For the Guardian, he named his top ten state of the nation novels. "When nations are undergoing some form of stress, be it financial or ethical or even military, state of the nation novels tend to be more numerous," he writes; "they come in many guises, but they have one thing in particular, that they provide a commentary or a judgment on the times."
One title on his list:
American Pastoral by Philip RothRead about the other novels on Cartwright's list.
The best of Roth's state of Jewish America novels. It has a maturity and a lyricism and was perhaps a necessary journey away from his staple character, Nathan Zuckerman, who has only a small part in this book.
American Pastoral is on Sheila Hancock's list of her six best books Maria Semple's list of her six best books, and among Ward Just's five favorite novels about the pursuit of money. It appears on John Mullan's list of ten of the best riots in literature and Jason Diamond's list of "The 50 Most Essential Works Of Jewish Fiction Of The Last 100 Years."