popular opinion The Best Novels Ever Written  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
301.9k votes 12.1k voters 209.1k 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 going this list and voting on what you think is a worthy choice.
list ordered by

1
3,556 1,669
To Kill a Mockingbird is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

2
2,864 998
Nineteen Eighty-Four is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell

3
3,265 1,237
The Lord of the Rings is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Lord of the Rings J. R. R. Tolkien

4
2,456 1,424
Animal Farm is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Animal Farm George Orwell

5
2,399 1,335
The Great Gatsby is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald

6
2,248 1,029
Of Mice and Men is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck

7
1,929 1,117
Lord of the Flies is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Lord of the Flies William Golding

8
1,773 966
The Grapes of Wrath is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck

9
2,642 992
The Hobbit is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Hobbit J. R. R. Tolkien

10
2,351 788
Pride and Prejudice is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
wawwhite1 added Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen

11
2,133 607
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

12
1,846 802
Alice in Wonderland is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Alice in Wonderland Lewis Carroll, William Glennon

13
1,531 767
Brave New World is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Brave New World Aldous Huxley

14
1,881 692
A Christmas Carol is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens

The Most Rewatchable Movies

15
1,144 747
Don Quixote is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Don Quixote Miguel de Cervantes

16
1,536 688
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
1,442 642
Les Misérables is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Les Misérables Victor Hugo

18
1,305 878
Moby-Dick; or, The Whale is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Moby-Dick Herman Melville

19
1,683 598
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

20
1,634 852
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the ... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

21
1,228 630
Crime and Punishment is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Crime and Punishment Fyodor Dostoyevsky

The Best Rolling Stone Covers

22
1,702 729
Romeo and Juliet is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Romeo and Juliet William Shakespeare

23
1,443 661
Great Expectations is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Great Expectations Charles Dickens

24
1,386 555
The Count of Monte Cristo is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Count of Monte Cristo Alexandre Dumas, Auguste Maquet

25
1,905 974
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
1,969 549
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
1,772 598
Fahrenheit 451 is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Fahrenheit 451 Ray Bradbury

28
1,162 671
Catch-22 is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Catch-22 Joseph Heller

Things You Should Never Do While Naked

29
1,016 629
War and Peace is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
War and Peace Leo Tolstoy

30
1,382 657
Wuthering Heights is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Wuthering Heights Emily Brontë

31
1,545 596
Little Women is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Little Women Louisa May Alcott

32
1,107 601
The Giver is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Giver Lois Lowry

33
1,269 540
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
1,201 656
Slaughterhouse-Five is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Slaughterhouse-Five Kurt Vonnegut

35
1,475 424
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

The Greatest TV Shows for Women

36
1,635 574
Jane Eyre is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë

37
1,290 339
The Adventures of Sherlock Hol... is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Arthur Conan Doyle

38
1,203 501
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
818 555
The Brothers Karamazov is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Brothers Karamazov Fyodor Dostoyevsky

40
741 685
Ulysses is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Ulysses James Joyce

41
1,892 714
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
1,205 501
The Picture of Dorian Gray is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written

All the My Weird School Books, Ranked Best to Worst

43
1,519 419
Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Frankenstein Mary Shelley

44
1,154 429
Treasure Island is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Treasure Island Robert Louis Stevenson

45
1,156 257
Macbeth is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Macbeth William Shakespeare

46
916 444
The Time Machine is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Time Machine H. G. Wells

47
1,382 454
Dracula is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
Dracula Bram Stoker

48
1,133 471
The Scarlet Letter is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne

49
1,135 568
The Old Man and the Sea is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Novels Ever Written
The Old Man and the Sea Ernest Hemingway

50
1,439 546
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