With all the information overload we are accustomed to in our daily lives, it’s surprising that news about good books written by debut authors don’t come our way more often. To address this problem, we bring you this list of five brilliant books written by first-time authors whose work deserve your encouragement.  

The Girl From Everywhere, Heidi Heilig

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Seems like titles with  the word 'Girl’ are all the rage these days (we’re looking at you Gone Girl and The Girl On The Train). Heidi Heilig’s debut book, The Girl From Everywhere, is a nod to her travels across the world as she takes readers on a journey through space and time with protagonist, Nix. So many time-travel books are just bloated sci-fi hypotheses, so it’s a relief to see a book that breaks that mould. A time-travelling pirate ship with a daughter and father leaping through time, and a delicious love story thrown in? This is the sort of book we need more of!  

Anatomy of a Soldier, Harry Parker

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Harry Parker is an ex-soldier who lost both his legs in Afghanistan after stepping on a bomb. He went on to write an extremely interesting book called Anatomy of a Soldier in which inanimate objects like a bike, a backpack, dog tags, a surgeon’s saw and a bag of fertilizer are given voices. The book follows Tom who has his legs amputated after – you guessed it – stepping on a bomb. What happens next is told by these objects in the book and you will be left in awe of this brave new author.  

Elizabeth is Missing, Emma Healey

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If you’ve been aching for a good mystery book then consider this to be your final stop. Emma Healey’s debut book Elizabeth is Missing features Maud, an old woman suffering from dementia, going back to find her best friend and sister who has disappeared without a trace. Launched last year, reviewers have praised Healey’s depiction of dementia even as the book waits for fans to acknowledge its brilliance.  

The Star-Touched Queen, Roshani Chokshi

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Roshani Chokshi grew up in Georgia and tried her hand at journalism in her university days before sitting down to write The Star-Touched Queen. Don’t fall for the title – Maya, the book’s protagonist, is cursed by the stars. Growing up like the poor women of her raja-father’s harem, Maya is packed off into a marriage of convenience by her father for political gains. Suddenly, as a new queen and wife, Maya reaches out to her new kingdom only to find a mystery connecting her to other-worldly realms that she must unravel.  

Save Me, Kurt Cobain, Jenny Manzer

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Jenny Manzer’s book has been making all the right noises ever since it released early this year. The book focuses on Nico Cavan whose mother abandoned her when she was four-years-old. Now 15, a chance encounter with a man on a ferry who she believes is Kurt Cobain, who she also suspects is her father, triggers the main story of the engrossing book. Nico’s sarcastic teenage angst, fueled by a story that keeps you guessing until the end, is made all the more special when you realise the healing power of music that forms the theme of this superb debut.


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