Tennessee Williams

Tennessee Williams was an American playwright and author of many stage classics. He is best known for his plays 'A Streetcar Named Desire', 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof', and 'The Glass Menagerie'. His work often explores themes of human fragility and the complexity of relationships.


This list of books are ONLY the books that have been ranked on the lists that are aggregated on this site. This is not a comprehensive list of all books by this author.

  1. 1. A Streetcar Named Desire

    "A Streetcar Named Desire" is a classic American play that explores themes of desire, desperation, and decay through the story of Blanche DuBois, a former schoolteacher from a once-wealthy Southern family who moves in with her sister Stella and her brutish husband Stanley in their cramped apartment in New Orleans. As Blanche grapples with her own past traumas and the harsh realities of her present situation, her mental state deteriorates, leading to a tragic end. The play presents a stark contrast between the genteel Old South and the gritty, working-class reality of post-WWII America.

    The 399th Greatest Book of All Time
  2. 2. The Glass Menagerie

    A memory play set in St. Louis during the Great Depression, it follows the story of the Wingfield family. The protagonist, Tom, struggles with his role as the breadwinner for his overbearing mother, Amanda, and his physically and emotionally fragile sister, Laura, who spends her time with her collection of glass animals. The family's life takes a turn when Tom invites a gentleman caller home for dinner to meet Laura, causing tensions to rise and secrets to unfold.

    The 1094th Greatest Book of All Time
  3. 3. The Roman Spring Of Mrs. Stone

    The novel explores the emotional and psychological journey of a wealthy and recently widowed American actress who has retired to Rome. As she grapples with the fading allure of her beauty and career, she becomes involved with a young Italian man, who is revealed to be a gigolo. Their complex relationship is further complicated by the manipulative Contessa, who facilitates these liaisons. The story delves into themes of aging, desire, and the transactional nature of relationships, set against the backdrop of the evocative and decaying grandeur of post-war Rome.

    The 2607th Greatest Book of All Time
  4. 4. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

    This classic play explores the turbulent relationships within a wealthy Southern family. The main characters include an alcoholic ex-football player, his wife, and his domineering father, who is dying of cancer. The story revolves around the family's internal conflict, deceit, and denial as they grapple with the patriarch's impending death and the question of who will inherit the family's wealth. Themes of sexual desire, repression, greed, and death are prominent in this intense, emotional drama.

    The 4198th Greatest Book of All Time
  5. 5. Summer And Smoke

    The play centers around the complex emotional interplay between two central characters: a high-strung, unmarried minister's daughter and a charming, unsentimental doctor's son. Set in a small town in Mississippi at the turn of the 20th century, the narrative explores themes of romantic longing, societal expectations, and the conflict between the spiritual and the physical. As the daughter grapples with her puritanical beliefs and her attraction to the doctor's son, their tumultuous relationship unfolds against a backdrop of Southern heat and repression, ultimately questioning whether true connection can be found in the convergence of the soul and the flesh.

    The 6796th Greatest Book of All Time
  6. 6. Sweet Bird Of Youth

    The play centers around a young, handsome drifter named Chance Wayne, who returns to his hometown with a faded movie star, hoping to capitalize on her fame to achieve his own success and reclaim his former love, Heavenly Finley. However, Chance's dreams of redemption and stardom are threatened by his tarnished reputation and the machinations of Heavenly's father, a corrupt political figure who seeks to drive him out of town to protect his family's name. As Chance confronts the consequences of his past actions, the narrative explores themes of lost youth, the corrupting influence of power, and the elusive nature of fame and personal fulfillment.

    The 10106th Greatest Book of All Time