Friday, February 18, 2011
Is that why they brought in Robert DeNiro?
Some works set such a high standard that sequels often come with unreasonable expectations. Take Godfather: can you imagine the pressure Coppola had when he began Godfather II?
The success of Hunger Games made Catching Fire and Mockingjay tough standards to live up to. (For the record, I thought both of them were done superbly.) Harper Lee stopped after To Kill a Mockingbird. Star Wars...never mind.
[The only redeeming factor]
Writers jump through hoop after hoop after hoop to get published. It's easy to think that once there is a contract, things will get easier. (Here I pause for my published friends to interject and tell me it ain't so.)
I believe them. When you write a book that is loved, you feel your readers' expectations. Authors who keep besting their efforts are amazing. I am reading Tana French's third book, Faithful Place, right now.
A friend loaned me The Likeness and I read it without being aware of the buzz it had garnered. It was a wonderful reading experience. I then picked up In The Woods and enjoyed it just as much. When I found out last year that she had come up with a third book, I was thrilled but apprehensive. Can she live up to the first two books or will I have to watch Sofia Coppola act?
I finally picked it up this week and I am two thirds of the way through and I have to say I am relieved to find the writing just as impressive and the story just as captivating. Actually, I'll go even further to say I think this is the best of the three.
Do you do that? Worried about your expectations being too high for a beloved author or filmmaker? Do you have favorite sequels?