List of contemporary epistolary novels  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

An epistolary novel tells its story through correspondence, letters, telegrams, and the like. Here are some examples of contemporary epistolary novels:

Author Title of Work Year Format Other Comments
Adiga, Aravind The White Tiger 2008 Letters Written as a series of letters to "His Excellency Wen Jiabao, The Premier's Office, Beijing"
Ahern, Cecilia Where Rainbows End 2006 E-mail, letters, and notes
Avi Nothing But the Truth 1991 Dialogue transcripts, telephone conversations, letters, telegrams, diary entries and memos
Bâ, Mariama Une si longue lettre (So Long a Letter) 1980 Considered a classical statement of the female condition in Africa
Bantock, Nick Griffin and Sabine: An Extraordinary Correspondence 1991 A series of letters and postcards
Baratier, David In It What's in It
Barth, John LETTERS 1979 Letters from seven writers, some addressed to the "author", plus one will codicil
Bauer, Wolfgang The Feverhead 1967 Letters of two friends that cross all the time, ending in a Mise en abyme
Beaumont, Matt e 2000 E-mail
Berger, John From A to X: A Story in Letters 2008 Letters Letters from A'ida to her imprisoned insurgent lover, Xavier.
Bull, Emma and Steven Brust Freedom and Necessity 1997 Letters and diary entries
Cary, Kate Bloodline 2005 Letters, diary entries, newspaper articles, etc A sequel to Dracula and thus mimicks the writing format of Bram Stoker's classic novel.
Chbosky, Stephen The Perks of Being a Wallflower 1999 Letters to a friend who is never mentioned.
Cleary, Beverly Dear Mr. Henshaw Letters and diary entries
Comeau, Joey Overqualified 2009 Novel told in job application letters.
Coupland, Douglas Microserfs 1995 Diary entries maintained on a PowerBook
The Gum Thief 2007 Journal entries, letters, e-mails, writing exercises and one work memo
Crumey, Andrew Mr Mee 2001
Dunn, Mark Ella Minnow Pea 2001
Ibid: A Life 2004
For Ilford Dyson, I Hope You Find This [1] 2006-? Blog Shows how the blog format has now created a sub-genre of epistolary novel. This blog is an on-going work of fiction, where the main character addresses his blog to a friend of his late father.
Echenique, Alfredo Bryce Tarzan's Tonsillitis 2001 First person narrative with letters
Frayn, Michael The Trick of It 1989
Glattauer, Daniel de:Daniel Glattauer Gut gegen Nordwind (German) 2006 Email E-mail correspondence between a man and a woman who fall in love with each other although they never meet and do not know what the other looks like
Hanff, Helene 84 Charing Cross Road' 1970 Letters Book, later made into a stage play and film, about the twenty-year correspondence between Hanff and Frank Doel, chief buyer of Marks & Co, antiquarian booksellers located at the eponymous address in London, England.
Imlay, Gilbert The Emigrants' 1793 Letters Letters between Gilbert Imlay and various contemporaries, contrasting the utopia of America with the degrading political and

economic situation of Europe, with a love story and several other side plots.

Hermann, Iselin C. Priority 1998, 2000 Letters Letters between a young woman and an artist she admires.
Johnson, Kij The Fox Woman Extracts from diaries
Kaufman, Bel Up the Down Staircase 1965 memos, notes dropped in the trash can, student papers, lesson plans, notes from students, and letters to a friend from college, A classic mid-60's portrayal of an urban high school that is a microcosm of the New York City school system that was also made into a film
Kellaway, Lucy Who Moved My Blackberry? 2005 Email Novelisation of the author's Financial Times column featuring Martin Lukes. Most emails are from Lukes himself, so the reader deduces the content of mails he is replying to.
Keyes, Daniel Flowers for Algernon 1966 Journal An expanded version of Keyes' 1959 short story of the same name. This book is the journal of mentally-retarded janitor Charlie Gordon, who temporarily becomes a super-genius during a medical experiment. Through changes in grammar and style, Charlie's mental rise and fall are presented.
King, Stephen Carrie 1976 Traditional narrative fused with journal articles, interviews, AP ticker reports, and court transcripts.
The Plant 2000 The story is told through various letters, memos and etceteras. Unfinished.
Kluger, Steve Last Days of Summer 1998 Letters, postcards, progress reports, and newspaper clippings. A series of letters during the 1940s between a twelve year old and a rookie baseball player.
Almost Like Being in Love 2004 The story is told primarily through diary entries, newspaper clippings, office documents, letters, e-mails, menus, post-it notes and checklists, with only minor reliance on narrative.
Kostova, Elizabeth The Historian 2005 Letters Letters, excerpts from books and academic literature, and the narrator's reconstructions of stories told to her by her father.
Kuipers, Alice Life on the Refrigerator Door 2007 Notes A series of notes left on the kitchen fridge by a single mother and her 15-year old daughter over the course of nine months.
Lardner, Ring You Know Me Al 1916 Letters Lardner's first successful book. Written by "Jack Keefe," a bush league baseball player, to a friend back home.
Llewellyn, David Eleven (novel) 2006 Email Emails sent on a single day, between the hours of 9am and 5pm.
Lucas, Tim The Book of Renfield 2005 Diary entries, dialogue transcriptions A book about the character of Renfield from Dracula and thus mimics the format of the novel. Excerpts from Stoker's novel are integrated into the plot.
Martel, Yann "Manners of Dying" (short story) Letter The book is presented as a set of different variants of an official letter that a warden writes to a mother of an executed prisoner named Kevin Barlow. In each letter both the exact details of Kevin's execution and the warden's reaction vary slightly.
Monteilhet, Hubert Les Mantes Religieuses (The Praying Mantises) 1960 Made into a BBC television film in 1982
Le Retour des Cendres (Return From the Ashes) 1962 Made into a film starring Maximilian Schell in 1965
Nabokov, Vladimir Ada
Nieves, Luis López Voltaire's Heart (Spanish) 2005 E-mail
Oz, Amos Black Box 1986
Parks, Tim Home Thoughts 1999
Payne, C.D. Youth in Revolt Journal entries
Priest, Christopher The Prestige 1995 Letters and diary entries
Randall, Bob The Fan 1977 Letters and telegrams
Rice, Luane and Joseph Monninger The Letters 2008 Letters
Rushton, Rosie and Nina Schindler P.S. He's Mine! 2001 E-mail
Salinger, J.D. Short stories about the Glass family Letters
Sayers, Dorothy L. and Robert Eustace The Documents in the Case 1930 Letters from a variety of characters and a few police statements Some of the letters contradict each other, requiring the reader to decide which characters are more trustworthy.
Shaffer, Mary Ann and Annie Barrows The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society 2008 Letters from a variety of characters Letters between an author/journalist and residents of Guernsey, survivors of the German occupation during World War II.
Shriver, Lionel We Need to Talk About Kevin 2003 Letters This book consists of letters from Eva, the mother of the boy in the title, to her husband.
Snicket, Lemony The Beatrice Letters 2006 Letters and Notes The book is obviously meant to be humorous while at the same time explaining some of the mysteries surrounding the Baudelaires. The letters are between Lemony and Beatrice. Several of the letters (mostly from Lemony Snicket) tend to be very long and rambling; one goes on about his love for Beatrice for four pages. As in The Unauthorized Autobiography pictures and letters allow readers to guess about the author's life.
Smith, Lee Fair and Tender Ladies Letters
Steadman, Carl "Two Solitudes" 1995 E-mail
Stevermer, Caroline and Patricia Wrede Sorcery and Cecelia or The Enchanted Chocolate Pot 1988 Letters "Being the Correspondence of Two Young Ladies of Quality Regarding Various Magical Scandals in London and the Country" (Set in a Regency England where magic works)
The Grand Tour 2004 Diary extracts and testimony "Being a Revelation of Matters of High Confidentiality and Greatest Importance, Including Extracts from the Intimate Diary of a Noblewoman and the Sworn Testimony of a Lady of Quality" (Immediate sequel to the work above)
The Mislaid Magician or Ten Years After 2006 Letters "Being the Private Correspondence Between Two Prominent Families Regarding a Scandal Touching the Highest Levels of Government and the Security of the Realm" (Takes place ten years after the previous two books)
Tanizaki, Jun'ichirō Kagi 1956 Diary entries Made into the film Odd Obsession (1960) starring Machiko Kyō and Tatsuya Nakadai and La Chiave in 1983 by Tinto Brass, starring Frank Finlay and Stefania Sandrelli.
Townsend, Sue Adrian Mole series Diary entries
Walker, Alice The Color Purple 1983 Letters and diary entries
Webster, Jean Daddy-Long-Legs 1912 Letters following introductory narrative An anonymous benefactor sponsors the college education of an orphan girl, Jerusha (Judy) Abbott, with the provision she write him monthly.
Dear Enemy 1915 Letters Sallie McBride, the college room-mate of Judy Abbott of "Daddy-Long-Legs", is appointed Superintendent of the John Grier Home, where Judy was brought up. She writes about her doings to Judy, Judy's husband (now the president of the orphanage), and the Scotsman Robin (Sandy) McRae (the "Dear Enemy" of the title) who is the orphanage's doctor.
Wittig, Rob Blue Company 2001 E-mail





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