One title on the list:
The Big Sleep by Raymond ChandlerRead about the other books on the list.
The classic detective novel, made into the equally classic Humphrey Bogart/Lauren Bacall film, is the first appearance of Los Angeles noir detective Phillip Marlow. Marlow is hired to expose the blackmailer of a tycoon's daughter, but along the way he exposes a lot more about the seedy underbelly of 1930's LA society. Chandler's eloquent prose and quirky characters are enchanting.
The Big Sleep also appears on Greil Marcus's six recommended books list, Barry Forshaw's critic's chart of six American noir masters, David Nicholls' list of favorite film adaptations, and the Guardian's list of ten of the best smokes in literature.