Modern Library, the highbrow imprint of Random House did one of those 100 Best Novels list things that anyone can do. Since such lists are ubiquitous the value lies in the prestige of the listmakers. Modern Library which reprints classic works of literature would seem to have that sort of clout. Indeed, their list is full of the usual suspects. This particular list could have been made any time in the last fifty years and not have been much different.
Say what you want about contemporary fiction, but there is a notable absence of anything written in the past twenty-five years. The literature canon ossified solid about the time that John Steinbeck pushed James Fennimore Cooper off of required reading lists.
Honestly, if you make such a list in this day and age without including at least one book by Toni Morrison, you are setting yourself up for accusations of fuddy-duddyness. Slaughterhouse Five doesn't appear until number 18, but I can live with that, even if I don't recognize a few of the books rated higher.
Where they really made a mistake was in letting the readers vote on their own list. Methinks some folks with a little too much time on their hands and some rather ideological agendas did some ballot box stuffing. Let's compare the top ten in each.
THE BOARD'S LIST
THE READERS' LIST
But it does make clear to me why Ron Paul is not President in real life and why we better never go to online voting for things that really matter. At least not until the counting software is really, really secure.