Goodreads Popular Books List

I love lists. It’s one of the reasons I participate in Top Ten Tuesday most weeks. One of my favorite lists was BBC’s The Big Read Top 100. Every few years I’d take stock and post the list highlighting the books I had read since the last time I posted it. It was a lot of fun and I miss doing it.

Anyway, back in May, Goodreads posted a similar list. This list is a collection of the 100 most popular books since 1922 and is sorted by publication year. You can click the link to see how Goodreads determined each year’s book.

I didn’t see the original post back in May. I did see Susan’s post on Bloggin’ ‘Bout Books. Because I love lists so much, I decided to join the fun. I’ll put a next to the ones I’ve read, a next to the ones on my TBR, and an next to the ones I’ve attempted and haven’t finished. Without further ado, here’s Goodreads’ list:

  1. Ulysses by James Joyce
  2. The Prophet by Khalil Gibran
  3. We by Yevgeny Zamyatin
  4. The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald
  5. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
  6. To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
  7. The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall
  8. Passing by Nella Larsen
  9. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
  10. The Joy of Cooking by Irma S Rombauer
  11. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  12. In Praise of Shadows by Jun’ichirō Tanizaki
  13. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  14. Gaudy Night by Dorothy L Sayers
  15. Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner
  16. Their Eyes were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  17. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
  18. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  19. Native Son by Richard Wright
  20. The Library of Babel by Jorge Luis Borges
  21. The Stranger by Albert Camus
  22. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  23. Ficciones by Jorge Luis Borges
  24. The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams
  25. The Member of the Wedding by Carson McCullers
  26. No Exit by Jean Paul-Sartre
  27. I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
  28. 1984 by George Orwell
  29. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis
  30. Foundation by Isaac Asimov
  31. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
  32. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  33. The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien
  34. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  35. Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin
  36. Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
  37. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
  38. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
  39. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  40. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
  41. Silent Spring by Rachel Carson
  42. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
  43. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
  44. Dune by Frank Herbert
  45. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead by Tom Stoppard
  46. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
  47. Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion
  48. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
  49. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
  50. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S Thompson
  51. Ways of Seeing by John Berger
  52. The Princess Bride by William Goldman
  53. Carrie by Stephen King
  54. Salem’s Lot by Stephen King
  55. The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston
  56. Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
  57. The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
  58. Kindred by Octavia E Butler
  59. The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
  60. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
  61. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
  62. The Queen’s Gambit by Walter Tevis
  63. The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
  64. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  65. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
  66. Watchmen by Alan Moore
  67. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
  68. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
  69. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
  70. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
  71. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
  72. The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
  73. The Wind Up Bird Chronicles by Haruki Murakami
  74. The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
  75. A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
  76. Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond
  77. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  78. Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
  79. House of Leaves by Mark Z Danielwski
  80. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
  81. Coraline by Neil Gaiman
  82. The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
  83. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
  84. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
  85. The Road by Cormac McCarthy
  86. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  87. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer
  88. Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
  89. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
  90. The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
  91. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  92. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
  93. Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
  94. Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
  95. When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
  96. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
  97. Educated by Tara Westover
  98. Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
  99. The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett
  100. Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid

This is a very interesting list, isn’t it? I’m surprised that none of the Harry Potter books or Twilight Saga are on it. Harry Potter probably didn’t make the cut because of the controversy with JKR, which is a real shame. I imagine that Twilight wasn’t included because of the polarization the series causes. Are there any books you expected to be on the list that aren’t?

I learned in DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) that life is full of dialectics, or two opposing truths. In this case, the two opposing truths are: 1) I don’t agree with JKR’s stance regarding trans people, and 2) I still love Harry Potter.

If my count is correct, I’ve read 14 of the 100 and I have 27 on my TBR. What about you? How many have you read? How many are on your TBR?

About Jenni Elyse


Hi, I'm Jenni. I’m an eclectic reader. I mostly read fiction and I favor fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, mystery, thrillers, and romance. The more kissing in a book the better!
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8 replies
    • Jenni Elyse
      Jenni Elyse says:

      I understand. Many people who didn’t love Twilight and the other books didn’t finish the series. And, a lot of people who loved Twilight hated the last book. So, you may have dodged a bullet. 😀 I loved Breaking Dawn, but I’m in the minority. LOL.

      Reply
  1. Wendy Williams
    Wendy Williams says:

    I should try this list too, but I don’t think I’d get very many. I agree with you about JKR, I love her books, but not her views. And it’s very surprising none of her book are on the list as those books have to be the most popular at least in sales for the years they were released.

    Reply
  2. Susan
    Susan says:

    Yeah sort of an interesting list. Some books are lighter popular fiction and others are more literary fiction and a few are nonfiction. I’m surprised Malibu Rising was the pick in 2021 … I didn’t read that one but was that really the pick of the year? Hmm.

    Reply

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