This blog got me thinking (which I guess is exactly what it’s supposed to do) about what books from our time will be considered classics generations from now — providing, of course, that people still read and don’t just have info shoved into their brain through a computer chip embedded in their skull.
For me, an absolute modern classic that deserves to be read for years and years and years is “The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay” by Michael Chabon.
I realize I’m not going out on any great limb here. Chabon, and this book in particular, have been roundly praised. But it has stayed with me longer than anything I’ve read in a long, long time. Not just the book itself, but also the actual experience of reading it, the continual, jaw-dropping wonder at the sheer talent jumping off every page.
I tend to prefer writers who don’t let their words get in the way of the story they’re telling. But this was one of the rare times I enjoyed a book as much for the writing itself as for the story the words told (which, by the way, is extraordinary.) What it feels like to be able to use the language the way Chabon does I can only imagine, but it’s thrilling to witness. It’s worth reading him just to see the metaphors and similes he creates.
Plus the book deals with some of my favorite subjects: the immigrant experience; past eras of New York City; and, most of all, comic books.
What are some of the books written in the last 10 years or so that you think deserve to be considered classics years from now?