I like to read. I have many “favorite” authors. Reading their work keeps me busy, but I try to keep open to authors I have not tried yet. Sometimes I get recommendations from family and friends, but I have begun to use the Internet for more recommendations. The literature map site is a new way for me to find authors I can expect to like. Type in an author’s name at the Web site and you get names of other authors. The other authors move away from the center. According to the site developer, the closer another author’s name is to the one you entered, the more you should like their work.
The closest, interrelated authors are the ones I have read and highly regarded: Jose Saramago, T.S. Eliot, and Italo Calvino. They are authors whose imaginative power never exhausts. They place their characters into ordinary situations that veer off to the imaginary realms. Irony the destiny of many of their works.
Although his works, including the most famous and creative The Master and Margarita, a sarcastic work of the Stalin period, were banned during his lifetime, Bulgakov is heavily influenced by Lemontov, Pelevin, Dovlatov, and Edward Albee, none of whom I have read.
Apropos of his being under-read and overlooked, L.P. Hartley doesn’t exist on this device.