There are a certain set of books that while you can criticize, you cannot ignore them. Gullivers Travels was not my favorite book, but through every page I was consciously asking "What makes this great?" Swift writes a universally offensive piece, and he's brilliant for it. He cut at the heart of his culture's morals, politics and social patterns. He constructed towers of new ridiculousness, and when I finally came across the line I feel he was building toward the entire time - the moment he was able to call them all "yahoos" - I exclaimed, "Aha!" out loud, and then began laughing. I learned something about satire, comedy and their potential in criticism. Gullivers Travels, it's great for a reason - and ought to be read by anyone who intends to take writing seriously - it's just not my favorite.