The 100 Books of the Century (French: Les cent livres du siècle) is a list of the hundred most memorable books of the 20th century, regardless of language, according to a poll performed during the spring of 1999 by the French retailer Fnac and the Paris newspaper Le Monde. The 19th-century The War of the Worlds is included even with its 1898 publication date.
Starting from a preliminary list of 200 titles created by bookshops and journalists, 17,000 French participants responded to the question, "Which books have stuck in your mind?" (Quels livres sont restés dans votre mémoire?).
The list includes both classic novels and genre fiction (Tolkien, Agatha Christie, A. C. Doyle), as well as poetry, drama and nonfiction literature (Freud's essays and the diary of Anne Frank). There are also comic books on the list, one album from each of these five francophone or italian series: Asterix, Tintin, Blake and Mortimer, Gaston and Corto Maltese. The large number of French novels of the list is due to the demographics of the surveyed group.
Likewise, comparable lists by English language sources—such as the two lists of Modern Library 100 Best Novels published in 1998, one by the Board of the Modern Library and the other by readers who responded—disproportionately favour British and American authors. Non-English language works were not eligible for the two Modern Library lists.
Note: Classified by the language of the book's first publication, which might not be the author's principal language.
See also Edit
- Bokklubben World Library (Norway)
- List of Nobel laureates in Literature (Sweden) – including Camus, Steinbeck, Hemingway, Beckett, Sartre, Solzhenitsyn, Gide, García Márquez, Faulkner, Mauriac, Mann, Pirandello, Böll, Lagerlöf, Le Clézio, and Perse
- List of recipients of the Grand Prize of the Académie française (France) – including de Saint-Exupéry, Cohen, Mauriac, Bernanos, and Tournier
- List of recipients of the Prix Goncourt (France) – including Proust, Malraux, de Beauvoir, Tournier, Gracq, and Duras
- List of recipients of the Prix Renaudot (France) – including Céline, Perec, Aragon, Le Clézio, and Beigbeder
- List of recipients of the Prix mondial Cino Del Duca (France) – including Kundera, Borges, Kadare, and Styron
- List of recipients of the Prix Médicis (France) – including Eco, Perec, and Kundera
- List of recipients of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (US) – including Steinbeck, Hemingway, Faulkner, Mitchell, and Styron
- List of recipients of the Neustadt Prize for Literature (US) – including García Márquez and Kadare
- List of recipients of the European Literary Award (Austria) – including de Beauvoir, Eco, Ionesco, Kundera, Duras, and Rushdie
- List of recipients of the Jerusalem Prize (Israel) – including de Beauvoir, Ionesco, Kundera, Borges, and Kadare
- List of recipients of the Strega Prize (Italy) – including Eco, Buzzati, Moravia, and Levi
- List of recipients of the Prince of Asturias Award (Spain) – including Kadare
- List of recipients of the Cervantes Prize (Spain) – including Borges
- Western canon
- Modern Library 100 Best Novels (US) – all were first published in English
- TIME's List of the 100 Best Novels (US) – all were first published in English
- The Big Read (UK)
- Newsweek's Top 100 Books
- Books o' the Ages: A Millennial/Centennial/Decennial/Annual Reassessment, overview of Best of Century lists