Reading Lessons

Knut Hamsun’s Pan

Robert Roper

A throbbing world of sensation and heartbreak

The Best of Gregory Clark

Rob Gurwitt

The art of making memory

Henry Beston’s The Outermost House

Sy Montgomery

A parallel world of unknown sensation

John le Carré’s The Spy Who Came in From the Cold

Matthew Quirk

A literary classic as thrilling as any airport paperback

Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace

Larry Woiwode

A huge, cinematic narrative

George Eliot’s Middlemarch

Alison Case

A liberal education in itself

John Steinbeck’s East of Eden

Sally Denton

Literary elegance and a sense of place

Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian

David Vann

A sour vision of beauty and violence

Isaac Babel’s Red Cavalry

Philip Marsden

A perfect alchemy of language and experience

Richard Hugo’s 31 Letters and 13 Dreams

Mas Masumoto

Missives about real places and authentic people

Richard Ford’s The Sportswriter

Sridhar Pappu

Universal truths drawn from a single life

Willa Cather’s My Àntonia

Charlotte Salley

The perfect marriage of voice and landscape

Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway

Elaine Showalter

A panoramic view of London after the Great War

Frances Ruth Keller’s The Contented Little Pussy Cat

Ingrid D. Rowland

A book that respects the intelligence of children

Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain

Fergus M. Bordewich

The vitality of big ideas

Herman Hesse’s The Glass Bead Game

Clay Risen

The difference between scholarship and wisdom

W.G. Sebald’s The Emigrants

Alix Christie

Anything is possible

José Saramago’s Death With Interruptions

Thomas Laqueur

What happens when the end doesn’t come?

J. M. Coetzee’s The Master of Petersburg

Sheila Kohler

The sinister truths of our souls

Charles and Mary Lamb’s Tales from Shakespeare

Sudip Bose

Sophisticated and never condescending

R. A. Montgomery’s Choose Your Own Adventure series

Nathaniel Rich

The many possibilities of reading

Roberto Bolaño’s “Last Evenings on Earth”

Thomas Chatterton Williams

The unbearable sadness of fathers and sons

Honoré de Balzac’s The Unknown Masterpiece

Anka Muhlstein

Anticipating the birth of modern art

The Best of Gregory Clark

Rob Gurwitt

The art of making memory

Philip Roth’s Patrimony

Emily Fox Gordon

An elegiac story of change and loss

Christina Stead’s The Man Who Loved Children

George O’Brien

A novel of the spaces within

Thomas McGuane’s The Longest Silence

Stephen Goodwin

A lifelong pursuit of mastery and meaning

Horace Kephart’s Camping and Woodcraft

Ernest B. Furgurson

Perfecting solitude

Knut Hamsun’s Pan

Robert Roper

A throbbing world of sensation and heartbreak

Wallace Stegner’s Where the Bluebird Sings to the Lemonade Springs

Aaron Sachs

A calming influence

W. S. Merwin’s The Book of Fables

Neil Shea

Wonder can matter more than statistics and facts

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Collected Stories

S. C. Gwynne

Drippingly romantic and dead on

Peter Stamm’s Seven Years

Will Boast

A novel of delusion, obsession, and redemption

Edna O’Brien’s The Country Girls Trilogy

Martha McPhee

Utterly foreign and completely familiar

Maxine Hong Kingston’s The Woman Warrior

Bethany Vaccaro

Setting your own seat at the table

Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things

Sierra Bellows

Intimate relationships shaped by the movement of history

Julian Barnes’s A History of the World in 10 ½ Chapters

Louis P. Masur

A well-told story always feels true

Jonathan Franzen’s How to Be Alone

James Santel

The shock of recognition

Albert Camus’ The Stranger

Craig Nova

The mysterious nature of literary influence

Harry Crews’s A Feast of Snakes

Hannah Pittard

A book of radical sadness

Lagercrantz’s Art of Reading and Writing

Sissela Bok

Style of effortless elegance

Virgil’s Aeneid

Willard Spiegelman

A tale foreign and familiar

Virginia Woolf’s The Years

Andrea Barrett

What a novel could be

Henry Beston’s The Outermost House

Sy Montgomery

A parallel world of unknown sensation

J. D. Salinger’s Nine Stories

David Huddle

Stealth greatness