1 Jane Austen
Jane Austen was an English novelist known principally for her five major novels which interpret, critique and comment upon the life of the British landed gentry at the end of the 18th century.
She is one of the greatest writers of our century. She has made me a naughty girl into a book lover. Also her book holds a very special place in the hearts of those who have read them.
3 Virginia Woolf
Adeline Virginia Woolf, born Stephen (25 January 1882 – 28 March 1941), known professionally as Virginia Woolf, was an English writer and one of the foremost modernists of the 20th century.
4 E.M. Forster
Read his books and also his "Aspects of the Novel." n.g. young (San Marcos, CA)
5 Sisters Bronte
6 Charles Dickens
Charles John Huffam Dickens (7 February 1812 – 9 June 1870) was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world's best-known fictional characters and is regarded by many as the greatest novelist of the Victorian era. ...read more.
7 Agatha Christie
Dame Agatha Mary Clarissa Christie, Lady Mallowan, DBE was an English crime novelist, short story writer and playwright.
Agatha Christie, in my eyes, is the Mother of Crime fiction. Her Poirot series especially is superb. Her books are only outsold by the bible. I love how her books are timeless, and there's often a romantic aura surrounding them which could really only come from that particular era.
Nice list. - Britgirl
8 William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright, and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist.
How, in the name of all that is holy, anyone so obtuse to not rank Shakespeare 1st?
If I read the list as Non English, I'm surprised to find Tolkien, Rowling and Christie in the top list. But Shakespeare ranked 9, Oscar Wilde ranked 11, G. Orwell 12. You have some sense of humor.
9 Robert Louis Stevenson
Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson (13 November 1850 – 3 December 1894) was a Scottish novelist, poet, essayist, and travel writer. His most famous works are Treasure Island, Kidnapped, Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and A Child's Garden of Verses. ...read more.
10 Oscar Wilde
Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde (16 October 1854 – 30 November 1900) was an Irish playwright, novelist, essayist, and poet. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London's most popular playwrights in the early 1890s. He is remembered for his epigrams, his novel ...read more.
One of, if not the greatest wit in the more than the thousand year history of the English language.
11 George Orwell
Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 – 21 January 1950), who used the pen name George Orwell, was an English novelist, essayist, journalist and critic. His work is marked by lucid prose, awareness of social injustice, opposition to totalitarianism, and outspoken support of democratic socialism.
He foretold the future as few others in history were able...
Agreed. He did foretell the future.
12 George MacDonald
13 Daphne du Maurier
14 Mary Shelley
There will never be a greater sociological and philosophical novel about a created and a natural human monster than "Frankenstein." n.g. young (San Marcos, CA)
15 Aldous Huxley
We forgot to put in this list the amazing Aldous Huxley!
16 J. R. R. Tolkien
John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973), known by his pen name J. R. R. Tolkien, was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor who is best known as the author of the classic high-fantasy works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.
This is the man who invented the fantasy genre! Without the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, we wouldn't have gotten a genre that has inspired many others to write such fantastic works, including JK Rowling.
17 Arthur Conan Doyle
18 Muriel Spark
19 D. H. Lawrence
By now means the greatest writer, but the first non-Arab who really tried to stamp out colonialism in that wretched part of the world. Had Lawrence succeeded, most if not all of today's "troubles" would never have occurred.
20 Rudyard Kipling
21 William Golding
22 George Eliot
23 Thomas Hardy
Thomas Hardy, OM (2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928) was an English novelist and poet. A Victorian realist in the tradition of George Eliot, he was influenced both in his novels and in his poetry by Romanticism, especially William Wordsworth.
24 John Fowles
25 Roald Dahl
Roald Dahl (13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990) was a British novelist, short story writer, poet, screenwriter, and fighter pilot. His books have sold more than 250 million copies worldwide.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, James and the Giant Peach, Fantastic Mr. Fox; Roald Dahl is the man who made me fall in love with many amazing tales and gave off some of the greatest life lessons.
26 Tanith Lee
She is a very atmospheric horror/fantasy writer. Outstanding!
27 H. G. Wells
Herbert George Wells - known as H. G. Wells - was a prolific English writer in many genres, including the novel, history, politics, and social commentary, and textbooks and rules for war games.
28 Mark Billingham
29 Joseph Conrad
30 William Makepeace Thackeray
31 Daniel Defoe
32 Peter James
One of the very best authors in the crime/thriller genre of the modern age. His Roy Grace novels are outstanding and he comes from Brighton!
P.S if you like Peter James, I have a Top Ten Peter James Novels list that may interest you. - Britgirl
33 J. Meade Falkner
I have fond memories of 'The Lost Stradivarius'. A very atmospheric novel.
34 Bram Stoker
35 Enid Blyton
36 E. Nesbit
37 Lewis Carroll
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, better known by his pen name Lewis Carroll, was an English writer, mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon, and photographer.
38 C.S. Lewis
Clive Staples Lewis (29 November 1898 – 22 November 1963) was a British novelist, poet, academic, medievalist, literary critic, essayist, lay theologian, broadcaster, lecturer, and Christian apologist. ...read more.
39 Martina Cole
40 Pat Barker
41 Charlotte Bronte
Charlotte Brontë (21 April 1816 – 31 March 1855) was an English novelist and poet, the eldest of the three Brontë sisters who survived into adulthood and whose novels have become classics of English literature. She first published her works (including her best known novel, Jane Eyre) under the pen ...read more.
42 Camilla Way
English Psychological thriller writer. - Britgirl
43 David Walliams
David Edward Williams, known as David Walliams, is an English comedian, actor, author, television personality and activist, known for his partnership with Matt Lucas on the BBC One sketch shows Little Britain, Rock Profile and Come Fly with Me.
He is the best author.
44 Ian Fleming
45 Graham Greene
Henry Graham Greene OM CH (2 October 1904 – 3 April 1991), better known by his pen name Graham Greene, was an English novelist regarded by some as one of the great writers of the 20th century.
46 Geoffrey Chaucer
Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1343 – 25 October 1400), known as the Father of English literature, is widely considered the greatest English poet of the Middle Ages and was the first poet to be buried in Poets' Corner of Westminster Abbey.
47 William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth (7 April 1770 – 23 April 1850) was a major English Romantic poet who, with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, helped to launch the Romantic Age in English literature with their joint publication Lyrical Ballads (1798).
48 T. S. Eliot
Thomas Stearns Eliot, OM, (26 September 1888 – 4 January 1965) was an American-born British essayist, publisher, playwright, literary and social critic, and one of the 20th century's major poets.
49 Arthur C. Clarke
Sir Arthur Charles Clarke, FRAS was a British science fiction writer, science writer and futurist, inventor, undersea explorer, and television series host.
50 Beatrix Potter