For many years I would have said that Dostoevsky was my favorite writer. And I still believe that the Brothers Karamozov is a brilliant work. However, I started rereading Crime and Punishment. It's a bit overwrought for my current taste.
Of American authors, my favorite is Faulkner. Not the most accessible of writers, but brilliant and occasionally profound. My favorite work of his is Light in August.
Of more recent American writers, I like Doctorow. The man could write.
A novel that stands out in my mind is The Metamorphosis by Kafka. I read it in college and thought it was strange, but good. I read it again about ten years later and thought it was sad. I read it again maybe ten years later. It was painfully sad. Heart- and gut-wrenching. And IMO brilliant.
One of the best short stories I ever read is Bartleby the Scribner by Herman Melville. Major league good. I was less a fan of Melville's longer works.
I'm sure more will come to me. I gotta cogitate.
Chai, you're right. I often used to read more than a book a week. I'm good at words, not math. What can I tell ya?