Best American Novel of last 25 years...  

redmustang91 58M  
8981 posts
5/12/2006 9:35 am

Last Read:
5/13/2006 11:08 am

Best American Novel of last 25 years...


the NY Times asked many respected writers and sages for their picks. Toni Morrison's Beloved won. I read it years ago and thought it good but not overwhelming. I attach the list, and realize I have not read most of them. I loved and read the Updike Rabbit Angstrom four novels. I used to read Phil Roth and enjoyed Portnoy's Complaint.

I loved Frank McCourt's autobio trilogy Angel's Ashes, etc. which read like novels, but he is Irish transplanted to America so probably disqualified on two grounds.

I think my favorite novels of modern American writing are Salinger's Catcher in the Rye, Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, and Truman Capote's In Cold Blood. I also love Mailer's Naked and the Dead, Margaret Mitchell's Gone with the Wind, and Heller's Catch 22. Another most favorite is Beryl Markham's West with the Night.

I like autobios that are written like Dicken's novels. They feel more passionate and real, yet contain a generous dose of fiction I am sure...

What Is the Best Work of American Fiction of the Last 25 Years? By THE NEW YORK TIMES
Book Review's editor, Sam Tanenhaus, sent out a short letter to a couple of hundred prominent writers, critics, editors asking them to please identify "the single best work of American fiction published in the last 25 years."
THE WINNER:
Beloved
Toni Morrison
(1987)
THE RUNNERS-UP:
Underworld
Don DeLillo
(1997)
Blood Meridian
Cormac McCarthy
(1985)
Rabbit Angstrom: The Four Novels
John Updike
'Rabbit at Rest'
(1990 )
'Rabbit Is Rich'
(1981)
'Rabbit Redux'
(1971)
'Rabbit, Run'
(1960 )
American Pastoral
Philip Roth
(1997)
THE FOLLOWING BOOKS ALSO RECEIVED MULTIPLE VOTES:
A Confederacy of Dunces
John Kennedy Toole
(1980 )
Housekeeping
Marilynne Robinson
(1980 )
Winter's Tale
Mark Helprin
(1983)
White Noise
Don DeLillo
(1985)
The Counterlife
Philip Roth
(1986)
Libra
Don DeLillo
(1988 )
Where I'm Calling From
Raymond Carver
(1988 )
The Things They Carried
Tim O'Brien
(1990 )
Mating
Norman Rush
(1991)
Jesus' Son
Denis Johnson
(1992)
Operation Shylock
Philip Roth
(1993)
Independence Day
Richard Ford
(1995)
Sabbath's Theater
Philip Roth
(1995)
Border Trilogy
Cormac McCarthy
(1999)
'Cities of the Plain'
(1998 )
'The Crossing'
(1994)
'All the Pretty Horses'
(1992)
The Human Stain
Philip Roth
(2000 )
The Known World
Edward P. Jones
(2003)
The Plot Against America
Philip Roth
(2004)

TickleMeBBW 37F

5/12/2006 10:41 am

I've tried so often to read Catcher In The Rye and To Kill a Mockingbird but I never seem to be able to keep going with it.

Tess Gerritsen is my fave author of late.

Kisses and licks, Tickles


wickedeasy 68F  
31320 posts
5/12/2006 10:47 am

where is stegner, amis the younger, hoffman, etc.?

i had read most of these and while i loved Beloved, best in 25 years?

no way

To Kill a Mockingbird misses the 25 year deadline doesn't it?

You cannot conceive the many without the one.


GossipJunkie 41F

5/12/2006 11:04 am

Beloved is one of the few books that I would also recommend watching the movie. A number of things in the book were difficult for me to visualize until I saw them on film. Neither medium takes away from the other; instead, they enhance each other.

GossipJunkie
"Dance like nobody's watching"


two41and14two 56M/50F

5/12/2006 11:14 am

cider house rules by john irving is a personal favorite. i reread it every 5 or 6 yrs or so.
guess i oughta reread beloved because, for me, it never lived up to the hype.


rm_wellread38 58F

5/12/2006 11:28 am

Those are indeed some remarkable reads. I have to agree with you about Morrison's Beloved. I've read other works that I thought were higher quality. Phillip Roth is one of my all time favorite authors as is John Irving. I'd place Irving's Cider House Rules towards the top of my list for best of the best fiction from the past 25 years. I'd also include Michael Cumminghams' The Hours and The Color Purple by Alice Walker. If we could include non-American born authors, I'd have to include John Conroy's The Prince of Tides.

I don't read much mass market fiction so I wouldn't be able to comment on some of those unless it was an author that I admired and read like Phillip Roth or Amy Tan.

Have you ever gone back and read some of those books like To Kill A Mockingbird or The Catcher In The Rye years after your first read through (ie for jr high/high school or college)? It's interesting how a few years of life can change how the novel "speaks" to you, isn't it?

Great post!


rm_skyeone2 65M/46F
7186 posts
5/13/2006 5:46 am

I like the science fiction of Arthur Charles Clarke, both Odyssey series along with Childhoods End & The Songs Of Distant Earth, as well as the writer of the Dune series Frank Herbert, other authors I like are John Saul and James Herbert. Saul wrote the book Darkness, that is a nice spooky little story, and J. Herbert wrote Fog, another nice science fiction story with just the right amount of spookiness to it as well. Just to name a few of my favs at any rate!

Thanks for visiting my blog.

Skye


Blessed Be


redmustang91 58M  
8929 posts
5/13/2006 11:08 am

I have reread Cather in the Rye and to Kill a Mockingbird and still find them amazing. Salinger captures the dialog and thought process of an adolescent better than anyone in my opinion. the movie of To Kill a Mockingbird got the AFI #1 vote as best movie of the last 100 years. The book is truly a classic. I love Philip roth and John Updike. I don't care about the 25 year deadline. I like what I like.


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