Books The Best Autobiographical Novels  

Ranker Books
1.1k votes 213 voters 8.3k views 41 items

List Rules Non-fiction novels written about the author's life

This list is about the best autobiographical novels; it answers the question, “What are the best autobiographies of all times?” An autobiography can be gripping, motivating and lighthearted at the same time. It allows a reader to truly get to see the world through the author’s perspective, creating a unique sense of empathy. It allows us to open up our minds to someone else’s beliefs and struggles.What distinguishes an autobiography from a biography is that it is written directly from an author about the author’s life; a biography is written by another person other than the author himself. For example, “The Autobiography of Albert Einstein” was written by himself with the help of a good friend Gerhard Roth. However, “Einstein: His Life and Universe” by Walter Isaacson was a book written by an author about the life of another person. The effects of reading an autobiography and a biography are very similar: both can capture the reader’s soul potentially more than any other literary type of work out there. A person can be emotionally moved by a great work of fiction, but a true story about an actual human being can take a reader beyond their emotions into actual motivations about the important things in life.Is there an autobiography that has meant a lot to you? Vote on your favorite today!
list ordered by

1
75 20
A Child Called
Dave Pelzer

2
67 18
Angela's Ashes is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Frank McCourt

3
47 10
The Bell Jar is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Sylvia Plath

4
51 14
Girl, Interrupted is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Susanna Kaysen

5
43 13
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sing... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

6
37 13
Go Ask Alice is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Beatrice Sparks

7
24 8
The Night Trilogy is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Elie Wiesel

8
30 16
Marley & Me: Life and Love wit... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

9
18 7
To Sir, with Love is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
E. R. Braithwaite

10
14 8
Go Tell It on the Mountain is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

11
13 10
Post Office is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Charles Bukowski

12
8 5
Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Me... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
MelonieBethKlouda added Azar Nafisi

13
11 10
Empire of the Sun is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
J. G. Ballard

14
11 10
Look Homeward, Angel is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Thomas Wolfe

15
11 10
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle ... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

16
9 8
Steppenwolf is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Hermann Hesse

17
9 8
Boyhood is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Leo Tolstoy

18
13 13
In Search of Lost Time is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Marcel Proust

19
13 13
The Last Lecture is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Randy Pausch, Jeffrey Zaslow

20
9 9
Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feyn... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

21
8 8
Running with Scissors is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
chantellebelle added Augusten Burroughs

22
12 13
A Death in the Family is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

23
8 9
I Dreamed of Africa is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

24
8 9
The Dharma Bums is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Jack Kerouac

25
8 9
The Way of All Flesh is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Samuel Butler

26
7 8
Desert Solitaire is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Edward Abbey

27
9 11
A Portrait of the Artist as a ... is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

28
8 10
Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

29
6 8
Grave of the Fireflies is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Akiyuki Nosaka

30
5 7
In the Year of the Boar and Ja... is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

31
7 10
Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Jeanette Winterson

32
7 10
John Barleycorn is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Jack London

33
5 8
The Town and the City is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Jack Kerouac

34
4 7
Speed is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
William S. Burroughs, Jr., William S. Burroughs

35
7 11
Wild: From Lost to Found on th... is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels

36
7 12
Sons and Lovers is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
D. H. Lawrence

37
6 11
Tropic of Cancer is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Henry Miller

38
4 9
The Lover is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Marguerite Duras

39
5 11
Shantaram is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Gregory David Roberts

40
2 9
Lavengro is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
George Henry Borrow

41
5 14
Moab Is My Washpot is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Autobiographical Novels
Stephen Fry