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TIME Magazine’s All-TIME 100 Novels


Checking out all the books on the 2013 Man Booker Prize shortlist and longlist had me wondering which of the titles will wind up on book lists like 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die, BBC’s The Big Read, and Book Riot’s Zero to Well Read over the next few years. So, of course, I just had to go out and find even more prominent booklists to see what the other competition would be! I’m nothing if not predictable, am I right? Now, if any of you have ever looked up book lists in the Google machine, then you’ve most likely already come across TIME Magazine’s All-TIME 100 Novels list. Put together by Richard Lacayo and Lev Grossman, the list features the top English-language books published after 1923, which is the year that TIME Magazine began. This obviously excludes many prominent titles, which not everyone was happy about (what book lover isn’t at least a little peeved about Pride and Prejudice not making a top 100 book list?), but it did make room for some interesting novels that you don’t always see on these sorts of lists, like the classic graphic novel Watchmen and the Irish modernist novel, At Swim-Two-Birds.

As always, the novels I’ve read are bolded. My count for this list is too depressing to write out, so I’ll let you tally up the number for yourself and judge me as I deserve to be judged. How many All-TIME novels have you read, dear readers?

  • The Adventures of Augie March~Saul Bellow
  • All the King’s Men~Robert Penn Warren
  • American Pastoral~Philip Roth
  • An American Tragedy~Theodore Dreiser
  • Animal Farm~George Orwell
  • Appointment in Samarra~John O’Hara
  • Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret~Judy Blume
  • The Assistant~Bernard Malamud
  • At Swim-Two-Birds~Flann O’Brien
  • Atonement~Ian McEwan
  • Beloved~Toni Morrison
  • The Berlin Stories~Christopher Isherwood
  • The Big Sleep~Raymond Chandler
  • The Blind Assassin~Margaret Atwood
  • Blood Meridian~Cormac McCarthy
  • Brideshead Revisited~Evelyn Waugh
  • The Bridge of San Luis Rey~Thornton Wilder
  • Call It Sleep~Henry Roth
  • Catch-22~Joseph Heller
  • The Catcher in the Rye~J. D. Salinger
  • A Clockwork Orange~Anthony Burgess
  • The Confessions of Nat Turner~William Styron
  • The Corrections~Jonathan Franzen
  • The Crying of Lot 49~Thomas Pynchon
  • A Dance to the Music of Time: First Movement~Anthony Powell
  • The Day of the Locust~Nathanael West
  • Death Comes for the Archbishop~Willa Cather
  • A Death in the Family~James Agee
  • The Death of the Heart~Elizabeth Bowen
  • Deliverance~James Dickey
  • Dog Soldiers~Robert Stone
  • Falconer~John Cheever
  • The French Lieutenant’s Woman~John Fowles
  • The Golden Notebook~Doris Lessing
  • Go Tell It on the Mountain~James Baldwin
  • Gone with the Wind~Margaret Mitchell
  • The Grapes of Wrath~John Steinbeck
  • Gravity’s Rainbow~Thomas Pynchon
  • The Great Gatsby~F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • A Handful of Dust~Evelyn Waugh
  • The Heart is a Lonely Hunter~Carson McCullers
  • The Heart of the Matter~Graham Greene
  • Herzog~Saul Bellow
  • Housekeeping~Marilynne Robinson
  • A House for Mr. Biswas~V. S. Naipaul
  • I, Claudius~Robert Graves
  • Infinite Jest~David Foster Wallace
  • Invisible Man~Ralph Ellison
  • Light in August~William Faulkner
  • The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe~C. S. Lewis
  • Lolita~Vladimir Nabokov
  • Lord of the Flies~William Golding
  • The Lord of the Rings~J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Loving~Henry Green
  • Lucky Jim~Kingsley Amis
  • The Man Who Loved Children~Christina Stead
  • Midnight’s Children~Salman Rushdie
  • Money~Martin Amis
  • The Moviegoer~Walker Percy
  • Mrs. Dalloway~Virginia Woolf
  • Naked Lunch~William S. Burroughs
  • Native Son~Richard Wright
  • Neuromancer~William Gibson
  • Never Let Me Go~Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Nineteen Eighty-Four~George Orwell
  • On the Road~Jack Kerouac
  • One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest~Ken Kesey
  • The Painted Bird~Jerzy Kosinski
  • Pale Fire~Vladimir Nabokov
  • A Passage to India~E. M. Forster
  • Play It As It Lays~Joan Didion
  • Portnoy’s Complaint~Philip Roth
  • Possession~A. S. Byatt
  • The Power and the Glory~Graham Greene
  • The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie~Muriel Spark
  • Rabbit, Run~John Updike
  • Ragtime~E. L. Doctorow
  • The Recognitions~William Gaddis
  • Red Harvest~Dashiell Hammett
  • Revolutionary Road~Richard Yates
  • The Sheltering Sky~Paul Bowles
  • Slaughterhouse-Five~Kurt Vonnegut
  • Snow Crash~Neal Stephenson
  • The Sot-Weed Factor~John Barth
  • The Sound and the Fury~William Faulkner
  • The Sportswriter~Richard Ford
  • The Spy Who Came in from the Cold~John le Carre
  • The Sun Also Rises~Ernest Hemingway
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God~Zora Neale Hurston
  • Things Fall Apart~Chinua Achebe
  • To Kill a Mockingbird~Harper Lee
  • To the Lighthouse~Virginia Woolf
  • Tropic of Cancer~Henry Miller
  • Ubik~Philip K. Dick
  • Under the Net~Iris Murdoch
  • Under the Volcano~Malcolm Lowry
  • Watchmen~Alan Moore
  • White Noise~Don DeLillo
  • White Teeth~Zadie Smith
  • Wide Sargasso Sea~Jean Rhys

7 thoughts on “TIME Magazine’s All-TIME 100 Novels

      • The types of books I enjoy reading are more based on scientific findings on human behavior. Sexual behavior, anything about how the brain or emotions work… I just love it. My favorite so far is ‘Love at Goon Park’ which is a story of Harry Harlow, the man who did the love studies on monkeys.

        But it does appear as if I need to give some actual stories a try. I’d love to get some classics under my belt! It’s funny that they had ‘Are you there, God… It’s Me Margret’ because that is what I loosely based the title of my first entry off. “Hello Again Writing.. Its me Connie.”

      • Ah, see those are books that I’ve always wanted to read but have only read abstracts of in my classes. I’d love to get one of those under my belt! Haha nice! That one actually shows up on most English-language reading lists and is almost guaranteed a place on American ones, it’s a classic now. Still need to read it myself though

  1. Pingback: Entertainment Weekly’s 100 All-Time Greatest Novels Ever | The Bewildered 20-Something Writer

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