Top 10 Best Fiction Books

Books To Keep And Re-Read

To choose the Top 10 Best Fiction Books is a bit cheeky perhaps as it is a very subjective consideration really.

However, many book-oriented websites have their list of top ten novels or even a hundred best books of the year and so on.

This is NOT a list based on obscure and esoteric writings by authors the average reader has rarely, if ever, heard of. It is NOT a list that would get a Nobel or Booker Prize nomination - which I consider usually are lists full of boring and inaccessible writing.

This is, after all, a site about fiction books to read for fun and relaxation.

I do have serious criteria - I am not talking about potboilers - my choice is based on
writing skills
narrative development
solid plotting
excellent and rich charasterization.

The books listed below all fulfill those criteria and more - they are so good that they well and truly stand up to a re-read from time to time.

To The List

The Top 10 Best Fiction Books

SONGMASTER by Orson Scott Card (Sci Fi)
In some ways Card stands alone in the Science Fiction genre – as his tales combine thought provoking morality, with seriously deadly action and stimulating narrative. His writing skills are a pleasure in themselves – regardless of the subject or tale.

THE POWER OF ONE by Bryce Courtenay (general fiction)
This novel is a powerful story of a prodigy growing up on the eve of WW11. The Power of One, although partly based on Courtenay’s own childhood experiences, is an almost elegaic narrative of a boy’s growing up in the increasingly oppressive racial society that was South Africa at the time.

Its sequel TANDIA maintains the standard and should be read as well.

THE LAST LION by William Manchester (Biography)
This author could write a phone book and it would be a superb read so good is his command and use of the language - this two volume biograhy of Churchill is simply a tour de force that is so pleasurable to read.

Unfortunately, Manchester died before he could complete the 3rd volume of this biography – but the two he did finish are simply brilliant.

THE BLACK ECHO by Michael Connelly (Legal and Crime Thriller)
I consider Connelly a writer who has never succumbed to formulaic writing and always maintained a high standard from THE BLACK ECHO to his latest offering THE GODS OF GUILT (2013) - the choice is simply an indicative - I really include all his books in this choice - those featuring Harry Bosch and those with Mickey Haller.

His yarns are well worth reading from the first in the series and do stand up to re-reading periodically.

THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD by James Lee Burke (Crime Thriller)
This is the latest in his Dave Robicheaux series. In a way it is an arbitrary selection as all in the series are of equal quality - he has maintained a very high standard without let up - making his novels a 'must read' imperative. He is a writer of extremely evocative and exquisite prose that makes just the reading a joy, regardless of the substance!

James Lee Burke's work has been awarded an Edgar twice for Best Crime Novel of the Year. His novel The Lost Get-Back Boogie was rejected 111 times over a period of nine years, and upon publication by Louisiana State University press was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

THE MAGICIAN by Raymond E Feist(fantasy)
Feist is a master story teller with an endless imagination - as evidenced by this pick - which is simply the beginning of a volume of related novels - all of which are of the very highest quality in fantasy writing. His latest MAGICIANS END has been published (2013)

ALL THE FLOWERS ARE DYING by Lawrence Block (Matt Scudder)
Block has a superb feel for atmosphere and the chinks in our humanity. He’s probably at his mordant best with the Scudder thriller novels which are also thoughtful, richly textured and peopled by unforgettable characters who are among Block's most enduring creations: such as his wife Elaine, streetwise sidekick TJ; old buddy, Mick Ballou, the murderous and hard-drinking Irish mobster with a deeply philosophical streak. He is also 'Evan Hunter'.

WHEN CHRIST AND HIS SAINTS SLEPT by McCullough has told the story from differing perspectives of the lead characters - and faithfully stuck to the spirit of Homer's story - without the mythology bits. It's a pity that the movie Troy couldn't have been based on it.

As indicated, this is an entirely subjective list - and there are many more books I consider to be of equal note that could have been included instead these choices.


If you have a list of what you consider to be the top 10 best fiction books and would like them published here - just email to me via the contact page.

The only criterion you need to heed is that they must be novels that are accessible and to be read for fun and relaxation.

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