This week on Top Ten Tuesday is a "love freebie," and since I don't see any other freebie weeks coming up in the next couple of months, I'm going to do a topic I've been storing up for ages that I only had to twist a little to properly tie to the theme.
This list has been brought to you by the upside-down-smiley-face-emoji mask I wear to hide my Actually Angry Face about how many authors I find abjectly terrible (or at least super boring) who have multiple titles to their name, and sometimes are even popular enough to quit their day job and become a full-time writer. I won't name names, but only because if I dwell on it my blood pressure will rise.
On the bright side, in the course of researching this post I did discover that a lot of authors I thought were 1-hit wonders actually DO have at least a second novel that's been published since I last checked for them, like Autumn Cornwell, who had a 12(!) year break between her two. That gives me some hope...for the 21st century writers, anyway.
Still. The injustice of a person like [REDACTED] making a living out of their work while these women were apparently met with crickets is something else.
Cover pics @ the end.
1. Tess Callahan - April & Oliver (2009)
I read this a 5-star book-hangover-inducing majesty of beautiful writing a year and a half ago and I'M STILL MAD ABOUT IT BEING MY ONLY OPTION. I have been teased for all that time about a possibly pending second novel but it has NOT appeared or even, apparently, gotten started in the publishing process. Though she does have some writing in literary magazines, so that's something.
2. Jessica Alcott - Even When You Lie to Me (2015)
Despite VOYA Magazine's outright lie*, it ticked several boxes for me in terms of what I like in student/teacher novels and I wanted to see what else she could do, dangit. But she's been "on a Twitter break" since 2015 and her website's gone "poof," so I don't think she has anything on the near horizon.
*Her Twitter bio amuses me to no end (as does her username), so I have finally screencapped it for Ever
3. Carol J. Scott - Kentucky Daughter (1986)
Based on this date, I'm pretty sure she is not gonna publish another novel any time soon either. Which is just a shame. In under 200 pages she captured this girl's life and her two locales (Virginia and Appalachian Kentucky) so, so well.
4. Amy Ackley - Sign Languge (2010)
Similar in scope to Second Chance Summer. Of the two, I did prefer Matson's and I'm very glad about the latter's body of work, but that doesn't mean Ackley's wasn't just as strong and tear-inducing.
5. Annemarie O'Brien - Lara's Gift (2013)
I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw this was still her only one. Are you kidding?? Let her be the next prolific dog book author! Let her follow in Lynn Hall's footsteps! Bobbi Pyron got to do it!!
(to be fair: her book did get reprinted by Scholastic and she seems to be highly successful with her blog reviewing other people's dog books, so maybe she's happy where she is?)
6. Catherine Greenman - Hooked (2011)
Even though I hated most of the characters, I thought the writing was extremely strong, enough to make the read enjoyable overall. That's exactly the kind of thing that makes an author worthy of another shot, so I am routinely shocked when I realize this is it from her.
7. Melodie Bowsher - My Lost and Found Life (2006)
Did I give this only 3 stars due to the amount of sex for a YA novel? Yes. Did I also think it had a very engaging cast of characters, memorable enough setting and premise that I have never forgotten it after nearly 10 years (I routinely find it for people on the lost-book forum, even), and other reasons to make me feel she had immense potential to write better novels? You bet your sweet behind I did.
8. M. Molly Backes - The Princesses of Iowa (2012)
Like Greenman -- except with way more enjoyable characters -- I want her to have another chance based on the sheer quality of writing I beheld. Although the initially shallow main character isn't amazing, I loved the setting and Backes made me sympathize with her POV. *pounds fist on table* Another!
9. Jennifer H. Lyne - Catch Rider (2013)
NAW. You don't get to write one of the best standalone YA horse books of the 21st century and NOT KEEP WRITING THEM. Do you know how rare traditionally-published standalone horse books for girls over 14 are?? The world needs this. I need this.
10. Cheryl Renee Herbsman - Breathing (2009)
You also don't get to write one of my favorite teen romances of the year and be done. What gives??
Bonus, Because Why Not
11. Julie A. Swanson - Going For the Record (2004)
Seventeen-year-old Leah's chance to make the national soccer team does not seem so important when she learns that her father has cancer and may only have months to live.
It's been 12 years since I read it so I don't know if it would hold up, but this book made me sob buckets and got 5 stars in a year when I 5-starred very few books, so. Please ma'am, I want some more.
Your Turn: Have you read or heard of any of these books? (It's okay if you didn't like them; maybe it will help me figure out why they didn't get a 2-book deal). Do you know anything I don't about future or supplemental work? Did I miss anyone going by a pen name, maybe?? (she says with great hope)
And/or, especially if the answer to all of the above is no, do YOU have any favorite underrated authors you've been waiting on for a while in hopes of a new book? Let me know! I am obviously very interested in realistic-YA recs, but I also just want to hear anecdotes from people who know my kind of pain.
Note: Most comments are screened and will be unscreened at my earliest opportunity, even if it says they have been flagged as spam.
ETA: I've had a few people tell me that they're getting a notice they've been banned from commenting. I have no idea why. Commenting on anon usually works, or you can create a free LJ account.