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Discussion Starter #1
Probably my two favorite authors are Roger Zelazny and Terry Pratchett. I'm wondering if any of you can recommend relatively new authors I should try who might appeal to me based on my affinity for those two authors.

I'm not looking for clones or copy-cats, but more the thematic elements as well as the effective characterizations and -- most especially -- the talent to use the English language in unexpected ways that make you think, "Wow! I never would have thought of saying it that way, but that's a perfect way to say it!" :)
 

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I would recommend Geoffrey Banks, here on KB, Jeff Hepple, also on KB who have a very interesting way with words.  Ed Patterson would also be interesting.  I don't know your authors, do know the names but if I have read anything don't remember it.  Oh yes, Michael Hicks is wonderful.  There are many others on this board that I absolutely have to have but these are some I personally would recommend to you.
 

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Have you read any Neil Gaiman? He does a mix of novels for adults and kids, as well as his graphic novels. I love his style and depth of writing.

Some of my favorites....

 

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If you love Terry Pratchett you'll adore Jasper Fforde. I looked for a long time to find someone who could come close, and Fforde does it. Pratchett seems to agree as Fforde is one of the five people he follows on Twitter. He has two basic sets of books. One is his Nursery Crime Division series which follows a hard nosed inspector named Jack Spratt as he solves nursery rhyme themed crimes. It's really a lot of fun how he mixes modern sensabilities with fairy tale imagery. It's set in an alternate world Britain where bears deal porridge like drugs and Punch and Judy run a marriage counseling business. I can't recommend these enough. They're wonderful.

The second series is his Thursday Next books. These are also set in an alternative present day London, but this time it's a world where authors are revered like we treat sports heroes and movie stars. Shakespeare is like a religion and Baconists go door to door with pamphlets trying to convert people. Original manuscripts are counterfeited and sold on the black market, and Thursday Next works in the Litera-tec division that works with these sorts of crimes. It's another wonderful blend of fantasy and the real world with some really smart use of situations and characters from classic literature. Again, I can't recommend these enough either.





And <gasp> you found Good Omens on Kindle!!!!! Downloaded that immediately. You have to read Good Omens and American Gods if you haven't.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
danfan said:
Have you read any Neil Gaiman? He does a mix of novels for adults and kids, as well as his graphic novels. I love his style and depth of writing....
Yes, I've read a few of his books, but generally found them just OK. He definitely writes well, but somehow he just doesn't "grab" me. Good Omens is, however, one of my all-time favorite books, but then of course it's coauthored with one of my all-time favorite authors. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Scheherazade said:
If you love Terry Pratchett you'll adore Jasper Fforde. I looked for a long time to find someone who could come close, and Fforde does it. He has two basic sets of books. One is his Nursery Crime Division series which follows a hard nosed inspector named Jack Spratt as he solves nursery rhyme themed crimes. It's really a lot of fun how he mixes modern sensabilities with fairy tale imagery. It's set in an alternate world Britain where bears deal porridge like drugs and Punch and Judy run a marriage counseling business. I can't recommend these enough. They're wonderful.

The second series is his Tuesday Next books. These are also set in an alternative present day London, but this time it's a world where authors are revered like we treat sports heroes and movie stars. Shakespeare is like a religion and Baconists go door to door with pamphlets trying to convert people. Original manuscripts are counterfeited and sold on the black market, and Tuesday Next works in the Litera-tec division that works with these sorts of crimes. Again, it's a wonderful blend of fantasy and the real world with some really smart use of situation and people from classic literature. Again, I can't recommend these enough either.
Thanks...sounds like something worth seeing if I can find some Kindle samples.
 

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Read the Tuesday Next books first. . . . .as I recall the 3rd or 4th one actually introduces Jack Spratt who is the character in the Nursery Crimes books.
 

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I put them in the order in which they were written. I recommend reading the Nursery Crime books first because they actually get mentioned a bit in the Thursday Next novels. They're almost all $9.99 unfortunately, but they're definitely worth the price.

Err... Ann and I just gave different adivce! That's odd then, because "The Fourth Bear" is most definitely referenced in "Lost in a Good Book". I admit to not having finished the Thursday Next series as I'm trying my best to savor them and make them last, so I'm not aware of the Jack Spratt reference in it. I just know I was really glad I had read the NCD books before finishing "Lost in a Good Book" or a fun twist would have been totally lost on me. I flew through Pratchett so I'm trying to sprinkle my reading with Fforde hence my slow going with the series.

And yeah, I said Tuesday Next at first but it's actually Thursday Next. I've just had Tuesday on the mind all day today for some reason... probably because it is Tuesday.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Ann in Arlington said:
Read the Tuesday Next books first. . . . .as I recall the 3rd or 4th one actually introduces Jack Spratt who is the character in the Nursery Crimes books.
Scheherazade said:
I put them in the order in which they were written. I recommend reading the Nursery Crime books first because they actually get mentioned a bit in the Thursday Next novels. They're almost all $9.99 unfortunately, but they're definitely worth the price.

Err... Ann and I just gave different adivce! That's odd then, because "The Fourth Bear" is most definitely referenced in "Lost in a Good Book". I admit to not having finished the Thursday Next series as I'm trying my best to savor them and make them last. I flew through Pratchett so I'm trying to sprinkle my reading with Fforde.
Heh...I've read Michael Moorcock's "Elric" series and "Corum" series, which overlap each other in reverse order (opposing time streams, I guess), so I should be able to cope either way. :)
 

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According to Fantastic Fiction, here's the order:


Thursday Next
1. The Eyre Affair (2001)
2. Lost in a Good Book (2002)
3. The Well of Lost Plots (2003)
4. Something Rotten (2004)
5. First Among Sequels (2007)

Nursery Crime
1. The Big Over Easy (2005)
2. The Fourth Bear (2006)


I notice the 'publication dates' on the Kindle editions are very different, but this is when the hardbacks first came out.

But, yeah, there is back-and-forth and it probably wouldn't make a difference either way.
 

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Very odd, but I agree... just read them and enjoy them!  I didn't really research when I started them so just kinda went with the first series I came across, though I did make sure I had the first book in that series.  So I started with The Big Over Easy, then read The Eyre Affair, then The Fourth Bear and so on.

I forgot to mention... he also plays with the format of the book which is something I love in Pratchett's books.  He makes use of footnotes, has a machine at one point that litters the text with punctuation and even breaks the fourth wall now and then.  He also has a tendency to bring up these things later subtly without dumbing it down for the reader which is another reason I enjoy Pratchett so much.  You can tell he was definitely inspired by him.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well, last night I read the sample for The Eyre Affair, and while it interested me enough to want to read more, it didn't grab me enough to want to spend $9.99 to do so. It will certainly go on my to-be-read list for consideration when either its price goes down or my budget goes up, but it does not look to be the next must-read author for me (i.e. the sort of author for whom I'd order the newest release in hardback the day it was released :) ).
 

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Try a sample of The Big Over Easy, too.  I tried to get a friend to start with The Eyre Affair and she couldn't get into it either!  Maybe it's just a bad one to start off on.  Worth a shot anyway ;)  But yeah, not everyone is for everyone else's tastes.  If you do find anyone else who fits the Pratchett bill be sure to post it.  I'm always looking for new books to read as well and he's my favorite contemporary author quite easily.
 

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Will do!

I find as I get older that I need more than a clever plot (which I think was often sufficient when I was younger). Mostly I need characters that are complex, believable, and -- most importantly -- make me care enough to find out what is going to happen to them. ("Care" does not necessarily mean that I want good things to happen to them, just that it's important for me to find out.) While Terry Pratchett probably first comes to mind for his fantasy plots and settings, I think what makes him so popular is his characters. I really, really want to find what's going to happen to Sam Vimes, Granny Weatherwax, or Rincewind. When I read Zelazny's "Amber" series, I very much empathize with Corwin and his interactions with his various siblings (and other relatives) amongst all the plotting, scheming, and swordplay. When you overlay that with each author's distinctively different way of using language to drive home his points (Pratchett in the tradition of the great satirists while Zelazny is almost poetic), you have a winning formula for me. And of course it helps that both those authors' underlying themes, world views, attitudes, or whatever seem to resonate well with me.

And so the hunt continues....
 

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I wish Alan Dean Foster's "Spellsinger" series was on Kindle.  I am re-reading the DTBs and I feel like, for me, they're exactly what you're describing.  And yeah... I can see where Fforde's characters can be a little flat.  It's more about the fun plot than character development, though there is -some- of that after you get a couple books in, especially with Thursday Next.  If you don't mind picking up a DTB and can find it in print, check out the "Spellsinger" books... the first of which is aptly named "Spellsinger".

Brian Jacques also has a line of fantasy novels that I feel might fit the bill, but again the first 14 books in the series are not on Kindle yet.
 

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I'm not familiar with your authors other than by name so this may not be a match but for $1.59 you can't go wrong and it's an EXCELLENT read from one of our authors. If you want something that will have you following the characters and practically yelling at the book to tell them what to do next this is it.

 

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Discussion Starter #20
LDB said:
I'm not familiar with your authors other than by name so this may not be a match but for $1.59 you can't go wrong and it's an EXCELLENT read from one of our authors. If you want something that will have you following the characters and practically yelling at the book to tell them what to do next this is it.

Coincidentally, I just ordered another title by Morrison as it was at the $1.00 price point, so we'll see... :)


PS: For those who are not familiar with Terry Pratchett, it looks like all of his "Discworld" books plus a number of others are available on Kindle, so there's no excuse. ;) Sadly, it appears that whoever is in control of Roger Zelazny's estate/copyrights has not yet seen fit to make anything available for Kindle. :( I highly recommend that you get yourself to the library or otherwise obtain a copy of the first Amber series (Nine Princes in Amber is the first book of five), Doorways in the Sand, or Lord of Light.
 
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