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20.4k voters

The Best Novels Ever Written

Updated January 8, 2021 405.5k votes 20.4k voters 329.0k views1.2k items

List RulesOnly 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.

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    Nineteen Eighty-Four, sometimes published as 1984, is a dystopian novel by English author...  more

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  • 2
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    The Lord of the Rings

    J. R. R. Tolkien
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  • 3
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    Crime and Punishment

    Fyodor Dostoyevsky
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  • 4
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    The Count of Monte Cristo

    Alexandre Dumas, Auguste Maquet
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  • 6
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    Fahrenheit 451

    Ray Bradbury
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    #2 of 72 The Greatest Dystopian Novels#8 of 18 If You've Read Any Of These Young Adult Novels/Series, You're Probably Ready For The Apocalypse

  • 7
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    A Christmas Carol

    Charles Dickens
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  • 8
    3,850
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    The Hobbit

    J. R. R. Tolkien
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  • 9
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    Frankenstein

    Mary Shelley
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  • 10
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    Dracula

    Bram Stoker
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    The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is a high fantasy novel for children by C. S. Lewis,...  more

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    Pride and Prejudice is a novel of manners by Jane Austen, first published in 1813. The story...  more

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  • 13
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    Jane Eyre

    Charlotte Brontë
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  • 14
    3,210
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    Of Mice and Men

    John Steinbeck
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  • 15
    The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain is an 1876 novel about a young boy growing up along...  more

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    The Picture of Dorian Gray is an 1891 philosophical novel by writer and playwright Oscar...  more

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    Anna Karenina

    Leo Tolstoy
    Anna Karenina is a novel by the Russian writer Leo Tolstoy, published in serial installments...  more

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  • 18
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    Treasure Island

    Robert Louis Stevenson
    Treasure Island is an adventure novel by Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson, narrating a...  more
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    The Hound of the Baskervilles is the third of the crime novels written by Sir Arthur Conan...  more

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    To Kill a Mockingbird is a novel by Harper Lee published in 1960. It was immediately...  more

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    Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is the original title of a novella written by the...  more
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    The Secret Garden

    Frances Hodgson Burnett
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  • 23
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    Alice in Wonderland

    Lewis Carroll, William Glennon
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (commonly shortened to Alice in Wonderland) is an 1865 novel...  more

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    #3 of 52 The Best Absurdist Fiction Novels#26 of 97 The Greatest Books to Read to Kids

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    One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is a novel written by Ken Kesey. Set in an Oregon psychiatric...  more

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    Charlotte's Web

    E. B. White
    Charlotte's Web is a children's novel by American author E. B. White and illustrated by Garth...  more

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