I just learned that Ursula K. Le Guin died yesterday. It occurs to me, given how young the people who read this blog tend to be, that you may not know her. That would be a shame.
My years teaching middle school also leads me to a suspicion, that she may have passed into that limbo of forced reading. If a teacher makes you read it, it must be dull, right?
I have no power to tell you what to read, but I can make two suggestions.
Ursula Le Guin was the greatest fantasy writer in the history of fantasy. No exceptions.
A Wizard of Earthsea is her masterpiece.
Of all the writers who moved me, inspired me, and taught me how to write by example, Le Guin is the one I most would have loved to bump into at a convention just to say hello, and thank you. That it didn’t happen, is one of my regrets.