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Ranking Author Dave Eggers’s Best Books (A Bibliography Countdown)

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“What are Dave Eggers Best Books?” We looked at all of Eggers’s authored bibliography and ranked them against one another to answer that very question!

We took all of the books written by Dave Eggers and looked at their Goodreads, Amazon, and LibraryThing scores, ranking them against one another to see which books came out on top. The books are ranked in our list below based on which titles have the highest overall score between all 3 review sites in comparison with all of the other books by the same author. The process isn’t super scientific and in reality, most books aren’t “better” than other books as much as they are just different. That being said, we do enjoy seeing where our favorites landed, and if you aren’t familiar with the author at all, the rankings can help you see what books might be best to start with.

The full ranking chart is also included below the countdown on the bottom of the page.

Happy Scrolling!



The Top Book’s Of Dave Eggers



21 ) Sacrament

 Sacrament Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 14
  • Amazon: 18
  • LibraryThing: 20

The Alternative Version of the author’s debut novel. Called “Hand’s Revised Edition”, this is, in effect, a new work, not just another edition as some have called it. Limited Edition of 2000 signed copies. Hard boards with the first paragraph of the novel on the cover, as issued. Text by Dave Eggers. Without DJ, as issued. Eggers’ novel is, in many ways, a further exploration of the themes of his breakthrough memoir, “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius”. Eggers’s ears are keenly attuned to the malaise as well as the redeeming possibilities of contemporary American life. Not surprisingly, he is also a convincingly charming, playful, self-styled iconoclast who, in this book and in his McSweeney’s Quarterlies Series, is clearly making fun of collectors

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19 ) A Hologram for the King

 A Hologram for the King Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 21
  • Amazon: 14
  • LibraryThing: 16

In a rising Saudi Arabian city, far from weary, recession-scarred America, a struggling businessman pursues a last-ditch attempt to stave off foreclosure, pay his daughter’s college tuition, and finally do something great. In A Hologram for the King, Dave Eggers takes us around the world to show how one man fights to hold himself and his splintering family together in the face of the global economy’s gale-force winds. This taut, richly layered, and elegiac novel is a powerful evocation of our contemporary moment — and a moving story of how we got here.

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19 ) Heroes of the Frontier

 Heroes of the Frontier Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 19
  • Amazon: 16
  • LibraryThing: 16

A captivating, often hilarious novel of family, loss, wilderness, and the curse of a violent America, Dave Eggers’s Heroes of the Frontier is a powerful examination of our contemporary life and a rousing story of adventure. Josie and her children’s father have split up, she’s been sued by a former patient and lost her dental practice, and she’s grieving the death of a young man senselessly killed. When her ex asks to take the children to meet his new fiancee’s family, Josie makes a run for it, figuring Alaska is about as far as she can get without a passport. Josie and her kids, Paul and Ana, rent a rattling old RV named the Chateau, and at first their trip feels like a vacation: They see bears and bison, they eat hot dogs cooked on a bonfire, and they spend nights parked along icy cold rivers in dark forests. But as they drive, pushed north by the ubiquitous wildfires, Josie is chased by enemies both real and imagined, past mistakes pursuing her tiny family, even to the very edge of civilization. A tremendous new novel from the best-selling author of The Circle, Heroes of the Frontier is the darkly comic story of a mother and her two young children on a journey through an Alaskan wilderness plagued by wildfires and a uniquely American madness.

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18 ) The Unforbidden is Compulsory; or, Optimism

Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 17
  • Amazon: 18
  • LibraryThing: 14

A slender paperback of absurdly humorous contemporary fiction by the author of “A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius,” this book is described as “a self-contained portion of a larger work.”

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17 ) The Circle

 The Circle Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 19
  • Amazon: 12
  • LibraryThing: 16

When Mae is hired to work for the Circle, the world’s most powerful internet company, she feels she’s been given the opportunity of a lifetime. Run out of a sprawling California campus, the Circle links users’ personal emails, social media, and finances with their universal operating system, resulting in one online identity and a new age of transparency. Mae can’t believe her great fortune to work for them – even as life beyond the campus grows distant, even as a strange encounter with a colleague leaves her shaken, even as her role at the Circle becomes increasingly public …

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16 ) The Wild Things – novel inspired by Where the Wild Things Are

 The Wild Things – novel inspired by Where the Wild Things Are Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 18
  • Amazon: 7
  • LibraryThing: 15

The Wild Things — based very loosely on the storybook by Maurice Sendak and the screenplay cowritten with Spike Jonze — is about the confusions of a boy, Max, making his way in a world he can’t control.

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13 ) A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

 A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 12
  • Amazon: 16
  • LibraryThing: 11

When you read his extraordinary memoir you don’t laugh, then cry, then laugh again; you somehow experience these emotions all at once.’ “Well, this was when Bill was sighing a lot. He had decided that after our parents died he just didn’t want any more fighting between what was left of us. He was twenty-four, Beth was twenty-three, I was twenty-one, Toph was eight, and all of us were so tried already, from that winter. So when something would come up, any little thing, some bill to pay or decision to make, he would just sigh, his eyes tired, his mouth in a sorry kind of smile. But Beth and I…Jesus, we were fighting with everyone, anyone, each other, with strangers at bars, anywhere — we were angry people wanting to exact revenge. We came to California and we wanted everything, would take what was ours, anything within reach. And I decided that little Toph and I, he with his backward hat and long hair, living together in our little house in Berkeley, would be world-destroyers. We inherited each other and, we felt, a responsibility to reinvent everything, to scoff and re-create and drive fast while singing loudly and pounding the windows. It was a hopeless sort of exhilaration, a kind of arrogance born of fatalism, I guess, of the feeling that if you could lose a couple of parents in a month, then basically anything could happen, at any time — all bullets bear your name, all cars are there to crush you, any balcony could give way; more disaster seemed only logical. And then, as in Dorothy’s dream, all these people I grew up with were there, too, some of them orphans also, most but not all of us believing that what we had been given was extraordinary, that it was time to tear or break down, ruin, remake, take and devour.

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13 ) You Shall Know Our Velocity

 You Shall Know Our Velocity Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 14
  • Amazon: 13
  • LibraryThing: 12

In his first novel, Dave Eggers has written a moving and hilarious tale of two friends who fly around the world trying to give away a lot of money and free themselves from a profound loss. It reminds us once again what an important, necessary talent Dave Eggers is.

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13 ) Stories Upon Stories

 Stories Upon Stories Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 1
  • Amazon: 18
  • LibraryThing: 20

Stories Upon Stories is an epic re-imagining of ten classic tales: Dave Eggers rewrites Jules Verne’s rollicking “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea,” Ali Smith reconceives Sophocles’ tragedy “Antigone,” Umberto Eco reimagines the mind-bending Italian classic “The Betrothed,” along with seven more equally inspired pairings of timeless masterpieces with contemporary literary masters. Featuring breathtakingly original illustrations on every page, and bound as lavishly as a textbook worthy of Hogwarts, this book will spark the imaginations of children and adults alike.

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12 ) Short Short Stories

 Short Short Stories Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 10
  • Amazon: 7
  • LibraryThing: 19

Dave Eggers has been partly responsible for a rejuvenation of short fiction in the USA, and these short stories are as original and witty as any of his longer works.

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11 ) Teachers Have It Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers

 Teachers Have It Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America's Teachers Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 13
  • Amazon: 15
  • LibraryThing: 4

Do teachers really have it easy? “Teaching would be the greatest job in the world-if money didn’t matter.” “I told the girl I was dating I wouldn’t mind teaching and she said, ‘Don’t waste your talent on that.’ ” “The schizophrenia is an issue: are you a professional or are you not?” “I actually had to get a note from my doctor saying I needed to be excused to use the restroom during the day.” “I threw in the towel and decided, it’s a noble profession but I don’t have time to be noble right now.” Dave Eggers, acclaimed author of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, son and brother of teachers, co-founder of writing centers in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Brooklyn, and passionate education advocate, joins forces with teacher Ninive Clements Calegari and journalist Daniel Moulthrop to examine a national scandal that affects us all. Many teachers today must work two or more jobs to survive; they can’t afford to buy homes or raise families. Why are they paid so poorly? How is this related to student achievement? And how can we find ways to treat them like the professionals they are? Teachers Have It Easy examines how bad policy interacts with teachers’ lives. Interweaving teachers’ voices from across the country with hard-hitting facts and figures, this book is a clear-eyed view of the harsh realities of public-school teaching, without any chicken-soup-for-the-soul success stories. With a look at the problems of recruitment and retention, the myths of short workdays and endless summer vacations, the realities of the workweek, and shocking examples of how America views its teachers.

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9 ) Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever?

 Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever? Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 16
  • Amazon: 6
  • LibraryThing: 8

From Dave Eggers, best-selling author of The Circle, a tightly controlled, emotionally searching novel. Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever? is the formally daring, brilliantly executed story of one man struggling to make sense of his country, seeking answers the only way he knows how. In a barracks on an abandoned military base, miles from the nearest road, Thomas watches as the man he has brought wakes up. Kev, a NASA astronaut, doesn’t recognize his captor, though Thomas remembers him. Kev cries for help. He pulls at his chain. But the ocean is close by, and nobody can hear him over the waves and wind. Thomas apologizes. He didn’t want to have to resort to this. But they really needed to have a conversation, and Kev didn’t answer his messages. And now, if Kev can just stop yelling, Thomas has a few questions.

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9 ) How We Are Hungry

 How We Are Hungry Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 11
  • Amazon: 10
  • LibraryThing: 9

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8 ) Cold Fusion

 Cold Fusion Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 7
  • Amazon: 11
  • LibraryThing: 10

For many years the scientific and educational communities have wondered and worried about the possibility that semi-sane scholar-pretenders would find the means to publish a series of reference books aimed at children but filled with ludicrous misinformation. These books would be distributed through respectable channels and would inevitably find their way into the hands and households of well-meaning families, who would go to them for facts but instead find bizarre untruths. The books would look normal enough but would read as if written by people who should not have written them. Sadly, that day is upon us. The fourth book in the HOW series, Cold Fusion, is to be feared. Like its predecessors, Giraffes? Giraffes! and Animals of the Ocean, Cold Fusion must also be kept far from the young people in your life.

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7 ) How the Water Feels to the Fishes

 How the Water Feels to the Fishes Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 9
  • Amazon: 5
  • LibraryThing: 13

A small collection of short stories, sold as part of the boxed set “One Hundred and Forty Five Stories in a Small Box: Hard to Admit and Harder to Escape, How the Water Feels to the Fishes, and Minor Robberies”

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6 ) Giraffes? Giraffes!

 Giraffes? Giraffes! Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 2
  • Amazon: 18
  • LibraryThing: 1

GIRAFFES?GIRAFFES For many years the scientific and educational community has wondered and worried about the possibility that semi-sane scholar-pretenders would find the means to put out a series of reference books, filled with ludicrous misinformation and aimed at children. So here we are with “GIRAFFES? GIRAFFES ” by Dr. and Mr. Doris Haggis-On-Whey. A world-renowned and much feared expert on everything, Dr. Doris Haggis-On-Whey has seventeen degrees from eighteen institutions of higher learning. With her husband, Benny, she has traveled the world many times over, has learned about all aspects of life, including outer space and food, first hand. When is the last time you actually sat down and had a conversation with a giraffe? That’s what I thought. You are hopelessly clueless on giraffe culture, their likes/dislikes and voting patterns — most giraffes are probably libertarian.

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5 ) Animals of the Ocean, in Particular the Giant Squid

 Animals of the Ocean, in Particular the Giant Squid Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 3
  • Amazon: 7
  • LibraryThing: 7

Here is the third installment in a series of reference books, all written by Dr. and Mr. Doris Haggis-on-Whey, a team of highly energized and deeply focused scientists with over sixty-seven combined years of experience at their command, including six months spent lifting awkwardly-sized boxes. Animals of the Ocean advances many heretofore unexplored discoveries and opinions, including squid dating dos and don’ts, why squid are not at all able to watch television in black and white, the ways in which people who don’t know any better might think fish are not animals, the long-term effects of salt water on musical theater, and also the adventure of Gunther. Animals of the Ocean, in Particular the Giant Squid comes with a foil-stamped and leather-inspired cover. Its pages are full color and illustrated without reserve. This book does not contain a warning label, but if it did, it would advise readers to enjoy its pages only in small and furtive doses, such as while waiting your turn at tetherball.

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4 ) The Monk of Mokha

 The Monk of Mokha Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 8
  • Amazon: 1
  • LibraryThing: 6

The Monk of Mokha is the exhilarating true story of a young Yemeni American man, raised in San Francisco, who dreams of resurrecting the ancient art of Yemeni coffee but finds himself trapped in Sana’a by civil war. Mokhtar Alkhanshali is twenty-four and working as a doorman when he discovers the astonishing history of coffee and Yemen’s central place in it. He leaves San Francisco and travels deep into his ancestral homeland to tour terraced farms high in the country’s rugged mountains and meet beleagured but determined farmers. But when war engulfs the country and Saudi bombs rain down, Mokhtar has to find a way out of Yemen without sacrificing his dreams or abandoning his people.

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3 ) Zeitoun

 Zeitoun Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 5
  • Amazon: 4
  • LibraryThing: 4

The true story of one family, caught between America’s two biggest policy disasters: the war on terror and the response to Hurricane Katrina. Abdulrahman and Kathy Zeitoun run a house-painting business in New Orleans. In August of 2005, as Hurricane Katrina approaches, Kathy evacuates with their four young children, leaving Zeitoun to watch over the business. In the days following the storm he travels the city by canoe, feeding abandoned animals and helping elderly neighbors. Then, on September 6th, police officers armed with M-16s arrest Zeitoun in his home. Told with eloquence and compassion, Zeitoun is a riveting account of one family’s unthinkable struggle with forces beyond wind and water.

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2 ) What Is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng

 What Is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 4
  • Amazon: 3
  • LibraryThing: 3

From the bestselling author of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, What Is the What is the epic novel based on the life of Valentino Achak Deng who, along with thousands of other children —the so-called Lost Boys—was forced to leave his village in Sudan at the age of seven and trek hundreds of miles by foot, pursued by militias, government bombers, and wild animals, crossing the deserts of three countries to find freedom. When he finally is resettled in the United States, he finds a life full of promise, but also heartache and myriad new challenges. Moving, suspenseful, and unexpectedly funny, What Is the What is an astonishing novel that illuminates the lives of millions through one extraordinary man.

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1 ) Surviving Justice: America’s Wrongfully Convicted and Exonerated

 Surviving Justice: America's Wrongfully Convicted and Exonerated Review Website Ranks:

  • Goodreads: 6
  • Amazon: 1
  • LibraryThing: 2

Surviving Justice presents oral histories of thirteen people from all walks of life, who, through a combination of all-too-common factors overzealous prosecutors, inept defense lawyers, coercive interrogation tactics, eyewitness misidentification found themselves imprisoned for crimes that they did not commit. The stories these exonerated men and women tell are spellbinding, heartbreaking, and ultimately inspiring. These narrators include: Paul Terry, who spent twenty-seven years wrongfully imprisoned, and emerged psychologically devastated and barely able to communicate. Beverly Monroe, an organic chemist who was coerced into falsely confessing to the murder of her lover. Free after seven years, she faces the daunting task of rebuilding her life from the ground up. Joseph Amrine, who was sentenced to death for murder. Seventeen years later, when DNA evidence exonerated him, Amrine emerged from prison with nothing but the fourteen dollars in his inmate account.”

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Dave Eggers’s Best Books



Dave Eggers Review Website Bibliography Rankings

BookGoodreadsAmazonLibraryThingOverall Rank
Surviving Justice: America’s Wrongfully Convicted and Exonerated 612 1
What Is the What: The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng 433 2
Zeitoun 544 3
The Monk of Mokha 816 4
Animals of the Ocean, in Particular the Giant Squid 377 5
Giraffes? Giraffes! 2181 6
How the Water Feels to the Fishes 9513 7
Cold Fusion 71110 8
Your Fathers, Where Are They? And the Prophets, Do They Live Forever? 1668 9
How We Are Hungry 11109 9
Teachers Have It Easy: The Big Sacrifices and Small Salaries of America’s Teachers 13154 11
Short Short Stories 10719 12
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius 121611 13
You Shall Know Our Velocity 141312 13
Stories Upon Stories 11820 13
The Wild Things – novel inspired by Where the Wild Things Are 18715 16
The Circle 191216 17
The Unforbidden is Compulsory; or, Optimism 171814 18
A Hologram for the King 211416 19
Heroes of the Frontier 191616 19
Sacrament 141820 21