Ever wonder how much time authors spend when it comes to some of the longest novels ever? I mean, it must take them years to get the story together and actually publish it for the world to see. However, we don’t blame them because not all stories can be told in a few chapters. Some require many more details to fully do the author’s creation justice. Plus, as a reader, I don’t want any of the books I enjoy to stop! So, let’s take a look at some of the longest novels that you might ever stumble upon, in case you were ever curious.
1. A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth
If we were to define some of the longest novels based on their word count, ‘A Suitable Boy’ by Vikram Seth would be in the top 10 percent because it contains 593,674 words! The plot of this book explores the lives of four families while enlightening the reader on the historical and social events of the era. It is a richly detailed and exotically vivid novel that requires thorough description from the author.
2. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
‘Atlas Shrugged’ is a story about Dagny Taggart, the novel’s heroine, who fights to save her transcontinental railroad from collapse. Her journey, which teaches her to think and act independently, is told in 565,223 words! Now that must be quite a story of standing up for what you believe in.
3. Remembrance Rock by Carl Sandburg
‘Remembrance Rock’ by Carl Sandburg, which consists of 532,030 words, is a story about the growth of the American Dream over the course of more than three centuries. The plot line captures the events of colonization, Revolution, Civil War and World War II. This novel meant a lot to Carl Sandburg on a personal level, to the point that even the red granite boulder that was placed over Sandburg’s ashes is named Remembrance Rock.
4. Gai-Jin by James Clavell
‘Gai-Jin’ is set in 1862 Japan, during the times in which foreigners came to Japan for trade, after they ruined the Chinese with the Opium Wars. This novel has a little bit of romance, history and drama in all of its 478,700-word content. It only makes sense that this novel is as long as it is, since the author had pretty heavy material to cover!
5. Mission Earth by L. Ron Hubbard
Believe it or not, but ‘Mission Earth’ by L.Ron Hubbard contains 1.2 million words! While many believe that this is in fact a series of novels, the author actually intended it to be a single novel, published in ten volumes. The novel follows the main theme of invasion and conquering of planets as the main action jumps from Earth to planet Voltar.
6. Sironia, Texas by Madison Cooper
‘Sironia, Texas’ by Madison Cooper is not far off from ‘Mission Earth,’ with 1,100,000 words in its content. The novel describes life in the titular town during the first 20 years of the 20th century, with the help of 30 main characters! Now that’s a lot of action to keep up with. It’s just too bad that this novel is very hard to come by nowadays.
7. Clarissa by Samuel Richardson
‘Clarissa’ by Samuel Richardson contains 969,000 words and follows the unfortunate life of Clarissa Harlowe, whose family decides to multiply their fortune by forcing her into a loveless marriage. Once aware of the plan, she runs off with a man who offers her protection without truly knowing his real motives. It’s a long read of an unfortunate turn of events.
There seems to be a pattern between all of these lengthy novels. It looks like most of them focus on heavy topics, which require a lot of elaboration from the author in order for everything to make sense. Which book would you be willing to read from cover to cover?