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The 12 Best Classic Books Set in London

Grab a cup of tea and get ready to lose yourself in some great books!

The Best Classic Books Set in London

If you’re looking for a good book to read, why not try one set in London?  There are plenty of classic books that take place in the city, and we’ve put together a list of our favorites.  Whether you’re interested in historical fiction or romance novels, there’s something for everyone on this list.  So grab a cup of tea and get ready to lose yourself in some great books!

Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Pip doesn’t expect much from life…His sister makes it clear that her orphaned little brother is nothing but a burden on her. But suddenly things begin to change. Pip’s narrow existence is blown apart when he finds an escaped criminal, is summoned to visit a mysterious old woman and meets the icy beauty Estella. Most astoundingly of all, an anonymous person gives him money to begin a new life in London. Are these events as random as they seem? Or does Pip’s fate hang on a series of coincidences he could never have expected?

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, a collection of twelve short stories by Scottish author Arthur Conan Doyle, is considered a milestone in the genre of detective fiction. With Sherlock Holmes’s clever disguises and ability to solve even the most elusive mysteries, as well as Holmes’s loyal friend and biographer, Dr. Watson, who narrates most of the stories, Doyle’s suspenseful stories and well-developed characters keep readers on the edges of their seats.

The Time Machine by H. G. Wells

The Time Machine by H. G. Wells

When a Victorian scientist propels himself into the year a.d. 802,701, he is initially delighted to find that suffering has been replaced by beauty, contentment, and peace. Entranced at first by the Eloi, an elfin species descended from man, he soon realizes that these beautiful people are simply remnants of a once-great culture–now weak and childishly afraid of the dark. They have every reason to be afraid: in deep tunnels beneath their paradise lurks another race descended from humanity–the sinister Morlocks. And when the scientist’s time machine vanishes, it becomes clear he must search these tunnels if he is ever to return to his own era.

The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter

The Magic Toyshop by Angela Carter

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and other stories by Robert Louis Stevenson

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and other stories by Robert Louis Stevenson

A book so iconic that its title is synonymous with split personalities, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson, was first released in 1886. The story of a virtuous Dr. Jekyll who mistakenly creates an alter ego of unadulterated evil serves as an examination of the duality of human nature and the battle between good and evil.

1984 by George Orwell

Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell

1984 has come and gone, but George Orwell’s prophetic, nightmare vision in 1949 of the world we were becoming is timelier than ever. “1984” is still the great modern classic “negative Utopia” – a startling original and haunting novel that creates an imaginary world that is completely convincing from the first sentence to the last four words.

Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh

Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh

Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray

Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray

The Mimic Men by V. S. Naipaul

The Mimic Men by V. S. Naipaul

The Ballad of Peckham Rye by Muriel Spark

The Ballad of Peckham Rye by Muriel Spark

The End of the Affair by Graham Greene

The End of the Affair by Graham Greene

This is a record of hate far more than of love, writes Maurice Bendrix in the opening passages of The End of the Affair, and it is a strange hate indeed that compels him to set down the retrospective account of his adulterous affair with Sarah Miles. Now, a year after Sarah’s death, Bendrix seeks to exorcise the persistence of his passion by retracing its course from obsessive love to love-hate. At first, he believes he hates Sarah and her husband, Henry. Yet as he delves further into his emotional outlook, Bendrix’s hatred shifts to the God he feels has broken his life, but whose existence at last comes to recognize.

What do you think about the books on this list?

Have you read any of these books?  Are any of them on your TBR?  What classic books set in London would you add to this list?  Let’s talk about it in the comments below.

Book List - The Best Classic Books Set in London

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