popular opinion The Best Novels Ever Written  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
308.6k votes 12.6k voters 217.9k views 1,203 items

List Rules Only fiction

This is the ultimate list of the best novels of all time, which is based on influence, originality, popularity, and personal affections. You can make the case for many books to be on this list, but only a few can be considered the best novel ever written. For as long as books have been around, there has been debate amongst book enthusiasts over what truly is the best book ever. The one criteria on this list is that we are only taking fiction books into account. Anything should not be on here.

Classics like Victor Hugo's Les Misérables, Herman Melville's Moby Dick, Charles Dickens' Tale of Two Cities and John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath are all on here and deservedly so as they've stood the test of the time and have become important pieces of literature. That's not to say that modern books are neglected, in fact, they're well represented as well. Recent classics like J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, Dan Brown's Angels and Demons, Thomas Pynchon's Gravity Rainbow and Stephen King's The Waste Lands are on here.

It's up to you to vote on or even add a book that isn't on this list. Otherwise, decide what the best book of all time is by voting up what you think is a worthy choice.

1
3,664 1,729
To Kill a Mockingbird is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

2
2,958 1,037
Nineteen Eighty-Four is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell

3
2,539 1,453
Animal Farm is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Animal Farm George Orwell

4
3,344 1,286
The Lord of the Rings is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Lord of the Rings J. R. R. Tolkien

5
2,462 1,374
The Great Gatsby is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald

6
2,309 1,060
Of Mice and Men is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck

7
1,994 1,139
Lord of the Flies is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Lord of the Flies William Golding

8
1,815 991
The Grapes of Wrath is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck

9
2,708 1,013
The Hobbit is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Hobbit J. R. R. Tolkien

10
2,402 813
Pride and Prejudice is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
wawwhite1 added Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen

11
2,189 619
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

12
1,892 820
Alice in Wonderland is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Alice in Wonderland Lewis Carroll, William Glennon

13
1,578 788
Brave New World is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Brave New World Aldous Huxley

14
1,931 703
A Christmas Carol is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens

The Funniest TV Characters of All Time

15
1,181 759
Don Quixote is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Don Quixote Miguel de Cervantes

16
1,579 700
A Tale of Two Cities is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens

17
1,491 658
Les Misérables is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Les Misérables Victor Hugo

18
1,348 899
Moby-Dick; or, The Whale is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Moby-Dick Herman Melville

19
1,717 610
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

20
1,678 884
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the ... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

21
1,271 648
Crime and Punishment is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Crime and Punishment Fyodor Dostoyevsky

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22
1,421 561
The Count of Monte Cristo is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Count of Monte Cristo Alexandre Dumas, Auguste Maquet

23
1,738 756
Romeo and Juliet is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Romeo and Juliet William Shakespeare

24
1,473 682
Great Expectations is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Great Expectations Charles Dickens

25
1,960 1,008
The Catcher in the Rye is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Catcher in the Rye J. D. Salinger

26
2,024 559
The Lion, the Witch and the Wa... is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
pigonthewing added The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe C. S. Lewis

27
1,834 606
Fahrenheit 451 is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Fahrenheit 451 Ray Bradbury

28
1,192 686
Catch-22 is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Catch-22 Joseph Heller

The 20 Most Epic Wedding FAILs of All Time

29
1,041 640
War and Peace is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
War and Peace Leo Tolstoy

30
1,415 677
Wuthering Heights is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Wuthering Heights Emily Brontë

31
1,580 608
Little Women is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Little Women Louisa May Alcott

32
1,138 620
The Giver is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Giver Lois Lowry

33
1,310 551
The Call of the Wild is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Call of the Wild Jack London

34
1,236 669
Slaughterhouse-Five is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Slaughterhouse-Five Kurt Vonnegut

35
1,515 439
Charlotte's Web is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added Charlotte's Web E. B. White

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36
1,336 344
The Adventures of Sherlock Hol... is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Arthur Conan Doyle

37
1,664 589
Jane Eyre is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë

38
1,238 509
The Hound of the Baskervilles is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Hound of the Baskervilles Arthur Conan Doyle

39
843 567
The Brothers Karamazov is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Brothers Karamazov Fyodor Dostoyevsky

40
759 693
Ulysses is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Ulysses James Joyce

41
1,945 737
Harry Potter and the Goblet of... is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
jmmikkola added Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire J. K. Rowling

42
1,553 425
Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Frankenstein Mary Shelley

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43
1,232 513
The Picture of Dorian Gray is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

44
1,186 435
Treasure Island is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Treasure Island Robert Louis Stevenson

45
1,189 266
Macbeth is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Macbeth William Shakespeare

46
937 452
The Time Machine is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Time Machine H. G. Wells

47
1,416 458
Dracula is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Dracula Bram Stoker

48
1,161 490
The Scarlet Letter is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne

49
1,485 560
Harry Potter and the Prisoner ... is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
jmmikkola added Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban J. K. Rowling

50
1,159 584
The Old Man and the Sea is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Old Man and the Sea Ernest Hemingway