Books set in New York

Written by:
September 27, 2022
Goodreads

Books set in New York

Every state has its hallmark writers. Mississippi has William Faulkner and his incomparable (fictional) Yoknapatawpha County and Missouri can lay claim to Mark Twain. The state of Maine is gifted with Pulitzer winner Richard Russo and horror icon Stephen King. Rural Pennsylvania is the playground of the much-heralded (and occasionally maligned) John Updike, and when many bibliophiles think of New Jersey, they also think of Richard Ford's series of novels featuring recurring Everyman character Frank Bascombe. Illinois can lay claim to William Maxwell, Sandra Cisneros, and Adam Langer, among numerous others. And what reader can think of Washington State without contending with the sparkle-vampire yarns of Stephanie Meyer?

What makes authors like these inextricably associated with a particular state is not simply the matter of their having been born there or choosing to live there. The connection, from a writerly standpoint, is deeper than that—their work, nearly all of it, is set in "their" state.

Of course, there are certainly exceptions. Whether a writer sets a tale in the town where they went to college or spent part of their childhood—like Donna Tartt's "The Secret History" and its New England arts school setting and the almost-factual small town of Jo Ann Beard's "In Zanesville," respectively—or crafts a story that follows a social or political theme to a location they know little about but lay narrative claim to anyway, the world is rife with books known, loved, and respected that also capture the essence of place—books where setting itself is one of the strongest characters.

Stacker compiled a list of books set in New York from Goodreads. Whether you're looking for a good read set in the state you call home, or you're looking to expand your curiosity with a writer you're already familiar with, we've got you covered.

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1 / 50
Goodreads

The Great Gatsby

- Rating: 3.93 (4.6 million ratings)
- Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
- Published: April 10, 1925
- Genres: Classics, Fiction, School, Historical Fiction
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2 / 50
Goodreads

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

- Rating: 4.28 (429,814 ratings)
- Author: Betty Smith
- Published: August 18, 1943
- Genres: Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Young Adult
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3 / 50
Goodreads

The Alienist (Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, #1)

- Rating: 4.05 (166,830 ratings)
- Author: Caleb Carr
- Published: March 15, 1994
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery, Fiction, Thriller
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4 / 50
Goodreads

The Catcher in the Rye

- Rating: 3.81 (3.2 million ratings)
- Author: J.D. Salinger
- Published: January 1, 1951
- Genres: Classics, Fiction, Young Adult, Literature
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5 / 50
Goodreads

Boy Meets Girl (Boy, #2)

- Rating: 3.83 (29,257 ratings)
- Author: Meg Cabot
- Published: January 6, 2004
- Genres: Chick Lit, Romance, Fiction, Contemporary
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6 / 50
Goodreads

The Godfather (The Godfather, #1)

- Rating: 4.37 (384,223 ratings)
- Author: Mario Puzo
- Published: March 10, 1969
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, Crime, Thriller
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7 / 50
Goodreads

The Gift of the Magi

- Rating: 4.10 (89,831 ratings)
- Author: O. Henry
- Published: December 10, 1905
- Genres: Classics, Short Stories, Fiction, Christmas
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8 / 50
Goodreads

Ragtime

- Rating: 3.89 (41,379 ratings)
- Author: E.L. Doctorow
- Published: January 1, 1975
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Classics, Novels
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9 / 50
Goodreads

Firestarter

- Rating: 3.90 (211,843 ratings)
- Author: Stephen King
- Published: September 29, 1980
- Genres: Horror, Fiction, Thriller, Science Fiction
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10 / 50
Goodreads

Flowers for Algernon

- Rating: 4.18 (580,501 ratings)
- Author: Daniel Keyes
- Published: April 1, 1959
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, Science Fiction, Young Adult
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11 / 50
Goodreads

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

- Rating: 4.15 (202,894 ratings)
- Author: E.L. Konigsburg
- Published: January 1, 1967
- Genres: Fiction, Childrens, Young Adult, Middle Grade
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12 / 50
Goodreads

The Thin Man

- Rating: 3.92 (33,071 ratings)
- Author: Dashiell Hammett
- Published: January 1, 1934
- Genres: Mystery, Fiction, Classics, Crime
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13 / 50
Goodreads

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

- Rating: 3.97 (406,276 ratings)
- Author: Jonathan Safran Foer
- Published: January 1, 2005
- Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Historical Fiction, Novels
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14 / 50
Goodreads

The House of Mirth

- Rating: 3.96 (91,755 ratings)
- Author: Edith Wharton
- Published: October 14, 1905
- Genres: Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Literature
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15 / 50
Goodreads

Miracle on 34th Street

- Rating: 4.07 (2,443 ratings)
- Author: Valentine Davies
- Published: January 1, 1947
- Genres: Christmas, Fiction, Classics, Holiday
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16 / 50
Goodreads

Breakfast at Tiffany's and Three Stories

- Rating: 3.86 (240,174 ratings)
- Author: Truman Capote
- Published: October 28, 1958
- Genres: Classics, Short Stories, Romance, Literature
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17 / 50
Goodreads

The Group

- Rating: 3.67 (14,779 ratings)
- Author: Mary McCarthy
- Published: January 1, 1963
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, Historical Fiction, Novels
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18 / 50
Goodreads

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

- Rating: 3.72 (62,502 ratings)
- Author: Washington Irving
- Published: January 1, 1820
- Genres: Classics, Horror, Fiction, Short Stories
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19 / 50
Goodreads

Stuart Little

- Rating: 3.90 (119,838 ratings)
- Author: E.B. White
- Published: January 1, 1945
- Genres: Childrens, Classics, Fiction, Fantasy
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20 / 50
Goodreads

The Cricket in Times Square (Chester Cricket and His Friends, #1)

- Rating: 4.03 (63,545 ratings)
- Author: George Selden
- Published: January 1, 1960
- Genres: Childrens, Fiction, Classics, Fantasy
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21 / 50
Goodreads

The Princess Diaries (The Princess Diaries, #1)

- Rating: 3.80 (247,375 ratings)
- Author: Meg Cabot
- Published: September 19, 2000
- Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Fiction, Contemporary
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22 / 50
Goodreads

Death of a Salesman

- Rating: 3.55 (212,733 ratings)
- Author: Arthur Miller
- Published: January 1, 1949
- Genres: Classics, Plays, Fiction, Drama
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23 / 50
Goodreads

The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1)

- Rating: 4.29 (2.5 million ratings)
- Author: Rick Riordan
- Published: June 28, 2005
- Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult, Mythology, Fiction
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24 / 50
Goodreads

The Age of Innocence

- Rating: 3.96 (157,903 ratings)
- Author: Edith Wharton
- Published: October 1, 1920
- Genres: Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Romance
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25 / 50
Goodreads

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1)

- Rating: 4.08 (1.9 million ratings)
- Author: Cassandra Clare
- Published: May 27, 2007
- Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
- Read more on Goodreads

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26 / 50
Goodreads

Rip Van Winkle

- Rating: 3.62 (14,323 ratings)
- Author: Washington Irving
- Published: January 1, 1819
- Genres: Classics, Short Stories, Fiction, Fantasy
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27 / 50
Goodreads

Seventh Heaven

- Rating: 3.76 (9,378 ratings)
- Author: Alice Hoffman
- Published: January 1, 1990
- Genres: Fiction, Magical Realism, Historical Fiction, Fantasy
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28 / 50
Goodreads

The Pink Suit

- Rating: 3.40 (2,518 ratings)
- Author: Nicole Mary Kelby
- Published: April 10, 2014
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical, Fashion
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29 / 50
Goodreads

Jazz

- Rating: 3.86 (27,526 ratings)
- Author: Toni Morrison
- Published: January 1, 1992
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, Historical Fiction, African American
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30 / 50
Goodreads

Jaws (Jaws #1)

- Rating: 3.96 (152,287 ratings)
- Author: Peter Benchley
- Published: May 6, 1974
- Genres: Horror, Fiction, Thriller, Classics
- Read more on Goodreads

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31 / 50
Goodreads

Here Is New York

- Rating: 4.30 (8,040 ratings)
- Author: E.B. White
- Published: January 1, 1948
- Genres: Nonfiction, New York, Essays, Travel
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32 / 50
Goodreads

New York

- Rating: 4.16 (37,346 ratings)
- Author: Edward Rutherfurd
- Published: September 3, 2009
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Fiction, Historical, New York
- Read more on Goodreads
33 / 50
Goodreads

Farmer Boy (Little House, #2)

- Rating: 4.07 (63,648 ratings)
- Author: Laura Ingalls Wilder
- Published: January 1, 1933
- Genres: Classics, Historical Fiction, Childrens, Fiction
- Read more on Goodreads
34 / 50
Goodreads

My Side of the Mountain (Mountain, #1)

- Rating: 4.07 (71,247 ratings)
- Author: Jean Craighead George
- Published: January 1, 1959
- Genres: Fiction, Young Adult, Classics, Childrens
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35 / 50
Goodreads

Wonderstruck

- Rating: 4.16 (56,122 ratings)
- Author: Brian Selznick
- Published: September 13, 2011
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Fiction, Middle Grade, Young Adult
- Read more on Goodreads

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36 / 50
Goodreads

Grand Central: Original Stories of Postwar Love and Reunion

- Rating: 3.85 (2,105 ratings)
- Author: Jenna Blum
- Published: July 1, 2014
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Short Stories, Fiction, World War II
- Read more on Goodreads
37 / 50
Goodreads

The Orphanmaster

- Rating: 3.29 (2,478 ratings)
- Author: Jean Zimmerman
- Published: June 19, 2012
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery, Fiction, Historical
- Read more on Goodreads
38 / 50
Goodreads

Felix Ever After

- Rating: 4.32 (46,978 ratings)
- Author: Kacen Callender
- Published: May 5, 2020
- Genres: LGBT, Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
- Read more on Goodreads
39 / 50
Goodreads

The Gods of Gotham (Timothy Wilde, #1)

- Rating: 3.87 (15,434 ratings)
- Author: Lyndsay Faye
- Published: March 15, 2012
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery, Fiction, Historical
- Read more on Goodreads
40 / 50
Goodreads

The Drawing of the Three

- Rating: 4.22 (240,240 ratings)
- Author: Stephen King
- Published: May 1, 1987
- Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Horror, Science Fiction
- Read more on Goodreads

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41 / 50
Goodreads

A Fall of Marigolds

- Rating: 4.07 (52,816 ratings)
- Author: Susan Meissner
- Published: February 4, 2014
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Fiction, Historical, Romance
- Read more on Goodreads
42 / 50
Goodreads

Go Tell It on the Mountain

- Rating: 4.03 (60,985 ratings)
- Author: James Baldwin
- Published: May 18, 1953
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, African American, Race
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43 / 50
Goodreads

Sophie's Choice

- Rating: 4.18 (87,252 ratings)
- Author: William Styron
- Published: January 1, 1979
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, Historical Fiction, Holocaust
- Read more on Goodreads
44 / 50
Goodreads

Object Lessons

- Rating: 3.83 (8,347 ratings)
- Author: Anna Quindlen
- Published: April 9, 1991
- Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Chick Lit, Novels
- Read more on Goodreads
45 / 50
Goodreads

Breath, Eyes, Memory

- Rating: 3.89 (28,852 ratings)
- Author: Edwidge Danticat
- Published: April 1, 1994
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Contemporary, Novels
- Read more on Goodreads

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46 / 50
Goodreads

Another Country

- Rating: 4.30 (20,892 ratings)
- Author: James Baldwin
- Published: May 1, 1962
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, LGBT, Queer
- Read more on Goodreads
47 / 50
Goodreads

Rules of Civility

- Rating: 4.07 (194,884 ratings)
- Author: Amor Towles
- Published: July 26, 2011
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical, New York
- Read more on Goodreads
48 / 50
Goodreads

Size 12 Is Not Fat (Heather Wells, #1)

- Rating: 3.76 (84,776 ratings)
- Author: Meg Cabot
- Published: December 27, 2005
- Genres: Chick Lit, Mystery, Romance, Fiction
- Read more on Goodreads
49 / 50
Goodreads

Gingerbread (Cyd Charisse, #1)

- Rating: 3.63 (10,785 ratings)
- Author: Rachel Cohn
- Published: March 1, 2002
- Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Contemporary, Teen
- Read more on Goodreads
50 / 50
Goodreads

Deacon King Kong

- Rating: 4.18 (55,323 ratings)
- Author: James McBride
- Published: March 3, 2020
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Audiobook, Literary Fiction
- Read more on Goodreads

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