Yes we’ve all heard the adage that youth is fleeting but these 9 authors have thrown that out the window by writing some incredible books. Oh and did we mention that each of these books were written when the authors were not yet 30 years old? Settle down with these books and marvel for a second at the accomplishments of these young people!
1) The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton
Not only is Catton under 30 but she is also the winner of the 2013 Man Booker Prize AND Governor General’s Award for Fiction! This fast rising star has written a deeply layered novel about love, lust, murder and greed. The Luminaries is set during the heady days of the New Zealand Gold Rush.
2) Red Rising by Pierce Brown
Brown’s bio states that “he fancied the idea of continuing his studies at Hogwarts. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a magical bone in his body.” While he might not have continued at Hogwarts, Brown has a rather magical talent for creating a dystopian trilogy that’s a cross between Ender’s Game, The Game of Thrones and The Hunger Games.
3) The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obreht
Set in a Balkan country mending from war, Natalia is compelled to unravel the mysterious circumstances surrounding her grandfather’s death. Obreht’s novel ended the year on just about every “Best Of” list there was!
4) The Encyclopedia of Early Earth by Isabel Greenberg
This charming graphic novel is about the explorations of a young man as he paddles from his home in the North Pole to the South Pole. There he meets his true love but like some of the most famous literary lovers, their romance is ill-fated. Early Earth’s unusual polarity means the lovers can never touch.
5) The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon
What were you doing at 20? Well if you’re Samantha Shannon, you’ve published Book One in your Bone Season series and are working on Book Two! With angels, clairvoyants and battles between good and evil, we can’t wait to see where Shannon takes us!
6) A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra
Marra’s brilliant debut novel is popping up everywhere and for good reason. This haunting story brings to life an abandoned hospital where a tough-minded doctor harbors a hunted young girl.
7) Swamplandia! by Karen Russell
Thirteen-year-old Ava Bigtree has lived her entire life at Swamplandia!, her family’s island home and gator-wrestling theme park located in the Florida Everglades. When Ava’s mother becomes ill, the family is plunged into chaos. Her father withdraws, her sister falls in love with a spooky character and her older brother defects to a rival park. As Ava sets out on a mission through the magical swamps to save them all, we are drawn into an incredible debut novel.
8) Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan
For the Kellehers, Maine is a place where their children run in packs, showers are taken outdoors and old Irish songs are sung. As three generations of women arrive a the Kellehers’ beach house, each woman brings her own hopes and fears. As you are drawn into this family saga, keep in mind that this is J. Courtney Sullivan’s second novel that she’s written before the age of 30!
9) Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult and Samantha van Leer
Yes, I know that only one of the authors is under 30 but it still counts! Jodi Picoult, who is famous for her adult bestselling novels, decided to co-write her first YA novel with her daughter, Samantha van Leer. I love that! In Between the Lines, bookworm Delilah loves the sweet fairy tale she has found written at the library. To her it’s just a story — words on the page. One day Delilah finds out that there’s more to the book then meets the eye. Prince Charming is a real person and Delilah has caught his eye. Can it work out?
What other young author has caught your eye? Who else should be on this list?