List of the best authors of all time as voted on by normal, book-loving people. For this list, we will consider writers who are mainly novelists. Many of the people included on this list are famous authors who wrote popular books; others may not be as well-known, but are masters of their craft.
The most popular authors are ones that have somehow enriched our lives. J.D. Salinger gave us Holden Caulfield and the term "phony," James Joyce introduced us to stream-of-consciousness prose and Carson McCullers immortalized the misfits and outcasts of the U.S. South in the first half of the 20th century.The best writers are ones that changed the literary landscape in some way, introduced an iconic character, experimented with form and style and captured our imagination with their language.
While lists of "best novelists" are often attempted by individuals, they can be easily disputed because they often amount to no more than one person's opinion. Since this Ranker list is crowdsourced and open to voting, it benefits from the collective wisdom of many rather than the whims of a few.Feel free to vote on this list of top authors, add some that may have been left off, or ReRank this list entirely.
- The Double and Notes from the Underground
- War and Peace, Anna Karenina
- Author of the classic high fantasy works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Fellowship of the Ring
- Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, gambler, traveler and all-around funny dude.
- Great Expectations, A Christmas Carol, A Tale of Two Cities
- Member of the "Lost generation" and author of The Old Man and the Sea, The Sun Also Rises, A Farewell to Arms, For Whom the Bell Tolls
- Animal Farm, Nineteen Eighty-Four
- ElijahKaganer addedDon Quixote
- JoséValente addedSense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice (No, not the zombie version)
- Les Misérables, The Hunchback of Notre Dame
- As I Lay Dying, Light in August, The Sound and the Fury, Absalom, Absalom!
- Ulysses, Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
- Heart of Darkness, Lord Jim
- kent787 addedLove in the Time of Cholera, One Hundred Years of Solitude
- JacobWestman added
- One of the great American writers you were forced to read in High School and probably didn't come to appreciate until later in life. Most famous for The Grapes of Wrath, East of Eden, Of Mice And Men, Tortilla Flat
- Brave New World, The Doors of Perception, Island
- sudeeshab added
- Journey to the Center of the earth
- mrblond added
- The Trial, The Metamorphosis, The Castle
- Mrs. Dalloway, A Room of One's Own, The Waves
- Moby Dick, Billy Budd