The Greatest Books Since 1970

How is this list generated?

This list is generated from 130 "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. If you're interested in the details about how the rankings are generated and which lists are the most important(in my eyes) please check out the list details page.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or corrections please feel free to e-mail me.

  1. 951 . Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead by Olga Tokarczuk

    Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead (Polish: Prowadź swój pług przez kości umarłych) is a 2009 novel by Olga Tokarczuk. Originally published in Polish by Wydawnictwo Literackie, it was later...

  2. 952 . Signs Preceding the End of the World by Yuri Herrera

    Signs Preceding the End of the World is one of the most arresting novels to be published in Spanish in the last ten years. Yuri Herrera does not simply write about the border between Mexico and the...

    - Google
  3. 953 . The Electric Michelangelo by Sarah Hall

    On the windswept front of Morecambe Bay, Cy Parks spends his childhood years first in a guest house for consumptives run by his mother and then as apprentice to alcoholic tattoo-artist Eliot Riley....

    - Google
  4. 954 . Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang

    Stories of Your Life and Others is a collection of short stories by American writer Ted Chiang originally published in 2002 by Tor Books. It collects Chiang's first eight stories. All of the storie...

  5. 955 . Ghostwritten by David Mitchell

    An apocalyptic cult member carries out a gas attack on a rush-hour metro, but what links him to a jazz buff in downtown Tokyo? Or to a Mongolian gangster, a woman on a holy mountain who talks to a ...

    - Google
  6. 956 . Harvest by Jim Crace

    Harvest is a novel by Jim Crace. Crace has stated that Harvest would be his final novel.Harvest was shortlisted for the 2013 Man Booker Prize, shortlisted for the inaugural Goldsmiths Prize, short...

  7. 957 . Coraline by Neil Gaiman

    Coraline is a dark fantasy children's novella by British author Neil Gaiman, published in 2002 by Bloomsbury and Harper Collins. It was awarded the 2003 Hugo Award for Best Novella, the 2003 Nebula...

  8. 958 . Sixty Stories by Donald Barthelme

    Presents a collection of sixty short stories by twentieth-century American author Donald Barthelme.

    - Google
  9. 959 . Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick by Philip K. Dick

    Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick contains twenty-one of Dick’s most dazzling and resonant stories, which span his entire career and show a world-class writer working at the peak of his powers. In...

    - Google
  10. 960 . Case Histories by Kate Atkinson

    a breathtaking story of families divided, love lost and found, and the mysteries of fate.

  11. 961 . That They May Face the Rising Sun by John McGahern

    Joe and Kate Ruttledge, have come to rural Ireland from London in search of a different life. In passages of beauty and truth, the drama of a year in their lives and those of the memorable characte...

  12. 962 . Visitation by Jenny Erpenbeck

    A bestseller in Germany, Visitation has established Jenny Erpenbeck as one of Europe’s most significant contemporary authors. A house on the forested bank of a Brandenburg lake outside Berlin (once...

    - Google
  13. 963 . Light by M. John Harrison

    The stories of three people--modern-day Michael Kearney who plays a part in a discovery that will make interstellar travel possible; Seria Mau Genlicher, a spaceship pilot modified to interact dire...

    - Google
  14. 964 . The Siege by Helen Dunmore

    The Siege is a historical novel by the English writer Helen Dunmore. It is set in Leningrad just before and during the Siege of Leningrad by German forces in World War II.

  15. 965 . The Accidental by Ali Smith

    The Accidental is a 2005 novel by Scottish author Ali Smith. It follows a middle-class English family who are visited by an uninvited guest, Amber, while they are on holiday in a small village in N...

  16. 966 . Darkmans by Nicola Barker

    Darkmans is a novel by Nicola Barker written in 2007. The 838 page book takes place in Ashford, in Kent and focuses on a father-son pair named Daniel and Kane Beede. The book was a finalist for the...

  17. 967 . A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

    A Little Life is a 2015 novel by American novelist Hanya Yanagihara. The novel was written over the course of eighteen months. Despite the length and difficult subject matter it became a bestseller.

  18. 968 . Broken Glass by Alain Mabanckou

    "A man sits in a bar, ruminating on his own failures and conversing with an ensemble of memorable characters that pass in and out of the same space. It’s archetypal stuff, but Mabanckou transforms ...

    - Google
  19. 969 . No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy

    Llewelyn Moss, hunting antelope near the Rio Grande, stumbles upon a transaction gone horribly wrong. Finding bullet-ridden bodies, several kilos of heroin, and a caseload of cash, he faces a choic...

    - Google
  20. 970 . The Statement by Brian Moore

    The hunt is on for an elusive Nazi war criminal in this “absorbing intellectual thriller that keeps you guessing . . . until the final page” (The New York Times). For four decades Pierre Brossard h...

    - Google
  21. 971 . Where I'm Calling From by Raymond Carver

    Where I'm Calling From is a short story and the title of a collection of thirty-seven short stories by American author Raymond Carver. This story, as well as many of his others, focuses on the effe...

  22. 972 . Cities of the Plain by Cormac McCarthy

    Cities of the Plain is the final volume of American novelist Cormac McCarthy's "The Border Trilogy." A film adaptation to be directed by Andrew Dominik has been announced for release in 2012. The t...

  23. 973 . The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

    "Gabriel García Márquez meets Umberto Eco meets Jorge Luis Borges for a sprawling magic show." --The New York Times Book Review A New York Times Bestseller Barcelona, 1945: A city slowly heals in t...

    - Google
  24. 974 . The Crossing by Cormac McCarthy

    The Crossing (ISBN 0-394-57475-3) is a novel by prize-winning American author Cormac McCarthy, published in 1994 by Alfred A. Knopf. The story is the second installment of McCarthy's "Border Trilogy".

  25. 975 . Betty Blue: The Story of a Passion by Philippe Djian

    BETTY BLUE remains a cult book and film nearly twenty years since its first outing. The extraordinary story of an erotic, doomed love affair has transfixed hundreds of thousands of readers around t...

    - Google
  26. 976 . The Day of the Jackal by Frederick Forsyth

    #1 New York Times bestselling author Frederick Forsyth’s unforgettable novel of a conspiracy, a killer, and the one man who can stop him… He is known only as “The Jackal”—a cold, calculating assass...

    - Google
  27. 977 . Alberta empfängt einen Liebhaber by Birgit Vanderbeke

    no translation. Original is in German

    - Google
  28. 978 . Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood

    Cat's Eye is the story of Elaine Risley, a controversial painter who returns to Toronto, the city of her youth, for a retrospective of her art. Engulfed by vivid images of the past, she reminisces ...

    - Google
  29. 979 . Die neuen Leiden des jungen W. by Ulrich Plenzdorf

    Die neuen Leiden des jungen W. (The new Sorrows of Young W.) is an analytic collage-style novel (montage novel) and play by Ulrich Plenzdorf. - Wikipedia

    - Google
  30. 980 . South of the Border, West of the Sun: A Novel by Haruki Murakami

    Following the massive complexity of The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle--Haruki Murakami's best-selling, award-winning novel--comes this deceptively simple love story, a contemporary rendering of the romanc...

    - Google
  31. 981 . Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

    Little Fires Everywhere is a 2017 novel by American author Celeste Ng. It is her second novel and takes place in Shaker Heights, Ohio where Ng grew up. She described writing about her hometown as "...

  32. 982 . The Secret Scripture by Sebastian Barry

    The Secret Scripture is a 2008 novel written by Irish playwright Sebastian Barry.

  33. 983 . Clockers by Richard Price

    Clockers is a 1992 novel by American author Richard Price.

  34. 984 . Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke

    Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell is the first novel by British writer Susanna Clarke. An alternate history set in 19th-century England around the time of the Napoleonic Wars, it is based on the premis...

  35. 985 . Circe by Madeline Miller

    "A bold and subversive retelling of the goddess's story," this #1 New York Times bestseller is "both epic and intimate in its scope, recasting the most infamous female figure from the Odyssey as a ...

    - Google
  36. 986 . The Public Burning by Robert Coover

    The Public Burning reimagines the three fateful days in 1953 that culminated with the execution of alleged atomic spies Julius and Ethel Rosenberg. Vice President Richard Nixon—the voraciously ambi...

    - Google
  37. 987 . Masterworks of the Classical Haida Mythtellers by Robert Bringhurst

    Robert Bringhurst (born October 16, 1946) is a Canadian poet, typographer and author. He is the author of The Elements of Typographic Style – a reference book of typefaces, glyphs and the visual an...

  38. 988 . Mystic River by Dennis Lehane

    Mystic River is a novel by Dennis Lehane that was published in 2001. It won the 2002 Dilys Award and was made into an Academy Award-winning film in 2003.

  39. 989 . Take It Or Leave It by Raymond Federman

    Moving freely from past to present and place to place leap-frogging from digression to digression, "Take It or Leave It" recounts the hilarious and amourous adventures of Frenchy, a young man who s...

    - Google
  40. 990 . Say You’re One of Them by Uwem Akpan

    Uwem Akpan, born the 19 May 1971, is a Nigerian Jesuit priest and the author of Say You’re One of Them (2008), a collection of five stories (each set in a different African country) published by Li...

  41. 991 . Swamplandia! by Karen Russell

    Swamplandia! is a 2011 novel by Karen Russell. Set in the Ten Thousand Islands, off the southwest coast of Florida, it is the story of the Bigtree family of alligator wrestlers who live on Swamplan...

  42. 992 . Black Water by Joyce Carol Oates

    Black Water is a 1992 novella by Joyce Carol Oates.

  43. 993 . The Leavers by Lisa Ko

    Lisa Ko is an American writer. Her debut novel, The Leavers, won the 2016 PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction and was a finalist for the 2017 National Book Award for Fiction. She has ...

  44. 994 . The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson

    The Way of Kings is an epic fantasy novel written by American author Brandon Sanderson and the first book in The Stormlight Archive series. The novel was published on August 31, 2010 by Tor Books. ...

  45. 995 . The Rifles by William T. Vollmann

    When Sir John Franklin defies the warnings of native peoples and embarks on his fourth Arctic voyage in the 1840s, his journey ends in tragedy in a novel of America's ongoing tragedy of greed, igno...

    - Google
  46. 996 . Wolf in White Van by John Darnielle

    Wolf in White Van is the first novel by the American author and singer-songwriter John Darnielle. Wolf in White Van tells the story of Sean Phillips, a reclusive game designer whose face has been s...

  47. 997 . The Collected Stories of Amy Hempel by Amy Hempel

    Amy Hempel (born December 14, 1951) is an American short story writer, journalist, and university professor at Brooklyn College.

  48. 998 . Dhalgren by Samuel R. Delany

    In Bellona, reality has come unglued, and a mad civilization takes root A young half–Native American known as the Kid has hitchhiked from Mexico to the midwestern city Bellona—only something is wro...

    - Google
  49. 999 . The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates

    The Water Dancer is a 2019 novel by Ta-Nehisi Coates. It is his first novel and was published on September 24, 2019, by One World, an imprint of Random House. It is a surrealist story set in the pr...

  50. 1000 . The Arrival by Shaun Tan