I am going on vacation soon and have tried to get a nice stock pile of books to read while I sit on the beach on Prince Edward Island.  There are the usual suspects that I gravitate towards  – Paulo Coelho, Anita Shreve, Jane Austen and Lisa See – but I decided that I need to break out of my literary comfort zone…a little.  So I started researching some author read-alikes.  I thought if I have interest in mixing it up a bit, others might be as well. 

I ran a report showing which books from our Baker and Taylor collection,  our special fiction and non-fiction collection, to see which books seem to be the most popular. I will be periodically posting a series of my findings,  as well as listings of other authors who either share a similar writing style or write  on similar subjects.  I have gathered my author read-a-like findings from one of my favorite UMA databases – NoveList Plus*.

Currently, our  most popular title (B&T collection) based on the number of times it has circulated is Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese.   We have two copies of this title available for check-out.

Cutting for Stone is the story of Marion and Shiva Stone [who] are twin brothers born of a secret union between a beautiful Indian nun and a brash British surgeon at a mission hospital in Addis Ababa. Orphaned by their mother’s death in childbirth and their father’s disappearance, bound together by a preternatural connection and a shared fascination with medicine, the twins come of age as Ethiopia hovers on the brink of revolution. Yet it will be love, not politics – their passion for the same woman – that will tear them apart and force Marion, fresh out of medical school, to flee his homeland. He makes his way to America, finding refuge in his work as an intern at an underfunded, overcrowded New York City hospital. When the past catches up to him – nearly destroying him – Marion must entrust his life to the two men he thought he trusted least in the world: the surgeon father who abandoned him and the brother who betrayed him. (Publisher summary)

If you like Abraham Verghese, you may like  Alistair MacLeod as both write moving family sagas for adult readers involving brothers. You may also like Danielle Ofri who has written non-fiction about the medical profession and the challenges that go along with it.  Below are some examples of MacLeod’s and Ofri’s books:

  • No Great Mischief (MacLeod)After being orphaned, Alexander MacDonald comes to Cape Breton Island yearning for family connections and finds himself working in the mines with his wild older brother and caring for another brother, who is dying (Publisher summary).
  • Island: The Complete Stories (MacLeod)-  Sixteen sparse, beautiful stories set against the backdrop of Cape Breton Island explore family relationships, tradition, legend, and superstition (publisher summary). 

Also by Abraham Verghese:

My Own Country: A Doctor’s Story

A young doctor of eastern Tennessee describes the town’s first introduction to the AIDS virus, which preceded a disturbing epidemic and introduced the doctor to many unique people (publisher summary).