Sydney Morning Herald - December 29, 2012
That's what you might deduce from the dramatic debuts of two Australian authors and some hopefuls overseas. The local stars are Graeme Simsion, whose ''classic screwball romance'' The Rosie Project (Text, March) has been sold into more than 30 countries; and Hannah Kent, who scored a seven-figure offer for Burial Rites (Picador, May), a novel about the last woman to be beheaded, in Iceland in 1830.
Meanwhile, in the wake of Justin Cronin's vampires, monsters stalk the earth in Ben Percy's Red Moon (Hodder & Stoughton, May) and Max Brooks's World War Z (Bloomsbury, April), a cult novel first released in 2006 and given new zombie life by the film tie-in edition.
And if you're looking for the next J.K. Rowling, Bloomsbury claims to have found her: Samantha Shannon, signed on for six dystopian novels with film rights sold while she was still an Oxford undergraduate. The first book, The Bone Season, is out in September.
Ever wondered what happened to that poor terrorised psychic boy in The Shining? After 36 years, Stephen King has a sequel, Doctor Sleep (Hodder & Stoughton, November). Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert has her first novel for 12 years, The Signature of All Things (Bloomsbury, October). And in Australia, Blanche d'Alpuget has her first novel out for 20 years: The Young Lion (HarperCollins, September) is about intrigue and passion in the royal court of 12th-century France.
Indeed, there's a strong trend towards novels based on the lives of real people. Australian novelist Steven Carroll has the second book in his T.S. Eliot series, A World of Other People (Fourth Estate, May). Kate Manning's My Notorious Life by Madame X (Bloomsbury, July) is about a scandalous New York abortionist. Kate Forsyth's Wild Girl (Random House, April) is a story of the girl who loved Wilhelm Grimm. Therese Anne Fowler's Z (Two Roads, March) is a novel about Zelda Fitzgerald. There are Australian novels about Miles Franklin (Maggie MacKellar's Miles, Random House, September) and the bushranger Ben Hall (Trevor Shearston's The Game, Allen & Unwin, August).
Overseas highlights include Margaret Atwood's final novel in the Oryx and Crake trilogy, MaddAddam (Bloomsbury, September); a third novel from The Kite Runner author Khaled Hosseini, and The Mountains Echoed (Bloomsbury, May); Lionel Shriver's Big Brother (Fourth Estate, May); Kate Atkinson's Life After Life (Random House, May); and a new Julian Barnes work (Random House, no date yet).
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/books/read-ahead-for-2013-20121228-2bya4.html#ixzz2GYoHAFfE