200 Greatest Novels of the
20th Century

Criteria: These novels published in the 1900s are ranked according to their initial and lasting acclaim, influence as well as initial and lasting popularity.

Disclaimer: This list is strongly influenced by the Western canon of literature. This means that in the broader scope of a global literature certain regions may be underrepresented, among them India, China, Africa and Latin America.

List Begun: 2022-09-24
Greatest Novels of the 20th Century
  1. Ulysses by James Joyce
  2. In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust
  3. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  4. The Trial by Franz Kafka
  5. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  6. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
  7. To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
  8. The Stranger by Albert Camus
  9. The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
10. The Magic Mountain by Thomas Mann
11. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce
12. Nineteen Eighty Four by George Orwell
13. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
14. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
15. Sons and Lovers by D.H. Lawrence
16. Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner
17. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
18. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
19. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
20. Beloved by Toni Morrison
21. The Ambassadors by Henry James
22. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
23. Molloy/Malone Dies/The Unnamable by Samuel Beckett
24. The Man Without Qualities by Robert Musil
25. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
26. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
27. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
28. Journey to the End of Night by Louis-Ferdinand Céline
29. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
30. The Castle by Franz Kafka
31. Buddenbrooks by Thomas Mann
32. Women in Love by D.H. Lawrence
33. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce
34. Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon
35. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
36. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
37. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
38. A Passage to India by E.M. Forster
39. Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie
40. For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway
41. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
42. Native Son by Richard Wright
43. Animal Farm by George Orwell
44. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
45. On the Road by Jack Kerouac
46. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
47. The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
48. The Plague by Albert Camus
49. Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov
50. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
51. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
52. The Tin Drum by Günter Grass
53. Nostromo by Joseph Conrad
54. My Antonia by Willa Cather
55. An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser
56. Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis
57. Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre
58. Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse
59. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
60. The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton
61. The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford
62. The Good Soldier Svejk by Jaroslav Hašek
63. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace
64. Under the Volcano by Malcolm Lowry
65. A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway
66. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
67. The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
68. And Quiet Flows the Don by Mikhail Sholokhov
69. Orlando: A Biography by Virginia Woolf
70. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
71. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
72. Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
73. Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys
74. Howards End by E.M. Forster
75. Rabbit, Run by John Updike
76. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
77. Nineteen Nineteen/The 42nd Parallel/The Big Money by John Dos Passos
78. Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
79. Death in Venice by Thomas Mann
80. Light in August by William Faulkner
81. Herzog by Saul Bellow
82. A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
83. The Golden Notebook by Doris Lessing
84. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
85. All the King's Men by Robert Penn Warren
86. Doctor Faustus by Thomas Mann
87. The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler
88. All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque
89. Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
90. The Call of the Wild by Jack London
91. Memoirs of Hadrian by Marguerite Yourcenar
92. Blindness by José Saramago
93. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
94. A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
95. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey
96. Rabbit Is Rich by John Updike
97. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
98. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling
99. The Moviegoer by Walker Percy
100. Pedro Paramo by Juan Rulfo

101. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett
102. Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham
103. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark
104. Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
105. The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro
106. Confessions of Zeno by Italo Svevo
107. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
108. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
109. The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle
110. The Waves by Virginia Woolf
111. Rabbit Redux by John Updike
112. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
113. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
114. The Leopard by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa
115. A Room With a View by E.M. Forster
116. The Sea, The Sea by Iris Murdoch
117. Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe
118. The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
119. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami
120. Independent People by Halldor Laxness
121. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
122. The World According to Garp by John Irving
123. The Stand by Stephen King
124. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
125. Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
126. Portnoy's Complaint by Philip Roth
127. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
128. Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein
129. Kim by Rudyard Kipling
130. Rabbit at Rest by John Updike
131. Go Tell It on the Mountain by James Baldwin
132. Dune by Frank Herbert
133. The Power and the Glory by Graham Greene
134. Berlin Alexanderplatz by Alfred Döblin
135. Petersburg by Andrei Bely
136. Hopscotch by Julio Cortázar
137. The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
138. White Teeth by Zadie Smith
139. The Death of Artemio Cruz by Carlos Fuentes
140. Cry, The Beloved Country by Alan Paton
141. Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
142. A House for Mr. Biswas by V.S. Naipaul
143. Season of Migration to the North by Al-Tayyib Salih
144. Children of Gebelawi by Naguib Mahfouz
145. Brighton Rock by Graham Greene
146. Disgrace by J.M. Coetzee
147. The End of the Affair by Graham Greene
148. American Pastoral by Philip Roth
149. Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor
150. Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko
151. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
152. Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford
153. The Godfather by Mario Puzo
154. The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy
155. Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler
156. One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
157. Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs
158. Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller
159. The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
160. The Naked and the Dead by Norman Mailer
161. The Secret Agent by Joseph Conrad
162. Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren
163. The Rainbow by D.H. Lawrence
164. Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis
165. The Fall by Albert Camus
166. I, Claudius by Robert Graves
167. The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers
168. White Noise by Don DeLillo
169. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
170. The Adventures of Augie March by Saul Bellow
171. Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates
172. Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
173. The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
174. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
175. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis
176. The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck
177. The Book of Disquiet by Fernando Pessoa
178. Death of Virgil by Hermann Broch
179. Man's Fate by André Malraux
180. The Devil to Pay in the Backlands by Joao Guimaraes Rosa
181. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling
182. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
183. The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
184. Watership Down by Richard Adams
185. All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy
186. The Confusions of Young Törless by Robert Musil
187. The Wings of the Dove by Henry James
188. The War of the End of the World by Mario Vargas Llosa
189. The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje
190. The Counterfeiters by André Gide
191. Neuromancer by William Gibson
192. We by Yevgeny Zamyatin
193. Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder
194. Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie
195. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
196. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
197. A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
198. The Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima
199. Snow Country by Yasunari Kawabata
200. History by Elsa Morante

Ulysses book cover

In Search of Lost Time book cover
In Search of Lost Time

One Hundred Years of Solitude book cover
One Hundred Years of Solitude

The Trial book cover
The Trial

The Great Gatsby book cover
The Great Gatsby

The Sound and the Fury book cover
The Sound and the Fury

To the Lighthouse book cover
To the Lighthouse

The Stranger book cover
The Stranger