What are the best books originally written in German?

asked by Anonymous
134 contributors
20 solutions
  1. 20

    #1The Complete Grimm's Fairy Tales

    The Complete Grimm's Fairy Tales

    The Complete Grimm's Fairy Tales is a compilation of folk tales from the Brothers Grimm, Jacob and Wilhelm, translated from the original German by Margaret Hunt. It includes tales such as Rapunzel, The Goose Girl, and Rumpelstiltskin.


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    Adam Hunt
    Written on April 21, 2018
    "This book has different covers that you can pick from. I got the cloth cover one and it is really beautiful. I really like the feel of the book whenever I pick it up."
  2. 16

    #2The Metamorphosis

    The Metamorphosis
    Gregor Samsa was a regular traveling salesman who one night transformed into a cockroach-looking animal. As his whole family despises him, this book uses Samsa's transformation to talk about human feeling of acceptance and guiltiness, as his new condition brought poverty to his family. 


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    Christopher May
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "The Metamorphosis or the original German title "Die Verwandlung" is a short novel by Franz Kafka. This is a classic and very well translated. It's a short and amazing read. Go for it!"
  3. 14

    #3The Sorrows of Young Werther

    The Sorrows of Young Werther

    The Sorrows of Young Werther is a classic novel written by the German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. It tells the story of an artist named Werther as he laments the marriage of the woman he loves to another man.


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    Hu Li
    Written on April 15, 2018
    "Through the usage of letters, the book follows the path and journeys of Werther. It is a very interesting read and keeps your interest throughout his trial and tribulations. Werther wants a woman he cannot have and suffers terribly between this knowledge yet still continues to try to have her. It is well written and captivating until the end."
  1. 13

    #4The Complete Stories

    The Complete Stories

    With the exception of his three novels The Trial, The Castle, and Amerika, The Complete Stories includes all of Franz Kafka's literary work, even those published posthumously.


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  2. 11


    Steppenwolf is a novel by Hermann Hesse originally published in Germany in 1927. It is a mix of autobiography and psychoanalysis, as well as a critical view of the intellectual hypocrisy of the period.

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    Carolyn Hill
    Written on April 23, 2018
    "This is one of the great classics in my eyes. It is a story I would recommend all reading at some point."
  3. 11

    #6Dr. Faustus

    Dr. Faustus

    This book, one of Western's literature most popular classics, narrates the story of a German doctor who sells his soul to the Devil in order to become powerful and to obtain knowledge. 


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    James Boyd
    Written on April 20, 2018
    "I have never given much thought to the so called classics, but Marlow's Dr. Faustus ignited a passion for reading more of this genre. As I was reading through the book I could see my self identifying with Dr. Faustus and the struggles became real to me. The vivid detail brings a level of realization to the story and I began to question what I would do given the same opportunity. In the end I fell in love with this classic and will be reading much more like this. "
  4. 9

    #7The Reader

    The Reader
    An exceptional novel by Bernhard Schlink about betrayal, guilt and the memory of the Holocaust. This is the story of the adolescent Michael Berg, rescued by Hanna. Both embark on a clandestine affair leading Michel in euphoric and confused times.


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    Kyle Schneider
    Written on April 23, 2018
    "This is a touching and thought provoking book written with the back drop of the holocaust. Orignally written in german this smart and intregueing story takes on the perspective of the everyday citizens of germany during this terrible time period. This story grabs you from the beginning and you will have a hard time putting this book down! Highly recommened!"
  5. 7

    #8All Quiet on the Western Front

    All Quiet on the Western Front
    All Quiet on the Western Front is a book by Erich Maria Remarque that tells the story of Paul Baumer, a soldier in the German army during World War I. The books was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931.

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    Evelyn Cox
    Written on April 14, 2018
    "All Quiet on the Western Front is a classic for a reason. Translations from the original German haven't failed to keep the important voice and the messages in this book. It's a compelling war novel that is moving and sometimes harrowing."
  6. 6

    #9The Magic Mountain

    The Magic Mountain

    The Magic Mountain is a satirical novel by the Nobel Prize-winning author, Thomas Mann. Set before World War I, it tells the story of Hans Castorp, who goes to a sanatorium in the Swiss Alps and stays for seven years.


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    Hannah Snyder
    Written on May 1, 2018
    "My grandfather used to always read to us in German. While I didn't understand the language when I was younger, I always thought it was a very beautifully and emotionally charged language. The Magic Mountain was one of my favorite books for him to read and I learned German as an adult so that I could read it to my children."
  7. 4

    #10Thus Spoke Zarathustra

    Thus Spoke Zarathustra

    The most accessible and influential work of Nietzsche, the most influencer philosopher of the 19th and 20th century. In this book, Nietzsche explains the basis of provocative and utterance 'God is dead'.


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    Doris Perkins
    Written on May 7, 2018
    "A classic and a must read for anyone interested in philosophy. Plus, nihilism is trendy now."
  8. 2



    Heidi is a classic novel about a young girl who lives with her grandfather in the Swiss Alps. She is a playful and contented girl, and just like any kids, she experiences typical struggles that she learns how to overcome. 


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    Rebecca Taylor
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "I remembered reading this as a child and being a little put off by the preachiness of some elements. I could feel the intention of my grandparents giving me the book to make me understand how spoiled a child I was and how others kids faced much harder challenges. In general, those stories written for children and larded with moralistic considerations don't sit that well with a lot of kids who get annoyed at the heavy handed lesson giving. But often, as is the case with Heidi, a novel will transcend its flaws and reach its audience through vivid descriptions and down-to-earth details that make the story jump up from the page and become real. Re-reading the book as an adult, I was won over by the exoticism of the location (the Alps, pastures, cowbells!) and its antiquated charm."
  9. 1

    #12Narcissus and Goldmund

    Narcissus and Goldmund

    Narcissus and Goldmund by Hermann Hesse is a historical and philosophical fiction novel published in 1930. This book tells the story of Goldmund's search for the 'meaning of life' and his friendship with a brilliant teacher - Narcissus.


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    Jiang Bai
    Written on April 14, 2018
    "Narcissus and Goldmund is the best solution for this problem. The book was originally written in german with the original title being "Narziß und Goldmund" and published in 1930. The book was only later translated to English in 1932."
  10. 0

    #13Der Fürst des Parnass

    Der Fürst des Parnass

    Der Fürst des Parnass is a historical fiction written by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Originally published in 2014 by Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag, it is a part of the El cementerio de los libros olvidados book series.


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    Joel Álvarez
    Written on May 13, 2018
    "This is well put the book is one of the best originally written in German however it is not the only original book written in German. It's one of many"
  11. 0



    Rituals is a book by Cees Nooteboom that tells the story of Inni who knew life was a chaotic whirlwind. Arnold and Philip at the other side sees the world differently, they will all meet and relieve each other's emptiness.


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    Margaret Rogers
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "Rituals is one of the best short novels written originally in German by Cees Nooteboom, and this book seems to get you attached to its plot and story on an emotional level. Each and every one of the characters leaves you with a memorable and visual taste. This book gets you attached and hooked from the start,one of the best books with a great story."
  12. 0

    #15Siegfried: A Black Idyll

    Siegfried: A Black Idyll

    Siegfried: A Black Idyll is a book by Harry Muslisch that tells the story of Rudolf Herter. He is a famous author who will travel and be confronted by different ideas of people. He will then try to write a book about it. 


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    Elizabeth Gonzales
    Written on April 27, 2018
    "Black Idyll is a great read. The fact that he's open to different ideas of people is really cool. Not a lot of people can do that."
  13. 0

    #16Joe Speedboot

    Joe Speedboot

    Joe Speedboot is a book Tommy Wierenga that tells the story of a teenager who just woke up from a coma. He will then tell his friends about his bizarre dreams while he was unconscious. 


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    Douglas Lopez
    Written on April 20, 2018
    "This so definitely a unique book through and through. Set through the eyes of a teenager who was in coma, you watch him tell his tales to his friends with all the vividness you'd expect like when you first wake yourself out of a dream. "
  14. 0

    #17The Twins

    The Twins

    The Twins is a German book written by Tessa De Loo that tells the story of twin siblings who was separated while they are still young. They will cross paths after two decades and will be shocked to see each other. 


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    Amanda Dunn
    Written on April 20, 2018
    "It's alright reading, but there are a few translation errors here and there."
  15. 0

    #18Best Short Stories

    Best Short Stories

    Best Short Stories: A Dual-Language Book (Dover Dual Language German) is a dual language book by Franz Kafka. It contains five stories of one of the greatest modern writers which explore modern life. It was published in 1997 by Dover.


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    Anthony Morales
    Written on May 10, 2018
    "thiss is far from the best German translation "
  16. 0

    #19The Future of an Illusion

    The Future of an Illusion

    The Future of an Illusion is a non-fiction book written by Sigmund Freud wherein he discusses religion in a psychoanalytical way since he believes religion and science were mortal enemies. 


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    Vincent Ortiz
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "A translation of Sigmund Freud's original work, the popular psychologist delves into the intricacies of the mind and ponders how it analyzes the facets of religion and science. Freud attempts to explain the origins of spirituality/religion and what drives the human mind to compensate for occurrences that could not be explained for their time. Logic and magic are the major themes being explored and Freud does an excellent job of observing both sides of the issue."
  17. 0

    #20The Discovery of Heaven

    The Discovery of Heaven

    The Discovery of Heaven is a book by Harry Mulisch that tells the story of Max and Onno. They are born the same day and they will meet unexpectedly. A connection between them will spark and things will escalate.


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    George Soto
    Written on April 25, 2018
    "I am unsure if it is was originally written in German, but this book overall tells a great story and was amazing from start to finish. "


Best What are the best books originally written in German
1The Complete Grimm's Fairy TalesBooks 20 Paid
2The MetamorphosisBooks 16 Paid
3The Sorrows of Young WertherBooks 14 Paid
4The Complete StoriesBooks 13 Paid
5SteppenwolfBooks 11 Paid
6Dr. FaustusBooks 11 Paid
7The ReaderBooks 9 Paid
8All Quiet on the Western FrontBooks 7 Paid
9The Magic MountainBooks 6 Paid
10Thus Spoke ZarathustraBooks 4 Paid

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