THE BOOK BEHIND THE BOOK
There’s this working theory that you’re only a memorable writer if your success is repeated. If you only have one oeuvre that persisted through time and a million other drafts that no one bothered to read, critics will say it is the ‘monkeys on typewriters’ situation. We’re here to make sure that some of our favorite writers will never end up in this category. Because their brilliance was a habit, not an occurrence.
Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien – Everyone knows the Middle Earth. Mainly because of the movies, but also because the books were a terrific read and a great metaphor for our world. The book you always say you’re going to get to, the Silmarillion, is the prequel to the series and depicts the creation of the universe that we all know and cherish.
New Spring by Robert Jordan – Fantasy addicts are in love with the 14-book-1kpage-per-book, yet somehow too short series The Wheel of Time. However, New Spring is the prequel to the series. We highly recommend it especially if you’re familiar with the universe. It’s impossible for this author not to forever change your outlook on what a memorable fantasy series should do for you. Jordan – 1, Tolkien – 0.
A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami – You know the Norwegian Wood and the Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, but Murakami is much more than that. The book is the third of ‘The Rat’ Trilogy, it is Surreal and it embeds American literature motifs and elements with Japanese contexts in an unprecedented narrative vertigo.
Skagboys by Irvine Welsh – Trainspotting is a classic, both as a book and as a movie. It is one of those British productions that is not a gangster book at all, but everyone associates it with the genre. It is THAT well written. And it has a prequel, where Mark Renton and his friends start out as impressive young men with promise. Choose prequels.