The 30 Must Read Books of All Time

There are countless books to read and it is impossible to choose which books to read. That is why we have curated a list of the 30 must read books of all time. Keep reading to see which books made our list!

The 30 Must Read Book of All Time

Choosing which books to read is a big decision and that means you must select a book that is worth reading. Once you have read enough classics and must read books, then it is alright to try your luck with new books. But we recommend reading these must reads at least once. They are the books that have changed the literary world. You can see the full list below!

The 30 Must Read Book of All Time

Must Read Books

No must read list can leave off some of these novels. Books such as To Kill a Mockingbird, 1984, and Jane Eyre are synonymous with literature. These are the books that every book lover needs to read. You’d be surprised by how many authors borrow from the classics.

The sci-fi and horror genre also get some love on this list. Frankenstein, Dracula, Ender’s Game, and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? have helped shape these genres. You can’t go wrong with these picks and see how amazing these genres are.

Our surprise picks are novels such as The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, The Secret History by Donna Tartt, and Pachinko by Min Jin Lee. These are lesser-known novels that are incredible reads. We wanted to highlight recent novels (Yes, I know The Secret History isn’t a recent novel but compared to many classics, it is) and these are the ones that won our hearts.


That ends our list of the 30 must read books of all time. How many of these novels have you read? What books would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below?

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44 thoughts on “The 30 Must Read Books of All Time

  1. hibouh says:

    I read about ten of them. Particularly enjoyed Betty Smith “A tree grows in Brooklyn”

    1. James Swanson says:

      FAHRENHEIT 451 and THE MASTER AND MARGARITA would be part of my list.

      1. Erin Richards says:

        Absolutely.Correct…(The BIBLE consists of 73 “Books” actually), but it is the Best & Wisest Reading Ever 😊!

      2. Rock says:

        This is probably the worst reading list of all time. It’s immature, basically a high school reading list with intent. For every book on here I can find five that are better.

    2. Margaret Mary Maher says:

      I’ve read 16 of them. You are missing “Star Maker” by Olaf Stapledon

  2. Samir Mokdad says:

    What about Hemingway’s “The Old Man And Sea” Also T.E.Lawrence “Seven Pillars Of Wisdom” Also Gibran Kahlil Gibran “The Prophet” etc…???
    Stockholm – Sweden.

    1. Anonymous says:

      Just noted the title of this article has an typo. Says book instead of books.

  3. John Austin says:

    You listed The Secret History twice.
    So thats 19/29 for me.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Suggest you re read your list of 30 books you must read. As the Secret History by Donna Tartt is on twice

  5. Anonymous says:

    I would like to add Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murokami

  6. Lindsay C. says:

    Nice set of books there! A lot I loved to read. I’ve read 22/29.

    P.S. If it was a copy & paste error, what was originally the 30th book?

  7. Alfred sams says:

    Better read a few books that can emotionally enrich you and help you to get a new perspective and develop empathy and compassion for others.try reading moby dick or marcel proust.even a lifetime is not enough to read all the books. My vote for you to include nikos kazantzakis zorba and all his books.he thought deeply and felt deeply and shares his valuable experience of life

  8. Jude Fernando says:

    I argue that this list is biased by the selector. My list of 30 will be different to everyone else. Everyone else will be different to everyone else! It will go on. Very simple. There’s no standard

  9. Javed Iqbal says:

    Your suggested collection of books is the best.

  10. Christopher Parker says:

    Great AI written article.

    Next time get the program to say why we should read them.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Gentleman From Moscow by Amor Towles. Also something by Barbara Kingsolver. Bean Trees perhaps!

  12. Phin Tuthill says:

    Few will agree on the best 30 of anything! But thanks for this. I’ve read about 10. Need to read more. Currently reading histories of our founding fathers. Wish they’d also discuss faults more of each, which were often substantial.

  13. Munya Munochiveyi says:

    You mean. “30 WESTERN BOOKS”, right?!?! Because that list is so Eurocentric 🤦🏾‍♂️🤷🏾‍♂️

    1. T Morales says:

      This is why people think that any and all things only have relevance if seen through white eyes. Where’s James Baldwin,Alice Walker, Octavia Butler, Toni Morrison, Zora Neale Hurston,and a slew of other worthy Black and Brown authors? I love To Kill A Mockingbird but even it rest upon the white savior prism. 

  14. Deborah Ann Sampson says:

    I have read them all. This list is pretty spurious. Dune? Really? Donna Tartt? Packing? It does not include important nonfiction by authors such as Whitehead , Sagan and Baldwin. it also ignores some truly great contemporary authors such as Alice Walker and Barbara Kingsolver. But then, without clear criteria for determining what ‘great’ means, any book could be included even true trash.

  15. Anonymous says:

    You’re joking, right-but there’s nothing humorous about this list-it has only lessened any intellectual discourse.

  16. Belinda says:

    Song of Solomon, Native Son and I know why the caged bird sings, just to name a few.

  17. Donald Mahalic says:

    How about the bible, don’t you think it should be at the top of the list?

  18. Anonymous says:

    The Stranger, by Albert Campus.
    A very good read.

  19. Anonymous says:

    There are only 29 books on this list. The Secret History is on there twice.

  20. Rosemarie T Pegueros Lev says:

    You need an editor. Donna Tartt, Secret History, is listed twice.

  21. Hill Giant says:

    Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler and Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

  22. Lola says:

    This is the most American list of books to read I have ever seen it’s sad and laughable at the same time. An average European high-school kid has read more and has a better compilation than this supposedly mature and well read preson (?). There are Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Thomas Mann, Herman Hesse, Camus, G.G Marquez, etc you name it and your list contains Salinger and Khaled Hosseini? I’m shook. Pardon my English, it’s my third language.

  23. John says:

    There’s only 29 books on the list. you doubled down on The Secret History.

  24. Richard Kuchynskas says:

    I nominate Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut

  25. Gordon N Lefort says:

    you can’t make a list of 30 books without including Dickens

  26. Gwendolyn says:

    It was enlightening to see the selection of ‘should read books,’ but I was rather surprised that Maya Angelou’s “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” did not make the list. Curiouser and curiouser!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Not one black author, I believe??? And if I missed 1 or 2,so what??? Were talking mainly aboutblack,not indian,not asian,not oriental ,not mixed race etc.Also apparently only AMERICAN authors ,white by the way,have written essential books???? That is sick,sad and actually funny. I guess no Kafka, Camus,Moravia,no Joyce,no Gide, no Tolstoy,no deUnamuno etc…u get the idea.
    Dickens,Baldwin,Huston….we could go on and on .Shame on this organization, you need to expand your horizons to include the WORLD OF BO9KS NOT JUST AMERICAN, unless things are specified as such which would be totally fine. You guys have hot to do a better job in the future.Hitckiers Guide etc, one of the 30 most important books to read out of all the books in the world???? Really ,this book is that important???? This is where u totally are an embarrassment with this list.


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