William Peter Blatty, also an excellent film director and sweet person
Dean Koontz (a convert and a good person and several of my friends love his work but I could take it or leave it)
Gene Wolfe (LOVE him!)
Walter M. Miller (another convert; I’m in excellent company!)
Although Eastern Catholic, one would fairly have to consider + Catherine Doherty (1896-1985), foundress of Madonna House and a current cause for canonization. She wrote several well recognized books, including a personal favorite, “Beginning Again” on the blessings of the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
Tolkien is likely my favorite author- not just for his writing which is good- but not as great, perhaps as many others, but his works have personally shaped my life. Though I love Tolkien and all about his works, I wouldn’t characterize his works as intimately tied to Catholicism as a Joyce or an O’Conner.
ringil, I too love Tolkien, but in my opinion, his works are quite tied to Catholicism. The themes of sacrifice, of carrying the cross (or the ring) up the hill, the Lembas* bread that replenishes the heroes on their journey, “more strengthening than any food by men,” the inner desire for the return of the King, the Lady Varda as an analog to Our Lady, the vanquishing of evil by the small and meek, and much more.
Louis de Wohl - “The Spear” and other novelizations of the lives of the saints
William E. Barrett - “Lilies of the Field” and “The Empty Shrine”
Paulo Coelho - yes, he’s Brazilian, but his works have been widely translated into English “The Alchemist”
And while perhaps not fitting everyone’s definition of “great”, many of Mary Higgins Clark’s romantic suspense novels feature devout Catholic characters, and James Patterson’s Det. Michael Bennett series does, also.