Sunday, September 23, 2007

Thomas Mallon's list

Novelist and critic Thomas Mallon is the author of Henry and Clara, Dewey Defeats Truman, and Bandbox. His latest novel, Fellow Travelers, is set in McCarthy-era Washington, D.C.

He contributed "The List" to The Week magazine last week.

One title on Mallon's list:

Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray

Its subtitle is “A Novel Without a Hero.” But what a heroine — and what a narrator. One of the most cynical and entertaining novels ever written. At its center, Miss Rebecca Sharp, who “had the dismal precocity of poverty ... she had been a woman since she was 8 years old.” In the first chapter she flings Johnson’s Dictionary from the window of a carriage; in the 66 that follow she rewrites every existing definition of moral behavior.

Read more about Mallon's list.

--Marshal Zeringue