Last week I talked about an author whose character descriptions I admire. Today I'm going to continue the theme by spotlighting an author whose setting descriptions just blow me away. As a reader, I'm not really big on reading setting descriptions, but Holly Black does such an amazing job putting me right in the scene that her descriptions are a joy to read. Both these excerpts are from Chapter 1 of Tithe:
The air was heavy and stank of drying mussels and the crust of salt on the jetties. Waves tossed themselves against the shore, dragging grit and sand between their nails as they were slowly pulled back out to sea.
A few lines later:
She loved the serene brutality of the ocean, loved the electric power she felt with each breath of wet, briny air.
I can see the waves, feel the heavy air, smell the drying mussels, taste the briny air, and feel the grit and sand. All in three sentences that are poetic and effortless, not dragged down with the effort of trying to convey too much.
Do you have an author whose setting descriptions you particularly admire?