This is what Everything2's web contributor "18thCandidate" posted in response to Harold Bloom's list of 278 potentially canonical works of 20th century American literature (click on the link below to challenge yourself with Bloom's list).
"The list by Harold Bloom ... is perhaps the most pretentious and self-absorbed list of its kind that I've ever seen. While most of the books in it are good, to call it a list of books you should have read by now and include six titles by John Ashbery smacks of a world of self-absorbed cultural irrelevance. These aren't 278 books you should have read by now, these are 278 books that a pretentious literary twat should have read by now."
Do you prefer 18thCandidate's alternative version of "278 Books You Should Have Read By Now"? The source article, with justifications, is available at "https://everything2.com/title/278+Books+You+Should+Have+Read+By+Now".