Friday, December 12, 2014

The 350 Greatest Novels



I like poring over lists, not just great novels lists. I just like lists. So, I was perusing my list of the 100 Greatest Novels today. I explain the creation of this list in my very first blog entry. If you missed it (and many of you did I’m sad to say), you may now make up for your oversight by clicking HERE. But in short, I took six different greatest novels lists and made one composite. If you want to see the composite list, click HERE.

As I say, I was perusing my list and it made me curious about little things like what author has the most appearances. And that made me curious about the bigger list, which is all novels on all six lists combined. There are 349 different novels. 349 is an untidy number, so on my own authority and discretion, I am adding The Adventures of Tom Sawyer to make it an even 350.

I did a little analysis of all 350, just out of curiosity. The results below show those authors who have more than one novel in the full list. I give highest honor to George Orwell, who although he only had two, 1984 and Animal Farm, both were in the top 10, #2 and #7 respectively. The only other author who comes close is William Faulkner who had two in the top 15, #9 The Sound and the Fury, and #14 As I lay Dying and two more #39 Absalom, Absalom and #62 Light in August. I’ll give one more honorable mention to Henry James who had 7 overall, with 4 in the top 100. No other author had more than two in the top 100.

Charles de Lint: 8 overall, 0 in the top 100. His highest #191 Moonheart

Henry James: 7 overall, 4 in the top 100, highest #74 The Ambassadors

Robert Heinlein: 7 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #106 The Moon is a Harsh Mistress

Ernest Hemingway: 5 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #13 The Sun Also Rises

Fyodor Dostoevsky: 5 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest#27 The Brothers Karamazov

Charles Dickens: 5 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #52 David Copperfield

William Faulkner: 4 overall, all 4 in the top 100, highest #9 The Sound and the Fury

Joseph Conrad:  4 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #21 Heart of Darkness

Leo Tolstoy: 4 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #29 Anna Karenina

Ayn Rand: 4 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #76 Atlas Shrugged

James Joyce: 3 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #5 Ulysses

Evelyn Waugh: 3 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #23 Brideshead Revisited

Jane Austen: 3 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #46 Emma

John Steinbeck: 3 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #8 The Grapes of Wrath

Cormac McCarthy: 3 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #25 Blood Meridian

E.M. Forster: 3 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #38 A Passage to India

Thomas Pynchon: 3 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #48 Gravity’s Rainbow

Saul Bellow: 3 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #51 The Adventures of Augie March

Graham Greene: 3 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #82 The Heart of the Matter

D.H. Lawrence: 3 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #103 The Rainbow

Thomas Hardy: 3 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #122 Jude the Obscure

Salman Rushdie: 3 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #140 Midnights Children

Thomas Mann: 3 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #144 The Magic Mountain

L. Ron Hubbard: 3 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #145 Battlefield Earth

Nevil Shute: 3 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #164 A Town Like Alice

George Orwell: 2 overall, both in the top 100, highest #2 1984

Vladimir Nabokov: 2 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #10 Lolita

Virginia Woolf: 2 overall, 2 in the top 100, highest #14 To the Lighthouse

F. Scott Fitzgerald: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #1 The Great Gatsby

Aldous Huxley: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #16 Brave New World

Kurt Vonnegut: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #18 Slaughterhouse Five

Ken Kesey: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #22 One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

Mark Twain: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #27 The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Garbriel Garcia Marquez: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #39 One Hundred Years of Solitude

John Fowles: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #41 The French Lieutenant’s Woman

Willa Cather: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest # 55 Death Comes for the Archbishop

Toni Morrison: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #57 Beloved

Nathanael West: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #58 The Day of the Locust

Philip Roth: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #67 American Pastoral

V.S. Naipaul: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #68 A Bend in the River

Alexandre Dumas: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #73 The Count of Monte Cristo

Theodore Dreiser: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #75 An American Tragedy

Ford Madox Ford: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #91 The Good Soldier

Marcel Proust: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #94 Remembrance of Things Past

Stendhal: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #95 The Charterhouse of Parma

Stephen King: 2 overall, 1 in the top 100, highest #100 The Stand

John Irving: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #115 A Prayer for Owen Meany

Ray Bradbury: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #116 Fahrenheit 451

Margaret Atwood: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #121 The Handmaid’s Tale

Honore De Balzac: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #159 The Black Sheep

William Styron: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #168 The Confessions of Nat Turner

George Eliot: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #178 Daniel Deronda

John Cheever: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #183 Falconer

Khaled Hosseini: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #192 The Kite Runner


Robertson Davies: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #199 Fifth Business

Albert Camus: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #209 The Stranger

Norman Mailer: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #218 The Naked and the Dead

Dashiell Hammett: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #224 The Maltese Falcon

Edith Wharton: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #231 The Age of Innocence

Kazuo Ishiguro: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #242 Never Let Me Go

Sinclair Lewis: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #252 Main Street

Milan Kundera: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #265 The Unbearable Lightness of Being

John Le Carre: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #270 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

Philip K. Dick: 2 overall, 0 in the top 100, highest #321 Ubik


These 64 authors, accounted for 176 of the 350, and 56 of the top 100. 

3 comments:

  1. Hmmm, I was surprised by some of these, like Twain and James, and some I have never even heard of. Well, I'm not very well read and only started my journey three years ago. That may explain my lack of knowledge.

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  2. Wow! That's a list! I thought that I lived compiling lists, but you win!!

    Curiously some names in there I've never even heard. Working in a bookshop as I do, I thought I'd st least know of them all.

    So many books; so little time

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  3. I've only read 8 of them & there are quite a number I've never heard of before. 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' is one I've seen on lots of lists but have no idea what it's about. I'll put in a plug for Nevil Shute - I really enjoy his books.

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