The Greatest Literature of All Time
See Editor Eric's famous list of the 1,000 greatest literary works in the world from 2100 BCE to today. Select entire list of "1,000 Greatest Works" above—for the greatest-ever novels, stories, plays and other literary works—or select by years.
Plus, check the lists of the 666 greatest novels of time, the 200 greatest short stories ever, the 200 greatest science fiction works, and the 200 greatest crime and mystery works. On all lists, you can click links to the more than 500 commentaries on authors, books, translations and adaptations of great literature.
The romance to end all romanticism
Partway through The Sorrows of Young Werther
you might wonder if this is actually a parody of romantic stories of the sturm und drang
era. Werther's attachment to his beloved Charlotte, Lotte for short, can come across as a ridiculously over-the-top passion. Or so it may appear to a modern reader. What Werther calls.... The Sorrows of Young Werther
The unquiet Brit and the Americans
The biggest obstacle to properly appreciating The Quiet American
is getting past Graham Greene's uncanny political prescience. In the 1950s, when Vietnam wasn't yet on the radar for most Western readers, when U.S. foreign policy and military power were still widely seen as forces to make the world safe for democracy.... The Quiet American
Murder in the middle
You could say Isaac Asimov always was a mystery writer. His early science fiction works were often light on action as his brainy, talkative characters sought answers to practical questions. Why did that robot act contrary to its programming? Where is that foundation hidden in the galaxy? But the young writer.... The Caves of Steel
First great story of slavery
Aphra Behn's most famous work might disappoint a reader who has heard it's a staunchly anti-slavery, anti-colonialist or feminist work. One may find Oroonoko
is none of those things, at least by modern standards. Behn was a writer in the latter seventeenth-century period known in England as the Restoration, when.... Oroonoko
The vril of it all
It's an irony of sorts that Edward Bulwer-Lytton's most influential book may be his last, one of his shortest, written in a genre different from everything else he had done to that point, and not even published under his own name. Yet it was greatly admired and popular in its time. But don't let any of that make you think.... The Coming Race
The war which is never over
It may seem odd an acclaimed series of novels near the end of the twentieth century should feature characters from the period of the First World War. Or that issues from that war time should continue to so resonate with the reading public. At least part of the popularity of the Regeneration
novels can be explained by.... The Regeneration Trilogy
The greatest SF works of all time
Editor Eric's list of the 200 greatest works of speculative and science fiction
—the greatest SF stories and novels published on the planet.
The greatest crime works of all time
Editor Eric's list of the 200 greatest works of crime, mystery and detective fiction
—the greatest stories and novels ever published in this popular genre.
Movies for people who love great books
Faithful adaptations or completely different art form? A guide to over 200 films, film series and television productions
—from the authentic to the silly—based on the greatest works of literature reviewed on these pages.
The Greatest Canadian Literature
The 150 best novels, drama and poetry from writers in the Great White North, plus commentaries on selected books and Canadian authors.