date: 27/05/2021

LONGLISTED FOR THE CWA GOLD DAGGER AWARD She's a murderer. Everyone knows she killed Stuart Rees - why else would his dead body be found in her shed? So now Tabitha is in prison, awaiting trial. Coming back to the remote coastal village where she grew up was a mistake. She didn't fit in then, and she doesn't fit in now. That day is such a blur, she can't remember clearly what happened. There is something she is missing, something important... She only knows one thing. She is not capable of murder. And the only one she can trust to help her out of this situation is herself. So she must fight. Against the odds. For her life. Beautifully written about prejudice, loneliness and fighting spirit, this new book by Nicci French is shocking, twisty and utterly compelling.

Liz Robinson's Picks of the Month
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

Author: Annie Barrows, Mary Ann Shaffer Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/04/2018

 To give them hope she must tell their story It's 1946. The war is over, and Juliet Ashton has writer's block. But when she receives a letter from Dawsey Adams of Guernsey - a total stranger living halfway across the Channel, who has come across her name written in a second hand book - she enters into a correspondence with him, and in time with all the members of the extraordinary Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Through their letters, the society tell Juliet about life on the island, their love of books - and the long shadow cast by their time living under German occupation. Drawn into their irresistible world, Juliet sets sail for the island, changing her life forever.

eBooks of the Month
Beautiful Creatures

Beautiful Creatures

Author: Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl Format: Paperback Release Date: 03/01/2013

A teen romance, now made into a film, with a twist of danger and the supernatural told with a sure touch that makes it a headlong read from start to finish. Typical teenager Ethan is bored by his life growing up in a small town where everyone knows everyone else. When a new girl arrives in the class, everything begins to change!   This edition features exclusive movie cover art. A brand new film tie-in edition of the bestselling love story, Beautiful Creatures - a romance that is bound to capture the hearts of Twilight fans everywhere. It ties in to the major new Warner Brothers and Alcon Entertainment blockbuster film starring Emma Thompson, Jeremy Irons, Alice Englert and Alden Ehrenreich.

eBooks of the Month
Daughter of the Empire

Daughter of the Empire

Author: Raymond E. Feist, Janny Wurts Format: Paperback Release Date: 02/09/2010

From the imagination of two of fantasy’s greatest names comes a magnificent epic of heroic and dynastic struggle. At age 17, Mara's ceremonial pledge of servantship to the goddess Lashima is interrupted by the news that her father and brother have been killed in battle on Trigia, the world through the rift. Now Ruling Lady of the Acoma, Mara finds that not only are her family's ancient enemies, the Minwanabi, responsible for the deaths of her loved ones, but her military forces have been decimated by the betrayal and House Acoma is now vulnerable to complete destruction.

Gideon's Sword: A Gideon Crew Novel

Gideon's Sword: A Gideon Crew Novel

Author: Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child Format: Paperback Release Date: 26/04/2012

May 2012 Book of the Month. From the best-selling U.S. writing partnership that bought us the enigmatically brilliant Agent Pendergast comes a new all together different character Gideon Crew. Driven by revenge, to clear his father's name, he has now been noticed by people he would be better off not knowing at all. This is the first novel in a high-octane new thriller series.

eBooks of the Month
Facets of Death

Facets of Death

Author: Michael Stanley Format: Paperback Release Date: 29/04/2021

A thrilling and enthralling novel that is just so beautifully easy to read I raced through it while inhaling every word. This is the prequel to the Detective Kubu series of books set in Botswana by the writing duo of Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip. If you’ve not read any of the previous books in the series then of course this is the perfect start! Detective David ‘Kubo’ Bengu is recruited from university straight into the position of Detective Sergeant in CID which causes consternation in his colleagues and makes his first job of a diamond robbery all that much harder. The cast of characters with phonetic pronunciations and map at the beginning are particularly helpful. I love the feel of this novel, it takes all the attributes of Kubo and paints with them, allowing you fall for this gently charismatic and fiercely intelligent man as he learns his trade. The storyline is riveting, sense of place vivid, and characters fascinating. Set in 1998 Facets of Death is an atmospheric, intriguing, and wonderfully readable crime novel I most definitely recommend.   

eBooks of the Month
The Man Who Watched Women

The Man Who Watched Women

Author: Michael Hjorth, Hans Rosenfeldt Format: Hardback Release Date: 18/06/2015

Scandinavian crime fiction is well know for being dark, gritty and full of complex characters, The Man Who Watched Women sits confidently alongside its associates. The author pairing of Michael Hjorth and Hans Rosenfeldt is well established, together they created the Swedish TV series of Wallander based on the books by Henning Mankell, and Rosenfeldt was the creator of the Swedish TV series The Bridge. The first book in this series is titled Sebastian Bergman, although best to start there, it is possible to read The Man Who Watched Women out of sequence. Egocentric criminal profiler Sebastian Bergman really isn't likeable, he doesn't have to be, he does however need to get his act firmly together in order to be of any use in this particular investigation. The rest of the team have their own issues to contend with and the twisted mastermind behind these murders will fully exploit any weakness. This is a slow burner of a read, it takes a little while to get used to the writing style, however it gradually catches fire and each page turned fans the flames. Intense, sinister and bleak, this is a captivating and dramatic read. ~ Liz Robinson

eBooks of the Month

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