A Life in Books: Tom Wolfe

If you've ever wondered how "Bonfire of the Vanities" author Tom Wolfe crafts his witty prose, consider this a crib sheet; he admits to modeling his writing style after these authors.

My five most important books

An Important Book you haven't read: There are lots of those. Many books are easier to praise than they are to read. James Joyce's "Finnegans Wake" is one of those.

The book I'd most want my kids to read: "The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism" by Max Weber. He wrote about status groups. I don't really expect my kids to read it, but I wish they would.