Best Books Of The Decade 2000 – 2009

Best Books Of The Decade 2000 - 2009

To help you, we’ve listed these in alphabetical order instead of chronological. 

Books Of The Decade 2000 - 2009

2666 was released in 2004, a year after Bolano died in 2003. Eventually, 2666 was released in the U.S. with an enormous page count of over 900 words.

It won the Altazor Award in 2005 and has been praised for its themes of academia, mental illness, journalism, and the breakdown of careers and relationships. 

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay was released in 2000 by Michael Chabon. It won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2001.

Inspired by the Golden Age of Heroes leading up to World War II, Chabon wrote this to blend Chabon’s heroic characters with the pop culture heroism of the same period as he focuses on truth, justice, and the American way. 

Atonement was released in 2001 and begins life as a Jane Austen-inspired romance before switching to a World War II historical drama and the hyper-realistic detail of a nurse’s life.

Including the wronged man crime mystery, this novel ends as a postmodern metafiction piece. It’s no surprise that Atonement is one of McEwan’s greatest works. 

Austerlitz is a 2001 novel and the final book of German author W.G. Sebald. Jacques Austerlitz came to England on the Kindertransport and knows nothing of his birth family.

When he is an old man, he begins to remember and goes on a search for his heritage in a world he left behind half a century ago. 

Bel Canto was published in 2001 and was awarded the Orange Prize for Fiction.

It was based on the Japanese embassy hostage crisis in Lima and tells the story of a group of terrorists and their hostages over several months.

It focuses on the relationships that take place, with a central operatic theme. 

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao was released in 2007 and tells the story of Oscar Wao, a boy obsessed with sci-fi and fantasy and a curse that has plagued his family for generations.

Much of the story is told from the perspective of Yunior, who has appeared in Diaz’s short story collections.

Chronic City was published in 2009 and focuses on a circle of friends, including a faded child actor, a cultural critic, a hack ghostwriter, and a city official.

This is an unconventional buddy novel where strange things continue, but life continues as normal for the cast.

Published in 2008, Cloud Atlas won the British Book Awards for Literary Fiction and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize.

Combining metafiction, historical fiction, contemporary fiction, and sci-fi elements, the reader journeys from the 19th-century South Pacific to a distant post-apocalyptic future. 

Published in 2001, The Corrections focuses on the lives and troubles of an elderly Midwestern couple and their three children.

We follow their lives from the mid-20th century to one last Christmas they share together near the turn of the millennium. 

Published in 2003, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is a mystery novel focusing on Christopher, a 15-year-old autistic boy investigating the mysterious death of his neighbor’s dog.

This novel is about being an outsider and the relationships between family members. 

Downtown Owl was published in 2008 and focuses on the fictional town of Owl in North Dakota, where three characters are intangibly connected to each other.

All three characters live different lives, but the focus is on the small town and the semi-isolated environment. 

Empire Falls was published in 2001 and won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2002.

This is an intergenerational story of a family that has fallen apart, especially Miles Roby, who finds himself investigating a mysterious affair his mother once had. 

The Feast of the Goat was published in 2000 and was written by Nobel Prize winner (see also: Nobel Prize Winning Books [Every Winner Through The Years])Mario Vargas Llosa.

In this novel, Llosa portrays the assassination of Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo and the aftermath by following Urania Cabral, who looks back to those days. 

The Fortress of Solitude is a 2003 semi-autobiographical novel.

Set in Brooklyn, we follow two teenage friends who discover a magic ring, and we follow their relationship through the ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s. 

Published in 2004, Gilead won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.

As Robinson’s second book, (see also: Home By Marilynne Robinson Book Review)we follow the fictional autobiography of John Ames, an elderly white pastor in the small town of Gilead. 

House of Leaves was published in 2000 as Danielewski’s debut novel.

In this novel, we follow the endless labyrinth of a family’s home, but the convoluted page layout makes this book interesting. 

Published in 2000, The Human Stain follows Nathan Zuckerman, who strikes up a friendship with Coleman Silk, who is accused of racism, leading to his resignation as a professor at Athena College. 

Invisible is a 2009 novel that is divided into four parts. This metafictional novel follows different narrators who are frustrated over novels or are planning to write one. 

Published in 2002, Kafka on the Shore follows a young Kafka Tamura who chooses to run away from his father to find his mother and sister.

Meanwhile, Satoru Nakata, an elderly disabled man, has an uncanny ability to talk to cats. 

The Kindly Ones was published in 2006 and follow a former SS officer and Holocaust perpetrator who was present during some major events in World War II.

It focuses on the actions of an executioner and how decisions can lead to genocide. 

Published in 2003, The Known World is a novel that examines the issues of owning Black slaves by both White and Black Americans. It won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2004. 

Lark and Termite was published in 2008 and focuses on the teenager Lark, who is studying secretarial skills.

While her mother is gone, her father is absent, and her only companion is her disabled younger half-brother, Termite. 

Lush Life was published in 2008 and is set in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Three men are accosted by two muggers, with one of the men killed.

As an NYPD detective investigates the case, the survivors and the victim’s family struggle to deal with the incident. 

Middlesex was published in 2002 and won the Pulitzer Prize. It is both a coming-of-age story and a family novel that focuses on pursuing the American dream and gender identity. 

The Raw Shark Texts is a debut novel published in 2007. It’s a metafictional work that follows an amnesiac discovering his past life while evading a steampunk villain and a shark. 

The Road is a 2006 post-apocalyptic novel that tells the story of a father and his son over a period of time following the collapse of civilization. It won the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for fiction. 

Published in 2005, The Sea is a Booker Prize-winning novel that focuses on a self-aware art historian attempting to reconcile with the deaths of those he loved throughout his life. 

Special Topics in Calamity Physics was published in 2006, following Blue Van Meer's story.

Blue is a film-obsessed teenager who is always moving from city to city; when she befriends a group of mysterious teenagers, and after the death of one of them, Blue is left to find out why. 

White Teeth is a 2000 novel by Zadie Smith. She focuses on the latter lives of two wartime friends and their relationship in London.

It explores the British relationship with immigrants from the Commonwealth. 

The White Tiger is a 2008 novel that won the 40th Booker Prize. It offers dark humor to India’s class struggle in a global world through a retrospective from a village boy.

It explores themes such as Hinduism, loyalty, corruption, and poverty. 

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed our collection of the 30 best books from the decade.

If you’d like to learn more, consider checking out our other articles. 

Sophie Andrea