"Ray Davies is an extraordinary storyteller; his lyrics have the compression and power of poetry," Niffenegger says. "The song I imagined playing in 'The Time Traveler's Wife' was 'You Really Got Me' -- I was looking for a group that would make the reader think '1964,' and the Kinks debuted that year. My second book, 'Her Fearful Symmetry,' is set in London. Whenever I am crossing Waterloo Bridge, my favorite Kinks song, 'Waterloo Sunset,' plays in my mind."
His song craft also exudes a cinematic scope that's influenced directors, including Wes Anderson, who has prominently featured Kinks' songs in films "Rushmore" and "The Darjeeling Limited." "Ray Davies' music is one of the greatest inspirations in any medium for my own work -- as much as any book or movie, ever," says Anderson.
A Kinks reunion, meanwhile, remains elusive. The group's 66-year-old frontman has been famously estranged for years from his younger brother, Kinks' guitarist Dave Davies (who hasn't performed since suffering a stroke in 2004). "I would be happy to do a reunion if the intention was to do some new music and not just revisit the past," says the elder Davies, who is busy regardless. This year, he will serve as curator for London's prestigious Meltdown Festival (previous curators include David Bowie, Massive Attack and Richard Thompson).