Guest Column: Three Books You Need To Read By Kari Rueslåtten

Kari RueslåttenKari Rueslåtten

Kari Rueslåtten

In our undying efforts to bring you engaging columns you won’t find anywhere else, we’ve reached out to the metal world seeking submissions for a new subject: Three amazing books you have to pick up and devour.

Seeing as you read this blog everyday, we went out on a limb and assumed you’d maybe want to get some decent book suggestions from some of your favorite bands, too. So today, we continue this series on rad, must-reads with an entry by Kari Rueslåtten, whose metal roots are undeniable — she was a founding member of the influential doom metal band The 3rd and the Mortal; she just issued a solo album, available here.

“Haugtussa” by Arne Garborg
“Haugtussa” is a selection of poems released for the first time in 1895. Arne Garborg here tells stories about a young girl (Haugtussa) and her struggle between good and evil forces in life. This is a very popular and historically important piece of work in Norwegian history, and has inspired Norwegian composers such as Edvard Grieg in his work “The Hall of the Mountain King” among others.

When I was studying classical training of my voice as a very young girl I sang many of Grieg’s opuses about Haugtussa and was deeply inspired by this in my early years with The 3rd and the Mortal.

“Canto General” by Pablo Neruda
I have grown really fond of reading poetry and I read many poems in the process of writing lyrics and songs for my new album Time to Tell. I just adore the way great poems can say so much, make you feel so many different emotions just from a few careful words and sentences.

To find other writers than those I would normally read, I asked my fans on my Facebook page what poets they would recommend — and they had such great suggestions! Many recommended “Canto General” by Pablo Neruda. The song “Paint the Rainbow grey” on Time to Tell is inspired by his work.

“The Secret History” by Donna Tartt
Donna Tartt is an American writer and “The Secret History” is her first novel. The book is about a group of students who start on a heavy journey where moral grows thinner and despair grows thicker as the story develops.

As the description says, “they discover how hard it can be to truly live and how easy it is to kill.” I was really inspired by reading “The Secret History” when I lived in London for some years during the making of the album Pilot. There was something about the underlying darkness and despair in this book that I was drawn into.

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