A monument of 20th C. literature, The Magic Mountain (1924) by Thomas Mann remains a timely book in light of our current "value wars." Protagonist Hans Castorp, in his early twenties, visiting his cousin at a sanatarium high in the Alps, is diagnosed with a touch of TB and stays and stays. Thrown in with a cast of quirky characters, Hans accumulates insights and experiences that profoundly alter the projected path of his life. Mann suggested the book be read twice to appreciate its musical structure. Critics have pointed out the magnificent interaction of the prosaic and the poetic throughout each episode in the book.