What was most popular book the year you were born?

These are the books that were shaping the world when you were born. Check your birth year to see what people were reading, and click on each book for a summary of the story on Amazon! This is a list of bestselling novels in the United States, as determined by Publishers Weekly. The list features the most popular novels of each year from 1930 through 2016.

1930: Cimarron by Edna Ferber

1931: The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck

1932: The Fountain by Charles Morgan

1933: Anthony Adverse by Hervey Allen

1934: As the Earth Turns by Gladys Hasty Carroll

1935: Green Light by Lloyd C. Douglas

1936: Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

1937: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

1938: The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

1939: The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

1940: How Green Was My Valley by Richard Llewellyn

1941: For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

1942: The Song of Bernadette by Franz Werfel

1943: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

1944: Strange Fruit by Lillian Smith

1945: Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor

1946: The King’s General by Daphne du Maurier

1947: The Miracle of the Bells by Russell Janney

1948: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank

1949: The Naked and the Dead by Norman Mailer

1950: The Cardinal by Henry Morton Robinson

1951: From Here to Eternity by James Jones

1952: The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

1953: The Robe by Lloyd C. Douglas

1954: Not as a Stranger by Morton Thompson

1955: The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit by Sloan Wilson

1956: Eloise by Kay Thompson

1957: Peyton Place by Grace Metalious

1958: Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

1959: Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak

1960: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

1961: Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller

1962: Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger

1963: The Shoes of the Fisherman by Morris West

1964: You Only Live Twice by Ian Fleming

1965: Herzog by Saul Bellow

1966: Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann

1967: Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin

1968: Couples by John Updike

1969: Portnoy’s Complaint by Philip Roth

1970: Love Story by Erich Segal

1971: The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty

1972: Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach

1973: Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut

1974: Jaws by Peter Benchley

1975: Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow

1976: Sleeping Murder by Agatha Christie

1977: The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough

1978: Fools Die by Mario Puzo

1979: Sophie’s Choice by William Styron

1980: The Bourne Identity by Robert Ludlum

1981: Cujo by Stephen King

1982: E.T. The Extra Terrestrial by William Kotzwinkle

1983: The Color Purple by Alice Walker

1984: The Sicilian by Mario Puzo

1985: Secrets by Danielle Steel

1986: The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy

1987: Patriot Games by Tom Clancy

1988: The Queen of the Damned by Anne Rice

1989: The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie

1990: The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love by Oscar Hijuelos

1991: The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien

1992: Waiting to Exhale by Terry McMillan

1993: The Bridges of Madison County by Robert James Waller

1994: Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt

1995: High Fidelity by Nick Hornby

1996: The Deep End of the Ocean by Jacquelyn Mitchard

1997: Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier

1998: Paradise by Toni Morrison

1999: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

2000: The Rescue by Nicholas Sparks

2001: The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen

2002: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

2003: The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

2004: The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom

2005: The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd

2006: Marley & Me by John Grogan

2007: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

2008: Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

2009: My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult

2010: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

2011: The Help by Kathryn Stockett

2012: Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

2013: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

2014: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

2015: The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

2016: Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow

This list was compiled through publicly available data and Publishers Weekly.

Cover Image: Stiller Beobachter (CC BY-SA 2.0)