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Read Catherine Kellogg's explanation, which includes helpful icons to let you know if the author is a character and if the plot is self-contradicting. Then the usual: bold if you've read it, italic if you started it, struck through if you hated it.

Kathy Acker's "In Memorium to Identity"
Donald Antrim's "The Hundred Brothers"
Margaret Atwood's "The Blind Assassin"
Paul Auster's New York Trilogy
Nicholson Baker's "The Mezzanine"
J.G. Ballard's "The Atrocity Exhibition"
John Barth's "Giles Goat-Boy"
Donald Barthelme's "60 Stories"
John Berger's "G"
Thomas Bernhard's "The Loser"
Roberto Bolaño's "2666"
Jorge Luis Borges' "Labyrinths"
William S. Burroughs' "Naked Lunch"
Robert Burton's "Anatomy of Melancholy"
Italo Calvino's "If on a Winter's Night a Traveler"
Julio Cortazar's "Hopscotch"
Robert Coover's "The Universal Baseball Association, Henry J. Waugh, Proprietor"
Stanley Crawford's "Log of the S.S. Mrs. Unguentine"
Mark Danielewski's "House of Leaves"
Don Delillo's "Great Jones Street"
Philip K. Dick's "The Man in the High Castle"
E.L. Doctorow's "City of God"
Geoff Dyer's "Out of Sheer Rage: Wrestling With D. H. Lawrence"
Umberto Eco's "The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana"
Dave Eggers' "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius"
Steve Erickson's "Tours of the Black Clock"
Percival Everett's "I Am Not Sidney Poitier"
William Faulkner's "Absalom! Absalom!"
Jonathan Safran Foer's "Everything Is Illuminated"
William Gaddis' "JR"
William Gass' "The Tunnel"
John Hawkes' "The Lime Twig"
Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter"
Aleksandar Hemon's "The Lazarus Project"
Michael Herr's "Dispatches"
Shelley Jackson's "Skin"
Franz Kafka's "Metamorphosis"
Milan Kundera's "The Book of Laughter and Forgetting"
Jonathan Lethem's "Motherless Brooklyn"
Ben Marcus' "Notable American Women"
David Markson's "Wittgenstein's Mistress"
Tom McCarthy's "Remainder"
Joseph McElroy's "Women and Men"
Steven Millhauser's "Edwin Mullhouse"
Haruki Murakami's "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle"
Vladimir Nabokov's "Pale Fire"
Flann O'Brien's "At Swim-Two-Birds"
Tim O'Brien's "The Things They Carried"
Harvey Pekar's "American Splendor"
Thomas Pynchon's "Gravity's Rainbow"
Philip Roth's "The Counterlife"
W.G. Sebald's "The Rings of Saturn"
William Shakespeare's "Hamlet"
Gilbert Sorrentino's "Mulligan Stew"
Christopher Sorrentino's "Trance"
Art Spiegelman's Maus I & II
Laurence Stern's "The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy"

Scarlett Thomas' "PopCo"
Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five"
David Foster Wallace's "Infinite Jest"
Colson Whitehead's "John Henry Days"

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
communicator
Jul. 17th, 2009 07:41 pm (UTC)
John Berger's "G"
Roberto Bolaño's "2666"
Jorge Luis Borges' "Labyrinths"
William S. Burroughs' "Naked Lunch"
Italo Calvino's "If on a Winter's Night a Traveler"
Mark Danielewski's "House of Leaves"
Philip K. Dick's "The Man in the High Castle"
Michael Herr's "Dispatches"
Franz Kafka's "Metamorphosis"
Flann O'Brien's "At Swim-Two-Birds"
Thomas Pynchon's "Gravity's Rainbow"
William Shakespeare's "Hamlet"
Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five"
David Foster Wallace's "Infinite Jest" (unfinished)

I recommend any of these to anyone who hasn't read them. Maybe not G.
seawasp
Jul. 17th, 2009 08:51 pm (UTC)
Dammit. I thought I might have a clean sweep of "No, never read it, never meant to", and the damn Shakespeare comes in and messes with my record. (I don't count the Kafka, that was assigned reading ... twice)
redfiona99
Jul. 18th, 2009 12:49 pm (UTC)
That's the one I've read too.

I've read other stuff by at least 3 of the other authors though.
raycun
Jul. 17th, 2009 09:28 pm (UTC)
I'm surprised you haven't read more.... I'd recommend
Nicholson Baker's "The Mezzanine" - one of his best, short and interesting
Italo Calvino's "If on a Winter's Night a Traveler" - I'm most surprised you haven't read this. Go out and get it now
Haruki Murakami's "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle" - Murakami has three really good books, and this is one of them
Vladimir Nabokov's "Pale Fire" - excellent
Philip Roth's "The Counterlife" - read all Roth
David Foster Wallace's "Infinite Jest" - I'd start with DFW's non-fiction first, but this is brilliant
(Anonymous)
Jul. 17th, 2009 10:59 pm (UTC)
Surely a good third of those are high modernist, not pomo?
bellinghman
Jul. 17th, 2009 11:24 pm (UTC)
Among those you've not read: "Gravity's Rainbow" is one of my all time favourite novels, one I've read enough times for it to fall to pieces. "Giles Goat Boy", on the other hand, has joined the less-than-a-dozen books I've ever failed to finish.

So, a mixed bunch in my view.
unwholesome_fen
Jul. 18th, 2009 02:13 pm (UTC)
Yes, I found Giles Goat Boy rather hard going. On the other hand almost all of Barth's other books are excellent.
bellinghman
Jul. 18th, 2009 08:49 pm (UTC)
I find this sort of list rather dubious on the whole. Why this book by this author, rather than that one?

In the end, it seems more than a little arbitrary, and I hate arbitrarity.
ninebelow
Jul. 18th, 2009 08:42 am (UTC)
Margaret Atwood's "The Blind Assassin"
Paul Auster's New York Trilogy
Nicholson Baker's "The Mezzanine"
J.G. Ballard's "The Atrocity Exhibition"
Donald Barthelme's "60 Stories"
Don Delillo's "Great Jones Street"
Philip K. Dick's "The Man in the High Castle"
Michael Herr's "Dispatches"
Milan Kundera's "The Book of Laughter and Forgetting"
Jonathan Lethem's "Motherless Brooklyn"
Haruki Murakami's "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle"
Tim O'Brien's "The Things They Carried"
William Shakespeare's "Hamlet"
Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five"

A very odd list. The Dick, Lethem and DeLillo are all strange picks from their respective works.

Dispatches? Author is a character? It is fucking reportage! The pronoun "I" does not make non-fiction postmodern.
unwholesome_fen
Jul. 18th, 2009 02:16 pm (UTC)
I've read these, but don't agree that they're all postmodern:

J.G. Ballard's "The Atrocity Exhibition"
John Barth's "Giles Goat-Boy"
Jorge Luis Borges' "Labyrinths"
William S. Burroughs' "Naked Lunch"
Italo Calvino's "If on a Winter's Night a Traveler"
Philip K. Dick's "The Man in the High Castle"
Milan Kundera's "The Book of Laughter and Forgetting"
Haruki Murakami's "The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle"
Flann O'Brien's "At Swim-Two-Birds"
Harvey Pekar's "American Splendor"
Thomas Pynchon's "Gravity's Rainbow"
William Shakespeare's "Hamlet"
Art Spiegelman's Maus I & II
Laurence Stern's "The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy"
Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse Five"
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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