Great 21st Century American Novels You've Maybe Never Heard Of/haven't Read Yet

Well, @kevan, thanks for requesting, but it's hard enough to recommend fiction without also guessing what you have or haven't heard of. But here's a start. Others can add.
  1. Rachel Kushner, The Flamethrowers (2013).
    The New York art scene, Italian history, truth and fiction. I can't stop thinking about it.
  2. Ben Lerner, Leaving the Atocha Station (2011) and 10:04 (2014).
    There's a lot to say about them, for better and worse, but they're definitely worth reading. He's one of the most compellingly articulate people I've ever met (and that's saying something, because I know people like @bjnovak) and he talks like his novels.
  3. Tobias Wolff, Old School (2002).
    Worst/most confusing title, but perfect short novel about private school kids and what they write.
  4. Jonathan Lethem, The Fortress of Solitude (2003).
    Maybe too well-known for this list? But great: vast, intimate, Brooklyn, race, art.
  5. Adelle Waldman, The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P (2013).
    A cringe-inducing portrait of an intellectual of our generation (Jewish day school, Harvard). Really incisive and made me nauseous.
  6. Atticus Lish, Preparation for the Next Life (2014)
    Beautifully written, deeply felt social novel that covers lots of Big Issues without ever feeling didactic. Also just a great New York novel.
    Suggested by   @gcowles