Contemporary British fiction?
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Cloud Atlas would be a good place to start, then Ghostwritten, then Black Swan Green.
Let me know what you think.
I just started the Ghastly Ordeal of Timothy Cavendish in Cloud Atlas. I'm hoping it doesn't turn out to be one of those books that's so hyped by everyone that I end up disappointed. It's not bad so far, but I keep expecting to find literary brilliance on the next page and it's not there yet.
As I mentioned, I have not read much recent British fiction that I might suggest in return. However, still within the umbrella of British fiction, I might wholeheartedly recommend one older British novel that I stumbled on by chance in the late 1990s and which proved a revelation - a book that ranks among the best I have read. It is A Glastonbury Romance by John Cowper Powys. I happened to read an article about it in the Daily Telegraph by Margaret Drabble who chose it as her "Book of the Century", calling it a "masterpiece" and its author "a genius". Bizarrely, the book was out of print in the UK, but still published in the States. The book is over 1000 pages long and I would not read it for the plot so much as to revel in the amazingly evocative descriptions, particularly of nature. Thanks again, and happy reading!
Curious you mention Powys. I just (yesterday) finished his 800 page Owen Glendower, which is a fine historical novel, heavy on the novel part when it comes to developing characters. As you mentioned about A Glastonbury Romance, his evocative descriptions of place, combined with captivating character development kept me 'on task' with this tome. Glendower's story is really a good one, especially when expanded by Powys. The most difficult thing is keeping track of the many characters and their (often multiple) Welsh names.
When I'm ready to take on another 1,000 pages of Powys, I'll track down a copy of 'Glastonbury'