Just finished reading Battle Royale.
Takami blew me away with his storytelling skills, and lo and behold, when I read the little interview in the back (I highly recommend you read it, it's very interesting to peek into the writing process of this bloody mammoth) it turns out he was influenced by Stephen King and Robert B. Parker. I haven't read Parker, but I devoured King in my teens in Russian.
Every book I read is like a link in a chain. The author either suggests books by having the characters mention them, or you learn about his/her influences in the foreword or afterword. This is how today I learned today about Otsuichi (want to read his Zoo) and Hideyuki Kikuchi and his Vampire Hunter D series which were illustrated by Yoshitaka Amano who illustrated Neil Gaiman's Sandman series which brings me full circle to one of my other favorite authors, Gaiman. I have also learned about Saeko Himuro who, incidentally, wrote I Can Hear The Sea which was made into a film by Studio Ghibli which was founded by Miyazaki, one of my favorite animators of all time.
Talk about coincidences. Or maybe I'm simply finding my way into my very own bubble of art, I don't know.
I ONLY WISH I HAD MORE TIME TO READ, AND I WISH I READ FASTER.
There are so many books, so many books I want to get my hands on before I die.