In this series, I ask various publishing professionals (including authors, bloggers, editors, agents etc.) to recommend 2-3 authors or books they feel haven’t received the recognition they deserve.

Today’s recommendations are by Richard Kadrey. He is the author of dozens of stories, plus ten novels, including Sandman Slim, Kill the Dead, Aloha from Hell, Devil Said Bang, Kill City Blues, Metrophage and Butcher Bird. His Wired magazine cover story, Carbon Copy, was made into one of the worst movies of 2001. It starred Bridget Fonda. Sorry, Bridget.

He has been immortalized as an action figure. “Kadray [sic]: The Invincible Wizard” was a villain in an episode of the Blackstar animated TV series.

Kadrey created and wrote the Vertigo comics mini-series ACCELERATE, which was illustrated by the Pander Brothers. He plans to do more comic work in the near future.

He has written and spoken about art, culture and technology for Wired, The San Francisco Chronicle, Discovery Online, The Site, SXSW and Wired For Sex on the G4 cable network.

Richard has no qualifications for anything he does.
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[Do you have an idea for a future Mind Meld? Let us know!]

We all have authors whose work, for whatever reason, inspire us more than the rest, whose books standout and can always be counted on to entertain, and even to comfort. These are the ones that we’ll instantly forgive a misstep or two (maybe even three), because we love them that much, and will buy, and read, anything that they write. So, we asked our panel…

Q: What authors are on your autoread list, and why?

Here’s what they said…

Jaime Lee Moyer
Jaime Lee Moyer lives in San Antonio with Marshall Payne, two cats, three guitars and a growing collection of books and music. Her first novel, DELIA’S SHADOW, will be published by TOR Books on September 17, 2013. Two other books in the series, A BARRICADE IN HELL, and AGAINST A BRIGHTENING SKY, will be published in 2014 and 2015. Her novels are represented by Tamar Rydzinski of the Laura Dail Literary Agency. She writes a lot, she reads as much as she can.

The list has changed over the years as I’ve changed and new writers have come onto the scene. There are so many good books out there, so many new worlds and viewpoints to explore. Potentially this list could get very long, but I’ll limit myself.

  • Elizabeth Bear is an autoread for me. Her worldbuilding is stunning, her use of language is amazing, and her characters suck me right into whatever story she’s telling. The women in Bear’s books are strong and autonomous, and they play central roles in the narrative.
  • Robin McKinley, for the beauty of her storytelling, and how a seemingly gentle story can kick me in the gut. The highest praise I can give a book is that it made me feel something: joy, sorrow, fear. McKinley’s books have made me cry more times than I can count. I love that.
  • Rae Carson, a new writer on the YA scene. Excellent worldbuilding in a non-European setting, and a main character that grows into the role fate has handed her. Carson’s use of language is superb, and just because her protag is young doesn’t mean she gets off easily. Can’t wait to see more from her.
  • Ian Tregillis, another new writer who pulls no punches. First rate storytelling, and characters that made me rethink my definitions of evil and what makes someone a monster. I can’t recommend his books highly enough.

There are more, but those are the top four on my current list.

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Check out the the cover art and synopsis of the upcoming Sandman Slim novel A Sandman Slim Novel by Richard Kadrey.

Here’s the synopsis:
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BOOK REVIEW: Devil Said Bang by Richard Kadrey

REVIEW SUMMARY: Fun heavy metal urban fantasy, if a little convoluted.

MY RATING:

BRIEF SYNOPSIS: After saving existence once again, James Stark finds himself stranded in Hell. This time things are different though. James is in charge but that doesn’t make life any easier or less dangerous.

MY REVIEW
PROS: 
Lots of cool ideas and interesting approaches to overdone tropes.
CONS: 
Almost too many ideas and a convoluted plot.
BOTTOM LINE:
Fans of Sandman Slim will be pleased and urban fantasy readers in search of a unique series may have a friend in Kadrey.

After the events of Aloha From Hell, demon hunter James Stark (aka Sandman Slim) finds himself stranded in Pandemonium. The Devil decided it was time to abandon ship and left him in charge. Stark is given a crash course in Hellion politics and court intrigue, rebuilding Hell and dodging assassination attempts to boot. Things aren’t much better back in L.A., with a serial killer ghost causing havoc and a secret cabal plotting to rewrite reality. It looks like Stark has some killing to do.

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