One of the more interesting ideas James M has followed over at Grognardia is his Pulp Fantasy Library which concentrates on literature that influenced Gygax and others at the beginning and similar literature.
What is in interesting is the pulp fantasy revival of the late 60s and 70s was part of a much larger fantasy literature revival. While Gygax’s tastes may not have drifted heavily into the realms of non-pulp fantasy the tastes of many who took up D&D were decided non-pulp fantasy. I think taking a look at the fantasy literature in broad print from 1974 (when D&D left home for school as it were) to 1984 (when Dragonlance ushered in the Silver Age of D&D).
With that in mind I’m adding a new irregular set of posts (given my reliability in posting I’m loathe to call it a series) called Silver Age Appendix N. It will focus on those fantasy and science fantasy books and authors who had a broad presence in the late 70s and early 80s. These authors not only shaped how people in the second and especially third generation of D&D players approached the game they influenced fantasy literature at large. Some grognards like to claim that gaming fantasy novels of the late 80s irrevocably changed fantasy literature. They fail to appreciate how these authors directly and indirectly influenced influenced the path of AD&D II and fantasy literature at least into the 90s and even to today. To the degree that gaming literature such as Dragonlance changed the fantasy literature market it did so in the context of authors like Terry Brooks and David Eddings.
We’ll be starting off later this week with what I consider the perfect 80s quest fantasy series (for both good and ill), The Belgariad.