Blogcritics.org had a nice article on why you should be reading debut authors. One thing I remember about debut books is that these are novels that authors usually labored over, for years. This sometimes explains the sophomore slump whereby the second book just isn’t as good as the first. The first two debut titles that spring to mind aren’t even romance. The first is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (her first and only published novel) and the second is Donna Tartt’s The Secret History.
In romance, you also have a unique situation. Writers like Nalini Singh who publish in category are considered a “debut” author for the purposes of their first mass market. Her “debut” book would then be Slave to Sensation. I think this would probably be true for ebook authors moving into the print publishing market for the first time. Probably my favorite romance debut (that is until the comments jog my memory) is Manhunting by Jennifer Crusie.
For the purposes of this post, I ask that you give a shout out to your favorite debut novels and if they’ve been previously published, either in category or ebook, identify that. For fun, I’ll give away the two address books from the Harlequin vintage stationary collection to two random commenters.