Books of the Decade by The Guardian

The 50 books that defined the decade(2000)

  1. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi


  2. The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

    Image of The Tipping Point

    Gladwell defines a tipping point as a sociological term: "the moment of critical mass, the threshold, the boiling point." The book seeks to explain and describe the "mysterious" sociological change...


  3. White Teeth by Zadie Smith

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    This may be the first novel ever written that truly feels at home in our borderless, globalized, intermarried, post-colonial age, populated by "children with first and last names on a direct collis...

    - Time

  4. Experience by Martin Amis


  5. The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman

    Image of The Amber Spyglass

    His Dark Materials is a trilogy of fantasy novels by Philip Pullman comprising Northern Lights (1995, published as The Golden Compass in North America), The Subtle Knife (1997) and The Amber Spygla...


  6. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers

    Image of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

    A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius (ISBN 0-330-48455-9) is a memoir by Dave Eggers released in 2000. It chronicles his stewardship of younger brother Christopher "Toph" Eggers following the ...


  7. No Logo by Naomi Klein


  8. Nickel And Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich

    Image of Nickel And Dimed

    Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America is a book written by Barbara Ehrenreich. Written from the perspective of the undercover journalist, it sets out to investigate the impact of the 199...


  9. The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen

    Image of The Corrections

    The Corrections is a 2001 novel by American author Jonathan Franzen. It revolves around the troubles of an elderly Midwestern couple and their three adult children, tracing their lives from the mid...


  10. Austerlitz by W. G. Sebald

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    Austerlitz, the internationally acclaimed masterpiece by "one of the most gripping writers imaginable" (The New York Review of Books), is the story of a man?s search for the answer to his life?s ce...


  11. A Life's Work: On Becoming a Mother by Rachel Cusk

    Image of A Life's Work: On Becoming a Mother

    Rachel Cusk (born in Canada in 1967) is an author.


  12. Atonement by Ian McEwan

    Image of Atonement

    Atonement is a 2001 novel by British author Ian McEwan. It tells the story of protagonist Briony Tallis's crime and how it changes her life, as well as those of her sister Cecilia and her lover Rob...


  13. Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

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    Fingersmith is a 2002 Victorian-inspired crime fiction novel by Sarah Waters.


  14. London Orbital: A Year Walking Around the M25 by Iain Sinclair

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  15. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon

    Image of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time

    The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time is a 2003 novel by British writer Mark Haddon. It won the 2003 Whitbread Book of the Year and the 2004 Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First B...


  16. Landing Light by Don Paterson


  17. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

    Image of The Kite Runner

    The Kite Runner is a novel by the author Khaled Hosseini. Published in 2003 by Riverhead Books, it is Hosseini's first novel, and was adapted into a film of the same name in 2007.


  18. Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss

    Image of Eats, Shoots and Leaves

    Eats, Shoots & Leaves is a non-fiction book written by Lynne Truss, the former host of the BBC Radio 4's Cutting a Dash programme. In the book, published in 2003, Truss bemoans the state of punctua...


  19. 2666 by Roberto Bolano

    Image of 2666

    2666 (2004) is the last novel written by Chilean-born novelist Roberto Bolaño. Depicting the unsolved and ongoing serial murders of Ciudad Juárez (Santa Teresa in the novel), the Eastern Front in W...


  20. Being Jordan by Katie Price


  21. The 9/11 Commission Report by 9/11 Commission


  22. Earth: An Intimate History by Richard Fortey

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  23. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

    Image of Cloud Atlas

    Cloud Atlas (published in the United States as Cloud Atlas: A Novel) is a 2004 novel, the third book by British author David Mitchell. It won the British Book Awards Literary Fiction Award and the ...


  24. Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama


  25. The Line of Beauty by Alan Hollinghurst

    Image of The Line of Beauty

    The Line of Beauty is a 2004 Booker Prize-winning novel by Alan Hollinghurst. Set in the United Kingdom in the early to mid-1980s, the story surrounds the post-Oxford life of the young gay prota...


  26. Small Island by Andrea Levy

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    Hortense Joseph arrives in London from Jamaica in 1948 with her life in her suitcase, her heart broken, her resolve intact. Her husband, Gilbert Joseph, returns from the war expecting to be receive...


  27. Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner

    Image of Freakonomics

    Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything is a 2005 non-fiction book by University of Chicago economist Steven Levitt and New York Times journalist Stephen J. Dubner. T...


  28. The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion

    Image of The Year of Magical Thinking

    The Year of Magical Thinking, by Joan Didion, is an account of the year following the death of the author's husband John Gregory Dunne (1932–2003). Published by Knopf in October 2005, the book was ...


  29. Untold Stories by Alan Bennett

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  30. Postwar by Tony Judt

    Image of Postwar

    Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945 is a 2005 book by historian Tony Judt, the Director of New York University's Erich Maria Remarque Institute. The book examines the history of Europe from the...


  31. Saturday by Ian McEwan

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    In his triumphant new novel, Ian McEwan, the bestselling author of Atonement, follows an ordinary man through a Saturday whose high promise gradually turns nightmarish. Henry Perowne–a neurosurgeon...


  32. The Weather Makers by Tim Flannery

    Image of The Weather Makers

    The Weather Makers: The History and Future Impact of Climate Change (2005) is a book by Tim Flannery.


  33. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

    Image of The Da Vinci Code

    The Da Vinci Code is a 2003 mystery-detective fiction novel written by American author Dan Brown. It follows symbologist Robert Langdon and Sophie Neveu as they investigate a murder in Paris's Louv...


  34. The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright

    Image of The Looming Tower

    The Looming Tower: Al Qaeda and the Road to 9/11 is a historical look at the way in which Al-Qaeda came into being, the background for various terrorist attacks and how they were investigated, and ...


  35. The Road by Cormac McCarthy

    Image of The Road

    The Road is a 2006 novel by American writer Cormac McCarthy. It is a post-apocalyptic tale of a journey taken by a father and his young son over a period of several months, across a landscape blast...


  36. The Audacity of Hope by Barack Obama

    Image of The Audacity of Hope

    The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream is the second book written by then-Senator Barack Obama. In the fall of 2006 it became number one on both the New York Times and Amaz...


  37. The Revenge of Gaia by James Lovelock


  38. The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins

    Image of The God Delusion

    The God Delusion is a 2006 bestselling non-fiction book by British biologist Richard Dawkins, professorial fellow of New College, Oxford, and inaugural holder of the Charles Simonyi Chair for the P...


  39. Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

    Image of Half of a Yellow Sun

    Half of a Yellow Sun is a novel that was written by Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. It was first published in 2006 by Knopf/Anchor and tells the story of two sisters Olanna and Kainene du...


  40. The Rest is Noise by Alex Ross


  41. The Blair Years by Alastair Campbell

    Image of The Blair Years

    The Blair Years is a book by Alastair Campbell, featuring extracts from his diaries detailing the period during which he worked for Tony Blair. Published by Random House, the book was released on 9...


  42. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

    Image of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is the seventh and final of the Harry Potter novels written by British author J. K. Rowling.


  43. The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid

    Image of The Reluctant Fundamentalist

    The Reluctant Fundamentalist is a novel by Mohsin Hamid that was published in 2007. The novel takes place during the course of a single evening in an outdoor Lahore cafe, where a bearded Pakistani ...


  44. Home by Marilynne Robinson

    Image of Home

    Home is a novel written by the Pulitzer Prize-winning American author Marilynne Robinson. Published in 2008, it is Robinson's third novel, preceded by Housekeeping in 1980 and Gilead in 2004.


  45. Change We Can Believe In by Barack Obama

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  46. The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science by Richard Holmes

    Image of The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science

    The Age of Wonder: How the romantic generation discovered the beauty and terror of Science is a 2008 popular science book about the history of science written by Richard Holmes. In it, the author d...


  47. The Suspicions of Mr Whicher by Kate Summerscale


  48. The Forever War by Dexter Filkins

    Image of The Forever War

    The Forever War is a non-fiction book by American journalist Dexter Filkins about his observations on assignment in Afghanistan and Iraq during the Iraq War. The book made the New York Times Book R...


  49. Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín


  50. Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel

    Image of Wolf Hall

    Wolf Hall (2009) is a Man Booker Prize-winning novel by English author Hilary Mantel, published by Fourth Estate. Set in the 1520s, it is about Thomas Cromwell's rise to power in the Tudor court of...


  51. Netherland by Joseph O'Neill

    Image of Netherland

    Netherland (2008) is a critically acclaimed novel by Joseph O'Neill. It concerns the life of a Dutchman living in New York in the wake of the September 11 attacks who takes up cricket and starts pl...