Ok so right now the top 5 recommendations would be:
1. The Terror - Simmons
2. Mistborn - Sanderson
3. Ready Player One - Cline
4. Star Maker - Stapledon
5. The Name of the Wind - Rothfuss
Good suggestions all around.
If you liked Gaiman's
other works (I saw that you read them), The Ocean at the End of the Lane
is fantastic. Gaiman is, in my opinion, the best writer of fantastical realism/magical realism, currently in existence and is one of the best writers, period, of the last half century.
I would also highly, HIGHLY recommend anything by Michael Chabon
, but particularly The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
, which won him the Pulitzer. He is very much literary fiction, rather than genre fiction, but his stories are multi-layered, complex, and beautiful. Kavalier and Clay chronicles two jews in the comic book industry at the start of the industry's first great emergence. I would also recommend Wonder Boys
, which coincidentally is a solid movie. It is the story of a creative writing professor who wrote a fantastic first novel and has been tinkering with his second for nigh on 10 years.
Also, David Benioff
, another product of UC-Irvine's MFA program, is fantastic. Read City of Thieves
, the story of a young boy in Russia during WWII who is imprisoned for being out past curfew and is assigned the strange task of retrieving supplies for a Russian colonel.
As far as Christopher Moore
is concerned, his book Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
is one of the funniest, most poignant tales about growing up, friendship, and religion I can think of. I literally laughed out loud at many parts of the book and recommend it to anyone who is not staunchly Christian.