Book Set #12 Revealed – Modern Ideas and Modernism

Books 45 through 49 out of 50

Book Set 12 - Modern Ideas and Modernism

Not all great books are from antiquity. Some important works deal with ideas and topics that are relatively new in mankind’s time here on earth. When I first starting working on the list of candidates, I assumed that nothing important was written during my own lifetime. Boy was I wrong. I found several significant works from the last forty or fifty years. In setting up the final list, I reserved ten percent of the space—five selections—for books from my lifetime, some of which appear in this section.

This penultimate set of books for The Well-Read Man Project puts the focus on “modern” themes and styles, including one work of “modernist” writing. (Click on a book to access its detail page.)

Book 45
The Metamorphosis
by Franz Kafka
Book 46
To the Lighthouse
by Virginia Woolf
Book 47
The Stranger
by Albert Camus
Book 48
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
by Hunter S. Thompson
Book 49
by William Gibson

To the Lighthouse is the book that uses a nontraditional, modernist style. The Metamorphosis and The Stranger, while employing common storytelling techniques, contain plots that are absurdist or existentialist in nature. The last two books, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Neuromancer, were both written during my lifetime, putting the focus on the 1960s drug culture and the postmodern cyberpunk culture respectively.


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