What are the best 20th century books?

asked by Anonymous
261 contributors
25 solutions
  1. 33

    #11984

    1984
    1984 is a dystopian novel by George Orwell that tells the story of Winston Smith, who lives under the rule of the tyrannical government ruled by the omnipresent Big Brother. It is a bleak portrayal of how society might become in the future.
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    Jenny Zhou
    Written on April 12, 2018
    "Absolute classic. Ages frighteningly well, given today's political climate. Everyone should read this at least once in their life."
  2. 29

    #2The Catcher in the Rye

    The Catcher in the Rye

    The Catcher in the Rye is J.D. Salinger's 1951 classic about teenager Holden Caulfield, who was used as an icon of teenage angst and rebellion. The controversial book has caused debates, mainly because of its vulgar language and themes.

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    Raymond Sullivan
    Written on April 30, 2018
    ""The Catcher in the Rye" is not the best book of the 20th century and it is not even one of the best but still, it is as influential as a book can get. Love it or hate it - and I have to say that it is a very polarizing book in its entirety - you can't argue that it has had a huge impact on the social and cultural climate of the 20th century. "
  3. 26

    #3Animal Farm

    Animal Farm
    Animal Farm is a short novel by George Orwell that tells the story of a farm that's taken over by its overworked, mistreated animals. They set out to create a paradise of progress, justice, and equality, but a revolution starts to show. 
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    Kenneth Carter
    Written on May 14, 2018
    "Sorry but this is a very comical story and I do enjoy it, but for me to say it is on of the best of the 20th century... not gonna happen. "
  1. 24

    #4Fahrenheit 451

    Fahrenheit 451

    Fahrenheit 451 is a dystopian novel wherein a totalitarian regime has ordered the burning of books in order to suppress the spread of subversive ideas. It preaches about the power and role of knowledge to see beyond the surface.

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    Alice Munoz
    Written on May 12, 2018
    "A fantastic, intriguing book that kept me on the edge of my chair. A book that has depth and makes you think about what could happen. Wonderful!"
  2. 23

    #5The Hobbit

    The Hobbit

    The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien is a modern classic and the prelude to The Lord of the Rings. Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable life, but his contentment is disturbed when Gandalf and a group of dwarves arrive on his doorstep.

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    Joseph Montgomery
    Written on May 14, 2018
    "Classic book that i read as a kid and reacquainted myself with many times since. THe movie does not do it justice. This book starts the whole series and does it in a way that captivates you and makes you feel like you are there. A must have in anyone;s book collection. "
  3. 20

    #6To Kill a Mockingbird

    To Kill a Mockingbird
    To Kill a Mockingbird is Harper Lee's Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred. This was first published in 1960.
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    Andrew Ortega
    Written on May 10, 2018
    "This is a great book that every student should read. It really tells the story of what hatred can do to people. I read it when I was in school and I just read it again and man you really pick up all the things you might have missed when you were younger. Great novel."
  4. 18

    #7One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

    One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
    This is one of the most imports novels of the 60's and from American history. The unforgettable story of a mental ward and the people living there and the tyrannical Nurse Ratched and McMurphy.
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    Andrew Bryant
    Written on May 1, 2018
    "This is a historical masterpiece. It's an unforgettable story of a mental ward and the people who live there. Kesey did an amazing job on this book and I have already read it twice. If you are a serious reader, then this book is a must-read. There is a bit of craziness found within its cover, but it is powerful story that will leave you in deep thought."
  5. 16

    #8Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl

    Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl
    Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl was written by Anne Frank, published from the diary she kept when she and her family were in hiding from the Nazis in the then German-occupied Netherlands.
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    Billy Gray
    Written on May 12, 2018
    "One of the most impactful pieces of writing in the 20th century. The true story of a young girl trying to evade capture by Nazi forces as they occupy the Netherlands. Anne Frank's diary is a gripping account of the trials that Jewish people faced during the holocaust. Parts of this diary brought me to tears, highly recommend."
  6. 13

    #9Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

    Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

    Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone is the first book in the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. It welcomed the readers to Harry's magical world and his discovery of his true self where adventure and danger await him as he entered Hogwarts. 

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    Kenneth Harris
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "There are many great books that are written in the 20th century. I would not consider Harry Potter series as in one of bests but I can admit that they are very popular. Together with the movies, the book made a great impact at the 20th century."
  7. 11

    #10Slaughterhouse-Five

    Slaughterhouse-Five
    Slaughterhouse-Five is a science fiction novel by Kurt Vonnegut that tells the story of the time-traveling American soldier Billy Pilgrim, who became devoutly anti-war after witnessing the bombing of Dresden.
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    Sean Liang
    Written on April 20, 2018
    "It has many positive customer reviews, and they seem to like it a lot. I kept losing track of time while reading this book, before I knew it, several hours would pass. I recommended this to family and friends who enjoy 20th century books."
  8. 10

    #11Of Mice and Men

    Of Mice and Men
    Of Mice and Men is a book by John Steinbeck that follows the story of George, small but smart, and Lennie, big and strong but mentally challenged, as they set off in a journey to look for a livelihood during the Great Depression.
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    Scott Harvey
    Written on April 14, 2018
    "What is there to say, really? This book is a classic. If you're a human with a heart, it will make you reconsider your relationship with the planet and everyone around you. If you're a human with an ambition to write it will make you want to slit your wrists for how much damn talent John Steinbeck manages to stuff onto every page."
  9. 7

    #12The Great Gatsby

    The Great Gatsby

    The Great Gatsby is a classic book written by F. Scott Fitzgerald which was first published in 1914. It tells the story of wealthy man Jay Gatsby who is in love with Daisy Buchanan from an old money family. This has two film adaptations. 

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    Jesse Myers
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "The Great Gatsby is one of the best 20th century books. It's arguably one of the best books of all time. The theme and setting really emphasizes and captures the 20th century."
  10. 5

    #13Brave New World

    Brave New World

    Brave New World by Aldous Huxley is a utopian and dystopian fiction novel published in 1932. This book follows Bernard Marx living a perfect life in a scientifically engineered society until he visited one of the remaining old reservoirs.

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    Kevin Ford
    Written on April 22, 2018
    "This is a great 20th century book. It has interesting views on how science can effect our lives."
  11. 1

    #14The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

    The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
    The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is the five-novel compilation of Douglas Adams' hysterical science fiction story. It has a bonus story titled "Young Zaphod Plays it Safe". Neil Gaiman wrote the intro for the book.
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    Marina Olvera
    Written on April 12, 2018
    " The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a guide to a scientific fiction story with a bonus story. an interesting read"
  12. 0

    #15Invisible Collection and Buchmendel

    Invisible Collection and Buchmendel

    Invisible Collection and Buchmendel is a classic fiction in German literature written by Stefan Zweig. This book is a collection of two short stories. First published in 1929, this book is published in 2000 by Pushkin Press.

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    Sarah Rose
    Written on April 17, 2018
    "Two amazing short stories by a great author, Stefan Zweig. His books have almost all been made into movies. This is short story telling at its finest . One is about an art dealer. The other is another heart wrenching tale of a Jewish man during World War I. Highly recommend all of this author's books. "
  13. 0

    #16Great Ideas Some Thoughts On the Common Toad

    Great Ideas Some Thoughts On the Common Toad

    Some Thoughts on the Common Toad is written by George Orwell which is a collection of essays painting an image of the humanity. It also includes an essay on an account of killing an elephant in Burma. 

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    Tony Jin
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "These were a wonderful collection of 20th century essays by none other than George Orwell, one of my favorite authors. I felt like I was in his mind as I was reading his essays. Everything he wrote just seemed to resonate with me, highly recommended read."
  14. 0

    #17The Notebooks of Don Rigoberto

    The Notebooks of Don Rigoberto
    The Notebooks of Don Rigoberto is a steamy romance novel for young adults written by iconic Peruvian author Mario Vargas Llosa. It was originally published in 1998 in Spanish as Los cuadernos de don Rigoberto.
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    Keith Griffin
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "This is a typical situation of homes that pitifully end, but in this process of termination there is always love, lust and sex that make this termination process slower and sometimes never happen."
  15. 0

    #18Anne of Green Gables

    Anne of Green Gables

    Anne of Green Gables (Modern Library Classics) is a novel written by L.M. Montgomery. The book Anne of Green Gables was published on June 10, 2008 by Modern Library.

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    Gerald Knight
    Written on April 29, 2018
    "Known as one of the greatest American novels of our time, this book delivered everything i was looking for and more. This is a classic tale, featuring endearing, memorable characters and story that i won't soon forget. Great stuff. "
  16. 0

    #19The Women Who Got Away

    The Women Who Got Away

    The Women Who Got Away is a collection of fictional short stories written by John Updike. This explores the theme of love and possibilities of love. With over 100 pages, this book is published in 2007 by Penguin Classics.

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  17. 0

    #20Love Among the Chickens

    Love Among the Chickens

    Love Among the Chickens (Penguin Modern Classics) is a classic fictional book written by P.G. Wodehouse. Love Among the Chickens (Penguin Modern Classics) was published by Penguin.

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    Agustina Castro
    Written on April 26, 2018
    "After seeing his friend Stanley Featherstonehaugh Ukridge for the first time in years, author Jeremy Garnet is dragged along on holiday to Ukridge's new chicken farm in Dorset. Hilarious situations abound with Garnet's troublesome courting of a girl living nearby and the struggles on the farm, which are worsened by Ukridge's bizarre business ideas and methods."
  18. 0

    #21Angst (German Edition)

    Angst (German Edition)

    Angst (German Edition) is a classic fiction in German, European literature written by Stefan Zweig. First published in 1910, this book is published in 1998 by Philipp Reclam, Jun Verlag GmbH.

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    Alice Mendez
    Written on April 17, 2018
    "Angst was written in German and originally published in 1910. It was reprinted in 1998 so that more readers could have the opportunity to read one of the best 20th century books. Grab a cup of coffee, blanket, curl up and get lost in this classic! "
  19. 0

    #22Dreamtigers

    Dreamtigers

    Dreamtigers is a collection of magical realism short stories written by Jorge Luis Borges and translated by Harold Morland and Mildred Boyer. First published in 1960, this book is published in 1985 by University of Texas Press.

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    Jose Jordan
    Written on April 16, 2018
    "Dreamtigers is a cool collection of short stories about the 20th century and the magical stories that the author imagined to have taken place. "
  20. 0

    #23Museums & Women And Other Stories

    Museums & Women And Other Stories

    Museums & Women And Other Stories is a collection of short stories written by John Updike exploring the themes of contemporary life, marriage, etc. With over 200 pages, this book is published in 1972 by Knopf.

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  21. 0

    #24Waiting for the Barbarians

    Waiting for the Barbarians

    Waiting for the Barbarians is a fictional novel written by J.M. Coetzee and illustrated by Chris Conn. This fictional novel was published on June 29, 2010 by Penguin Books.

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    Kathryn Berry
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "One of my favorite 20th century books. Waiting for the Barbarians is high on my list of all time favorites. The illustrations by Chris Conn really add depth to the story and allow you to better picture what you are reading. It is a good fiction novel."
  22. 0

    #25The Centaur

    The Centaur
    The Centaur is a retelling of an ancient Greek mythology legend Chiron, the wisest centaur. This book, written by John Updike, is the winner of the National Book Award and the Prix Du Meilleur Livre Étranger.
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    Johnny Hall
    Written on April 14, 2018
    "If you are into Greek mythology than look no further. This book is really well written and I don't think enough people have enjoyed it. I think even people who aren't into Greek mythology will find something to like here."

Summary

Best What are the best 20th century books
RankSolutionsTypeVotesPrice
11984Books 33 Paid
2The Catcher in the RyeBooks 29 Paid
3Animal FarmBooks 26 Paid
4Fahrenheit 451Books 24 Paid
5The HobbitBooks 23 Paid
6To Kill a MockingbirdBooks 20 Paid
7One Flew Over the Cuckoo's NestBooks 18 Paid
8Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young GirlBooks 16 Paid
9Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's StoneBooks 13 Paid
10Slaughterhouse-FiveBooks 11 Paid
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