Barnes & Noble’s Best Books of All Time  

There are few bookstores that have established themselves like Barnes & Noble over the decades. Now, they are one of the best places to find books. But the retail bookstore also curates lists and we will be looking at Barnes & Noble’s Best Books of All Time that you must read. Keep reading to see what made their list! 

Over the years, Barnes & Noble has turned around and changed their reputation. Now, they are regarded with respect and authority when it comes to books and bookstores. Still, not everyone is a fan of the retail bookstore. Let’s put aside our feelings and judge their list without any bias. You can see the full list below. 

Barnes & Noble’s Best Books of All Time 

Barnes & Noble’s Best Books of All Time 

  1. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez , Edith Grossman 
  2. The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith 
  3. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg 
  4. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier 
  5. Holes by Louis Sachar 
  6. Atonement by Ian McEwan 
  7. Kindred by Octavia E. Butler 
  8. Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion , David Thomson 
  9. The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster, Jules Feiffer 
  10. We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson  
  11. The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin 
  12. Address Unknown by Kathrine Kressmann Taylor, Margot Livesey 
  13.  The Watsons Go to Birmingham by Christopher Paul Curtis 
  14. The Hustler by Walter Tevis 
  15. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (George Smiley Series) by John le Carré 
  16. Howl’s Moving Castle (Howl’s Castle Series #1) by Diana Wynne Jones 
  17. Beloved by Toni Morrison 
  18. The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy 
  19. The Bell Jar (P.S. Series) by Sylvia Plath 
  20. Life of Pi: A Novel by Yann Martel 
  21. Things Fall Apart (African Trilogy #1) by Chinua Achebe 
  22. The Color Purple by Alice Walker 
  23. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou  
  24. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston 
  25. 1984 by George Orwell 
  26. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak 
  27. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini 
  28. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison 
  29. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte 
  30. Watchmen by Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons 
  31. Lord of the Flies by William Golding  
  32. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley 
  33. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker’s Guide Series #1) by Douglas Adams 
  34. Slaughterhouse-Five, or The Children’s Crusade: A Duty-Dance with Death by Kurt Vonnegut 
  35. Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin 
  36. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen 

37 Books Make the List 

What I love about this list is that it includes books that are often overlooked. Books such as The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith, Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, and The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini must read books.  

The list also includes classics that many people would agree must read such as 1984 by George Orwell, Beloved by Toni Morrison, and Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. There are also books on this list that aren’t seen on many other lists such as The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin and Holes by Louis Sachar.  


What did you think of Barnes & Noble’s best books of all-time list? How many of these books have you read? Let us know in the comments below! 

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12 thoughts on “Barnes & Noble’s Best Books of All Time  

  1. MI6 says:

    If you are interested in Oleg Gordievsky, John le Carré or Kim Philby you should have heard of Pemberton’s People in MI6 by now. Colonel Alan Pemberton CVO MBE knew all of them and features as a leading protagonist in Beyond Enkription in The Burlington Files series.

    The book “Beyond Enkription” by Bill Fairclough is the first stand-alone fact-based espionage novel of six autobiographical tomes in The Burlington Files series. As the first book in the series, it provides a gripping introduction to the world of British intelligence and espionage. It is an intense electrifying spy thriller that had me perched on the edge of my seat from beginning to end. The twists and turns in the interwoven plots kept me guessing beyond the epilogue. The characters were wholesome, well-developed and intriguing. The author’s attention to detail added extra layers of authenticity to the narrative.

    In real life Bill Fairclough aka Edward Burlington (MI6 codename JJ) was one of Pemberton’s People in MI6; for more about that see a brief News Article dated 31 October 2022 published in TheBurlingtonFiles website. The series follows the real life of Bill Fairclough (and his family) who worked not only for British Intelligence, but also the CIA et al for several decades. The first tome is set in 1974 in London, Nassau and Port au Prince: see TheBurlingtonFiles website for a synopsis.

    Fairclough is not a professional but his writing style is engaging and fast-paced, making it difficult to put the book down as he effortlessly glides from cerebral issues to action-packed scenes which are never that far apart. Beyond Enkription is the stuff memorable spy films are made of. It’s raw, realistic, punchy, pacy and provocative. While the book does not feature John le Carré’s “delicate diction, sophisticated syntax and placid plots” it remains a riveting and delightful read.

    This thriller is like nothing we have ever come across before. Indeed, we wonder what The Burlington Files would have been like if David Cornwell (aka John le Carré) had collaborated with Bill Fairclough whom critics have likened to “a posh Harry Palmer”. They did consider collaborating but did not proceed as explained in the aforementioned News Article. Nonetheless, critics have lauded Beyond Enkription as being ”up there with My Silent War by Kim Philby and No Other Choice by George Blake”.

    Overall, Beyond Enkription is a brilliantly refreshing book and a must read, especially for espionage cognoscenti. I cannot wait to see what is in store for us in the future. In the meantime, before reading Beyond Enkription do visit TheBurlingtonFiles website. It is like a living espionage museum and breathtaking in its own right.

    1. Anonymous says:

      Wuthering Heights Needs to be in there by Emily Bronte

  2. Neena says:

    Hmm. Great list. I love that “Mixed Up Files…” is included. But…The Hobbit would top my list. I’d have to
    add The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, The Odyssey, Great Expectations, Tale of Two Cities, Treasure Island, Camus’ The Stranger, Wizard of Oz. And the list could go on- Christie, Conan Doyle, Khayyam, Seuss, Sartre’s Antigone, Charlotte’s Web, Asimov, Poe,….

    1. Kathy says:

      Some of the books I have not heard of and some I have seen the movie, but have not read the book. The list is eclectic, which I like. A lot of the books I have read are the classics, which I read thru out high-school. I might give some I f them a try, but I already own so many books, and borrow a lot from the library. But I do like to try something very different sometimes.

  3. Andrew Bierlein says:

    Any “Best of” list of books that does not include Lord of the Rings is biased bollocks.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Not a very comprehensive list for best books too many mediocre and leaving out a massive amount of true classics!

  5. Jp says:

    Best books of all time. Only, what? 3 books written before 1900? Surely there is a mistake somewhere here.

  6. Betsy Hensley says:

    How about A Gentleman in Moscow. Confessions of Nat Turner. Sophie’s Choice…I could come up with many different ones.

  7. Judi Belle Raines says:

    Sorry to see missing from such a list but not surprised Manchild in the Promiseland by Claudde Brown, The Color of Water by James McBride,Monster by Walter Dean Myers or maybe Between The World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates , The Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison!

  8. Anonymous says:

    I have read 8 on the list. There were a dozen I have never heard about . The overall list was not very impressive.


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