Top 50 most read books by Brits revealed– and some might surprise you

top 50 books brits read
(Image credit: Getty)

The top 50 most read books by Brits have been revealed, after new research found that a person will read on average 696 books over a lifetime.

The study, which was commissioned by eBay UK, also found that the average person will get through 11 books a year, with almost one in five saying they read every day.

However, researchers also found that 42 per cent of Brits are too busy to read as much as they would like with the average adult owning at least 10 books they are yet to get to the end of.

And as for what we read?

top 50 books brits read

Crime is the most popular genre (42 per cent) along with thrillers (38 per cent) and drama (35 per cent).

‘There’s no doubt that we’re a nation of readers,’ said Rob Johnson, Co-Founder of Wordery, eBay UK’s online bookstore, ‘but it’s really heartwarming to see that reading books and getting lost in fiction is still a hobby Brits love to take part in, especially in the days of box sets and instant viewing.

More: These are the books you should read to make you fall asleep

The study of 2,000 adults found summer holidays are the optimum time to get your nose into a good book, with 65 per cent saying that reading on holiday as a good way to relax.In fact, the average adult will get through two books during a week-long break, getting lost inside an exciting tale for one hour and 20 minutes a day while on a break - twice as long as they do when they are at home.

top 50 books brits read

And 36 per cent happily re-read a story on holiday that they’ve already enjoyed before.

Tilda Molho, director of media and entertainment at eBay, added: ‘Our online book stores are always incredibly popular, but the roaring trade definitely comes during the run up to the summer months, when we as Brits generally make more time for reading and spending time offline.’

So what are the most popular books read by Brits that you can take off on your travels with you?

Well the top 50 are:

  1. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe
  2. The Da Vinci Code
  3. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
  4. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
  5. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  6. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
  7. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  8. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
  9. Nineteen-Eighty Four
  10. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
  11. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
  12. Treasure Island
  13. The Wind in the Willows
  14. The Hobbit
  15. The Girl on the Train
  16. Jane Eyre
  17. The Lord of the Rings
  18. Lord of the Flies
  19. Wuthering Heights
  20. Bridget Jones’ Diary
  21. The Catcher in the Rye
  22. A Tale of Two Cities
  23. Gone Girl
  24. Fifty Shades of Grey
  25. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
  26. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
  27. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
  28. The Lovely Bones
  29. Tales of Huckleberry Finn
  30. Murder on the Orient Express
  31. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
  32. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
  33. The Hunger Games
  34. Anne of Green Gables
  35. The Time Traveller’s Wife
  36. The Wizard of Oz
  37. Jamaica Inn
  38. PS. I Love You
  39. Twilight
  40. Brighton Rock
  41. Life of Pi
  42. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest
  43. The Kite Runner
  44. Memoirs of a Geisha
  45. American Psycho
  46. The Handmaid’s Tale
  47. My Sister’s Keeper
  48. Me Before You
  49. One Day
  50. Jack Reacher: Killing Floor
Aleesha Badkar
Aleesha Badkar

Aleesha is digital shopping writer at woman&home - so whether you're looking for beauty, fashion, health or home buys, she knows all the best places to splash your cash. She earned an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London in 2017 after graduating from University of Leeds in 2014 with a BA in English and Spanish (which took her to Madrid for a fun Rioja and tapas-packed year). Aleesha has worked for woman&home since 2019, when she joined the team as their digital news writer. A year on the news team gained her quick and reactive writing skills and a love for breaking stories, invaluable insight into where to get the best lifestyle releases first, an AOP awards nomination and the nickname ‘crazy watch lady’ after she became so obsessed with the royals that she followed breaking news alerts on her Apple Watch.


Before joining the woman&home team, Aleesha wrote for their sister site GoodtoKnow, where she covered celebrity news, health advice and where to snap up the cheapest lifestyle buys. With a background in beauty, Aleesha has also written for Stylist and Women’s Health where she developed an understanding into what makes a stellar product and which brands are worth paying attention to. She never leaves the house without a slick of lip balm and a good slathering of SPF, cannot live without an eyelash curler by her side and is always on the hunt for new lipsticks to add to her ‘Lipstick of the Day’ Instagram story highlight (and color-coordinated collection).

But it’s not just beauty buys Aleesha can help you with. Social media savviness, strong PR relationships and a need to stay in the know mean she’s all about the latest fashions, clever gadgets and reliable lifestyle buys too. She loves indulging in an interior craze (with a bedroom drowned in prints, plants and pink), is a regular visitor to the Missoma and Edge of Ember 'New In' pages and can’t resist the allure of a kitchen gadget—just ask her three coffee machines.

When she’s not playing around with new products and testing anything she can get her hands on, Aleesha spends most of her time with her head in a current bestseller, catching up on the latest Netflix craze with her sister, trying out new recipes, drinking wine with her bestie and (in non-COVID times) has been known to be a bit of a jetsetter amongst her friendship group. Oh and she makes the most of her Disney+ subscription by watching the Marvel films on repeat (definitely not just for Chris Evans...).

Follow her latest shopping & lifestyle advice, beauty insights and social antics on Instagram at @aleeshabadkar.


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