Top Ten Books Of All Time: Timeless Literary Treasures

top 10 books novel reading writing Saudiscoop
A book can be a good friend, and at times, it can be your only friend. Here's a list of top ten books of all time, in our opinion, of course.

The earliest evidence of writing dates back to 5500 years ago. The Mesopotamians substituted the pictorial language for a series of complex characters (books).

That serves as the ultimate ancestor for all writings to come. And they’ve all served essential purposes.

After all, not all books are only for entertainment purposes; some sparked revolutions like the Communist Manifesto.

Some were manuscripts that were important for us to understand the past. Such a list would consist of books on slavery or the holocaust.

Others are there to understand the development of human societies and thoughts through time like “Wealth of Nations” or “On the Origin Of Species“.

Nonetheless, our top 10 picks (in no specific order) are a joy to read and leave a valuable message or meaning behind.

1- The Great Gatsby Novel

It is a novel based on Long Island written by the American transcriber F.Scott Fitzgerald. Nick Carraway, a close acquaintance of Gatsby, narrated the book. Its story failed to gain popularity upon initial release but gained fame during the second world war.

This has opened a gate to many screenplays and film adaptations—the most famous one starring Leanardo Di Caprio. 

The book itself lures around the world Nick creates for the readers. Nick is amused and appalled by his mysterious millionaire neighbor Gatsby and his luxurious and extravagant weekend parties.

Upon stumbling on one of these parties, Nick realizes that Gatsby is unsatisfied with his life.

The dissatisfaction lies in his love, Daisy, being married while Gatsby leaves for the war. This triggers a struggle between Gatsby and Daisy’s husband, Tom.

This is not a typical romance drama novel. It hints at some major themes as it lingers around the jazz age of the 1920s in America.

It trots around wealth, class performance, the American Dream, and serious environmental issues.

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The Great Gatsby Novel F.Scott Fitzgerald Nick Carraway Leanardo Di Caprio Saudiscoop

Recent interpretations of the novel have also talked about identity and sexuality.

This discussion stems from the homoeroticism and deeply veiled emotional attachment between Nick and Gatsby throughout the thriller.

Overall a novel worthy of making a list and one that can be a good travel buddy or an evening picnic companion.

2- To Kill A Mocking Bird

The book is a painful yet objective perspective of America and what the world looks like from the viewpoint of a 6-year-old.

It tackles complex and heavy concepts like rape and racial inequality while still keeping it light-hearted and humorous at times.

The book was published in 1960 and has become a landmark piece of literature that tells a powerful and influential story about the history of America.

The book has won the Pulitzer prize amongst many other accolades. 

About Story

The protagonist of the story, Scout Finch, lives in Depression-era Alabama. The youth and innocence of the children contrast the violence, cruelty, and injustice around them.

The story narrates the trial of a black man, tom, who alleged to rape a young white woman named Ewell.

Despite much public adversary, Scout’s father(Atticus) agrees to fight the case for Tom. In the trial, Atticus successfully defends Tom, proving that Ewell made sexual advances towards him & then was beaten by her father for it.

But due to an explained reason, which they hint to be the racial prejudice of the time, Tom is still convicted. 

While Ewell wins the case, her dignity is lost as it has become clear to the public that she lied. Tom dies in prison after being shot 17 times trying to escape.

Ewell tries to regain her respect by attacking Scout & Jem(Scout’s brother) but is saved by their neighbor, & Ewell dies from the same knife she tried to attack Scout and Jem with.

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To Kill A Mocking Bird by Scout Finch Saudiscoop

There are several themes presented and explored by Lee. Notably, one of them is the performance of gender.

Scout’s development of femininity shakes and changes when she comes to accept the injustice and cruelty around her.

That empowers her with independence and strong wellness, atypical for women in the south. Another beautiful portrayal is the role of the fathers.

While Ewell’s father had beaten her for pursuing Tom and has also been hinted that he molested her, Atticus performs his role much more differently.

Other more common and blatant themes include injustice and racial inequality around which the entire novel revolves;

Overall, an American classic that is a must-read for people of all ages.

The lesson it provides and the history and its development through the story portray the march away from backwardness.

3- Narrative of Life of Fredrick Douglass, An American Slave

This book is a memoir written and treatise on the abolitionist movement by Fredrick Douglas, a formerly enslaved person.

Consisting of eleven chapters, the book talks about Douglas’ struggles and ambition to become a free man.

This is one of the most famous narratives provided by formerly enslaved people. It also provides an in-depth insight into the enslaved people lives of the time.

Naturally, this fuelled the abolitionist movement further and was influential for its rise.

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Narrative of Life of Fredrick Douglass, An American Slave Saudiscoop

It isn’t easy to know or relate to the lived experience of enslaves of the time. Nevertheless, the book does an incredible job by providing details about how an enslaved person was born, their shelters or quarters, the amount of food they’d be given each day, and how their masters treated them.

Similarly, it helps us understand the scary and inhumane actions taken against the enslaved people and thus makes us even stronger in our pursuit of freedom and justice for all.

4- Great Expectations Book

This is one of Charles Dicken’s masterpieces and his penultimate finished book. It comes as a part of the serial in a weekly periodical “all year round”.

The text is full of powerful and extreme imagery, with Dicken’s not being shy of going to great lengths to make the reader immerse themselves in the story.

This meant ideas like poverty, prison life, fights to the death are common and often touched in the book. The book has even been translated into many languages since 1861 when it was published.

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Great Expectations Book by Charles Dicken's Saudicoop

The book features its protagonist in Pip, who lives in Kent and loves this adopted girl, Estella. Pip is greatly ashamed of his humble background and thus, through an unknown benefactor, leaves for London to study.

After spending years in London, he learns that his benefactor, whose identity is known, can no longer finance him.

Thus he prepares to flee England and goes to Estella one last time before leaving. Estella rejects our hero and tells him how she plans to marry someone else.

Pip is caught before escaping, but his poor health prevents him from being jailed for fraud.

Pip escapes the prison because his brother pays his debts; when Pip visits Estella years later, a widow, he grabs her hand and promises not to let go.

5- The Alchemist Book

An all-time great and one of the most-read books of all time, Alchemist is the works of Paulo Coelho. The book has a fan following worldwide with being translated into 80 different languages.

The book portrays the story of a young boy who travels to the pyramids of Giza after having a dream of finding a treasure there.

The boy follows his dream to the pyramids being robbed twice along the way, accompanied by different travelers.

Santiago learns the cost of love and treasure along the way, meeting an alchemist to find out the treasure was at the church where he had the first dream about it.

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Alchemist by Paulo Coelho Saudiscoop

Nearing the end of his journey, Santiago falls in love with a tribes girl Fatima. Santiago proposes marriage to her, who claims she’ll marry him when he completes his trip.

Since the book takes place in Sub-Saharan, Egypt, it proves a spiritual path and background to Sangives Santiago and readers and the readers.

This gives us the unity of the universe and personal legends.

It’s a book that can help you escape reality and understand it simultaneously and thus can be a great starting point for anyone who’s trying to make sense of themselves and things around them.

6- Metamorphosis

The book is an excellent example of Kafkaesque and the philosophy birthed from his writings.

Written by one of the greats of literature himself, Franz Kafka, the book is a wonderful insight into the world around us in a spectacle that Kafka often used himself.

Kafka suffered great anxiety about himself and his writings and thus never really published or gained praise during his lifetime or the initial release of his works.

It wasn’t until 10, 15 years of his death that Kafka’s book caught the word.

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Metamorphosis Kafkaesque Written by Franz Kafka Saudiscoop

It narrates the story of a salesman who inexplicably finds himself to be a massive insect as he wakes up one day and then struggles to get on with his life due to his transformation.

The book is more than just a tale of a man-turned-bug. Instead, it shows the struggles that come with fitting into the past while changing so quickly.

Such as George Samsa(the protagonist) coping with being the family’s sole breadwinner to afflicting troubles and sorrow to the rest of his family.

George eventually dies and brings peace to his family, symbolizing Kafka and his father’s complex.

It resonates with the mental illnesses Kafka lived with and how the individual, while having no control over them, unwantedly inflicts and affects others.

7- Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984) Novel

A dystopian social science novella, 1984 is the last work that George Orwell produced in his lifetime. The book shows a world masked with totalitarianism, mass surveillance, and brutal authoritarianism.

A topic for debate has always been whether the book is based on Stalin’s Soviet Union.

What’s not debatable is how the book successfully shows how lies, truth, facts, and emotions can be manipulated for political causes.

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Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984) Novel George Orwell Saudiscoop

The novel has mass pop-culture appeal as many dialogues have caught on and become part of public usages; such as “2+2=5” or “Big Brother” or “Thought police”.

Similarly, often parallels have been drawn between the book’s version of totalitarianism and accurate word instances of such violations of freedom of expression.

Nonetheless, the book is an eye-opening work where Winston Smith secretly opposes Big Brother’s control by starting a secret rebellion.

His lover, Julia, keeps a personal diary of his thoughts(a thought crime) while fighting oppression that no one else sees or dislikes.

8- Diary of a Young Girl

Anne Frank would be a great author had she been alive. It is unexplainable how a teenage girl’s journal became a vital history lesson and great war literature.

The diary tells a story of a Jewish family who spent two years hiding in Amsterdam.

Thehiding in Amsterdam for two years, whose entrance was hidden by a movable bookcase. Upon Hitler’s arrival in Germany, Anne’s family shifted to Amsterdam, but soon the Netherlands was captured by Germany too.

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Dairy of a Young Girl by Anne Frank Saudiscoop

More Jews joined them there, food and other supplies by alias were given on the surface. Eventually, the annex is found, and Anne, her mother, and sister, are sent to Auschwitz, where they die.

These stories and experiences were recorded in Anne’s red and white diary, which she received on her 13th birthday.

She hoped it would get published one day as a novel named “the secret annex”. It was difficult to publish the book because the diary had to be collected and compiled with the other loose sheets where Anne wrote her entries.

Amidst all the adversity, Anne wrote, “I still believe, despite everything, people are good at heart.”

9- Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice is an 1813 novel written by Jane Austen. A romantic drama that was initially published anonymously, which quickly became a literary classic.

It centers around the story of Elizabeth and her relationship with a wealthy landowner, Darcy.

The book follows the character development of Elizabeth Bennet; the dynamic character of the book who learns about the consequences of hasty judgments; and comes to appreciate the difference between simple kindness and genuine kindness.

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Pride and Prejudice 1813 novel written by Jane Austen Saudiscoop

Jane uses despicable realism and nail-biting social commentary whose work is primarily affected by her background and her social context.

While it may seem funny, the book’s plot shows how integral marriage is to women’s economic security.

Elizabeth Bennet and her five sisters are at the brink of poverty when their father dies with no male heir, thus having all five daughters face poverty. 

Although the novel is often criticized for the social bubble, it was created as the world that Elizabeth lived in was rarely affected by the outside happenings; such as the French Revolution that was happening at the time of the story.

At the same time, Elizabeth was shown as ever conceiving and seeing, and as the book primed the story around the two main characters. Likewise, Elizabeth made the book famous and received great acclaim. 

10- Norwegian Woods Book

We know what you’re thinking. Isn’t Norwegian woods a song by the Beatles? Yes, it is, and the book by Murakami’ Norwegian woods’ has been deliberately named.

In the book, the protagonist, Toru Watanabe, is introduced to listening to the Beatles and has been observed to be fond of the band.

The book is a first perspective narration from Toru, who fiddles with his sexuality while romancing with two different and polar opposite women.

It is important to note that Watanabe is nostalgic about the entire experience and his reliving it from his memory of his college days.

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Murakami' Norwegian woods Toru Watanabe Saudiscoop

Watanabe, his classmate Kizuki and Kizuki’s girlfriend-Naoko are best friends. But things change when Kizuki kills himself, leading to Naoko and Watanabe getting closer due to a romantic tension between them.

Soon they find themselves having sex with each other, immediately after which Naoko leaves the city for a sanatorium.

After spending enough time with his drama colleague, Midori, he falls in love with her too; and the rest of the story is spent in confusion and conflict between the two for Watanabe.

It ends with Naoko killing herself unexpectedly and Watanabe going back to Midori. 


There have been a lot of novels and books throughout history. As soon as man learned how to speak and think, he documented it in words, which led to a limitless history and presence of literature.

The list of ‘top ten books of all time’ is measured on a personal and subjective metric and in no way or form a complete one.

In fact, we believe that there are a lot more that could have been added here; and we did consider them too such as ‘Wuthering Heights” or “Harry Potter” and “Lord of the Rings“; but we were constricted with the number of books thus could not accommodate all.

Wuthering Heights Saudiscoop
Harry Potter Saudiscoop
Lord of the Rings Saudiscoop

It is important to note that your list may differ very much, and we encourage you to develop your list and compare it.

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