I'm reading "Ulysses" right now, and I must say that James Joyce is climbing the charts.
SFOintern, I've never read it in its entirety....and I don't know many people who have, including writers, lit professors, etc., but it's one of the greatest books ever written, way ahead of its time. The techniques Joyce uses blow you away, especially in dialogue. It gives the reader a natural high, a major trip...without the use of illegal substances. Great choice, the kind of book you can pick and choose which parts to read and get something out of it.
My picks for contemporary fiction authors include Dave Eggers, Tom Wolfe, David Foster Wallace, Joyce Carol Oates (short fiction only), and Douglas Coupland.
Picks for contemporary non-fiction include Bill Bryson, Paul Theroux, David Foster Wallace, Joyce Carol Oates (essays), and Anne Lamott.
[Edited 2004-03-10 02:49:13]
Snap, Krackle, and Pop are thinly veiled emblems for the Trilateral Commission.