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The Modern Library was one of the most important publishing houses of the early 1920s and billed itself as "The Modern Library of World's Best Books." The current Board includes the likes of Maya Angelou, Daniel J. Boorstin, and Gore Vidal. In 1998, The Modern Library published a list of the 100 Best Novels. Below is an excerpt from that list.


The Modern Library's 90 Best Novels - Fiction



Ulysses by James Joyce 1. Ulysses by James Joyce

Ulysses by James Joyce


The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald 2. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald


A Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Man by James Joyce 3. A Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Man by James Joyce

A Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Man by James Joyce


Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov 4. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov


Brave New World by Aldous Huxley 5. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley


The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner 6. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner

The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner


Catch-22 by Joseph Heller 7. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller


Darkness At Noon by Arthur Koestler 8. Darkness At Noon by Arthur Koestler

Darkness At Noon by Arthur Koestler


Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence 9. Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence

Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence


The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck 10. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck


Under The Volcano by Malcolm Lowry 11. Under The Volcano by Malcolm Lowry

Under The Volcano by Malcolm Lowry


The Way Of All Flesh by Samuel Butler 12. The Way Of All Flesh by Samuel Butler

The Way Of All Flesh by Samuel Butler


1984 by George Orwell 13. 1984 by George Orwell

1984 by George Orwell


I, Claudius by Robert Graves 14. I, Claudius by Robert Graves

I, Claudius by Robert Graves


To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf 15. To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf


An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser 16. An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser

An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser


The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter by Carson Mccullers 17. The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter by Carson Mccullers

The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter by Carson Mccullers


Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut 18. Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut

Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut


Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison 19. Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison


Native Son by Richard Wright 20. Native Son by Richard Wright

Native Son by Richard Wright


Henderson The Rain King by Saul Bellow 21. Henderson The Rain King by Saul Bellow

Henderson The Rain King by Saul Bellow


Appointment In Samarra by John O'Hara 22. Appointment In Samarra by John O'Hara

Appointment In Samarra by John O'Hara


U.S.A. (Trilogy) by John Dos Passos 23. U.S.A. (Trilogy) by John Dos Passos

U.S.A. (Trilogy) by John Dos Passos


Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson 24. Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson

Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson


A Passage To India by E.M. Forster 25. A Passage To India by E.M. Forster

A Passage To India by E.M. Forster


The Wings Of The Dove by Henry James 26. The Wings Of The Dove by Henry James

The Wings Of The Dove by Henry James


The Ambassadors by Henry James 27. The Ambassadors by Henry James

The Ambassadors by Henry James


Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald 28. Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald


The Studs Lonigan Trilogy by James T. Farrell 29. The Studs Lonigan Trilogy by James T. Farrell

The Studs Lonigan Trilogy by James T. Farrell


The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford 30. The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford

The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford


Animal Farm by George Orwell 31. Animal Farm by George Orwell

Animal Farm by George Orwell


The Golden Bowl by Henry James 32. The Golden Bowl by Henry James

The Golden Bowl by Henry James


Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser 33. Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser

Sister Carrie by Theodore Dreiser


A Handful Of Dust by Evelyn Waugh 34. A Handful Of Dust by Evelyn Waugh

A Handful Of Dust by Evelyn Waugh


As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner 35. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner

As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner


All The King's Men by Robert Penn Warren 36. All The King's Men by Robert Penn Warren

All The King's Men by Robert Penn Warren


The Bridge Of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder 37. The Bridge Of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder

The Bridge Of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder


Howards End by E.M. Forster 38. Howards End by E.M. Forster

Howards End by E.M. Forster


Go Tell It On The Mountain by James Baldwin 39. Go Tell It On The Mountain by James Baldwin

Go Tell It On The Mountain by James Baldwin


The Heart Of The Matter by Graham Greene 40. The Heart Of The Matter by Graham Greene

The Heart Of The Matter by Graham Greene


Lord Of The Flies by William Golding 41. Lord Of The Flies by William Golding

Lord Of The Flies by William Golding


Deliverance by James Dickey 42. Deliverance by James Dickey

Deliverance by James Dickey


A Dance To The Music Of Time (Series) by Anthony Powell 43. A Dance To The Music Of Time (Series) by Anthony Powell

A Dance To The Music Of Time (Series) by Anthony Powell


Point Counter Point by Aldous Huxley 44. Point Counter Point by Aldous Huxley

Point Counter Point by Aldous Huxley


The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway 45. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway


The Secret Agent by Joseph Conrad 46. The Secret Agent by Joseph Conrad

The Secret Agent by Joseph Conrad


Nostromo by Joseph Conrad 47. Nostromo by Joseph Conrad

Nostromo by Joseph Conrad


The Rainbow by D.H. Lawrence 48. The Rainbow by D.H. Lawrence

The Rainbow by D.H. Lawrence


Women In Love by D.H. Lawrence 49. Women In Love by D.H. Lawrence

Women In Love by D.H. Lawrence


Tropic Of Cancer by Henry Miller 50. Tropic Of Cancer by Henry Miller

Tropic Of Cancer by Henry Miller


The Naked And The Dead by Norman Mailer 51. The Naked And The Dead by Norman Mailer

The Naked And The Dead by Norman Mailer


Portnoy's Complaint by Philip Roth 52. Portnoy's Complaint by Philip Roth

Portnoy's Complaint by Philip Roth


Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov 53. Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov

Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov


Light In August by William Faulkner 54. Light In August by William Faulkner

Light In August by William Faulkner


On The Road by Jack Kerouac 55. On The Road by Jack Kerouac

On The Road by Jack Kerouac


The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett 56. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett

The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett


Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford 57. Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford

Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford


The Age Of Innocence by Edith Wharton 58. The Age Of Innocence by Edith Wharton

The Age Of Innocence by Edith Wharton


Zuleika Dobson by Max Beerbohm 59. Zuleika Dobson by Max Beerbohm

Zuleika Dobson by Max Beerbohm


The Moviegoer by Walker Percy 60. The Moviegoer by Walker Percy

The Moviegoer by Walker Percy


Death Comes For The Archbishop by Willa Cather 61. Death Comes For The Archbishop by Willa Cather

Death Comes For The Archbishop by Willa Cather


From Here To Eternity by James Jones 62. From Here To Eternity by James Jones

From Here To Eternity by James Jones


The Wapshot Chronicle by John Cheever 63. The Wapshot Chronicle by John Cheever

The Wapshot Chronicle by John Cheever


The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger 64. The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger

The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger


A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess 65. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess


Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham 66. Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham

Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham


Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad 67. Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad


Main Street by Sinclair Lewis 68. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis

Main Street by Sinclair Lewis


The House Of Mirth by Edith Wharton 69. The House Of Mirth by Edith Wharton

The House Of Mirth by Edith Wharton


The Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durell 70. The Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durell

The Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durell


A High Wind In Jamaica by Richard Hughes 71. A High Wind In Jamaica by Richard Hughes

A High Wind In Jamaica by Richard Hughes


A House For Mr Biswas by V.S. Naipaul 72. A House For Mr Biswas by V.S. Naipaul

A House For Mr Biswas by V.S. Naipaul


The Day Of The Locust by Nathanael West 73. The Day Of The Locust by Nathanael West

The Day Of The Locust by Nathanael West


A Farewell To Arms by Ernest Hemingway 74. A Farewell To Arms by Ernest Hemingway

A Farewell To Arms by Ernest Hemingway


Scoop by Evelyn Waugh 75. Scoop by Evelyn Waugh

Scoop by Evelyn Waugh


The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark 76. The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark

The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark


Finnegans Wake by James Joyce 77. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

Finnegans Wake by James Joyce


Kim by Rudyard Kipling 78. Kim by Rudyard Kipling

Kim by Rudyard Kipling


A Room With A View by E.M. Forster 79. A Room With A View by E.M. Forster

A Room With A View by E.M. Forster


Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh 80. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh

Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh


The Adventures Of Augie March by Saul Bellow 81. The Adventures Of Augie March by Saul Bellow

The Adventures Of Augie March by Saul Bellow


Angle Of Repose by Wallace Stegner 82. Angle Of Repose by Wallace Stegner

Angle Of Repose by Wallace Stegner


A Bend In The River by V.S. Naipaul 83. A Bend In The River by V.S. Naipaul

A Bend In The River by V.S. Naipaul


The Death Of The Heart by Elizabeth Bowen 84. The Death Of The Heart by Elizabeth Bowen

The Death Of The Heart by Elizabeth Bowen


Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad 85. Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad

Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad


Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow 86. Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow

Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow


The Old Wives' Tale by Arnold Bennett 87. The Old Wives' Tale by Arnold Bennett

The Old Wives' Tale by Arnold Bennett


The Call Of The Wild by Jack London 88. The Call Of The Wild by Jack London

The Call Of The Wild by Jack London


Loving by Henry Green 89. Loving by Henry Green

Loving by Henry Green


Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie 90. Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie

Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie


Tobacco Road By Erskine Caldwell 91. Tobacco Road
By Erskine Caldwell


Ironweed By William Kennedy 92. Ironweed
By William Kennedy


The Magus By John Fowles 93. The Magus
By John Fowles



Wide Sargasso Sea By Jean Rhys 94. Wide Sargasso Sea
By Jean Rhys


Under The Net By Iris Murdoch 95. Under The Net
By Iris Murdoch


Sophie's Choice By William Styron 96. Sophie's Choice
By William Styron


The Sheltering Sky By Paul Bowles 97. The Sheltering Sky
By Paul Bowles


The Call Of The Wild By Jack London 98. The Call Of The Wild
By Jack London


Loving By Henry Green 99. Loving
By Henry Green


Midnight's Children By Salman Rushdie 100. Midnight's Children
By Salman Rushdie




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