Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

On this page, I’ve compiled 50 of the best-selling books in history, including novels, non-fiction books, and more. The list below shows books with the biggest volume of books sold, not my personal ratings. I intend on updating the list every January.

Note that religious books such as The Bible and The Quran are excluded in this list, for the obvious reason that tracking sales of such books are next to impossible. I’ve also taken manga, comic books, and graphic novels out of the equation because they are a different beast unto themselves.

The Essential Five

Each list of book recommendations I’ll post will include an “essential five”. This should help you get started with books that I personally think you should get started with.

Check out this list’s essentials:

I’ve included H. Rider’s Haggard’s She: A History of Adventure for its feminist thought carries great weight, even many years after its first publication. Napoleon Hill’s Think & Grow Rich is known as a business/leadership manual, but I think it’s more introspective than that. I would go as far as saying it’s one of the best self-development books out there.

Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude is a staple for any reader, in my humble opinion. It licks a bit on magical realism and it does indulge in building a world for you but stick with it and you’ll get one of the most satisfying reads you’ll have. Ever. Similarly, J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye is a must-read for angsty and reflective youths or adults who wish to recapture what it’s like to have at least one bit of idealism.

Finally, we have Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird, an empathetic story about a small American town and a scandal that will disturb their tranquil existence. It’s also a great examination on colorism and racism, something that’s still prevalent not only in America but all over the world.

The 50 Best-Selling Books of All Time

1.) DON QUIXOTE (Miguel de Cervantes)


2.) A TALE OF TWO CITIES (Charles Dickens)


3.) THE LORD OF THE RINGS (J.R.R. Tolkien)


4.) THE LITTLE PRINCE (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)


5.) HARRY POTTER AND THE PHILOSOPHER’S STONE (J.K. Rowling)


6.) THE HOBBIT (J.R.R. Tolkien)


7.) AND THEN THERE WERE NONE (Agatha Christie)


8.) DREAM OF THE RED CHAMBER (Cao Xueqin)


9.) THE LION, THE WITCH, AND THE WARDROBE (C.S. Lewis)


10.) SHE: A HISTORY OF ADVENTURE (H. Rider Haggard)


11.) THE ADVENTURES OF PINOCCHIO (Carlo Collodi)


12.) THE DA VINCI CODE (Dan Brown)


13.) HARRY POTTER AND THE CHAMBER OF SECRETS (J.K. Rowling)


14.) HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN (J.K. Rowling)


15.) HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE (J.K. Rowling)


16.) HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX (J.K. Rowling)


17.) HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE (J.K. Rowling)


18.) HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS (J.K. Rowling)


19.) THE ALCHEMIST (Paulo Coelho)


20.) THE CATCHER IN THE RYE (J.D. Salinger)


21.) THINK AND GROW RICH (Napoleon Hill)


22.) THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY (Robert James Waller)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

23.) BEN-HUR: A TALE OF THE CHRIST (Lew Wallace)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

24.) YOU CAN HEAL YOUR LIFE (Louise Hay)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

25.) ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF SOLITUDE (Gabriel García Márquez)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

26.) LOLITA (Vladimir Nabokov)


27.) HEIDI’S YEARS OF LEARNING AND TRAVEL (Johanna Spyri)


28.) THE BOOK OF BABY AND CHILD CARE (Dr. Benjamin Spock)


29.) ANNE OF GREEN GABLES (Lucy Maud Montgomery)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

30.) BLACK BEAUTY (Anna Sewell)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

31.) THE NAME OF THE ROSE (Umberto Eco)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

32.) THE EAGLE HAS LANDED (Jack Higgins)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

33.) WATERSHIP DOWN (Richard Adams)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

34.) THE HITE REPORT (Shere Hite)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

35.) CHARLOTTE’S WEB (E.B. White)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

36.) THE GINGER MAN (J.P. Donleavy)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

37.) THE TALE OF PETER RABBIT (Beatrix Potter)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

38.) JOHN LIVINGSTON SEAGULL (Richard Bach)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

39.) THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR (Eric Carle)


40.) A MESSAGE TO GARCIA (Elbert Hubbard)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

41.) SOPHIE’S WORLD (Jostein Gaarder)


Reading Recommendations: The 50 Best-Selling Books Of All Time

42.) FLOWERS IN THE ATTIC (V. C. Andrews)


43.) TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD (Harper Lee)


44.) ANGELS & DEMONS (Dan Brown)


45.) KANE AND ABEL (Jeffrey Archer)


46.) HOW THE STEEL WAS TEMPERED (Nikolai Ostrovsky)


47.) WAR AND PEACE (Leo Tolstoy)


48.) THE DIARY OF A YOUNG GIRL (Anne Frank)


49.) YOUR ERRONEOUS ZONES (Wayne Dyer)


50.) THE PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE (Rick Warren)


IMPORTANT NOTES:

The data used to build this list comes from this page.
The “buy on Amazon” buttons include Affiliate Links, which means I get a commission whenever you buy books at zero extra cost.
This list is updated every January.