Now, I'm not suggesting any of you go and read Stein's Tender Buttons (trust me, it's odd), unless of course you're feeling spectacularly brave, but hopefully one or two of these books may pique your interest enough to take the plunge into modernism (or even just dip you toes in).
To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
See also: A Writer's Diary
The Garden Party and Other Stories by Katherine Mansfield
See also: Katherine Mansfield's Journal published by Persephone Books
The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford
See also: Parade's End
Fiesta: The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
See also: A Moveable Feast
The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
See also: The Trial
Constellation of Genius by Kevin Jackson
The One I'd Like to Read
Nightwood by Djuna Barnes
Personally I think there is a big difference between enjoying and respecting a modernist book. I can say I enjoyed (loved) To the Lighthouse but, whilst I respected what Joyce was doing, I hated A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. I think that's the tricky thing with modernism - so many of the writers are so ridiculously skilled that you feel you should love the book. I'm saying that you can hate it but still be impressed by it.
Anyway, let me know if you've read any of these or if you have any to add.
What's your stance on modernism? Love it? Hate it? Indifferent?