I like fantasy that makes me laugh (Robert Rankin, Pratchett, Jasper Fforde style stuff) and the Terry Brooks prequels to Shannara (but don't like the Shanara stuff).
Some sci fi but nothing where I need to understand too much science. Phillip K Dick = good but Greg Egan goes over my head.
My major passion is crime novels - more modern ones such as Ian Rankin and Kathy Reichs, but mostly stuff such as Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle. Though have read all of these our library has. Have tried the Alexander McCall Smith ones but couldn't get on with them.
I would like to read the Paul Temple series but can't remember the author. Also the woman that wrote that one with the policeman stuck in bed who 'solved' the princes in the tower mystery.
I also want to read some more classic books but don't like 'romance' or 'twee' stuff. I can't stand Dickens and have read all the Jane Austen I can stand (ok was forced to at school). Also didn't like 'The woman in white'.
If I can get away with books with no hint of love or romance then that is my ideal . Chick lit is my idea of hell.
There was also a book serialised on radio that I would like to get hold of about a woman who was brought up at home (I think early 20th century) then went to finishing school where she met a girl who became an actress. She was in love with someone from her village who went to war. Never married. Her sister caused a scandal by getting pregnant and eventually died after trying to kill her self (her new inlaws were bastards). Eventually heroine's love asks her to marry him but she decides she'd prefer to stay single and be a spinster.
I also like books on cookery (Elizabeth David style).
If anyone can suggest anything I would be very grateful
crime novel wise- tess gerritsen! fab author! she has loads of books but a bunch of them follow 2 characters (maura isles and jane rizzolli) theyre fab! will find you a list of the order to red them if ya interested?
I've read a couple of Mary Higgins-Clark ("Two Little Girls in Blue" and "No place like home") which are easy but good reads, crime/mystery-ish. You might like John Grisham, a lot of his books are legal thrillers, rather than crime novels (haven't been too impressed with his books which weren't legal thrillers tho). Classics - I'd try Thomas Hardy's "Jude the Obscure"or "the Mayor of Casterbridge"; Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird"
I was going to suggest Christopher Brookmyre - as a crime writer but also because in your first post you mentioned that you like fantasy with humour.
Other crime writers - have you tried Mark Billingham or Peter Robinson? Rick Riordan has recently been very successful as a children's writer but he's written a wonderful series of PI crime novels - I don't know if they're published here but I've been able to buy the ones I didn't already have through Amazon - first in the series is Big Red Tequila. This year I've also devoured the Martin Beck series of 60s/70s Swedish books about a police detective - the authors were Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo. Only trouble is there are only 10 and Wahloo died soon after the last was published, so there are won't be any more.
another book i read recently was called Creepers by David Morrell.
the blurb says - one chilly october night in New Jersey, a group of creepers enters the Paragon, a hotel designed and built by a reclusive millionaire. the once magnificent structure is now a decrepit,boarded-up edifice marked for demolition and has a disturbing history. soon after the group enters it becomes clear that this decying seven storey building holds more secrets than they could have imagined in their worst nightmares. danger, terror and death wait for them in a place ravaged by time and redolent of evil.
the author also wrote the 'rambo' books but dont let that put you off truly a gripping story IMO
I've just read my first Kate Atkinson novel 'When will there be good news', a crime thriller but so much more! Would highly recommend it. I am also a big fan of Elizabeth George (she writes the Inspector Lynley novels, much better than the TV series).