fiction The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked  

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Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules The best living novelists, writers, and writers of fiction.

These are the best living authors and novelists currently, according to Rankers and bibliophiles. If you’re looking for a book to read for a rainy day, you can’t go wrong by choosing a novel or short story written by someone on this list. After all, the greatest novelists alive consistently get onto bestseller lists and book club recommendation lists. But amongst all these writers currently alive, who are the best?

If you love reading, then vote for your favorite living authors and novelists below. They hail for a wide range of genres and literary styles, from playwrights to novelists. You’ll find your favorite science fiction writers as well as great dramatic novelists. Everyone on the list and everyone that you vote for must currently be alive. We all know that there are plenty of great writers that have left us, but this list is about the ones we still get to cherish.

Don’t see a great living author listed? Then add him or her so that others may vote and discover some excellent novels. If you’re curious where your favorite novelist currently alive is ranked, use the search box at the top of the list. Otherwise, get your votes on, book worms. Vote for who you think is the best living author (or best living authors) right now!

list ordered by

1
430 194
Cormac McCarthy is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Cormac McCarthy The Road, Blood Meridian, No Country for Old Men

2
249 153
Thomas Pynchon is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Thomas Pynchon Inherent Vice, Gravity's Rainbow, The Crying of Lot 49

3
248 159
Philip Roth is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
voting closed at #3 Philip Roth - Died May 22, 2018 Portnoy's Complaint, American Pastoral, The Plot Against America

4
179 161
Margaret Atwood is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Margaret Atwood The Handmaid's Tale, Oryx & Crake, The Blind Assassin

5
252 137
Haruki Murakami is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Haruki Murakami The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Norwegian Wood, 1Q84

6
185 108
Don DeLillo is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Don DeLillo White Noise, Underworld, Falling Man

7
444 267
Stephen King is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Stephen King The Shining, The Stand, The Dark Tower

8
148 115
Kazuo Ishiguro is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Kazuo Ishiguro Never Let Me Go, The Remains of the Day, When We Were Orphans

9
223 204
Toni Morrison is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Toni Morrison Beloved, The Bluest Eye, Song of Solomon

10
157 114
John Irving is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
John Irving The World According to Garp, A Prayer for Owen Meany, The Cider House Rules

11
133 102
Ian McEwan is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Ian McEwan Atonement, The Children Act, Sweet Tooth

12
140 106
Salman Rushdie is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Salman Rushdie The Satanic Verses, Midnight's Children, Joseph Anton: A Memoir

13
114 71
Milan Kundera is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Milan Kundera The Unbearable Lightness of Being, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, The Joke

14
123 107
Tom Wolfe is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
voting closed at #14 Tom Wolfe - Died May 15, 2018 The Bonfire of the Vanities, The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, The Right Stuff

The Greatest Living Writers & Most Famous Authors Today

15
119 80
J. M. Coetzee is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
J. M. Coetzee Disgrace, Waiting for the Barbarians, Life & Times of Michael K

16
122 116
Jonathan Franzen is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Jonathan Franzen The Corrections, Freedom, How to Be Alone

17
269 214
J. K. Rowling is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
J. K. Rowling Harry Potter series

18
152 157
Neil Gaiman is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Neil Gaiman American Gods, Coraline, The Graveyard Book

19
96 113
Zadie Smith is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Zadie Smith White Teeth, NW, On Beauty

20
64 40
Umberto Eco is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
voting closed at #14 Umberto Eco - Died Feb. 19, 2016 Foucault's Pendulum, The Prague Cemetery, Baudolino

21
106 84
Michael Chabon is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Michael Chabon The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, Wonder Boys, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh

The Best Batman Comics

22
63 36
Michel Houellebecq is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Mollevangsvagen added Michel Houellebecq Platform, Whatever, H. P. Lovecraft: Against the World

23
93 62
Jeffrey Eugenides is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Jeffrey Eugenides Middlesex, The Virgin Suicides, The Marriage Plot

24
71 95
Isabel Allende is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Isabel Allende Ripper, Eva Luna, Daughter of Fortune

25
78 53
David Mitchell is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
David Mitchell Cloud Atlas, The Bone Clocks, number9dream

26
67 68
Martin Amis is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Martin Amis London Fields, Time's Arrow, Lionel Asbo: State of England

27
76 69
Marilynne Robinson is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Marilynne Robinson Gilead, Housekeeping, The Death of Adam

28
62 42
V.S. Naipaul is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
V.S. Naipaul A House for Mr Biswas, A Bend in the River, Miguel Street

The Best Novelists of All Time

29
75 56
John le Carré is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
John le Carré Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, A Most Wanted Man

30
91 89
Joyce Carol Oates is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Joyce Carol Oates The Gravedigger's Daughter, The Accursed, The Falls

31
101 86
Chuck Palahniuk is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Chuck Palahniuk Fight Club, Choke, Survivor

32
50 37
E. L. Doctorow is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
E. L. Doctorow Ragtime, Daniel, Billy Bathgate

33
43 44
Wendell Berry is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Wendell Berry Jayber Crow, Hannah Coulter A Place on Earth

34
65 86
Barbara Kingsolver is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Barbara Kingsolver The Poisonwood Bible, Flight Behavior, The Bean Trees

35
44 37
Günter Grass is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Günter Grass The Tin Drum, Crabwalk, Cat and Mouse

Last Words Written By Famous People In Their Suicide Notes

36
46 51
William Gibson is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
William Gibson Neuromancer, Pattern Recognition, Spook Country

37
71 85
Junot Díaz is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Junot Díaz The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Drown, This Is How You Lose Her

38
52 49
Richard Russo is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Richard Russo Empire Falls, Straight Man, That Old Cape Magic

39
64 77
Alice Walker is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Alice Walker The Color Purple, Everyday Use, Possessing the Secret of Joy

40
65 67
Joan Didion is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Joan Didion Play It As It Lays, A Book of Common Prayer, Run River

41
49 22
Alice Munro is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
TommyLobotomy added Alice Munro The Moons of Jupiter, Lives of Girls and Women, The Love of a Good Woman: Stories

42
48 61
Anne Tyler is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Anne Tyler The Accidental Tourist, Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant, Breathing Lessons

The Greatest American Novels

43
35 50
Gene Wolfe is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Gene Wolfe Endangered Species, The Citadel of the Autarch, Caldé of the Long Sun

44
36 50
Wally Lamb is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Wally Lamb She's Come Undone, I Know This Much Is True, We Are Water

45
42 55
A. S. Byatt is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
A. S. Byatt The Little Black Book of Stories, On histories and stories, Possession: A Romance

46
30 41
Louise Erdrich is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Louise Erdrich The Round House, Love Medicine, The Plague of Doves

47
16 22
Herta Müller is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
RazvanPop added Herta Müller The Fox Has Always Been The Hunter, Nadirs, The Appointment

48
34 21
Christian Kracht is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Mollevangsvagen added Christian Kracht Ich werde hier sein im Sonnenschein und im Schatten, Finsterworld, Faserland

49
30 25
James Lee Burke is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
KenCarroll added James Lee Burke Black Cherry Blues, Cimarron Rose, Cadillac Jukebox

50
31 19
Botho Strauß is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The 30+ Best Living Novelists & Fiction Authors Today, Ranked
Mollevangsvagen added Botho Strauß The Distant Land, Theaterstücke 3. 1993 - 1999, Schlußchor. Drei Akte