Who Writes Like Me?

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I’ve addressed this topic informally on my blog, but in the last few days, I’ve received four nearly identical emails from new readers, so I think it’s time to address the topic formally. Each reader spoke of discovering me with The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes, and each went on to read Before the Storm. A couple have worked their way through all of my books in their local libraries. Now, as they await my next book, they want to find an author who writes like me and they want to know who I’d suggest.

I’m never sure how to answer that question, since I really don’t know who writes like me. I’d say the relationship element in my books is similar to the same element in books by Barbara Delinsky, Mary Alice Monroe, Emilie Richards and Luanne Rice. I’d say the hard questions being addressed in some of my stories are similar to those addressed in Jodi Picoult’s books. Then you have to throw some supsense and/or mystery into the mix. Who do you end up with? I really don’t know.

So I’m hoping that you, my current readers, will help my new readers. I suggested they check out the blog this week for the answer to the question, ”Who should I read while waiting for Diane’s next book?” Who do you suggest?

Comments

  1. There are a few new authors I’d compare–Kristy Kiernan (Matters of Faith, Catching Genius); Judy Merrill Larson (All the Numbers), Katrina Kittle (The Kindness of Strangers), Carleen Brice (Orange Mint and Honey), Therese Fowler (Souvenir). Sara Gruen’s books before Water for Elephants (Riding Lessons, Flying Changes).
    As far as some other established ones, perhaps Jacquelyn Mitchard, Chris Bohjalian (yes, a boy!), Kristin Hannah (have only read one of her books, but it struck me as similar), Patricia Gaffney. On a more literary scale, Joyce Carol Oates.
    While each has a unique voice, all typically deal with families in crisis, usually spurred by some tragic event, present or past, and usually use several points of view.
    And … hopefully one day soon, we can add ME to the list!! :-D

  2. That’s a very hard question Diane because I don’t feel anyone writes like you. I think I understand what your new readers are going thru right now because your novels are so phenomenal and unique and they want to continue reading similar books that connect them so deeply with characters, emotions and the beautiful sense of place. In addition to the authors you just mentioned I would add ANNE RIVERS SIDDONS to the list…she writes beautifully and usually has an element of surprise that is completely unexpected!…favorites of mine were OUTER BANKS, COLONY, ISLANDS, PEACHTREE ROAD. Another author I enjoy is KRISTIN HANNAH & I’ve heard her latest FIREFLY LANE is wonderful. NANCY THAYER is a wonderful author & my fav of hers was BELONGING which takes place on Nantucket Island!…another Nantucket Island author is ELIN HILDERBRAND and my 2 favorites were THE BLUE BISTRO and NANTUCKET NIGHTS.
    These are authors who are wonderful to read in-between Diane books but believe me, Diane is very, very special and you won’t find anyone like her…(-:
    P.S. I read all kinds of different literature including mysteries, adventure, biographies and even paranormal so if anyone wants suggestions on other types of reading just let me know!

  3. It is a difficult question because I have not read anyone who is quite like our Diane.
    I can see a comparison to a few of Jodi Picoult’s books. I have only read one each by Jacquelyn Mitchard and Chris Bohjalian but those are good suggestions, Julie.
    Margo, I’m now reading Outer Banks…not too far into it. It’s my first Rivers Siddons book, and I am liking it. And I’ve been eying one of Hilderbrand’s books recently; I think will read it now.

  4. Denise, which Hilderbrand book are you looking at?

  5. Margo, can’t remember the title right now. But it seems like it was about a group of good girlfriends. It was on Borders’ ‘buy one, get one half-off table’ last month. I looked at some of her other books in the section, too, and they looked like something I would like. “Girfriends” books always seem to sell well. Lol

  6. Mena O Neill says:

    Hi new readers, welcome to the wonderful world of Diane’s books. I first discovered Diane with ‘Keeper of the light’ and loved it so much I trawled bookshops to find her other books. This was before I knew the internet or online shopping was possible.LOl. Hey, it’s not that long ago.
    Anyway, living in a small seaside town in Southern Ireland, I’m afraid her books weren’t easy to find, but I did find them eventually,trust me, every one! And believe me, there is no writer in my book- if you’ll excuse the pun, even close to Diane Chamberlain. I love her,I want to be her. LOL.
    I am planning a trip to the outer banks north carolina next summer, all because of her wonderful imagery.
    So, ok, sorry, I rant on a bit, writers I have enjoyed in the same vein, Susan Lewis. I picked up her book ‘Missing’ a month ago and finished it in two nights! I found another one in a little book shop in Kenmare Co Kerry, last week, ‘A french Affair’ and I’m sparing it as i read, I want it to last, so much.
    I agree with everything Margo said about why we all want to hang on to Diane’s characters, she gets us so envolved, we’re there. it’s all happening to us too.
    I enjoyed several Jodie Picoult’s, but they are more, I’m floundering for the right word, serious, I think. Not as escapist, as Diane’s because the issues are, demand more attention, but do I read for that? to have to feel so sorry for poeple? no, I love Diane’s books because there’s always a way out, a happy ending. I think Diane is more romantic than Jodie, no offense to Jodie, of course.
    Anyway, I’m off to Amazon to buy a few of those writer’s Diane recommended, I haven’t come accross those names before. Or I’ll let ye know what corner of Ireland i happen to see them in.
    So, happy reading people. let me know if ye discover any new ones.

  7. I agree with Diane’s list and Margo–some of my favorites…although like Margo-I read other genres–Christian Fiction, thrillers, mysteries…memoirs, etc. However, I think the closest writer to Diane is Barbara Delinsky…there is a moral to the story…plain and simple-enjoyment with that moral…I read so many authors that it would take forever to list…Margo got me onto Hilderbrand-thank goodness…and as much as I love all of these authors-and I do…I reread Diane’s books-all that I have-yearly-faithfully…and I learn something new each time…One day, I will list the ones I have-if there is one I do not-I will be determined to find that one.

  8. Mena–I am one day going to visit Ireland…I was fortunate enough to go to England in 2006 and 2008 (on grants) to study Shakespeare…my other dreams are France and Ireland…Would love to know more about your area…Diane’s books there, etc…How great to know our author is famous there too…

  9. Oh! Oh! I don’t know if anyone ELSE is getting good ideas of other writers to read, but I sure am. I can’t wait to try some of these writers, especially from Julie’s list, many of whom are new to me (I loved Fowler’s SOUVENIR, by the way. She lives near me and she’s as lovely as her book). Margo, you’re right about Siddons. She should have been on my list.
    I’m actually in the Outer Banks as I type. John is co-teaching one of the Barefoot Contessa Photography Workshops, and it’s my opportunity to curl up on the daybed in our room at the inn and work. And I almost hate to tell y’all this, but I’m spending this trip playing with yet another book idea. I can’t help myself! It came to me during a mini-nap yesterday and I just have to see where it leads. I’ll settle on one idea next week. And once my publisher and I agree on the story, I’ll give you some hints about it.
    Thanks to all of you who are sharing your book ideas with my readers.

  10. It’s so wonderful to hear how Diane’s books reach all over the world such as Mena in Ireland!…like Brenda, I would love to visit…have been to England and Scotland but Ireland is on my list someday. Brenda, like you I re-read all Diane’s books while waiting on her next…I take my fav book down from my ‘Diane Shelf’ every year and re-read KEEPER OF THE LIGHT and always get something new out of it.
    Diane, I’m so glad you & John were able to make it to the Outer Banks and thrilled another new idea came to you!…what better place to be inspired than by the sea…maybe this book will take place by the ocean (I hope, I hope). (-:

  11. Mena, I really like several of your Irish authors…Cathy Kelly, Anna McPartlin and Cecelia Ahern. Cathy Kelly’s “Past Secrets” sort of reminds me of a “Diane” book.
    Diane, it sounds like you have caught the creativity bug. Lol Have fun!

  12. Mena O Neill says:

    Hi Brenda, it’s great you’re considering visiting Ireland in the future. I’m in Kinsale Co Cork, there are several websites on Kinsale if you’re curious. And of course, if I can answer any questions about your trip please feel free to ask. I love France too, though my favourite is Portugal, I have a holiday apt in the Algarve and try to get there as often as I can. Ireland is green but wet! We need a bit of sun every now and then.LOL.
    Hi Margo, ‘keeper of the light is my absolute favourite too. I just loved Annie and I was facinated by the skill of the stained glass. I can’t wait for this new book your cooking up on the banks, Diane.
    Hi Denise, yeah, we’re blessed with good writer’s here in the emerald Isle. Anna Mcpartlin is one I might read, she’s relatively new. I like Marion Keyes-rachel’s holiday was my fav and I just bought ‘The Gift’ by Ceciela Ahern for my sister for xmas and had to have a sneaky read first,LOL, I was trying not to make the pages look used.LOL.
    I’ve only ever read one Cathy Kelly. Woman to Woman. it was ok.
    Maybe I’ll get hung for this – but I find a lot of these Irish ‘chick lit’ writers all use stories that are the same. what I think of as ‘Fluffy’ stuff.
    The issues in their plots seem to be- deserted wife -new hair style- drunken one night stand and volla, new boyfriend- lots of shopping and happy ever after, NO THANKS. I’m afraid I don’t care about these characters at all. It’s too parochial, every day stuff. Ceciala has a fresh eye and an unusual approach and while I enjoy her stuff and take my hat off to her that she actually gets her butt on the chair and writes a book, I am looking forward to reading her stuff in say, 10 yrs time, when it might have more maturity. I think she will only get better with age.
    Nora Roberts is someone I admire also. She can really write good characters.
    Two very good writers, currently writing for Harlequin Mills & Boon who will, I think, in a matter of time, go mainstream and be well worth watching, is Trish Whylie and Abby Green. Trish and Abby have style.

  13. I like Cathy Kelly and Marian Keys-of course, in one grad class a couple of years ago-we did IRISH authors-some so great…great…some dark…Patrick M. ??? was a dark one…one woman wrote several good ones-esp. a trilogy…darn it…I gave those books to a student…can’t remember the names-and of course, JAMES JOYCE…Love the short story, “ARABY”…
    Welcome to the Blog, our Irish LADY…

  14. Mena, I don’t know if Ahern’s “The Gift” is available here yet. I’ll keep an eye out for it. Her book titles tend to change for America.
    I like how she tries different things. I thought “If You Could See Me Now” was very different and not something I would usually enjoy but fun and kind of magical (it might have a different title there). By the way, is her father still your prime minister? Lol
    I read four or five of Cathy Kelly’s. Of all of them, I liked Past Secrets and Best of Friends the best.
    I agree about the ‘fluff.’ I don’t care for that either.

  15. Angie Pinkard says:

    If you like Diane and would love a Christian Fiction novel that is similar to her style, with twists, turns, and romance, I would suggest Deborah Raney. She is an awesomer writer, as well. Diane, you are definitely my favorite “secular”(??) writer.

  16. I am SO glad you started this blog Diane! I am a HUGE fan of your books and you are the one that rekindled my interest in reading. It’s been SO long since I have found a book that grabs my attention, pulls me in – one that I can’t put down! After reading a few of your books I eagerly read the next one until I worked my way through all of your books. That left me with panic – “Oh no! What will I read now????” Unfortunately others pale in comparison. I want to keep my avid interest in reading but I just can’t seem to find any authors that interest me – you have set the bar too high! :) In response, I will say that I have found that Jodi Picoult and Kristin Hannah are both good authors and have a similar style to yours. You are still hands down the BEST author ever though!

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