May 04, 2011 at 04:04 PM EDT

Grand Central Publishing announced this morning that Mario Puzo’s 1969 novel The Godfather, which inspired the classic film series, will be getting a prequel. The Family Corleone will be written by author Ed Falco, and it will be set in 1933 depression-era New York “before the Corleones rise to power,” according to a press release. It tells the story of how Vito Corleone “fought to survive in the brutal criminal underworld to become the influential and respected Don in The Godfather.”

Tony Puzo, Mario Puzo’s son and executor of the Puzo estate, says that The Family Corleone will be “cherished by all Godfather fans.”

The prequel is slated for publication in June 2012.

What do you think of authors extending a series after the creator has died? And what would you think of a prequel movie trilogy, a la Star Wars?

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