books The Best Novels Ever Written  

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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 going this list and voting on what you think is a worthy choice.
list ordered by

1
2,281 1,031
To Kill a Mockingbird is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

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2
1,734 589
Nineteen Eighty-Four is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell

3
1,541 966
Animal Farm is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Animal Farm George Orwell

4
2,108 829
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
1,463 658
Of Mice and Men is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck

6
1,529 870
The Great Gatsby is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald

7
1,166 614
The Grapes of Wrath is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck

8
1,569 477
Pride and Prejudice is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
wawwhite1 added Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen

9
1,184 749
Lord of the Flies is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Lord of the Flies William Golding

10
1,242 503
Alice in Wonderland is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Alice in Wonderland Lewis Carroll, William Glennon

11
1,715 664
The Hobbit is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Hobbit J. R. R. Tolkien

12
1,395 369
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

13
1,226 447
A Christmas Carol is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens

14
989 482
Brave New World is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Brave New World Aldous Huxley

15
1,026 425
A Tale of Two Cities is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens

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16
736 448
Don Quixote is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Don Quixote Miguel de Cervantes

17
856 572
Moby-Dick; or, The Whale is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Moby-Dick Herman Melville

18
799 358
Crime and Punishment is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Crime and Punishment Fyodor Dostoyevsky

19
981 393
Les Misérables is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Les Misérables Victor Hugo

20
950 397
Great Expectations is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Great Expectations Charles Dickens

21
1,111 379
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

22
1,036 469
Romeo and Juliet is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Romeo and Juliet William Shakespeare

23
1,240 652
The Catcher in the Rye is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Catcher in the Rye J. D. Salinger

24
1,129 374
Fahrenheit 451 is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Fahrenheit 451 Ray Bradbury

25
915 357
The Count of Monte Cristo is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Count of Monte Cristo Alexandre Dumas, Auguste Maquet

26
1,055 567
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the ... is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

27
688 357
War and Peace is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
War and Peace Leo Tolstoy

28
784 417
Catch-22 is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Catch-22 Joseph Heller

29
1,254 348
The Lion, the Witch and the Wa... is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
pigonthewing added The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe C. S. Lewis

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30
925 416
Wuthering Heights is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Wuthering Heights Emily Brontë

31
810 175
The Adventures of Sherlock Hol... is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Arthur Conan Doyle

32
1,118 383
Jane Eyre is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë

33
1,007 407
Little Women is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Little Women Louisa May Alcott

34
814 338
The Call of the Wild is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Call of the Wild Jack London

35
816 312
The Hound of the Baskervilles is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Hound of the Baskervilles Arthur Conan Doyle

36
559 318
The Brothers Karamazov is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Brothers Karamazov Fyodor Dostoyevsky

37
794 434
Slaughterhouse-Five is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Slaughterhouse-Five Kurt Vonnegut

38
629 359
The Giver is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Giver Lois Lowry

39
809 314
The Picture of Dorian Gray is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

40
768 264
Treasure Island is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Treasure Island Robert Louis Stevenson

41
840 277
Charlotte's Web is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added Charlotte's Web E. B. White

42
978 277
Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Frankenstein Mary Shelley

43
1,139 461
Harry Potter and the Goblet of... is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
jmmikkola added Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire J. K. Rowling

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44
514 442
Ulysses is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Ulysses James Joyce

45
646 141
Macbeth is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Macbeth William Shakespeare

46
926 301
Dracula is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Dracula Bram Stoker

47
585 256
The Time Machine is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Time Machine H. G. Wells

48
759 357
The Old Man and the Sea is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Old Man and the Sea Ernest Hemingway

49
658 285
The Scarlet Letter is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne

50
755 317
Harry Potter and the Prisoner ... is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
jmmikkola added Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban J. K. Rowling