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The Greatest Books of All Time


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  1. 151. The Color Purple by Alice Walker

    Cover Image for the book The Color Purple

    Taking place mostly in rural Georgia, the story focuses on female black life during the 1930s in the Southern United States, addressing the numerous issues including their exceedingly low position ... - Wikipedia

      
  2. 152. A Bend in the River by V. S. Naipaul

    Cover Image for the book A Bend in the River

    In the "brilliant novel" ("The New York Times) V.S. Naipaul takes us deeply into the life of one man--an Indian who, uprooted by the bloody tides of Third World history, has come to live in an isol... - Publisher

      
  3. 153. Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys

    Cover Image for the book Wide Sargasso Sea

    In Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre, Bertha is the madwoman locked in the attic by her husband Rochester, the simmering Englishman whose children Jane has been hired to tutor. In Bronte's novel we lear... - Time

      
  4. 154. A Room With a View by E.M. Forster

    Cover Image for the book A Room With a View

    British social comedy examines a young heroine's struggle against strait-laced Victorian attitudes as she rejects the man her family has encouraged her to marry and chooses, instead, a socially uns... - Publisher

      
  5. 155. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by John Le Carre

    Cover Image for the book Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

    Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is a spy novel by John le Carré, first published in 1974. It is the first volume of a three-book series informally known as The Karla Trilogy, followed by The Honourabl... - Wikipedia

      
  6. 156. Prometheus Bound by Aeschylus

    Cover Image for the book Prometheus Bound

    Prometheus Bound is an Ancient Greek tragedy. In Antiquity, this drama was attributed to Aeschylus, but is now considered by some scholars to be the work of another hand, perhaps one as late as ca.... - Wikipedia

      
  7. 157. Philoctetes by Sophocles

    Cover Image for the book Philoctetes

    Philoctetes is a play by Sophocles (Aeschylus and Euripides also each wrote a Philoctetes but theirs have not survived). It was first performed at the Festival of Dionysus in 409 BC, where it won f... - Wikipedia

      
  8. 158. Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio

    Cover Image for the book Decameron

    In the early summer of the year 1348, as a terrible plague ravages the city, ten charming young Florentines take refuge in country villas to tell each other stories — a hundred stories of love, adv... - Publisher

      
  9. 159. The Complete Stories of Franz Kafka by Franz Kafka

    Cover Image for the book The Complete Stories of Franz Kafka

    The Complete Stories of Franz Kafka is a compilation of all Kafka's short stories. With the exception of Kafka's three novels (The Trial, The Castle and Amerika), this collection includes all of Ka... - Wikipedia

      
  10. 160. A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen

    Cover Image for the book A Doll's House

    A Doll's House is an 1879 play by Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen. Written one year after The Pillars of Society, the play was the first of Ibsen's to create a sensation and is now perhaps his mo... - Wikipedia

      
  11. 161. Ajax by Sophocles

    Cover Image for the book Ajax

    Ajax is a play by Sophocles. The date of its first performance is unknown, but most scholars regard it as an early work, about 450 BCE to 430 BCE (J. Moore, 2). It chronicles the fate of the warrio... - Wikipedia

      
  12. 162. Oresteia by Aeschylus

    Cover Image for the book Oresteia

    The Oresteia is a trilogy of Greek tragedies written by Aeschylus which concerns the end of the curse on the House of Atreus. When originally performed it was accompanied by Proteus, a satyr play t... - Wikipedia

      
  13. 163. Collected Poems of T.S. Eliot by T.S. Eliot

    Cover Image for the book Collected Poems of T.S. Eliot

    Thomas Stearns Eliot was an American poet, playwright, and literary critic, arguably the most important English-language poet of the 20th century. - Wikipedia

      
  14. 164. Bleak House by Charles Dickens

    Cover Image for the book Bleak House

    Bleak House is the ninth novel by Charles Dickens, published in twenty monthly instalments between March 1852 and September 1853. It is held to be one of Dickens's finest novels, containing one of ... - Wikipedia

      
  15. 165. A Death in the Family by James Agee

    Cover Image for the book A Death in the Family

    A Death in the Family is an autobiographical novel by author James Agee, set in Knoxville, Tennessee. He began writing it in 1948, but it was not quite complete when he died in 1955. It was edited ... - Wikipedia

      
  16. 166. The Way We Live Now by Anthony Trollope

    Cover Image for the book The Way We Live Now

    'Trollope did not write for posterity,' observed Henry James. 'He wrote for the day, the moment; but these are just the writers whom posterity is apt to put into its pocket.' Considered by contempo... - Publisher

      
  17. 167. Daniel Deronda by George Eliot

    Cover Image for the book Daniel Deronda

    Daniel Deronda opens with one of the most memorable encounters in fiction: Gwendolen Harleth, alluring yet unsettling, is poised at the roulette-table in Leubronn, observed by Daniel Deronda, a you... - Publisher

      
  18. 168. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

    Cover Image for the book Rebecca

    Rebecca is considered to be one of her best works. Some observers have noted parallels with Jane Eyre. Much of the novel was written while she was staying in Alexandria, Egypt, where her husband wa... - Wikipedia

      
  19. 169. Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler

    Cover Image for the book Darkness at Noon

    Darkness At Noon stands as an unequaled fictional portrayal of the nightmare politics of our time. Its hero is an aging revolutionary, imprisoned and psychologically tortured by the Party to which ... - Publisher

      
  20. 170. The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder

    Cover Image for the book The Bridge of San Luis Rey

    The Bridge of San Luis Rey is American author Thornton Wilder's second novel, first published in 1927 to worldwide acclaim. It tells the story of several interrelated people who die in the collapse... - Wikipedia

      
  21. 171. Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

    Cover Image for the book Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

    Spawned by a nightmare that Stevenson had, this classic tale of the dark, primordial night of the soul remains a masterpiece of the duality of good and evil within us all. - Publisher

      
  22. 172. Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome

    Cover Image for the book Three Men in a Boat

    Conceived as a fairly serious guide to amateur boating on the Thames in 1889, Jerome K. Jerome's best-known novel ended up as a hilarious account of the misadventures of three friends and a dog as ... - Publisher

      
  23. 173. Go Down, Moses by William Faulkner

    Cover Image for the book Go Down, Moses

    Go Down, Moses is a collection of seven related pieces of short fiction by American author William Faulkner, sometimes considered a novel. The most prominent character and unifying voice is that of... - Wikipedia

      
  24. 174. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

    Cover Image for the book The Picture of Dorian Gray

    Celebrated novel traces the moral degeneration of a handsome young Londoner from an innocent fop into a cruel and reckless pursuer of pleasure and, ultimately, a murderer. As Dorian Gray sinks into... - Publisher

      
  25. 175. The Diary of a Nobody by George & Weedon Grossmith

    Cover Image for the book The Diary of a Nobody

    Weedon Grossmith's 1892 book presents the details of English suburban life through the anxious and accident-prone character of Charles Porter. Porter's diary chronicles his daily routine, which inc... - Publisher

      
  26. 176. Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy

    Cover Image for the book Jude the Obscure

    In 1895 Hardy’s final novel, the great tale of Jude the Obscure, sent shock waves of indignation rolling across Victorian England. Hardy had dared to write frankly about sexuality and to indict the... - Publisher

      
  27. 177. Riddle of the Sands by Erskine Childers

    Cover Image for the book Riddle of the Sands

    A simple invitation to join his friend Davies on a yachting expedition in the Baltic is the beginning of an extraordinary and dangerous adventure for the bored and worldly but clever Carruthers. As... - Publisher

      
  28. 178. Look Homeward, Angel by Thomas Wolfe

    Cover Image for the book Look Homeward, Angel

    It is Wolfe's first novel, and is considered a highly autobiographical American Bildungsroman. The character of Eugene Gant is generally believed to be a depiction of Wolfe himself. The novel cover... - 1929

      
  29. 179. The Adventures of Augie March by Saul Bellow

    Cover Image for the book The Adventures of Augie March

    The Adventures of Augie March (1953) is a novel by Saul Bellow. It centers on the eponymous character who grows up during the Great Depression. This picaresque novel is an example of bildungsroman,... - Wikipedia

      
  30. 180. The Counterfeiters by André Gide

    Cover Image for the book The Counterfeiters

    The Counterfeiters is a 1925 novel by French author André Gide, first published in Nouvelle Revue Française. With many characters and crisscrossing plotlines, its main theme is that of the original... - Wikipedia

      
  31. 181. First Folio by William Shakespeare

    Cover Image for the book First Folio

    Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies is the 1623 published collection of William Shakespeare's plays. Modern scholars commonly refer to it as the First Folio. Printed in folio... - Wikipedia

      
  32. 182. Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett

    Cover Image for the book Waiting for Godot

    Waiting for Godot (pronounced /ˈɡɒdoʊ/) is a play by Samuel Beckett, in which two characters, Vladimir and Estragon, wait for someone named Godot. Godot's absence, as well as numerous other aspects... - Wikipedia

      
  33. 183. The Prelude by William Wordsworth

    Cover Image for the book The Prelude

    The Prelude; or, Growth of a Poet's Mind is an autobiographical, "philosophical" poem in blank verse by the English poet William Wordsworth. Wordsworth wrote the first version of the poem when he w... - Wikipedia

      
  34. 184. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

    Cover Image for the book Of Mice and Men

    Published in 1937, it tells the tragic story of George Milton and Lennie Small, two displaced migrant ranch workers during the Great Depression in California. Based on Steinbeck's own experiences a... - Wikipedia

      
  35. 185. American Pastoral by Philip Roth

    Cover Image for the book American Pastoral

    American Pastoral is a Philip Roth novel concerning Seymour "Swede" Levov, a Jewish-American businessman and former high school athlete from Newark, New Jersey. Levov's happy and conventional upper... - Wikipedia

      
  36. 186. The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan

    Cover Image for the book The Thirty-Nine Steps

    In The Thirty-Nine Steps (1915), the best-known of his thrillers (made into a popular movie by Alfred Hitchcock), John Buchan introduces his most enduring hero, Richard Hannay, who, despite claimin... - Publisher

      
  37. 187. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand

    Cover Image for the book Atlas Shrugged

    Ayn Rand's epochal novel, first published in 1957, has been a bestseller for more than four decades as well as an intellectual landmark. It is the story of a man who said that he would stop the mot... - Publisher

      
  38. 188. Money by Martin Amis

    Cover Image for the book Money

    Money tells the story of, and is narrated by, John Self, a successful director of commercials who is invited to New York by Fielding Goodney, a film producer, in order to shoot his first film. Self... - Wikipedia

      
  39. 189. Men Without Women by Ernest Hemingway

    Cover Image for the book Men Without Women

    First published in 1927, Men Without Women represents some of Hemingway's most important and compelling early writing. In these fourteen stories, Hemingway begins to examine the themes that would o... - Publisher

      
  40. 190. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis

    Cover Image for the book Main Street

    In this classic satire of small-town America, beautiful young Carol Kennicott comes to Gopher Prairie, Minnesota, with dreams of transforming the provincial old town into a place of beauty and cult... - Publisher

      
  41. 191. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair

    Cover Image for the book The Jungle

    1906 best-seller shockingly reveals intolerable labor practices and unsanitary working conditions in the Chicago stockyards as it tells the brutally grim story of a Slavic family that emigrates to ... - Publisher

      
  42. 192. Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad

    Cover Image for the book Lord Jim

    Conrad's great novel of guilt and redemption follows the first mate on board the Patna, a raw youth with dreams of heroism who, in an act of cowardice, abandons his ship. His unbearable guilt and i... - Publisher

      
  43. 193. The Complete Tales of Edgar Allan Poe by Edgar Allan Poe

    Cover Image for the book The Complete Tales of Edgar Allan Poe

    Edgar Allan Poe (January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849) was an American writer, poet, editor and literary critic, considered part of the American Romantic Movement. Best known for his tales of mystery... - Wikipedia

      
  44. 194. Franny and Zooey by J. D. Salinger

    Cover Image for the book Franny and Zooey

    Franny and Zooey, a sister and brother both in their 20s, are the two youngest members of the Glass family, which was a frequent focus of Salinger's writings. The action of both parts takes place o... - Wikipedia

      
  45. 195. White Noise by Don DeLillo

    Cover Image for the book White Noise

    Set at a bucolic midwestern college known only as The-College-on-the-Hill, White Noise follows a year in the life of Jack Gladney, a professor who has made his name by pioneering the field of Hitle... - Wikipedia

      
  46. 196. Call It Sleep by Henry Roth

    Cover Image for the book Call It Sleep

    Call It Sleep is the story of an Austrian-Jewish immigrant family in New York in the early part of the twentieth century. Six-year-old David Schearl has a close and loving relationship with his mot... - Wikipedia

      
  47. 197. Appointment in Samarra by John O'Hara

    Cover Image for the book Appointment in Samarra

    Appointment in Samarra, published in 1934, is the first novel by John O'Hara. It concerns the self-destruction of Julian English, once a member of the social elite of Gibbsville (O'Hara's fictional... - Wikipedia

      
  48. 198. A House for Mr. Biswas by V.S. Naipaul

    Cover Image for the book A House for Mr. Biswas

    It is the story of Mr Mohun Biswas, an Indo-Trinidadian who continually strives for success and mostly fails, who marries into the Tulsi family only to find himself dominated by it, and who finally... - Wikipedia

      
  49. 199. Lady Chatterley's Lover by D. H. Lawrence

    Cover Image for the book Lady Chatterley's Lover

    Lyric and sensual, D.H. Lawrence's last novel is one of the major works of fiction of the twentieth century. Filled with scenes of intimate beauty, explores the emotions of a lonely woman trapped i... - Publisher

      
  50. 200. Kim by Rudyard Kipling

    Cover Image for the book Kim

    Kim is an orphan, living from hand to mouth in the teeming streets of Lahore. One day he meets a man quite unlike anything in his wide experience, a Tibetan lama on a quest. Kim's life suddenly acq... - Publisher

      

The Lists

  1. 100 Most Influential Books of the Century

    Boston Public Library's list of "The 100 Most Influential Books of the Century". A booklist for Adults. - Boston Public Library

  2. 110 Best Books: The Perfect Library

    From classics and sci-fi to poetry, biographies and books that changed the world… we present the ultimate reading list. - The Telegraph

  3. 50 Greatest Books of All Time

    A list of the 50 greatest books of all time as determined by a panel of secret judges for Globe and Mail. The books are not ranked. - Globe and Mail

  4. 50 Memorable Books from 50 Years of Books to Remember

    A representative selection from over 1500 titles on annual lists of Books to Remember from 1956 to 2005. - The New York Public Library

  5. Books of the Decade

    The 50 books that defined the decade(2000) - The Guardian

  6. Costa Book Award - Best Novel

    The Costa Book Awards are a series of literary awards given to books by authors based in the United Kingdom and Ireland. They were known as the Whitbread Book Awards until 2005, after which Costa C... - Costa Coffee

  7. Donald Barthelme’s Reading List

    81 books recommended by Author Donald Barthelme to his students at the University of Houston. -

  8. Extreme Classics: The 100 Greatest Adventure Books of All Time

    The 100 greatest adventure books chosen by National Geographic. - National Geographic Adventure Magazine

  9. Great Books of the Western World

    Great Books of the Western World is a series of books originally published in the United States in 1952 by Encyclopædia Britannica Inc. to present the western canon in a single package of 54 volume... - Great Books Foundation

  10. Harvard Book Store Staff's Favorite 100 Books

    A list of the Harvard Book Store staff's top 100 favorite books. - Harvard Book Store

  11. Man Booker Prize

    The Man Booker Prize for Fiction, also known in short as the Booker Prize, is a literary prize awarded each year for the best original full-length novel, written in the English language, by a citiz... - Man Booker Prize

  12. National Book Award - Fiction

    The National Book Awards are among the most eminent literary prizes in the United States. Started in 1950, the awards are presented annually to American authors for literature published in the prio... - National Book Foundation

  13. National Book Award - Nonfiction

    The National Book Awards are among the most eminent literary prizes in the United States. Started in 1950, the awards are presented annually to American authors for literature published in the prio... - National Book Foundation

  14. National Book Critics Circle Award - Fiction

    The National Book Critics Circle Award is an annual award given by the National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) to promote the finest books and reviews published in English. - National Book Critics Circle

  15. National Book Critics Circle Award - Nonfiction

    The National Book Critics Circle Award is an annual award given by the National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) to promote the finest books and reviews published in English. - National Book Critics Circle

  16. Paste Magazine's Best Books of the Decade(2000-2009)

    The top 20 best books of the 2000s by Paste Magazine. It includes both fiction and nonfiction. - Paste Magazine

  17. PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction

    The PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction is awarded annually by the PEN/Faulkner Foundation to the author of the best American work of fiction that year. The winner receives US $15,000 and each of four... - PEN/Faulkner

  18. Pulitzer Prize for Biography or Autobiography

    The Pulitzer Prize for Biography or Autobiography has been presented since 1917 for a distinguished biography or autobiography by an American author. - Pulitzer Prize

  19. Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

    All the books that have won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction from 1948 to the present. - Pulitzer Prize

  20. Pulitzer Prize for History

    The Pulitzer Prize for History has been awarded since 1917 for a distinguished book upon the history of the United States. Many history books have also been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for General N... - Pulitzer Prize

  21. Pulitzer Prize for Non-Fiction

    The Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction has been awarded since 1962 for a distinguished book of non-fiction by an American author that is not eligible for consideration in any other category. - Pulitzer Prize

  22. Radcliffe's 100 Best Novels

    - Radcliffe Publishing Course

  23. St. John's College Academic Program Reading List

    The reading list that serves as the core of the St. John's College curriculum had its beginnings at Columbia College, at the University of Chicago, and at the University of Virginia. Since 1937, th... - St. John's College

  24. The 100 Best Books of the Decade(2000)

    The Time's list of the 100 Best Books of the 2000s. It's a mix of fiction and nonfiction. - Times

  25. The 100 Best Non-Fiction Books of the Century

    The 100 best non-fiction books of all time judged by a panel of historians, authors, publishers, and experts for the National Review Magazine. - National Review

  26. The 100 Greatest Novels of All Time: The List

    The Observer's list of essential fiction from the past 300 years. - The Observer

  27. The 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written

    The 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written: The History of Thought from Ancient Times to Today (1998) is a book of intellectual history written by Martin Seymour-Smith (1928–1998), a British poet,... - Martin Seymour-Smith

  28. The 10 Best of the Decade(2000)

    Entertainment Weekly's top 10 best books of the 2000s - Entertainment Weekly

  29. The 50 Best Books of the Century

    ISI defined "best" as "volumes of extraordinary reflection and creativity in a traditional form, which heartens us with the knowledge that fine writing and clear-mindedness are perennially possible... - Intercollegiate Studies Institute

  30. The 75 Books Every Man Should Read

    -

  31. The Best Books of the 2000s

    The Best Books of the 2000s according to the Onion AV club. Includes Fiction and Nonfiction. - The Onion AV Club

  32. The Best Southern Nonfiction of All Time

    The best southern United States nonfiction books of all time judged by 130 literary experts and authors. - Oxford American

  33. The Best Southern Novels of All Time

    A list of the best southern novels of all time by Oxford American Magazine judged by 130 experts as well as authors. - Oxford American

  34. The Big Read

    The Big Read was a survey on books carried out by the BBC in the United Kingdom in 2003, where over three quarters of a million votes were received to find the nations best-loved book of all time, ... - BBC

  35. The Modern Library | 100 Best Nonfiction

    - The Modern Library

  36. The Modern Library | 100 Best Novels

    - Modern Library

  37. The New Classics - 100 Best Reads from 1983 to 2008

    Entertainment Weekly's list of the 100 best reads from 1083 to 2008. There's no description of who the judges were. - Entertainment Weekly

  38. The Novel 100: A Ranking of the Greatest Novels of All Time

    The list below is from the book The Novel 100: A Ranking of Greatest Novels All Time (Checkmark Books/Facts On File, Inc.: New York, 2004), written by Daniel S. Burt. - The Novel 100

  39. The Top 10: The Greatest Books of All Time

    The Top 10 book chosen by 125 top writers from the book "The Top 10" edited by J. Peder Zane. - The Top 10 (Book)

  40. TIME Magazine All Time 100 Novels

    Time critics Lev Grossman and Richard Lacayo pick the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to the present. - TIME Magazine

  41. Top 100 Works in World Literature

    The editors of the Norwegian Book Clubs, with the Norwegian Nobel Institute, polled a panel of 100 authors from 54 countries on what they considered the “best and most central works in world litera... - Norwegian Book Clubs, with the Norwegian Nobel Institute

  42. Top 10 British, Irish or Commonwealth Novels from 1980 to 2005

    The Observer asked 150 literary luminaries to vote for the best British, Irish or Commonwealth novel from 1980 to 2005. - The Observer

  43. What Is the Best Work of American Fiction of the Last 25 Years?

    The New York Times Book Review's editor, Sam Tanenhaus, sent out a short letter to a couple of hundred prominent writers, critics, editors and other literary sages, asking them to please identify... - New York Times

What?

I've always loved to read and I'm a big fan of "best of" lists. After reading through about 5 or so "Greatest Books of all Time" lists I got the idea of combining the lists into 1 master list of the greatest books of all time.

A goal of mine is to someday read The first 100 of these books. I built this application to help me generate the list as well as keep track of which books I've already read. You too can track which books you've read if you create an account. You can view details about a specific list or book by clicking the titles.

I had a great time creating this site and I hope you enjoy it. If you have any Comments please


How?

This list is generated from 43 "best of" book lists from a variety of great sources. An algorithm is used to create a master list based on how many lists a particular book appears on. Some lists count more than others. I generally trust "best of all time" lists voted by authors and experts over user-generated lists. On the lists that are actually ranked, the book that is 1st counts a lot more than the book that's 100th.

Where Can I Buy The Books?

If you click on the title of the books you can easily see a summary of what amazon.com has for sale based on price and binding(paperback, hardcover, audio, etc). The prices and availability are updated daily directly from Amazon.com.

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