When people ask me who my "favorite author" is, I almost always answer by naming Louise Erdrich.
Back in college, I received her novel Tracks as a gift from Fay, Jim, and Corey who were traveling in the upper Midwest. I loved the book, and I went back and read her previous novels, and just fell in love with the world of her stories. Often secondary or tertiary characters in one novel will become main characters of other novels, sometimes she goes back in time to visit their ancestors. Most of the novels are set in the same fictional universe: a town, a reservation, a set of families. Although you don't need to read all of her books to understand any one, I did enjoy the deeper knowledge and understanding that came with having read them all. Also, she just writes beautifully. I really love the whole package.
She was one of the few author's in my life who was an automatic buy--a new novel of hers came out and I bought it. No questions asked. Probably her favorite of my books was The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse. But then, for some reason---(Just kidding. I totally know why: because somebody was born and I stopped reading)---I've missed her last few novels. There's one I don't even *own*, The Master Butcher's Singing Club, which shocked the hell out of me until I realized it was published in 2003. That's the beginning of the Dark Years, when I stopped reading books, watching movies, etc.
At some point, I picked up The Plague of Doves, but I never got around to reading it. I'm looking forward to catching up with my favorite author. Along with this book, I also found a copy of her newest, Shadow Tag, at another going-out-of-business Borders books.
PS. You know I keep *nothing*, and yet here's Tracks, complete with inscription from Fay. How about that?!