horror The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King  

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List Rules Must be books written by Stephen King and published under his name, not a pseudonym.

He's one of the most recognizable names in fiction and easily one of the most prolific American authors. With so many great works, this list of books by Stephen King, voted on by the Ranker community, attempts to rank his top novels and best books ever. This list of King's writings is the definitive ranking of his body of work. King's stories range from thick novels to short stories and collections, and include some of the most popular horror novels of our time. Many Stephen King books and stories have been adapted into popular horror movies as well, including The Shining, Misery, Carrie, and The Shawshank Redemption

What are Stephen King's best books? This list is focused only on Stephen King's published work, not the resulting movies or TV shows. Enjoy this list of Stephen King books ranked, and vote for the novels you think are the best Stephen King books of all time.

Ranking Stephen King books isn't easy, with so many to choose from, so help us out and vote! His works cover many genres, primarily horror, fantasy, supernatural fiction, and dark fantasy. He has written memorable series such as The Dark Tower series, as well as stand-alone horror novels, like The Stand. King has also branched out from horror writing during his career, such as with the time-travel novel, 11/22/63, about the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

The best Stephen King novels on this list have combined to sell over 350 million copies, and King himself has received numerous writing and literature awards throughout his career. So vote for the best among his many top works below, or rerank the list if you don't agree with the order.
list ordered by

1
3,309 691
The Stand is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Stand 1978 The Stand is a post-apocalyptic horror/fantasy novel by American author Stephen King. It expands upon the scenario of his earlier short story, "Night Surf". The novel was originally ...more

2
3,685 528
It is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
It 1986 It is a 1986 horror novel by American author Stephen King. The story follows the exploits of seven children as they are terrorized by the eponymous being, which exploits the fears and phobias of ...more

3
2,882 432
The Shining is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Shining 1977 The Shining is a horror novel by American author Stephen King. Published in 1977, it is King's third published novel and first hardback bestseller, and the success of the book firmly established ...more

4
2,205 531
Misery is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Misery 1987 Misery is a psychological horror novel by Stephen King. The novel was nominated for the World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 1988, and was later made into a Hollywood film and an off-Broadway ...more

5
2,205 483
Pet Sematary is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Pet Sematary 1983 Pet Sematary is a 1983 horror novel by Stephen King, nominated for a World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 1984, and adapted into a 1989 film of the same name. In November 2013, PS Publishing ...more

6
2,163 489
'Salem's Lot is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
'Salem's Lot 1975 'Salem's Lot is a 1975 horror fiction novel written by the American author Stephen King. It was his second published novel. The story involves a writer named Ben Mears who returns to the town ...more

7
1,731 568
Carrie is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Carrie 1974 Carrie is an American epistolary novel and author Stephen King's first published novel, released on April 5, 1974, with an approximate first print-run of 30,000 copies. Set in the then-future ...more

8
2,253 330
The Green Mile is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Green Mile 1996 The Green Mile is a 1996 serial novel written by Stephen King. It tells the story of death row supervisor Paul Edgecombe's encounter with John Coffey, an unusual inmate who displays inexplicable ...more

9
1,503 492
Needful Things is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Needful Things 1991 Needful Things is a 1991 horror novel by American author Stephen King. It is the first novel King wrote after his rehabilitation from drugs and alcohol. According to the cover, it is "The ...more

10
1,382 458
The Dead Zone is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Dead Zone 1979 The Dead Zone is a supernatural thriller novel by Stephen King published in 1979. It concerns Johnny Smith, who is injured in an accident and enters a coma for nearly five years. When he ...more

11
1,307 525
Christine is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Christine 1983 Christine is a horror novel by Stephen King, published in 1983. It tells the story of a vintage automobile apparently possessed by supernatural forces. Later that same year, a film adaptation, ...more

12
1,121 336
Night Shift is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Night Shift 1978 Night Shift is the first collection of short stories by Stephen King, first published in 1978. In 1980, Night Shift received the Balrog Award for Best Collection, and in 1979 it was nominated as ...more

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13
1,316 334
Different Seasons is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Different Seasons 1982 Different Seasons is a collection of four Stephen King novellas with a more serious dramatic bent than the horror fiction for which King is famous. The four novellas are tied together via ...more

14
1,247 510
Cujo is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Cujo 1981 Cujo is a 1981 psychological horror novel by Stephen King about a rabid dog. The novel won the British Fantasy Award in 1982, and was made into a film in 1983.

15
1,603 454
The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger 1982 The Gunslinger is a novel by American author Stephen King, and is the first volume in the Dark Tower series, which King considers to be his magnum opus. Initially a fix-up novel that strung ...more

16
1,351 360
The Dark Tower II: The Drawing... is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Dark Tower II: The Drawing of the Three 1987 The Drawing of the Three is the second book in The Dark Tower series of novels written by Stephen King and published by Grant in 1987. The series was inspired by Childe Roland to the Dark Tower ...more

17
1,049 383
Firestarter is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Firestarter 1980 Firestarter is a science fiction novel by Stephen King, first published in September 1980. In July and August 1980, two excerpts from the novel were published in Omni. In 1981, Firestarter was ...more

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18
1,713 324
11/22/63 is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
11/22/63 2011 11/22/63 is a novel by Stephen King about a time traveler who attempts to prevent the assassination of President John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy, which occurred on November 22, 1963. ...more

19
884 275
Skeleton Crew is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Skeleton Crew 1985 Skeleton Crew is the second collection of short fiction by Stephen King, published by Putnam in June 1985. A limited edition of a thousand copies was published by Scream/Press in October 1985, ...more

20
1,136 362
Ranker Video
The Dark Tower VII: The Dark Tower 2004 The Dark Tower is the seventh novel in Stephen King's Dark Tower series, published by Grant on September 21, 2004, and illustrated by Michael Whelan. It has four subtitles: REPRODUCTION, ...more

21
1,077 304
The Long Walk is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Long Walk 1979 The Long Walk is a dystopian novel by Stephen King published under the pseudonym Richard Bachman in 1979 as a paperback original. It was collected in 1985 in the hardcover omnibus The Bachman ...more

22
959 362
Bag of Bones is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Bag of Bones 1998 Bag of Bones is a 1998 novel by Stephen King. It focuses on an author who suffers severe writer's block and delusions at an isolated lake house four years after the death of his wife. It won the ...more

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23
1,067 440
Under the Dome is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Under the Dome 2009 Under the Dome is a science fiction novel by Stephen King published in November 2009. Set in and around a small Maine town, it tells an intricate, multi-character and point-of-view story of how ...more

24
982 351
Thinner is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Thinner 1984 Thinner is a 1984 novel by Stephen King, published under his pseudonym, Richard Bachman. It is about a man cursed by a gypsy to grow progressively thinner. It would be the last novel which King ...more

25
787 351
The Dark Half is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Dark Half 1989 The Dark Half is a horror novel by Stephen King, published in 1989. Publishers Weekly listed The Dark Half as the second best-selling book of 1989 behind Tom Clancy's Clear and Present Danger. ...more

26
789 250
Nightmares & Dreamscapes is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Nightmares & Dreamscapes 1993 Nightmares & Dreamscapes is a short story collection by Stephen King published in 1993.

27
810 348
The Running Man is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Running Man 1982 The Running Man is a science fiction novel by Stephen King, first published under the pseudonym Richard Bachman in 1982 as a paperback original. It was collected in 1985 in the omnibus The ...more

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28
814 446
Dreamcatcher is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Dreamcatcher 2001 Dreamcatcher is a science fiction novel written by Stephen King. It was adapted into a 2003 film of the same name. The book, written in cursive, helped the author recuperate from a 1999 car ...more

29
897 371
Insomnia is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Insomnia 1994 Insomnia is a novel written by Stephen King and first published in 1994. Like It and Dreamcatcher, its setting is the fictional town of Derry, Maine. The original hardcover edition was issued ...more

30
854 446
The Tommyknockers is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Tommyknockers 1987 The Tommyknockers is a 1987 science fiction novel by Stephen King. While maintaining a horror style, the novel is more of an excursion into the realm of science fiction for King, as the ...more

31
925 240
Dolores Claiborne is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Dolores Claiborne 1992 Dolores Claiborne is a 1992 psychological thriller novel by Stephen King. The novel is narrated by the title character. Atypically for a King novel, it has no chapters, double-spacing between ...more

32
1,100 279
The Dark Tower IV: Wizard and ... is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Dark Tower IV: Wizard and Glass 1997 Wizard and Glass is the fourth book in the Dark Tower series by Stephen King published in 1997. Subtitled "Regard", it placed fourth in the annual Locus Poll for best fantasy novel.

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33
842 304
Desperation is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Desperation 1996 Desperation is a horror novel by Stephen King. It was published in 1996 at the same time as its "mirror" novel, The Regulators. It was made into a TV film starring Ron Perlman, Tom ...more

34
1,041 249
The Dark Tower III: The Waste ... is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Dark Tower III: The Waste Lands 1991 The Waste Lands is the third book of the The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. The original limited edition hardcover featuring full-color illustrations by Ned Dameron was published in 1991 by ...more

35
579 315
Black House is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Black House 2001 Black House is a Stoker Award nominated novel by horror writers Stephen King and Peter Straub. Published in 2001, this is the sequel to The Talisman. This is one of King's numerous novels, which ...more

36
833 292
The Eyes of the Dragon is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Eyes of the Dragon 1987 The Eyes of the Dragon is a novel by Stephen King that was first published as a limited edition slipcased hardcover by Philtrum Press in 1984, illustrated by Kenneth R. Linkhauser. The novel ...more

37
591 309
On Writing: A Memoir of the Cr... is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft 2000 On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King, published in 2000, is a memoir of the author's experiences as a writer, and also serves as a guide book for those who choose to enter the ...more

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38
641 248
Everything's Eventual is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Everything's Eventual 2002 Everything's Eventual is a collection of 14 short stories written by Stephen King and published in 2002.

39
737 368
Cell is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Cell 2006 Cell is an apocalyptic horror novel published by American author Stephen King in 2006. An excerpt was published in the January 27, 2006 issue of Entertainment Weekly. The story follows a New ...more

40
608 350
The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon:... is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon: A Novel 1999 The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon is a psychological horror novel by Stephen King. In 2004, a pop-up book adaptation was released, designed by Kees Moerbeek and illustrated by Alan Dingman.

41
645 217
Four Past Midnight is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Four Past Midnight 1990 Four Past Midnight is a collection of four novellas by Stephen King, published in 1990. The four stories are "The Langoliers"; "Secret Window, Secret Garden"; "The ...more

42
703 299
Hearts in Atlantis is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Hearts in Atlantis 1999 Hearts in Atlantis is a collection of two novellas and three short stories by Stephen King, all connected to one another by recurring characters and taking place in roughly chronological order. ...more

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43
693 382
Gerald's Game is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Gerald's Game 1970 Gerald's Game is a 1992 suspense novel by Stephen King. The story is about a woman who accidentally kills her husband while she is handcuffed to the bed as part of a bondage game, and, following ...more

44
841 248
The Dark Tower V: Wolves of th... is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Dark Tower V: Wolves of the Calla 2003 Wolves of the Calla is the fifth book in Stephen King's The Dark Tower series. This book continues the story of Roland Deschain, Eddie Dean, Susannah Dean, Jake Chambers, and Oy as they make ...more

45
496 361
From a Buick 8 is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
From a Buick 8 2002 From a Buick 8 is a novel by Stephen King. Published on September 24, 2002, this is the second novel by Stephen King to feature a supernatural car. According to the book sleeve: "From a ...more

46
681 204
The Bachman Books is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Bachman Books 1985 The Bachman Books is a collection of short novels by Stephen King published under the pseudonym Richard Bachman between 1977 and 1982. It was a The New York Times Best Seller List when it was ...more

47
834 231
Dr. Sleep is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Dr. Sleep 2013 Doctor Sleep is a novel by Stephen King, a sequel to King's novel The Shining, released in September 2013. King first mentioned the idea in November 2009. The author's official website confirmed ...more

48
543 290
The Regulators is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
The Regulators 1996 The Regulators is a novel by Stephen King under the pseudonym Richard Bachman. It was published in 1996 at the same time as its "mirror" novel, Desperation. The two novels represent ...more

49
746 290
Duma Key is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Duma Key 2008 Duma Key is a novel by American novelist Stephen King published on January 22, 2008 by Scribner. The book reached #1 on the New York Times Best Seller List. It is King's first novel to be set in ...more

50
523 342
Lisey's Story is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The All-Time Greatest Works of Stephen King
Lisey's Story 2006 Lisey's Story is a novel by Stephen King that combines the elements of psychological horror and romance. It was released on October 24, 2006, and was nominated for the World Fantasy Award in ...more