Best Light Novels

A light novel (ライトノベル raito noberu? ) is a style of Japanese novel primarily targeting middle- and high-school students (young adult demographic). [1][2] "Light novel" is a wasei-eigo, or a Japanese term formed from words in the English language. Such short, light novels are often called ranobe (ラノベ? )[3] or LN in the West. They are typically not more than 40,000�"50,000 words long (the shorter ones being equivalent to a novella in US publishing terms), are rarely more than a few hundred pages, often have dense publishing schedules, are usually published in bunkobon size, and are often illustrated. [4] The text is often serialized in anthology magazines before collection in book form.

The Top Ten

1 The Empty Box and the Zeroth Maria

My dad works for microsoft

Simply put, a masterpiece. Seriously, I read all available volumes (1-6) in 3 nights. Every day I'd be excited for getting to read the rest of the series. I then spent an excruciating time waiting for the last volume to be released and translated. When it finally got an official translated I went and bought it and had it shipped to my country immediately. Can not recommend this series enough.

By far, the best Light Novel I've ever read. It grips you from the first sentence, and doesn't let go until the last. The mystery is very well-crafted, you won't be able to figure out the major plot twists, but you'll realize once they happen that the clues were always there. It's also a powerfully emotional story, with characters that'll make you deeply care. - Cyto


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2 Monogatari Series

I can't express in words how AMAZING the Monogatari series is.

It's way too good, seriously

Simply a masterpiece

The best light-novel, one of the best anime series

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3 Spice & Wolf

Amazing progression, wonderful unforgettable characters, keeps you hooked

This is not a normal light novel, it's Legend

The epitome of storytelling!

A slower paced story filled with a wondrous series of believable events, savourable timelines and developed characters.

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4 Oregairu

It is amazing

Deserves to be on the TOP 5

It's the best accumulation of realistic thoughts that can be put together in a fictional story

One of the best RomCom there is. Highly recommended.

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5 Jobless Reincarnation - It will be All Out if I Go to Another World Jobless Reincarnation - It will be All Out if I Go to Another World

Great novel, mostly thanks to the strong characters. Each one is flawed but in a very humane or endearing kind of way, especially the protagonist that goes from being a useless NEET to risking his life over and over for the sake of his family.

Full of adventures! filled with fun, excitement and brimming with emotions! recommended to everyone!

By far the best isekai out there. Many isekai leave a lot to be desired but this one was executed beautifully. The main character and the supporting cast are all unique and memorable and the plot makes sense...kind of. - AndrewHunt42

Best isekai light novel ever.
If you’re into isekai’s, this is a must read LN

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6 A Certain Magical Index

Beautiful book by a writer who I believe is incarnation of God.

A masterpiece light novel about Science and Magic crossing path. You'll never regret reading it.

A great read. Very entricate and delicate plots. All around amazing.

This is the single best Jove followed by no game no life the monogatari series

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7 No Game No Life

I know the anime for this, but I haven't watched It yet. I might start off with the novels - MLPFan

Exceptional series. I have read each book multiple times and watched the anime, and I can't recommend it enough. The characters and the writing is exceptional, and their genius is portrayed flawlessly.

Though the english translation is not at top notch. It drops bombs after bombs as the novel approach the end. Imagine the boner u gets from the anime when he declare war on all other race top it all of being the weakest. Get that feeling and times 5 my guy.

The best novel ever

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8 Re:Zero Kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu Re:Zero Kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu

I've always been a huge fan of this, and will always think this is the best. It's just such an AMAZING story I can't describe it with words. The best thing in my life that happened to me was finding this masterpiece, and I don't think anything is going to beat this.

This story is amazing. By far my favorite light novel and show. Love all the characters in this story and it is a very dark and awesome series.

Why it isn't first yet?

Heart wrenchingly beautiful.

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9 Overlord

The cover is wrong

How to do overpowered characters right in a story? With good world building and taking multiple perspectives from good side characters.

One of the best greatest pieces of literature I have ever read. Please give it a chance, you will not be disappointed.

Only ainz shall achieve godhood

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10 Knight's & Magic

I hope for the continuation. it was the best novel for me

it is good

The Contenders

11 The Rising of the Shield Hero

Fast pace and very good storyline. Keeps readers in suspense and draws them in with un expected twist and turns. The cgaracter development is also really good. After completing this novel, I felt so empty. That, is a true definition of a great LN.

A cooler look on the transported to a different world genre.

It's great please read this


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12 Shuumatsu Nani Shitemasu Ka?
13 Kino's Journey: The Beautiful World
14 Zaregoto
15 Legendary Moonlight Sculptor

Great feeling of adventure

Best ever. A must read.

I hope there would be real game that build based on this novel..

This is really good

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16 Baccano! Baccano! Baccano! (バッカーノ!), which Narita translates as 'stupid commotion', is Italian for 'ruckus'. An ongoing light novel series with over twenty volumes published, it takes place across three eras – the early 1700s, 1930s, and 2000s – and presents its story arcs in anachronistic fashion. Though more.

Awesome plot, keeps you glued from the begining 'till the end each volume. Characters, you could actually look up to. Give it a try!

17 Sword Art Online

Sword Art Online below Log Horizon? You gotta be kidding me.

I'm sorry, but there are just too many problems with Sword Art Online for me to like it. - itz_izzy

There's too many issues and it's kinda really boring

It's getting boring hope it regains its hype soon.

This is the best novel where Kirito and Asuna had SEX

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18 The Irregular at Magic High School

Relatable though a fantasy work. Not over the top action and story makes it (for me) the best thing I ever read.

This anime is so cool and I really want to know if they will make season 2

Story is pretty cool with lots of background details

Absolutely love it!

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19 Tales Of Demons and Gods

Started with the Manga and then went "... WHERE IS THE LIGHT NOVEL I NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT IN THE STORY! " I Couldn't stop with the Manga and I can't stop with the Light Novel now It's a great piece with a good mix of action, mystery, romantic, diplomatic and dark scenes within it.

First Light Novel I've ever read. I find it amazing though, well written and actually hard to foresee. Very likeable characters and great setting

The manga is a bit slow at picking up and only shows a tiny tiny portion of what the story is. And the story, oh, my, god. It's actually damn good!

Can't stop reading this. Amazing story and the way MC knows so such, its stunning.

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20 Konosuba: God's Blessing on This Wonderful World! Konosuba: God's Blessing on This Wonderful World!

Such a masterpiece is on 22th place? It's an unforgivable disgrace.

A light hearted romp that just makes you happy to have read it

No better word to describe it

Need s3

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21 Danmachi Danmachi

When fantasy crosses dreams. By far the most well written light novel I have red. If you like mythology give it a shot. I promise it will not disappoint. The story isn't as deceiving is the title!

Great anime, amazing light novel! This is by far my favorite series out there! Love able characters and great story! Highly recommend!

Was skeptical at first but seriously some of the best written characters and story plots I had the pleasure of reading!

Definitely one of the best fantasy light novels out there!

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22 High School DxD

Very attractive novel I always used to read in free time

Super creative with all of these dragon and faction stuff

Just a great one.

Awesome plot and character development
And especially Issei's character:- a gentleman true to his carnal desires

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23 Tensei Shitara Slime Datta Ken

Slow start but once you get into it its pretty good. - AndrewHunt42

Best for me. I can't get over it and have been addicted to it since the beginning. The character development is well portrayed, the transitions on each arc is very smooth, the events in the story can take your breath away (in anticipation). seriously guys, if you want an LN with an OP MC but still down to earth -- who plans ahead before going to battle when it's clear as day that he's by far the strongest--, and support characters that are strong as hell, you better read this! This LN is amazing.

I'm literally obsessed, this is probably the singular best light novel series I've read, full of humor and fantastical beasts, definitely one great isekai!

Top 2 light novels ever written!

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24 Durarara!!

Really one of the best animes that I have seen there is a lot of caracters and every one have a role in the story.Whene I think about it I still can't say this serie talk about what, because its just a mix of events that create a kind of suspense and thriller and made you interested

When I first started reading, didn't know what to expect. But the story was well done, and the character's designs fitted well with the plot.

Very enjoyable.

25 Against the Gods

Most amazing story I have ever read! Give this a shot and you will not be disappointed. I have read a lot of light novels and this one takes the cake by far.

This Is very very good for you who like harem genre with OP mc

Have to read it. its still on going & worth to wait

Typical chinese OP MC with harem and stage progession system(strongest in city weakest in county, strongest in county weakest in country, stongest in country weakest in continent etc.) If the average one is a 5 this one would be a 6. It's better than average type in this genre but its still doesn't stand out in any field except its chapter number. - AndrewHunt42

26 Violet Evergarden Violet Evergarden Violet Evergarden is a Japanese light novel series written by Kana Akatsuki and illustrated by Akiko Takase.

Simply the best

27? what a shame

To be honest, this is one of the most beautifully written light novels I have read. The characters, their perspectives, and their stories all add up to each other making you feel part of the story. I’m quite disappointed it is only 27th here.

27 The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya

I'm surprised this wasn't on the list, but this series is one of my favorites. I love all of the characters, and from the light novel, the series got two anime seasons, a movie, and a manga adaptation. Definitely worth checking out. - itz_izzy

Really enjoyed it. Took a while new spin n the stereotypical high school light Novel and made it truly something special.


28 Log Horizon

Better than SAO, always.

Easily the best light novel of its kind.

Nah, I love Sword Art Online better.

SAO turned from a good story to fanservice that I just can't bother with anymore. The writer of SAO even admitted that it became a harem scenario because he doesn't know how to write male characters, which is plain lousy excuse. Log Horizon on the other hand only got progressively interesting. So LH > SAO for me. SAO fanboys should just go watch your ecchi and hentais to fulfill your harem fantasy.

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29 Re:Monster

A bit out in a many extents (like too overpowered, etc) but quite entertaining, like it much

It's pretty good except the story is a bit fast and sometime it's a bit confusing other than that it's pretty good read...exciting stuff.

Pretty good

Good story - Dragovik

30 Invincible Level Up
31 You-Zitsu

If you enjoy a series about an OP MC that tricks everyone through intellect this would be your series.

So Interesting and fun!

Best Light Novel I've ever read. MC is so good and the story is always intriguing and thrilling.

Best ln I ever read so far, yet why it's so underrated

32 Isekai Wa Smartphone to Tomo to In

Awesome must read I liked it most

Linze best girl

33 Hyouka Hyouka

You can feel the mystery

Nostalgic mystery

Now why isn't hyouka in this list? deserves to be under hakomari in my opinion

I like kudryavka seqence very much!

34 Fate/Zero Fate/Zero Fate/Zero is a series of light novels written by Gen Urobuchi, illustrated by Takashi Takeuchi, and is a prequel to Type-Moon's visual novel, Fate/stay night. An anime adaptation of Fate/Zero was jointly produced by Aniplex, nitroplus, Type-Moon, Seikaisha, and Ufotable that ran from 2011-2012.
35 Peerless Martial God
36 Campione Campione
37 Slayers
38 Kaifuku Jutsushi No Yarinaoshi
39 Boku Wa Tomodachi Ga Sukunai

My god this light novel is so funny and realist about the people who don't have any friends - MloikFred

40 Arifureta Kanashimi No Hate
41 Toradora!

It's the best and biggest cliche, and I love it

One of the best light novel. I even read it 10 times the romantic comedy. they help each other to like each's best friend but in the end they fall for each other what a cliche

42 Everyone Else is a Returnee

Main character takes things his own pace while others have to just role with it. Really good twists that make you question everything. It is kind of fast paced; however it ends up ending in the most satisfying way possible. I don't regret reading this.

The progression is interesting, very fast pace and it keeps you on your toes imagining what ability the MC is gonna get next. - AndrewHunt42

43 Kagerou Project Kagerou Project

Kagerou Project is really good!

44 Hataraku Maou Sama (Devil is a Part Timer)

It is the best, I don't remember the part time lady partner that maou had, but I root for her

This is the best reverse isekai for me, Yusa Emi for life!

45 Full Metal Alchemist Full Metal Alchemist Fullmetal Alchemist is an anime series adapted from the manga of the same name by Hiromu Arakawa. It is about two brothers, Edward Elric and Alphonse Elric, trying to restore their bodies after failing at bringing their mother back to life. It aired in 2003 and was remade as Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood more.
46 Bungou Stray Dogs Bungou Stray Dogs
47 Sayonara Piano Sonata
48 Cooking with Wild Game
49 The Asterisk War

Battle, sci-fi/fantasy, mystery. Couldn't put it down, despite that I generally find ecchi and harem annoying and too unrealistic. As the series goes on, the world gets deeper.

50 Umineko When They Cry
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