Here’s the problem with reading the books that everyone else has read. It makes you more like everyone else. Checking off the various books from your high school curriculum, and then, perhaps the “100 Greatest Books Ever Written” is the educational equivalent of skating to where the puck is and not where it’s going.
Reading is about insight into the human experience, about understanding. What does following in the footsteps of everyone else get you? It gets you to exactly the same conclusions as everyone else.
Not to say that the books in our “canon” aren’t valuable, because they certainly are. It’s just that you have to remember for every Great Gatsby out there, there were 10 others written at the same time about the same thing that for whatever twist of cultural fate and cumulative advantage are mostly lost to us (one of the books on this list fits…
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