PDA

View Full Version : LitGeeks: NYT Survey of best American Fiction of last 25 years.


NewChief
05-23-2006, 06:21 AM
Don't necessarily agree with all the picks, but it makes a good summer reading goal, I guess. One thing is certain, I've vastly underestimated Philp Roth, geeze.

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/21/books/fiction-25-years.html?_r=1&%20_r=1&oref=login&pagewanted=print

What Is the Best Work of American Fiction of the Last 25 Years?

By THE NEW YORK TIMES
Early this year, the Book Review's editor, Sam Tanenhaus, sent out a short letter to a couple of hundred prominent writers, critics, editors and other literary sages, asking them to please identify "the single best work of American fiction published in the last 25 years." [Read A. O. Scott's essay. See a list of the judges.] Following are the results.

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
(1995)

American Pastoral
Philip Roth
(1997)

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)

The Human Stain
Philip Roth
(2000)

The Known World
Edward P. Jones
(2003)


The Plot Against America
Philip Roth
(2004)

keg in kc
05-23-2006, 06:30 AM
I'm slightly embarrassed to admit that I've read not a single book on that list.

I'm somewhat less embarrassed to admit that I still have no interest in reading a single book on that list.

NewChief
05-23-2006, 07:26 AM
I'm slightly embarrassed to admit that I've read not a single book on that list.

I'm somewhat less embarrassed to admit that I still have no interest in reading a single book on that list.

I've only read eight of the entries (though the Border Trilogy is a trilogy, so that actually makes me have 10 works). Like I said, I'm obviously weak in Philip Roth as I haven't read a single one of his works.

nychief
05-23-2006, 08:15 AM
11 if you count a trilogy.... i hate "top lists" generally.

Brock
05-23-2006, 08:31 AM
Zero books by Tom Wolfe = BS

Not a single James Ellroy?

Sydd
05-23-2006, 09:36 AM
Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson should have made that list.

NewChief
05-23-2006, 10:09 AM
No David Foster Wallace is also a travesty.

Keep in mind the way the list was created, though. They asked for only the top novel of the last 25 years, they didn't ask for a listing of the top ten novels. That makes for some schewed results, I'd say.

Ebolapox
05-23-2006, 05:11 PM
I read entirely too much for my own good... and I've read exactly one book from that list (white noise)... the list looks like a list compiled by fans of said authors on the list, as there are several authors that have multiple books... which I think is a crock

NewChief
05-23-2006, 06:34 PM
I read entirely too much for my own good... and I've read exactly one book from that list (white noise)... the list looks like a list compiled by fans of said authors on the list, as there are several authors that have multiple books... which I think is a crock

Look at the methodology. Each person only got one vote which made for the screwy results, imo.