This week, we’ve talked about classic books we should have read but didn’t, and books our Regency heroes would have read. (Advance apologies for no pictures; Blogger not so nice this morning).

Today I’d like to talk about books that no-one thinks everyone should read, except you. Yes, your Buried Treasure books, books that in your opinion are shockingly, shamefully overlooked in the canon of Great Literature.

I asked my Spouse which book he’d recommend, and after berating me for asking such a hard question, I answered for him, and he grunted a slight affirmative. It’s John HawkesWhistlejacket, which takes place in contemporary times and in flashback to when 18th century painter George Stubbs painted a portrait of a horse named Whistlejacket. It’s dark, intense, dangerously sexual, intricate writing that is not easy to read, but it is very, very compelling.

If posed the same question, I might answer Charles Willeford‘s Cockfighter. It’s a first person narrative by a mute cockfighter (and the story behind his muteness is amazing!), and again, it is incredibly written and powerfully compelling. Willeford is mildly famous for his Hoke Moseley series (Miami Blues, which was made into a movie), but his darker noir stuff is not as celebrated. If I could cheat, I’d also recommend his Burnt Orange Heresy, about art collectors in Florida.

In romance, I’d cite Kate Moore‘s Sweet Bargain, a traditional Regency with as much sexual tension as the most erotic of eroticas.

So what obscure book, romance or otherwise, would you recommend? And why?