What, in your opinion, is the (mythical) Great American Novel? At least to date. A â€œclassic,â€ or a current oneâ€“either would be fine. Mark Twain? J.D. Salinger? F. Scott Fitzgerald? Stephen King? Laura Ingalls Wilder?
It doesnâ€™t have to be your favorite book, mind you. â€œCitizen Kaneâ€ may be the â€œbestâ€ film, and I concede its merits, but itâ€™s not my favorite. You donâ€™t have to love something to know that itâ€™s good.Now, I know that not all of you are Americanâ€“but you can play, too! What I want from you is to know what you consider to the best novel of YOUR country. It might be someone the rest of us havenâ€™t heard of and, frankly, I think weâ€™d all like to get some new authors to read. – BTT
Shamefully, I’ve read more American books and authors than Canadian ones. I’ve read more British books and writers as well. So I’ll take a stab at the American question because I’m quite the fan of John Steinbeck. I also grew up with the Laura Ingalls Wilder books and the TV series. I also think Jeffrey Eugenides novels are very American and modern classics. There are a lot of books I would consider great American novels. Edit: I must agree with the comment below that I love Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. The movie blows my mind as well.
As for Canadian novels, I must concede Margaret Atwood here. I haven’t read all of the Orpheus trilogy, but Robertson Davies falls in this category as well. Probably L. M. Montgomery, but I have not started on my Anne of Green Gables yet. I’m inclined to think children’s novels and stories usually make great best novels for countries.