Best Twentieth Century American Novels

1

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2

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3.89 avg rating — 2,858,256 ratings
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3

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3.93 avg rating — 566,853 ratings
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4

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3.98 avg rating — 594,810 ratings
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5

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3.84 avg rating — 1,551,006 ratings
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6

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3.79 avg rating — 2,169,920 ratings
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7

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3.97 avg rating — 1,205,143 ratings
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8

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4.35 avg rating — 343,128 ratings
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9

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3.73 avg rating — 593,772 ratings
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10

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3.88 avg rating — 526,951 ratings
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11

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4.19 avg rating — 522,595 ratings
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12

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4.06 avg rating — 910,425 ratings
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13

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4.19 avg rating — 72,056 ratings
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14

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3.95 avg rating — 68,840 ratings
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15

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4.17 avg rating — 406,392 ratings
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16

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3.84 avg rating — 130,021 ratings
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17

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3.86 avg rating — 135,436 ratings
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17

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4.15 avg rating — 1,119,364 ratings
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19

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3.72 avg rating — 112,787 ratings
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20

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3.96 avg rating — 32,899 ratings
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21

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3.77 avg rating — 102,955 ratings
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22

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3.87 avg rating — 202,228 ratings
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23

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3.79 avg rating — 211,772 ratings
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24

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3.94 avg rating — 27,439 ratings
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25

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3.98 avg rating — 450,068 ratings
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26

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4.28 avg rating — 913,781 ratings
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27

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3.89 avg rating — 188,983 ratings
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28

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4.02 avg rating — 90,858 ratings
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29

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3.77 avg rating — 249,911 ratings
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30

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3.75 avg rating — 20,829 ratings
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31

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4.07 avg rating — 181,244 ratings
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32

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3.64 avg rating — 282,820 ratings
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33

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3.98 avg rating — 164,670 ratings
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33

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3.83 avg rating — 308,822 ratings
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35

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3.97 avg rating — 76,605 ratings
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36

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3.36 avg rating — 85,155 ratings
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37

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4.08 avg rating — 189,916 ratings
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38

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3.93 avg rating — 117,077 ratings
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39

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3.84 avg rating — 36,485 ratings
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40

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3.57 avg rating — 43,495 ratings
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41

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3.83 avg rating — 89,249 ratings
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42

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4.34 avg rating — 482,850 ratings
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43

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3.80 avg rating — 24,391 ratings
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44

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3.75 avg rating — 34,607 ratings
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45

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3.79 avg rating — 15,828 ratings
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46

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3.96 avg rating — 71,103 ratings
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47

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4.27 avg rating — 43,303 ratings
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48

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4.19 avg rating — 30,402 ratings
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49

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3.90 avg rating — 83,475 ratings
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50

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4.25 avg rating — 662,671 ratings
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51

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3.96 avg rating — 210,043 ratings
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52

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3.92 avg rating — 68,924 ratings
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53

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4.08 avg rating — 47,568 ratings
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54

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3.68 avg rating — 48,648 ratings
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55

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3.81 avg rating — 13,901 ratings
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56

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3.97 avg rating — 195,685 ratings
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57

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3.88 avg rating — 23,512 ratings
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58

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3.96 avg rating — 12,838 ratings
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59

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4.16 avg rating — 29,268 ratings
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60

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3.81 avg rating — 23,845 ratings
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61

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4.12 avg rating — 189,286 ratings
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62

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4.07 avg rating — 15,444 ratings
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63

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3.79 avg rating — 11,949 ratings
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64

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3.70 avg rating — 43,245 ratings
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65

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3.79 avg rating — 50,200 ratings
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65

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 31,782 ratings
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67

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3.84 avg rating — 111,239 ratings
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68

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3.82 avg rating — 35,352 ratings
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69

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3.65 avg rating — 9,930 ratings
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70

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4.30 avg rating — 63,874 ratings
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70

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4.02 avg rating — 7,829 ratings
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72

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4.03 avg rating — 569,558 ratings
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73

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3.85 avg rating — 14,034 ratings
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74

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3.94 avg rating — 10,658 ratings
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75

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 3,570 ratings
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76

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3.46 avg rating — 62,746 ratings
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77

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4.01 avg rating — 65,242 ratings
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78

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4.03 avg rating — 28,902 ratings
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79

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3.98 avg rating — 3,976 ratings
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80

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3.70 avg rating — 6,326 ratings
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81

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3.97 avg rating — 4,320 ratings
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82

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3.95 avg rating — 8,072 ratings
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83

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3.72 avg rating — 19,844 ratings
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84

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3.90 avg rating — 65,921 ratings
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85

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4.05 avg rating — 74,809 ratings
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86

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3.82 avg rating — 31,354 ratings
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87

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3.90 avg rating — 14,368 ratings
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88

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3.46 avg rating — 6,839 ratings
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89

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3.92 avg rating — 108,626 ratings
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90

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3.84 avg rating — 968 ratings
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91

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4.31 avg rating — 58,330 ratings
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92

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4.12 avg rating — 5,651 ratings
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93

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4.15 avg rating — 7,783 ratings
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94

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3.88 avg rating — 20,779 ratings
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95

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3.98 avg rating — 3,838 ratings
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95

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3.97 avg rating — 73,732 ratings
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97

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4.18 avg rating — 81,721 ratings
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98

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4.25 avg rating — 3,341 ratings
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99

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3.99 avg rating — 18,505 ratings
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100

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3.98 avg rating — 17,375 ratings
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187 books · 93 voters · list created March 7th, 2010 by Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (votes) .
Tags: 1900s, american, best
14 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads 2940 books
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Argus 254 books
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Thom 6023 books
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Sebastian 503 books
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Emma 593 books
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Mike (the Paladin) 3532 books
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Mohammed 1265 books
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L. 2112 books
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Comments (showing 1-13 of 13) (13 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Lobstergirl (new)

Lobstergirl I feel like Philip Roth should be on here, but not sure what book. Also Cormac McCarthy. Are we calling Nabokov American? And I love Charlotte's Web, but I don't think it can properly be called a novel.

Other ideas: DeLillo, Toni Morrison, Helprin, Norman Mailer.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I would take Nabokov as an American novelist, as he became a citizen in 1945.

I just vote for the novels I really like.


message 3: by Lobstergirl (new)

Lobstergirl I had to remove "The Little Friend" as it was published in 2002.


message 4: by Reese (new)

Reese LG,
I'm not sure what makes you reluctant to consider CHARLOTTE'S WEB a novel. Plot? There. Character development? There. Confict? There. Is it any less believable than science fiction, magical realism, etc.? If it's not a novel, what is it? A novella? If length disqualifies it, then GOODBYE, COLUMBUS needs to go. I'm open to looking at CW in another way if you want to share your thoughts.
Reese


message 5: by Lobstergirl (new)

Lobstergirl Only the fact that it's a children's or YA book, and I take the term "novel" to be something different, aimed at an older audience. If we were taking a college course on "the novel," a YA book wouldn't be on the curriculum. I'm not saying CW isn't a lovely, near-perfect book.


message 6: by Reese (new)

Reese Thanks for explaining. You've made a good case for distinguishing it from fiction intended for an adult audience. While I can see the appropriateness of categorizing it as a YA book, I also see it as a book for readers of all ages and one that has all of the essential elements of a novel. Keeping it or striking it is not up to me.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Removed for not being published in the 20th century:

Empire Falls, by Richard Russo (2001)


message 8: by Bakagh (new)

Bakagh I will finish most of them.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Removed, for not being first published in the 20th century:

Isn't It Pretty To Think So? (2012)


message 10: by Dennis (new)

Dennis I'm surprised that "And Ladies of the Club" isn't here.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads You could add it.


message 12: by PatrickT (new)

PatrickT The Rhum Diary is pretty good, nearly as good as The Sun Also Rises and The Moveable Feast. I would have Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas too, though I can understand if there's reluctance. Ask the Dust, up there too. Basketball Diaries. Off the top of my head. Anything Mark Twain might have written between 1900 and 1910?


message 13: by Eva (new)

Eva Schiess The Goldfinch- Donna Tartt
Flight Behavior- Barbara Kingsolver
Should be in top 20.


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