I'm a late arrival at this party but you might have seen the list of the sixty best books of the last sixty years published by the Times on 3rd August. It begins with Orwel's Nineteen Eighty-four in 1949 and ends with The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters. You can read the full list here:
Of the sixty, six are books written for the children's or teenage market: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (1950); A Hundred and One Dalmatians (1956); Watership Down (1972); Northern Lights (1995); Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (1997) and Twilight (2005). I have read all these though not all sixty.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, it is the last that has excited the most vitriolic comments. Now, one does not look at the Comments section of any Online post for the least crazy responses but it's interesting to see just how much acid is thrown Stephenie Meyer's way. I did a little trawl to see what else was published in 2005 and found: Arthur and George by Julian Barnes, The Sea by John Banville; 1599 by James Shapiro; Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood; A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian by Marina Lewycka; Beyond Black by Hliary Mantel and many other heavyweight literary contenders.
So yes, there is a perversity in the choice (though they could have done worse and nominated the ghastly Saturday by Ian McEwan, or Kate Mosse's unspeakable Labyrinth, both also published in that year). But perhaps this is a new and different meaning of "best" as Arthur Dent might put it? Perhaps they meant "most influential" or "most significant" or "best-selling." But it can't be the last, since Dan Brown isn't on the list.
So hard to fathom what Meyer is doing there.
In the end, all such lists are subjective and this one is even a little prophetic, since 2009 isn't over yet. And in case Sarah Waters thinks they are pre-judging the Man Booker prize, she should note that Anthony Burgess's Earthly Powers, their choice for 1980 and Graham Swift's Waterland (1983) did not bear away the palm.
And Meyer, if she reads Comments sections at all, will surely be like Liberace, crying all the way to the bank.