One to Watch Wednesday: authonomy members edition

In our first newsletter of 2012 we announced that February was to be the month of ‘undiscovered reads’. A month dedicated to seeking out the best books, both on and off of authonomy, and spreading the word. Scott and I have been reading, blogging and tweeting about some of our picks; in-house we’ve held book-club style meetings (to which I brought some pretty epic biscuits); and now it’s time to announce the book most voted for by the authonomy community as being the best undiscovered read on the site. Thank you to every one who sent in their suggestion – you’ve certainly helped me build up my watch list.

Given that we’re making the winning book this week’s One to Watch, we couldn’t include any previous One to Watch titles, but special commendations go to Saltus by Colin Smith, A Noble Profession by Greg Levin, and The Cheech Room by Liz Hoban, which were all heavily recommended.

This week’s One to Watch, as suggested by you guys:

‘After the Ruin’ by HM Goodchild

'After the Ruin' stood out as a particularly popular title among the authonomy writing and reading community (and yes, we checked, votes for an author's own book, or by non-authonomy members were not included) and though it was not necessary, Harriet's book also got some great comments with each recommendation. Here is one of my favourites:

['After the Ruin'] is not snazzy or smart, or pretentious but.... It's just good.

Authonomy is like a Sunday painter’s exhibition; a lot of it is embarrassing, some of it is technically proficient but uninteresting, and just occasionally there are uncut diamonds. ‘After the Ruin’ is an uncut diamond. If you don't pick it up you'll regret it.

… and I can see what they mean. ‘After the Ruin‘ is a book about stories, and the opening chapter is written in a classic storytelling fashion – potentially overdone in places, but with a little editing, it could be a cracking prologue. We then meet Assiolo - an enigmatic and tricksy character, who is immediately endearing  - as he arrives at the gates of Felluria.

The narrative is littered with rich names, images and a strong sense that the mythological and historical background to the story has been thoroughly thought out. It’s difficult to see where the narrative is going, but it’s engaging enough that you want to find out. 

I don’t think the pitch really does the novel justice, so I’m urging everyone to go, have a read, and see for yourself. 


Many thanks to all who made recommendations, and congratulations to all who recommended the winning book. I'm on the hunt for something I can recommend to return the favour - in the mean time, we'll email shortly to inquire about postal details.


  1. I love what Harriet evokes for me with her writing, though it's nameless, like most best things :)

  2. Yay, well deserved. I think I was one of the first to put this on the shelf, and I haven't removed it.

  3. I love After the Ruin. It was on my shelf for a good while and lives on my watchlist for a return.

  4. Is an "epic biscuit" a BhagaRyvita?

  5. wish someone would spread the word of my epic. even to pass constructive remarks about it!

  6. Your Blog Is Really Helps For My Search & I Really Like It.. I Understand What You’re Trying To Say In This Post & I Like Your Opinion.Thanks A Lot..:)
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