My Five Most Important Books
1. "The Sound and the Fury" by William Faulkner. A work of relentless, triumphant prose. I couldn't write for a year afterward.
2. "The Power and the Glory" by Graham Greene. A soaringly spiritual book, by a man every bit as cynical as an Englishman can pretend to be.
3. "The Souls of Black Folk" by W.E.B. Du Bois. Unlike most political books, it is also a work of artistry and beauty. It captured my soul.
4. "The Brothers Karamazov" by Fyodor Dostoevsky. Still the most overwhelming and engrossing work of fiction I've ever read.
5. "Collected Poems" by William Butler Yeats. Reminds me of the worth of pushing back against the worst that life can do to you.
A book to which you will always return: "The House at Pooh Corner" by A. A. Milne. No other book reflects so tenderly the magic of childhood.
A classic book that, upon revisiting, disappointed: "The Four Quartets" by T. S. Eliot. I don't think he had enough red wine or erotic juices in his veins. Dry as British skeleton bones.