Top Picks: Christine Sneed

Whether you're looking for a collection of short stories or a novel, Christine Sneed has something for you. Her writing includes a variety of subjects—from families to celebrities—and covers themes of relationship dynamics and self-discovery.

Sneed, who teaches creative writing at Northwestern University, received the 21st Century Award from Chicago Public Library Foundation in 2013. She wrote about her experience at Libertyville High School in our Guest Blog: Christine Sneed On Chicago: The City That Gives.

If you want to get a taste for her writing style, The Virginity of Famous Men is a good place to start. In Sneed's most recent collection of short stories, characters lose and find their ways in settings across the country. These perceptive stories touch on everything from Hollywood scouts to mother-and-son relationships.

If you're looking to dive a little deeper, Sneed's debut novel, Little Known Facts, gives you the opportunity to do so. Set in Hollywood, the novel takes a look at what is not all glitter and gold in a celebrity-obsessed world. Actor Renn Ivins may appear to have it all, but a closer look through his personal relationships dulls the shine.

Sneed's award-winning first collection of short stories, Portraits of A Few of the People I've Made Cry, includes 10 stories focusing on the relationships between men and women and the confusion and questions that go along with less-than-ideal relationships.

If you're looking for readalike stories, try author Lorrie Moore. Her collection of stories Birds of America brings to light the everyday experiences of human relationships in an engaging way.