Best Literary Fiction

Literary fiction is serious fiction with claims to literary merit, and focuses more on style, psychological depth, and character. (As opposed to genre or popular fiction).

What are your favorites of literary fiction?
1

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4.26 avg rating — 3,755,275 ratings
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2

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4.11 avg rating — 1,386,735 ratings
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3

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4.24 avg rating — 4,816 ratings
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4

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4.04 avg rating — 6,059 ratings
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5

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3.80 avg rating — 2,345,307 ratings
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6

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4.20 avg rating — 509,998 ratings
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7

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4.25 avg rating — 2,464,194 ratings
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8

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3.86 avg rating — 174,350 ratings
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9

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4.21 avg rating — 3,391 ratings
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10

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3.66 avg rating — 1,845,794 ratings
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11

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3.90 avg rating — 3,152,753 ratings
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12

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4.29 avg rating — 971,351 ratings
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13

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3.84 avg rating — 1,124,653 ratings
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14

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4.07 avg rating — 779,005 ratings
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15

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4.32 avg rating — 197,062 ratings
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16

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4.16 avg rating — 2,437,834 ratings
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17

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4.05 avg rating — 633,969 ratings
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18

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4.20 avg rating — 1,808,970 ratings
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19

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4.03 avg rating — 532,723 ratings
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20

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4.09 avg rating — 1,529,176 ratings
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21

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4.24 avg rating — 600,865 ratings
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22

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4.22 avg rating — 370,379 ratings
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23

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4.26 avg rating — 2,433,530 ratings
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24

by
4.23 avg rating — 1,831 ratings
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25

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4.19 avg rating — 544,085 ratings
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26

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3.94 avg rating — 620,019 ratings
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27

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3.76 avg rating — 564,110 ratings
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28

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4.36 avg rating — 1,495,303 ratings
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29

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3.90 avg rating — 2,244,581 ratings
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30

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4.28 avg rating — 2,084,816 ratings
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31

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4.19 avg rating — 442,755 ratings
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32

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3.81 avg rating — 1,060,313 ratings
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33

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3.89 avg rating — 566,599 ratings
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34

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4.44 avg rating — 2,026 ratings
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35

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3.98 avg rating — 1,330,895 ratings
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36

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3.89 avg rating — 1,154,883 ratings
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37

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4.12 avg rating — 765,366 ratings
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38

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3.90 avg rating — 658,480 ratings
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39

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4.04 avg rating — 597,996 ratings
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40

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4.46 avg rating — 5,629,794 ratings
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41

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3.80 avg rating — 269,661 ratings
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42

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3.98 avg rating — 1,209,008 ratings
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43

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4.10 avg rating — 225,916 ratings
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44

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4.36 avg rating — 368,750 ratings
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45

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3.81 avg rating — 380,719 ratings
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46

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4.01 avg rating — 259,182 ratings
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47

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3.98 avg rating — 160,835 ratings
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48

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4.07 avg rating — 980,845 ratings
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49

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4.23 avg rating — 263,707 ratings
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50

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3.90 avg rating — 350,308 ratings
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51

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3.87 avg rating — 27,600 ratings
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52

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4.26 avg rating — 364,561 ratings
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53

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4.12 avg rating — 1,463,232 ratings
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54

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4.22 avg rating — 23 ratings
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55

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3.85 avg rating — 1,667,844 ratings
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56

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4.35 avg rating — 966,830 ratings
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57

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4.10 avg rating — 393,503 ratings
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58

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4.39 avg rating — 72 ratings
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59

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3.77 avg rating — 979,941 ratings
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60

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4.25 avg rating — 334,849 ratings
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61

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4.48 avg rating — 128,531 ratings
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62

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4.11 avg rating — 158,002 ratings
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63

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3.97 avg rating — 559,334 ratings
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64

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4.29 avg rating — 1,032,125 ratings
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65

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3.98 avg rating — 640,557 ratings
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66

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3.84 avg rating — 1,657,283 ratings
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67

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4.33 avg rating — 5,535,664 ratings
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68

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3.39 avg rating — 617,276 ratings
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69

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4.21 avg rating — 1,164,363 ratings
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70

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4.30 avg rating — 556,805 ratings
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71

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4.46 avg rating — 1,802,793 ratings
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72

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4.03 avg rating — 1,003,285 ratings
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73

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3.75 avg rating — 668,781 ratings
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74

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4.19 avg rating — 75,669 ratings
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75

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4.08 avg rating — 188,731 ratings
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76

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3.95 avg rating — 243,365 ratings
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76

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4.17 avg rating — 166 ratings
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78

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4.31 avg rating — 188,691 ratings
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79

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3.99 avg rating — 539,852 ratings
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80

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4.14 avg rating — 493,944 ratings
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81

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4.19 avg rating — 226,309 ratings
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82

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4.13 avg rating — 452,755 ratings
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83

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3.48 avg rating — 432,059 ratings
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84

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4.23 avg rating — 657,638 ratings
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85

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3.98 avg rating — 205,493 ratings
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86

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4.08 avg rating — 1,205,966 ratings
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87

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4.08 avg rating — 87,511 ratings
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88

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3.89 avg rating — 184,874 ratings
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89

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4.16 avg rating — 470,788 ratings
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90

by
3.90 avg rating — 80,113 ratings
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91

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3.89 avg rating — 203,507 ratings
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92

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4.19 avg rating — 33,992 ratings
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93

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4.17 avg rating — 300,267 ratings
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94

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3.96 avg rating — 121,390 ratings
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95

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3.80 avg rating — 492,227 ratings
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96

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3.84 avg rating — 205,029 ratings
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97

by
4.05 avg rating — 1,436,130 ratings
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98

by
3.94 avg rating — 124,750 ratings
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99

by
4.15 avg rating — 592,351 ratings
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100

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3.86 avg rating — 277,475 ratings
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936 books · 1,241 voters · list created January 27th, 2009 by Shelagh (votes) .
153 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Shelagh 45 books
840 friends
Michael 84 books
1100 friends
Yvonne 26 books
58 friends
Chelle 141 books
278 friends
James 36 books
1157 friends
James 149 books
577 friends
Malcolm 656 books
637 friends
Barbara 89 books
699 friends

More voters…


Comments Showing 1-8 of 8 (8 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Yvonne (new)

Yvonne I highly recommend this writer, she is a excellent read.
Yvonne


message 2: by Stuart (new)

Stuart 'The Power of Persuasion' by Shelagh Watkins is a masterpiece of modern day writing -- highly recommended.


message 3: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Brillant!


message 4: by Ann (new)

Ann Bateman New York Trilogy by Paul Auster


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

I wish people would learn to place books in the correct genres. This list has quite a few romance novels, which cannot by any stretch of the imagine be counted as works of literary fiction.


message 6: by Daniel (new)

Daniel Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy and Narnia are all good books, but they are definitely not literary fiction!


message 7: by Martinw (new)

Martinw deleted user wrote: "I wish people would learn to place books in the correct genres. This list has quite a few romance novels, which cannot by any stretch of the imagine be counted as works of literary fiction."

I was just scanning Goodreads for a list exactly like this, and I have to agree with Daniel. I like these books, but this is not the place for them. Hunger Games, too, should be removed.


message 8: by Donna (last edited Mar 07, 2018 01:51PM) (new)

Donna Davis Removed from page 2 as nonfiction: In Cold Blood, by Truman Capote
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1...
Also removed from #426, Pippi Longstocking (c'mon guys, "serious fiction"):
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1...

I question the inclusion of The Odyssey and The Iliad (page 2), which are poetry. Also...Shakespeare's plays, literary fiction? I'm not touching these until I see feedback, but...?

The system found and removed 3 duplicates.

I am surprised to see some unlikely contenders, yet there was no E.L. Doctorow, Russell Banks, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Willa Cather, Octavia Butler, Jesmyn Ward, or Michael Chabon. I have added them, but if you want to vote for them you'll have to flip to the back pages to find them.

Removed from #125, Speedy Reads
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2...

The system found and removed another duplicate.


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