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The Best Books Released Posthumously

List RulesThese books were all released after the authors' deaths. Vote up all of your favorites!

This list contains information about the best books that were released posthumously. Several famous fiction writers, scientists, and children's book authors have had their works released posthumously. Some of these famous books were released just days after an author's death, while others were released decades later.

What is the most famous book to be released posthumously? The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank tops our list. This book was published in 1947 and documents Frank and her family's experience hiding from the Nazis for two years during World War II. Frank died from typhus in a concentration camp in 1945, just a month before the camp was liberated. Ernest Hemingway recalled his experiences in Paris in the 1920's in his book A Moveable Feast, which was published in 1964. Hemingway committed suicide in 1961.

One of the most popular book series of recent years was published posthumously. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was published in 2005, just months after its author, Stieg Larsson, died of a heart attack on November 9, 2004. The book has since been developed in to a film by David Fincher, starring Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander.

Which posthumous books are your favorites? Vote them up, and if you don't see one on here that deserves a spot, be sure to add it.
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  • 1

    First PublishedPublished in 1947: Frank died 1945

    SubjectsNetherlands in World War II, Otto Frank, World War II, Hannah Pik-Goslar, Sol Kimel

    Genres (Book)Children's literature, Biography, Autobiography, High fantasy

    Original LanguageDutch Language

    The Diary of a Young Girl is a book of the writings from the Dutch language diary kept by Anne Frank while she was in hiding for two years with her family during the Nazi occupation of the  ...more
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  • 2
    Geoffrey Chaucer
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    9

    First PublishedPublished in 1478: Chaucer died October 25, 1400

    SubjectsStorytelling, Astrology, Pilgrimage, Middle Ages, England

    Genres (Book)Anthology

    Original LanguageMiddle English

    The Canterbury Tales is a collection of over 20 stories written in Middle English by Geoffrey Chaucer at the end of the 14th century, during the time of the Hundred Years' War. The tales are  ...more
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  • 3
    J. R. R. Tolkien
    44
    13

    First PublishedPublished Sept. 15, 1977: Tolkien died Sept. 2 1973

    Genres (Book)Speculative fiction, Fantasy

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    The Silmarillion is a collection of J. R. R. Tolkien's mythopoeic works, edited and published posthumously by his son, Christopher Tolkien, in 1977, with assistance from Guy Gavriel Kay, who later  ...more
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  • 4
    Edgar Allan Poe
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    5

    First PublishedPublished Oct. 9, 1849: Poe died Oct. 7, 1849

    SubjectsDeath of a beautiful woman

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    "Annabel Lee" is the last complete poem composed by American author Edgar Allan Poe. Like many of Poe's poems, it explores the theme of the death of a beautiful woman. The narrator, who fell in love  ...more
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  • 5
    Emily Dickinson
    21
    5

    First PublishedPublished 1896: Dickinson died May 15, 1886

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  • 6

    First PublishedPublished 2005: Larsson died Nov. 9, 2004

    SubjectsCrime

    Genres (Book)Crime Fiction, Mystery, Thriller

    Original LanguageSwedish Language

    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a crime novel by the late Swedish author and journalist Stieg Larsson. It is the first book of the Millennium trilogy, which, when published posthumously in 2005,  ...more
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  • 7
    John Kennedy Toole
    22
    10

    First Published1980

    SubjectsPopular literature, Literary, Classics, French Quarter, New Orleans

    Genres (Book)Tragicomedy, Fiction, Comedy

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    A Confederacy of Dunces is a picaresque novel by American novelist John Kennedy Toole which appeared in 1980, eleven years after Toole's suicide. Published through the efforts of writer Walker Percy  ...more
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  • 8
    Franz Kafka
    21
    11

    First PublishedPublished 1925: Kafka died June 3, 1924

    SubjectsLiterary, Existentialism, Literature, Crime, Classics

    Genres (Book)Absurdist fiction, Fiction, Novel, Philosophical fiction

    Original LanguageGerman Language

    The Trial is a novel written by Franz Kafka in 1914 and 1915 but not published until 1925. One of Kafka's best-known works, it tells the story of a man arrested and prosecuted by a remote,  ...more
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  • 9
    Jane Austen
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    10

    First PublishedPublished December 1817: Austen died July 18, 1817

    SubjectsLiterary, Education, Literature, Classics, Drama

    Genres (Book)Romance novel, Satire, Fiction, Reference, Gothic fiction

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    Northanger Abbey was the first of Jane Austen's novels to be completed for publication, though she had previously made a start on Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice. According to Cassandra  ...more
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  • 10

    First PublishedPublished April, 1 1965: Fleming died Aug. 12, 1964

    SubjectsCuba, British Cuisine

    Genres (Book)Crime Fiction, Spy fiction

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    The Man with the Golden Gun is the twelfth novel of Ian Fleming's James Bond series. It was first published by Jonathan Cape in the UK on 1 April 1965, eight months after the author's death. The  ...more
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  • 11
    Ernest Hemingway
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    7

    First PublishedDecember 1964: Hemingway died July 2, 1961

    SubjectsLiterary, Literature, France, Classics, Ernest Hemingway

    Genres (Book)Biography, Fiction, Autobiography

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    A Moveable Feast is a memoir by American author Ernest Hemingway about his years as an expatriate writer in Paris in the 1920s. The book describes Hemingway's apprenticeship as a young writer while  ...more
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  • 12
    Friedrich Nietzsche
    17
    11

    First PublishedPublished 1910: Nietzsche died Aug. 25, 1900

    SubjectsPhilosophy, Existentialism, Modern philosophy

    Genres (Book)Philosophy

    The Will to Power is a book of notes drawn from the literary remains of philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche by his sister Elisabeth Förster-Nietzsche and Heinrich Köselitz. The Will to Power is also the  ...more
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  • 13
    Alex Haley, Malcolm X
    18
    13

    First PublishedPublished 1965: Malcolm X died Feb. 21, 1965

    SubjectsSecurity, African American, African American studies, Black, Islam

    Genres (Book)Biography, Autobiography

    The Autobiography of Malcolm X was published in 1965, the result of a collaboration between human rights activist Malcolm X and journalist Alex Haley. Haley coauthored the autobiography based on a  ...more
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  • 14
    Anaïs Nin
    12
    8

    First Published1977

    Genres (Book)Erotica, Short story

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    Delta of Venus is a book of fifteen short stories by Anaïs Nin published posthumously in 1977 — though largely written in the 1940s as erotica for a private collector. In 1994 a film inspired by the  ...more
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  • 15
    J. R. R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien
    7
    4

    First Published2009-05-05

    Genres (Book)Fantasy

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrún is a book containing two narrative poems and related texts composed by J. R. R. Tolkien. It was published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and HarperCollins on 5 May  ...more
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  • 16
    10
    7

    First PublishedPublished Jan. 11, 1995: Dr. Seuss died Sept. 24, 1991

    Genres (Book)Children's literature

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    Daisy-Head Mayzie is the last children's book officially written by Dr. Seuss, although he did not illustrate it, nor was it published until 1995, after his death.  ...more
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  • 17
    Mikhail Bulgakov
    7
    4

    First Published1967

    SubjectsJerusalem, Russia, Communism, Soviet Union

    Genres (Book)Romance novel, Speculative fiction, Satire, Farce, Novel

    Original LanguageRussian Language

    The Master and Margarita is a novel by Mikhail Bulgakov, written between 1928 and 1940, but unpublished in book form until 1967. The story concerns a visit by the Devil to the fervently atheistic  ...more
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  • 18

    First PublishedPublished 1997: Sagan died Dec. 20, 1996

    Billions and Billions: Thoughts on Life and Death at the Brink of the Millennium, published by Random House in 1997, is the last book written by renowned American astronomer and science popularizer  ...more
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  • 19

    First PublishedPublished 1991. Dahl died Nov. 23, 1990

    Genres (Book)Children's literature

    Roald Dahl's Guide to Railway Safety was published in 1991 by the British Railways Board. The British Railways Board had asked Roald Dahl to write the text of the booklet, and Quentin Blake to  ...more
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  • 20
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  • 21
    Anaïs Nin
    4
    1

    First Published1979

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  • 22
    J. R. R. Tolkien, John D. Rateliff
    4
    1

    First Published2007

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    The History of The Hobbit is a two-volume study of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit. It was published by HarperCollins in June and July 2007 in the United Kingdom, with both volumes released in the  ...more
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  • 23
    J. R. R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien
    4
    1

    Genres (Book)Speculative fiction, Fiction, Fantasy

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    Unfinished Tales is a collection of stories and essays by J. R. R. Tolkien that were never completed during his lifetime, but were edited by his son Christopher Tolkien and published in 1980. Unlike  ...more
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  • 24

    First PublishedPublished 1916: Twain died April 21, 1910

    SubjectsLiterary, Literature, Classics, Literary criticism

    Genres (Book)Suspense, Children's literature, Mystery, Fiction, Novel

    Original LanguageEnglish Language

    The Mysterious Stranger is the final novel attempted by the American author Mark Twain. He worked on it periodically from 1897 through 1908. The body of work is a serious social commentary by Twain  ...more
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  • 25
    Albert Camus
    10
    10

    First PublishedPublished 1994: Camus died Jan. 4, 1960

    SubjectsAlgeria

    Genres (Book)Autobiographical novel

    Original LanguageFrench Language

    The First Man is Albert Camus' unfinished final novel. On January 4, 1960, at the age of forty-six, Camus was killed in a car accident in the Luberon area in southern France. The incomplete  ...more
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List Rules: These books were all released after the authors' deaths. Vote up all of your favorites!