My List of 100 Memorable Novels. With a Few Memoirs.

A list of 100 favorite/impactful/memorable novels —

Nathan Bransford did it. So did Becky Levine. I’m going to do it, too, and pop on to my blog long enough to post it, so you can think about your 100 favorite books (and perhaps find a few on my list, or Becky’s, or Nathan’s, that you want to read this summer.)

I’ll post them in alphabetical order, with some of the same caveats as Becky gave, and a few of my own.


  • The books will be ones I’ve actually read, all the way through. There are probably many other books out there that would qualify.
  • Some of these books I haven’t read in decades and are on the list because of the impact they had on me when I did read them. If I reread them today, they might not make the list. Others are recent reads that are foremost in my memory–in 10 years, they might not be here. Some books I have re-read so many times, I can quote passages from memory. Others I may not read again, but I’m grateful that I read them, and something of them remains with me. I confess that I sometimes had to jog my memory about the titles of books.
  • They are in alphabetical order, obviously, not order of favoritude. Sorry, but there are no links. I urge you to search for them, though. They’re definitely worth it!
  •  I’m not going to argue about this list. I welcome all comments and discussion, but I won’t be defending anything I’ve put here. That’s why it’s my list. You should definitely make your own and, if you want, leave a link in the comments!
  •  Because some of my favorite books are memoirs, I’ve included some of those.

Here goes:

  1. 84, Charing Cross Road memoir/letters by Helene Hanff (and the sequel, Duchess of Bloomsbury Street, which is often published with it)
  2. A Great Deliverance by Elizabeth George (and all the Inspector Lynley mysteries)
  3. A Handful of Stars by Cynthia Lord
  4. A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park
  5. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf
  6. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
  7. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith MG? YA?
  8. All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriott
  9. An Old Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott MG
  10. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery **
  11. At Home in Mitford by Jan Karon
  12. Beginner’s Luck by Laura Pedersen YA (first of a series – I recommend them all)
  13. Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
  14. Better Nate than Ever by Tim Federle
  15. brown girl dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
  16. Busman’s Holiday by Dorothy L. Sayers
  17. Capture the Flag by Kate Messner
  18. Clearing in the West autobiography by Nellie L. McClung **
  19. Dash by Kirby Larson
  20. Dreaming Suburb by R.F. Delderfield
  21. Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott MG
  22. Ekaterinoslav: One Family’s Passage to America by Jane Yolen
  23. Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey
  24. Emma and Otto and Russell and James by Emma Hooper
  25. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  26. Falling for Henry by Beverley Brenna YA **
  27. Finding Wonders by Jeannine Atkins MG non-fiction but reads like a novel
  28. Five Smooth Stones by Ann Fairbairn
  29. Flygirl by Sherri L. Smith YA
  30. From Anna by Jean Little MG **
  31. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg MG
  32. Gaudy Night by Dorothy L. Sayers (although truthfully, I prefer the Edward Petheridge movie)
  33. George by Alex Gino MG
  34. Gift from the Sea memoir/thoughts by Anne Morrow Lindbergh
  35. God is an Englishman by R.F. Delderfield
  36. Goodnight, Mr. Tom by Michelle Magorian MG/YA
  37. Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky MG
  38. Half a Chance by Cynthia Lord MG
  39. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
  40. Home memoir by Julie Andrews
  41. I Lived on Butterfly Hill by Marjorie Agosin MG
  42. It’s Like This, Cat by Emily Cheney Neville MG
  43. Jane of Lantern Hill by L.M. Montgomery MG **
  44. Jo’s Boys by Louisa May Alcott MG (sequel to Little Men)
  45. Karen memoir/biography by Marie Killilea
  46. Kate by Jean Little MG (sequel to Look Through My Window) **
  47. Kira-Kira by Cynthia Kadohata MG
  48. Life on the Refrigerator Door by Alice Kuipers YA **
  49. Listen for the Singing by Jean Little (sequel to From Anna) MG **
  50. Little by Little writer’s memoir by Jean Little **
  51. Little Men by Louisa May Alcott MG (sequel to Little Women)
  52. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott MG
  53. Look Through My Window by Jean Little MG **
  54. Mandy by Julie Andrews Edwards MG
  55. Mister God, This is Anna by Finn
  56. Ms Bixby’s Last Day by John David Anderson MG
  57. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  58. My Brilliant Career by Miles Franklin (also see if you can find the movie)
  59. Okay for Now by Gary D. Schmidt MG
  60. Pat of Silver Bush by L.M. Montgomery MG **
  61. Pigs Have Wings by P.G. Wodehouse (and any of the other Blandings Castle/Lord Emsworth novels and short stories)
  62. Rilla of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery (last in the Anne series, set in World War I) **
  63. Rose in Bloom by Louisa May Alcott MG (sequel to Eight Cousins)
  64. Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan early MG
  65. Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
  66. See You at Harry’s by Jo Knowles MG? YA?
  67. Stars Come Out Within writer’s memoir by Jean Little (sequel to Little by Little) **
  68. Summer at Tiffany by Marjorie Hart
  69. The Avenue at War by R. F. Delderfield (sequel to The Dreaming Suburb)
  70. The Crossover by Kwame Alexander MG
  71. The Diviners by Margaret Laurence **
  72. The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer L. Holm MG
  73. The Guests of War trilogy (which I’m counting as one, as I have it in one book) by Kit Pearson MG **
  74. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas YA
  75. The Haunted Bookshop by Christopher Morley
  76. The House at Pooh Corner by A.A. Milne Young kidlets (and me)
  77. The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles by Julie Andrews Edwards MG
  78. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
  79. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry MG to adult
  80. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
  81. The Pearl by John Steinbeck
  82. The Seventh Wish by Kate Messner MG
  83. The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence **
  84. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
  85. Third Person Singular by K.J. Erickson (and the rest of the Mars Bahr mystery series set in Minneapolis-St. Paul)
  86. Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome
  87. Traveller by Richard Adams
  88. Travels with Charley travel memoir by John Steinbeck
  89. Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt MG
  90. Under One Roof biography that reads like fiction by Barry Martin with Philip Lerman
  91. Untouchable by Mulk Raj Anand
  92. Waiting for No One by Beverley Brenna (second of the Taylor Jane Simon trilogy) YA **
  93. Walking Home by Eric Walters MG
  94. Watership Down by Richard Adams
  95. When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead MG
  96. White Bicycle by Beverley Brenna (third of the Taylor Jane Simon trilogy) YA **
  97. Wild Orchid by Beverley Brenna (first of the Taylor Jane Simon trilogy) YA **
  98. Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne Young kidlets (and me)
  99. With Love from Karen memoir/biography by Marie Killilea
  100. Word After Word After Word by Patricia MacLachlan MG

I DID IT!!!!

** denotes a Canadian author

5 thoughts on “My List of 100 Memorable Novels. With a Few Memoirs.”

    1. Yes, I enjoyed the overlap with our two lists! And some new and different ones to explore, as well. I want to re-read Margaret Laurence’s novels now, after listing them.

  1. Lovely! What an accomplishment-to put together a list like this. I’ve read at least half of them, and because I love those half, I am off to check out the other books that you listed because I’m pretty sure I will enjoy too.

  2. What an interesting list. Some of mine are on your list but I need to think about all I’ve read. The fact that you chose them also makes me want to read them. I’m so glad you mix in good children’s books as I do read many. I love the books by Katherine Paterson and Jean Little ( of Ontario, CA) who is blind and has been writing for years. I just re-read “From Anna” which Katherine also said she loved. I met her 15 years ago at her stone home and received her lovely historical novel,”The Belonging House.” Her parents were missionaries in China nd had 4 children. Jean lives with her sister in Elora

Comments are closed.

Scroll to Top