Who Would You Add to this List of the Top Ten British and Irish Novelists?


The Times Literary Supplement has put together a list of the top ten British and Irish novelists working today, as decided by leading critics and writers. It is heralding these authors as ‘the new Elizabethans’. Such lists are always controversial and up for debate. Who would you add?

The full list, in order of nominations, is:

  1. Ali Smith
  2. Hilary Mantel
  3. Zadie Smith
  4. Kazuo Ishiguro
  5. Eimear McBride
  6. Colm Tóibín
  7. Nicola Barker
  8. Alan Hollinghurst
  9. Anne Enright
  10. Sebastian Barry
  11. Jon McGregor
  12. David Szalay
  13. Kevin Barry
  14. Deborah Levy
  15. Tom McCarthy / Sally Rooney
  16. Kamila Shamsie
  17. Claire-Louise Bennett / Rachel Cusk / Gwendoline Riley / Sarah Waters

Compilations like these always conjure up the challenge of being ‘too’ much of something or the other: too male, too female, too white, too middle-class, too focused on the ‘literary’. So have your say. What’s wrong with this list? Who should be on there, but isn’t?

Join the chat in the comments below, or use the hashtag #MondayMusing on Twitter or Facebook.

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2 responses to “Who Would You Add to this List of the Top Ten British and Irish Novelists?

    • Good call! It would be interesting to see how many poets (and dramatists, essayists etc.) would make it into a list of the Top 10 British and Irish writers in general. As it stands, the novel seems to be the literary genre most commonly associated with ‘being a writer’.

      Liked by 1 person

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