Originally Posted by HarryT
Certainly it is. My point was simply that authors who are regarded as "essential reading" in one culture are not necessarily so in another. Eg, I suspect that rather few British people have read Steinbeck, despite his (justifiable) fame in the US. I would (at the risk of modesty) consider myself to be extremely well-read, especially when it comes to the classics, but I must confess that I've never read any of his work.
We studied Of Mice and Men at school. Which made hard work of it, as usual. I later read (I'm pretty sure) Grapes of Wrath and thought it was excellent.
What doesn't really cross our paths much, here, is the Pulitzer, I'd say, since it's a fairly inward-looking US prize.