books The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written  

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List Rules Vote up any good, very sad tearjerker books that make you cry.

This list is about the most heartbreaking novels ever written; it answers the question, “What are the saddest books of all time?” If you’ve ever read one of these tear-jerkers, you know that these sad stories will tug on your heart strings in a way that no other novel can.  The best sad stories like this will warm even the coldest of hearts! We’ve all felt the pain of loss, the agony of heartbreak and the joy of falling in love: we all relate to sad stories. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter provides us with a sense of empathy for an underdog, a woman that is forced to wear her sins on her sleeve for the world to see. Natalie Babbit’s Tuck Everlasting pulls on that secret place deep down in each of us that longs for love to never end, but teaches us that what seems like a blessing to us now may be a curse in the future. Arthur Golden’s Memoirs of a Geisha shows us how life can be in another part of the world, moving us from our self-centered perspectives about life into a compassion for those less fortunate. These stories mold us into who we are and show us where we came from. Most importantly, these novels teach us that we’re not as different as we may think.
list ordered by

1
401 106
Where the Red Fern Grows is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

2
314 97
Flowers for Algernon is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
carlybobarly added Flowers for Algernon Daniel Keyes

3
311 104
Bridge to Terabithia is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Bridge to Terabithia Donna Diamond, Katherine Paterson

4
334 84
Old Yeller is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Old Yeller Fred Gipson

5
355 99
Charlotte's Web is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Charlotte's Web E. B. White

6
413 99
Of Mice and Men is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck

7
253 63
The Outsiders is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added The Outsiders S. E. Hinton

8
388 108
To Kill a Mockingbird is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

9
159 42
Nineteen Eighty-Four is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
stubb added Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell

10
259 68
Les Misérables is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Les Misérables Victor Hugo

11
253 74
A Child Called
A Child Called "It" Dave Pelzer

12
382 170
The Fault in Our Stars is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

13
304 84
The Book Thief is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Book Thief Markus Zusak

14
217 81
My Sister's Keeper is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
My Sister's Keeper Jodi Picoult

The Best Movies That Were Originally Panned by Critics

15
229 89
The Kite Runner is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Kite Runner Khaled Hosseini

16
304 136
Harry Potter and the Deathly H... is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

17
153 50
Wuthering Heights is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
slaft added Wuthering Heights Emily Brontë

18
112 59
Atonement is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Garvin added Atonement Ian McEwan

19
210 92
The Giver is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Giver Lois Lowry

20
191 82
A Walk to Remember is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
A Walk to Remember Nicholas Sparks

21
181 61
Black Beauty is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Black Beauty Anna Sewell

20 Books to Read in Your 20s

22
141 62
Brave New World is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Brave New World Aldous Huxley

23
156 72
The Help is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
CourtneyRoseSampson added The Help Kathryn Stockett

24
106 38
The Little Prince is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
punksnotdead added The Little Prince Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

25
111 42
Great Expectations is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
slaft added Great Expectations Charles Dickens

26
168 60
A Tale of Two Cities is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens

27
192 78
Marley & Me: Life and Love wit... is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

28
204 86
The Lovely Bones is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Lovely Bones Alice Sebold

Things You Should Never Do While Naked

29
121 63
Island of the Blue Dolphins is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

30
94 43
Jane Eyre is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
rachel hatton added Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë

31
92 23
The Velveteen Rabbit is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Velveteen Rabbit Margery Williams

32
90 23
Hamlet is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Hamlet William Shakespeare

33
119 68
Never Let Me Go is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Never Let Me Go Kazuo Ishiguro

34
66 37
Uncle Tom's Cabin is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
slaft added Uncle Tom's Cabin Harriet Beecher Stowe

35
113 63
A Thousand Splendid Suns is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
BethSmoothMoveRothwell added A Thousand Splendid Suns Khaled Hosseini

The Best American Actors Working Today

36
138 59
Anna Karenina is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Anna Karenina Leo Tolstoy

37
143 90
Mockingjay is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added Mockingjay Suzanne Collins

38
95 31
Animal Farm is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Animal Farm George Orwell

39
99 35
The Great Gatsby is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald

40
79 40
The Phantom of the Opera is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
slaft added The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux

41
82 45
For Whom the Bell Tolls is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
For Whom the Bell Tolls Ernest Hemingway

42
183 102
The Notebook is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Notebook Nicholas Sparks

All the Amber Brown Books, Ranked Best to Worst

43
129 62
The Time Traveler's Wife is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Time Traveler's Wife Audrey Niffenegger

44
56 26
Tess of the d'Urbervilles is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
MarylyleMcCue added Tess of the d'Urbervilles Thomas Hardy

45
152 112
The Hunger Games is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added The Hunger Games Suzanne Collins

46
152 85
The Perks of Being a Wallflowe... is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

47
88 35
Lord of the Flies is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Lord of the Flies William Golding

48
115 84
If I Stay is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
If I Stay Gayle Forman

49
130 70
Memoirs of a Geisha is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Memoirs of a Geisha Arthur Golden

50
135 75
The Scarlet Letter is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne