London in Literature

From Virginia Woolf to Zadie Smith, Charles Dickens to Hanif Kureishi, London has been the envy of the literature world for its capacity to produce, host and inspire writers. We’ve selected a short list of the works that we feel express the many unique facets of life in London.

John Gay, Trivia, or the Art of Walking the Streets of London

Charles Dickens, Bleak House and Little Dorrit

Henry Green, Party Going

Andrea Levy, Small Island

Elizabeth Bowen, Collected Stories

William Blake, London

Robert Louis Stevenson, Jekyll and Hyde

William Blanchard Jerrold, London: A Pilgrimage

George Gissing, New Grub Street

George Orwell, Keep the Aspidistra Flying

Sarah Waters, The Night Watch

Zadie Smith, White Teeth and NW

Hilary Mantel, An Experiment in Love

Colin MacInnes, Absolute Beginners

Sukhdev Sandhu, Night Haunts

Xialou Gou, A Concise Chinese-English Dictionary for Lovers

Gillian Tindall, The House by the River

Helen Simpson, Constitutional

Sam Sevlon, The Lonely Londoners

Ben Aaronovitch, Rivers of London

Monica Ali, Brick Lane

Hanif Kureishi, The Buddha of Suburbia and Gabriel’s Gift

Neil Gaimon, Neverwhere

Ian McEwan, Enduring Love and Saturday

Penelope Lively, City of the Mind

Joseph Conrad, The Secret Agent

Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway

Patrick Hamilton, 20,000 Streets Under the Sky and Hangover Square

Norman Collins, London Belongs to Me

Muriel Spark, The Ballard of Peckham Rye

Audrey Niffenegger, Her Fearful Symmetry

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