The Book of Forgotten Authors by Christopher Fowlers

Absence doesn’t make the heart grow fonder.

– Opening sentence

If you consider yourself a book lover, then you NEED this book. It’s a very well put-together collection of authors who used to be popular, but have drifted into obscurity over the years.

Christopher Fowler, the author behind this book, spent 10 years putting this collection together;

“The forgotten authors wrote the popular paperbacks that shaped our imaginations and became touchstones in out lives. They were influential¬†and often hugely successful, were adapted for television and theatre, but still vanished from bookshelves. What happened to these writers and their novels?

The project of unearthing them became a ten-year labour of love that made me new friends around the world, as the loved ones of writers got in touch and offered their stories. Soon I had over 450 authors in my files, and what had started out as a small weekly newspaper article became an obsession. The final version, ‘The Book of Forgotten Authors’, boiled down to just 99 writers, but I could equally have taken the same number from those I’d cut, and told similar odd tales.”

– Christopher Fowler, April 2017

Each chapter discusses a new author and their brief backstory, providing just the right amount of backstory information to pique your interest, without getting tedious.

The 99 authors are punctuated by 12 short essays about faded once-favourites, including the now-vanished novels Walt Disney brought to the screen, as well as the rivals of Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie who did not stand the test of time.

It’s the perfect gift for any bookworm, and can be kept on the coffee/bedside table for browsing and light reading. I ended up adding a large number of previously unknown books and authors to my wish list, vowing to do my bit to keep these stories alive.

In all honesty, there isn’t much more to say about this book. It’s a must-have for anyone who consider themselves to be (or wants to be) “well-read”, and the work of a dedicated collector who is passionate about remembering the notable authors from our past.

4 Stars (4 / 5)

The works of even the most obscure authors are still out there somewhere, and thanks to the dedication of publishers, collectors, sellers and readers, they are once more being found and enjoyed again.

– Final sentence

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