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Old 07-02-2012, 11:51 AM   #1
elemenoP
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One-hit Wonders

Name a writer who wrote an INCREDIBLE book... and also wrote some or many more mediocre-to-bad ones.

I would say Sara Gruen. I loved Water for Elephants: the plot, the characters, and the writing style. Then I read Ape House and I couldn't believe it was by the same author. Terrible, terrible writing. I have not read her earlier works but I see they get some bad reviews.

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Old 07-02-2012, 01:41 PM   #2
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The definitive one-hit wonder is surely Harper Lee. She wrote a phenomenally successful book, selling tens of millions of copies in dozens of languages. And then wrote nothing else.

Mike
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Old 07-02-2012, 01:56 PM   #3
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The definitive one-hit wonder is surely Harper Lee. She wrote a phenomenally successful book, selling tens of millions of copies in dozens of languages. And then wrote nothing else.

Mike
I can see your Harper Lee and raise you Margaret Mitchell. But I think the OP wants authors who wrote one good book and a load o' carp otherwise.
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Old 07-02-2012, 02:45 PM   #4
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Mash by Richard Hooker, a pseudonym for Dr. H. Richard Hornberger.
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Old 07-02-2012, 03:59 PM   #5
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Donna Tartt. The Secret History is great. The Little Friend is completely hopeless.
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Old 07-02-2012, 04:14 PM   #6
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Moby Dick by Herman Melville.

I took a course on Melville in college. I enjoyed the books, but none of them were particularly good except Moby Dick. Of course, there are some who say that that one wasn't good either, but that's for another discussion.
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Old 07-02-2012, 04:48 PM   #7
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Colleen McCullough, maybe? Loved The Thorn Birds, but could barely get through any of her other books around that time. I don't know what her more recent work is like, though.
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Old 07-02-2012, 04:51 PM   #8
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Colleen McCullough, maybe? Loved The Thorn Birds, but could barely get through any of her other books around that time. I don't know what her more recent work is like, though.
Her Masters of Rome series is pretty popular.
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Old 07-02-2012, 04:54 PM   #9
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Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger?
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Old 07-02-2012, 05:09 PM   #10
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in this great future
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I can see your Harper Lee and raise you Margaret Mitchell...
And I can see your Margaret Mitchell and raise you Emily Brontë.
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Old 07-02-2012, 10:38 PM   #11
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The Bible by God
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Old 07-02-2012, 11:00 PM   #12
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Harriet Beecher Stowe. In her followup to Uncle Tom's Cabin, titled Dred: A Tale of the Great Dismal Swamp, Stowe is careful to make sure every black character is supremely dignified. But they are dull as well. At least, that's how I remember it from when I read both books as a teenager (or maybe even younger). I do recall being impressed that the library's copy of Dred, if not an 1856 first edition, was close to it. Meaning, among other things, that not a whole lot of people read Dred.

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The Bible by God
I'm afraid to ask what the mediocre to bad follow-ups are.

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Old 07-03-2012, 02:27 AM   #13
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The Bible by God
he really needs to write a sequel to that. there have been a few spin-offs here and there but too many people are trying to retcon through their own fan networks lately. there are still some big questions that need answering.
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Old 07-03-2012, 06:42 AM   #14
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I would say JRRR Tolkien. He did great with The Hobbit, but then followed it up with a mind numbingly dull trilogy, and his other stuff is even more obtuse.
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Old 07-03-2012, 07:05 AM   #15
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The Bible by God
The 10 Commandments.
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