I'm creating this thread just so I might hopefully learn about a new author... I love literature and wisdom, and I like learning things from the books I read... learning about new perspectives, about history, from keen observations of great geniuses. Writers like Hesse... he is the gold standard for me. I tend to dislike long novels, and prefer short works that don't require too much attachment from the reader - I get bored very easily, but not always... What are your favorites? Here are mine: 1. Hermann Hesse - Narcissus and Goldmund is his magnum opus in my view... Siddhartha a close second 2. Par Lagerkvist - Just read Barabbas and am reading The Dwarf now. I enjoy his cynical and sparse style. 3. Camus - The Stranger is really the only work of his I love. I also like his essays. 4. Tolstoy - His short stories - I've never read his long novels. The later short stories are full of insight and compassion, especially the Death of Ivan Illych. 5. Mark Twain - The Mysterious Stranger is wonderful. I tend to like darker subjects... 6. Steinbeck - East of Eden literally changed my life and opened my eyes to many things that I'd never realized before.