books The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels  

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List Rules Greatest works of nonfiction literature

This list is about the best non-fiction novels; it answers the question, “What are the best non-fiction books?” While everyone loves a good fiction novel from time to time, non-fiction stories can grip the soul in a way that nothing else can. Tales about war, lost love, tragedy, death, loss, heroism, goodness – each facet of a non-fiction book tugs at our heartstrings and reminds us that we are united together as human beings. We begin to remember that we each feel - we each know struggles and pain and all of us know what it’s like to love. Some of the best-written novels of our time are the ones that are forever implanted in our beings. Feelings of anger, hope and revenge are struck when we read about was stories like “Hiroshima”. We remember where we came from and feel a sense of patriotism when we read “A People’s History of the United States.” And we gain a sense of empathy and respect from reading “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”. It is stories like this that make us who we truly are, and never allow us to forget. Is there a true story listed here that has deeply impacted your life? Vote for your favorite non-fiction novel!
list ordered by

1
+ - 100 8
The Diary of a Young Girl is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

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2
+ - 87 18
In Cold Blood is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
In Cold Blood Truman Capote

3
+ - 62 14
Helter Skelter is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Helter Skelter Vincent Bugliosi, Curt Gentry

4
+ - 71 20
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sing... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

5
+ - 54 16
Hiroshima is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Hiroshima John Hersey

6
+ - 64 23
Midnight in the Garden of Good... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

7
+ - 50 17
All the President's Men is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
All the President's Men Carl Bernstein, Bob Woodward

8
+ - 52 19
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

9
+ - 44 15
The Elements of Style is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Elements of Style E. B. White, William Strunk, Jr.

10
+ - 54 23
The Devil in the White City is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

11
+ - 44 17
The Rise and Fall of the Third... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

12
+ - 39 17
Guns, Germs, and Steel is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Guns, Germs, and Steel Jared Diamond

13
+ - 45 22
A Brief History of Time is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
A Brief History of Time Stephen Hawking

14
+ - 31 12
Out of Africa is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Out of Africa Isak Dinesen

15
+ - 35 16
The Right Stuff is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Right Stuff Tom Wolfe

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16
+ - 36 17
A Walk in the Woods is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
A Walk in the Woods Bill Bryson

17
+ - 44 25
Into the Wild is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Into the Wild Jon Krakauer

18
+ - 34 18
A Room of One's Own is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
A Room of One's Own Virginia Woolf

19
+ - 35 19
The Perfect Storm is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Perfect Storm Sebastian Junger

20
+ - 35 20
A People's History of the Unit... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

21
+ - 31 18
The Guns of August is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Guns of August Barbara W. Tuchman

22
+ - 32 19
And the Band Played On is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
And the Band Played On Randy Shilts

23
+ - 28 16
The Joy of Sex is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Joy of Sex Alex Comfort

24
+ - 29 17
The Executioner's Song is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Executioner's Song Norman Mailer

25
+ - 33 21
Silent Spring is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Silent Spring Rachel Carson

26
+ - 29 18
On Writing: A Memoir of the Cr... is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

27
+ - 32 21
The Autobiography of Malcolm X is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Autobiography of Malcolm X Alex Haley, Malcolm X

28
+ - 20 10
The Rape of Nanking: The Forgo... is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

29
+ - 29 19
Nickel and Dimed is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Nickel and Dimed Barbara Ehrenreich

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30
+ - 25 16
The Feminine Mystique is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Feminine Mystique Betty Friedan

31
+ - 32 25
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle ... is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

32
+ - 27 20
How to Win Friends and Influen... is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

33
+ - 26 20
The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Tes... is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

34
+ - 21 15
Mastering the Art of French Co... is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Mastering the Art of French Cooking Simone Beck, Julia Child, Louisette Bertholle

35
+ - 15 10
A Bridge Too Far is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
A Bridge Too Far Cornelius Ryan

36
+ - 23 19
Fast Food Nation: The Dark Sid... is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

37
+ - 20 16
Up From Slavery is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Up From Slavery Booker T. Washington

38
+ - 20 16
The Hero with a Thousand Faces is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

39
+ - 14 11
On the origin of species by me... is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

40
+ - 14 11
The Longest Day is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Longest Day Cornelius Ryan

41
+ - 10 7
The Holy Blood and the Holy Gr... is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail Richard Leigh, Michael Baigent, Henry Lincoln

42
+ - 20 19
Black Boy is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Black Boy Richard Wright

43
+ - 15 14
A Moveable Feast is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
A Moveable Feast Ernest Hemingway

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44
+ - 13 13
The Double Helix: A Personal A... is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

45
+ - 16 17
The Varieties of Religious Exp... is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

46
+ - 14 15
The Gnostic Gospels is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Gnostic Gospels Elaine Pagels

47
+ - 18 20
Our bodies, ourselves is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Our bodies, ourselves Boston Women's Health Book Collective

48
+ - 14 17
Maus is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
Maus Art Spiegelman

49
+ - 12 15
The Education of Henry Adams is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels

50
+ - 11 14
The double helix is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Non-Fiction Novels
The Double Helix James D. Watson