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
325 83
Where the Red Fern Grows is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

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2
352 81
Of Mice and Men is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck

3
266 72
Flowers for Algernon is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
carlybobarly added Flowers for Algernon Daniel Keyes

4
280 73
Old Yeller is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Old Yeller Fred Gipson

5
287 84
Charlotte's Web is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Charlotte's Web E. B. White

6
315 90
To Kill a Mockingbird is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

7
259 90
Bridge to Terabithia is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Bridge to Terabithia Donna Diamond, Katherine Paterson

8
194 52
The Outsiders is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added The Outsiders S. E. Hinton

9
211 55
Les Misérables is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Les Misérables Victor Hugo

10
216 60
A Child Called
A Child Called "It" Dave Pelzer

11
267 71
The Book Thief is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Book Thief Markus Zusak

12
110 26
Nineteen Eighty-Four is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
stubb added Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell

13
333 152
The Fault in Our Stars is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

14
190 66
My Sister's Keeper is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
My Sister's Keeper Jodi Picoult

15
203 71
The Kite Runner is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Kite Runner Khaled Hosseini

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16
113 35
Wuthering Heights is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
slaft added Wuthering Heights Emily Brontë

17
250 120
Harry Potter and the Deathly H... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

18
146 49
Black Beauty is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Black Beauty Anna Sewell

19
142 47
A Tale of Two Cities is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens

20
168 76
The Giver is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Giver Lois Lowry

21
173 67
A Walk to Remember is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
A Walk to Remember Nicholas Sparks

22
116 48
Brave New World is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Brave New World Aldous Huxley

23
173 73
The Lovely Bones is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Lovely Bones Alice Sebold

24
91 42
Atonement is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Garvin added Atonement Ian McEwan

25
162 67
Marley & Me: Life and Love wit... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

26
128 58
The Help is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
CourtneyRoseSampson added The Help Kathryn Stockett

27
82 27
Great Expectations is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
slaft added Great Expectations Charles Dickens

28
77 25
The Little Prince is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
punksnotdead added The Little Prince Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

29
119 47
Anna Karenina is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Anna Karenina Leo Tolstoy

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30
113 47
The Time Traveler's Wife is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Time Traveler's Wife Audrey Niffenegger

31
65 24
Jane Eyre is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
rachel hatton added Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë

32
53 9
Hamlet is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Hamlet William Shakespeare

33
143 69
The Perks of Being a Wallflowe... is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

34
105 55
Never Let Me Go is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Never Let Me Go Kazuo Ishiguro

35
98 50
Island of the Blue Dolphins is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written

36
94 49
A Thousand Splendid Suns is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
BethSmoothMoveRothwell added A Thousand Splendid Suns Khaled Hosseini

37
163 87
The Notebook is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Notebook Nicholas Sparks

38
66 20
The Great Gatsby is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald

39
55 13
The Velveteen Rabbit is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Velveteen Rabbit Margery Williams

40
64 28
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
96 43
Tuck Everlasting is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Tuck Everlasting Natalie Babbitt

42
59 17
Lord of the Flies is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Lord of the Flies William Golding

43
113 72
Mockingjay is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added Mockingjay Suzanne Collins

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44
105 56
Memoirs of a Geisha is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Memoirs of a Geisha Arthur Golden

45
57 20
Animal Farm is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Animal Farm George Orwell

46
103 70
If I Stay is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
If I Stay Gayle Forman

47
104 59
The Scarlet Letter is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne

48
39 16
Tess of the d'Urbervilles is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
MarylyleMcCue added Tess of the d'Urbervilles Thomas Hardy

49
125 90
The Hunger Games is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
but chickens double d added The Hunger Games Suzanne Collins

50
110 66
Looking for Alaska is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Most Heartbreaking Novels Ever Written
Looking for Alaska John Green