Books We Need a List of Lists
posted by June 23 at 15:00 PMon
Apparently, Entertainment Weekly published its thousandth issue this week, and the entire magazine is devoted to “New Classics,” or the best, um, entertainment in the last twenty-five years. There are 100 new movie classic lists and 100 new music classic lists, but, being the book guy, I’m mainly interested in the 100 new books classics listl. It looks much more reasonable than EW’s list of 100 albums that are new classics, which Jeff Kirby has already ripped on over at Line Out.
You know, there’s a lot of good here: there’s a nice mix of genres and mediums (I’m glad that they included Jimmy Corrigan by Chris Ware, which has to be one of the best books I’ve ever read, and they’ve also inserted other ((way too?)) obvious comics choices like Sandman and Maus.) I’d put Wind-Up Bird Chronicle inside the top ten list, and I’d completely remove Cold Mountain (of which I only remember two horrifying words, used to describe a vagina: bewhiskered notch).
The Tipping Point belongs nowhere but a Fortune 500 CEO’s bathroom, and, since the very funny and very Irish Angela’s Ashes, Frank McCourt has diluted his own work to the point of obscurity. And The Da Vinci Code and America (The Book) belong nowhere near any list with the name ‘classic’ at the top. (One is the stupidest book I’ve ever read, the other won’t age well at all.) But on the whole, it’s a decent list full of entertaining books, both highbrow and mindless fun. You could do a lot worse than check it out before hitting up the library.