Famous Spanish Novelists

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Miguel de Cervantes

Miguel de Cervantes.
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Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: September 29, 1547
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Alcalá de Henares, Spain
Died: April 22, 1616

Miguel de Cervantes was a Spanish writer best known for his work Don Quixote, which is considered one of the high points of world literature. He is regarded as one of the greatest novelists of all time and the greatest writer to ever write in the Spanish language. His works have influenced other works of art like music and paintings.

 2 Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Carlos Ruiz Zafón.
3
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: September 25, 1964
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Barcelona

Spanish author Carlos Ruiz Zafón gained international fame with his first adult novel, The Shadow of the Wind. Previously, he had dabbled in the young-adult genre, with novels such as The Prince of Mist. He had initially been associated with the advertising industry and later also wrote scripts.

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 3 Miguel de Unamuno

Miguel de Unamuno.
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: September 29, 1864
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Bilbao
Died: December 31, 1936

Miguel de Unamuno was a Spanish essayist, poet, playwright, novelist, and philosopher. His most famous novel was Abel Sánchez: The History of a Passion, a modern retelling of the Biblical Cain and Abel story. He was a significant figure in the Spanish literary and intellectual circles and served as rector of the University of Salamanca. 

 4 Lope de Vega

Lope de Vega.
3
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: November 25, 1562
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: August 27, 1635

Spanish Baroque dramatist Lope de Vega was one of the most significant figures of the Spanish Golden Age. He had initially aspired to be a priest but abandoned his plans after falling in love with a married woman. He is best remembered for works such as The Dog in the Manger.

 5 Arturo Pérez-Reverte

Arturo Pérez-Reverte.
3
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: November 25, 1951
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Cartagena, Spain

A retired war correspondent and best-selling author, Arturo Pérez-Reverte Gutiérrez began his writing career while serving as a journalist, publishing his first novel, El hussar, set during the Napoleon Wars, at the age of thirty-five. Outside Spain, he is best known for his Captain Alatriste series, which contains seven novels set around a seventeenth century soldier of the same name.

 6 Camilo José Cela

Camilo José Cela.
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: May 11, 1916
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Iria Flavia
Died: January 17, 2002

Camilo José Cela was a Spanish novelist, essayist, story writer, and poet. One of the most respected Spanish writers of his generation, Camilo José Cela received a number of prestigious awards, including the 1987 Prince of Asturias Award for Literature. In 1989, he won the Nobel Prize in Literature. In 1994, he was honored with the Premio Planeta de Novela.

 7 Pedro Paterno

Pedro Paterno
3
Famous As: politician, novelist, poet, author, autobiographer
Birthdate: February 17, 1857
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Manila
Died: March 11, 1911

Philippine politician Pedro Paterno was educated in Spain, where he graduated in philosophy and theology. He later became the prime minister of his country. A poet and novelist, too, he eventually became infamous as a traitor after supporting the U.S. and favoring American dominion during the Philippine–American War.

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 8 Javier Marías

Javier Marías
3
Famous As: Writer, Translator, Novelist, Professor, Journalist
Birthdate: September 20, 1951
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Madrid

Born to banned educator Julián Marías, Javier Marías had begun writing at age 14 and penned his first novel, The Dominions of the Wolf, at 17. His depiction of John Gawsworth, the king of the Caribbean island Redonda, led him to inherit the kingship. He also writes columns for El Pais.

 9 Ibn Tufail

Ibn Tufail
3
Famous As: Polymath
Birthdate: 1105 AD
Birthplace: Guadix, Spain
Died: 1185 AD

Ibn Tufail was a 12th-century Arab polymath from Andalusia and a significant figure of the Islamic Golden Age. Best known for his philosophical romance Ḥayy ibn Yaqẓān, he had also penned medical works in Arab and had been the court physician of Abū Yaʿqūb Yūsuf.

 10 Emilia Pardo Bazán

Emilia Pardo Bazán
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Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: September 16, 1851
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: A Coruña, Spain
Died: May 12, 1921

Spanish countess and novelist Emilia Pardo Bazán had initially gained fame with the essay The Critical Issue. She was an advocate of naturalism and free will. Known for novels such as The House of Ulloa, she also taught Romance literature and was divorced by her husband because of her literary success.

 11 Benito Pérez Galdós

Benito Pérez Galdós
2
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: May 10, 1843
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Municipality of Las Palmas, Spain
Died: January 4, 1920

One of the greatest Spanish novelists ever, Benito Pérez Galdós had initially aspired to become a lawyer but later switched to journalism. His novel The Fountain of Gold was the first in a series of 46 novels known as National Episodes. He also penned plays such as Realidad.

 12 Dolores Redondo

Dolores Redondo
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: February 1, 1969
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: San Sebastián, Spain

 13 David trueba

David trueba
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Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: September 10, 1969
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Madrid

David Trueba is a Spanish film director, novelist, and screenwriter. He is known for directing movies like The Good Life, Madrid, 1987, and Living Is Easy with Eyes Closed. The younger brother of Oscar-winning filmmaker Fernando Trueba, David Trueba has also directed several TV series. He is also known as the ex-husband of popular Spanish actress Ariadna Gil.

 14 Corín Tellado

Corín Tellado
2
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: April 25, 1927
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Viavélez, Spain
Died: April 11, 2009

Corín Tellado held a Guinness World Record for selling the most titles in the Spanish language. The author of over 4,000 titles, Tellado specialized in romance novels and photonovels. She included feminist elements, such as working women, and also penned several erotic novels under the pseudonym Ada Miller.

 15 Vicente Blasco Ibáñez

Vicente Blasco Ibáñez
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: January 29, 1867
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Valencia, Spain
Died: January 28, 1928

Best known for his war novels, such as The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Vicente Blasco Ibáñez was a prominent member of the Spanish Generation of ’98 movement. Though he had been elected to the parliament, he later went into self-exile. Many of his novels were later adapted into films.

 16 Fernando Fernán Gómez

Fernando Fernán Gómez
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Famous As: Actor, Writer
Birthdate: August 28, 1921
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Lima, Peru
Died: November 21, 2007

 17 Fernando Arrabal

Fernando Arrabal
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Famous As: Playwright
Birthdate: August 11, 1932
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Melilla, Spain

Spanish-born French author and playwright Fernando Arrabal is best known for his absurdist plays. While he initially studied law, he later switched to drama. He has written and directed films such as Viva la Muerte, and his characters are often murderers or prostitutes amid cruel and pornographic themes.

 18 Ramón del Valle-Inclán

Ramón del Valle-Inclán
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Famous As: Dramatist
Birthdate: October 28, 1866
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vilanova de Arousa
Died: January 5, 1936

Spanish dramatist and novelist Ramón del Valle-Inclán, a member of the Spanish Generation of 98, was a noted radical dramatist who despised literary realism and created esperpento, expressionist theatre. Major works of Valle-Inclán includes plays like Divine Words (Divinas palabras) and Bohemian Lights (Luces de Bohemia), the novel Tyrant Banderas (Tirano Banderas) and the four novelettes known as the Sonatas.

 19 Ramón María del Valle-Inclán

Ramón María del Valle-Inclán
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: October 28, 1866
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Villanueva de Arosa, Spain
Died: January 5, 1936

One of the greatest Spanish dramatists, Ramón María del Valle-Inclán was part of the Generation of ’98 movement. While he initially studied law, he later penned novels influenced by French Symbolists. He later specialized in satirical plays, which he called esperpento, such as Lights of Bohemia and Don Friolera’s Horns.

 20 Ildefonso Falcones

Ildefonso Falcones
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: 1959 AD
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain

 21 Pío Baroja

Pío Baroja
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Famous As: Writer, Physician, Novelist
Birthdate: December 28, 1872
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Donostia / San Sebastián
Died: October 30, 1956

Spanish Basque writer Pío Baroja was a qualified doctor and practiced medicine in northern Spain for a few years before returning to Madrid to manage his family bakery. Part of the Generation of ’98, he penned iconic works such as the series Memoirs of a Man of Action.

 22 Ana María Matute

Ana María Matute
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: July 26, 1925
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: June 25, 2014

Spanish writer Ana María Matute is counted among leading novelists of the posguerra. A member of Real Academia Española, Matute’s rich body of work, including novels like Fiesta al noroeste and short stories like El árbol de oro, helped her become the third woman to receive the Cervantes Prize. She also received Premio Nadal for the novel Primera memoria.

 23 Manuel Vázquez Montalbán

Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: July 14, 1939
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: October 18, 2003

Renowned Spanish author and poet Manuel Vázquez Montalbán was a regular columnist for El Pais. A gastronome, he displayed his knowledge of cooking in the Detective Pepe Carvalho series and in Contra los Gourmets. He was a football lover, too, and often wrote essays on topics such as sports and music.

 24 Federica Montseny

Federica Montseny
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Famous As: Anarchist
Birthdate: February 12, 1905
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: January 14, 1994

 25 Juan Goytisolo

Juan Goytisolo
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Famous As: Writer, Screenwriter, Poet, Literary editor, Journalist
Birthdate: January 5, 1931
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain

Spanish poet, short-story writer, essayist, and novelist Juan Goytisolo was regarded as the greatest living writer of Spain at the beginning of the 21st century. A critique of Francoist Spain, works of Goytisolo, which includes the novels Marks of Identity, Count Julian, and Juan the Landless, were banned in Spain until after Francisco Franco’s death.

 26 Miguel Delibes

Miguel Delibes
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Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: October 17, 1920
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Valladolid, Spain
Died: March 12, 2010

Spanish author Miguel Delibes was a significant member of the Generation of '36 movement and is remembered for his realist fiction. He had been part of the Spanish navy and initially worked as a newspaper caricaturist. Many of his works, such as El camino, were later made into films.

 27 Rosa Montero

Rosa Montero
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Famous As: Journalist
Birthdate: January 3, 1951
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Madrid

 28 Jorge Semprún

Jorge Semprún
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: December 10, 1923
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: June 7, 2011

Spanish-born author and politician Jorge Semprún mostly wrote in French. He was educated at the Sorbonne and mostly lived in France. He soared to fame with the autobiographical novel The Cattle Truck, while his scripts for the films Z and The War Is Over earned him Academy Award nominations.

 29 Mariano José de Larra

Mariano José de Larra
2
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: March 24, 1809
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: February 13, 1837

Spanish journalist, playwright, and satirical author Mariano José de Larra had his own newspapers and also worked as a drama critic for La revista Española as Figaro. Part of the costumbrismo movement, he penned the play Macías. He later took his own life after being rejected by a woman he loved.

 30 Carmen Laforet

Carmen Laforet
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Famous As: Author
Birthdate: September 6, 1921
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: February 28, 2004

Premio Nadal-winning Spanish author Carmen Laforet is remembered for developing Spanish Existentialist literature. Best known for her first and most popular novel, Nada, she used the tremendismo narrative in her works. Suffering from Alzheimer's disease in later years, she eventually lost the ability to speak.

 31 Mercè Rodoreda

Mercè Rodoreda
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: October 10, 1908
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: April 13, 1983

Spanish Catalan novelist Mercè Rodoreda is best remembered for her novel The Time of the Doves. While she had initially begun writing to escape her unhappy marriage, she took it up as a serious career while in exile in France and Switzerland after the Spanish Civil War.

 32 José Martínez Ruiz

José Martínez Ruiz
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Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: June 8, 1873
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Monòver, Spain
Died: March 6, 1967

José Martínez Ruiz, better known as Azorin, was a prominent Spanish literary critic. He was also credited with naming his group of Spanish writers the Generation of ’98. Though educated in law, he later became a journalist and penned works such as An Hour of Spain, 1560–1590.

 33 Leopoldo Alas

Leopoldo Alas
1
Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: April 25, 1852
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Zamora, Spain
Died: June 13, 1901

Nineteenth-century Spanish literary critic Leopoldo Alas gained fame for his paliques and his liberalism. A qualified lawyer, he taught law and political economy at the University of Oviedo throughout his life. His notable works include his novel La regenta and his short story collections such as El gallo de Sócrates.

 34 Ramón Gómez de la Serna

Ramón Gómez de la Serna
1
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: July 3, 1888
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: January 13, 1963

The Spanish avant-garde author Ramón Gómez de la Serna is best remembered for his greguerías, or short poems. Though he had studied law, he never practiced and ventured into literature instead. He also launched his own literary magazine, Prometeo, and penned numerous articles, novels, and plays.

 35 Juan Gómez-Jurado

Juan Gómez-Jurado
1
Famous As: Journalist
Birthdate: December 16, 1977
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain

 36 Alonso Fernández de Avellaneda

Alonso Fernández de Avellaneda
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Famous As: Critic
Birthdate: 0000 AD
Birthplace: Tordesillas, Spain

Alonso Fernández de Avellaneda is the pseudonym of the unknown author who penned the Second Book of the Ingenious Knight Don Quixote of La Mancha, an unauthorized sequel to Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. Cervantes, however, had criticized the poor quality of Avellaneda’s work, in the original second volume.

 37 Fernando Aramburu

Fernando Aramburu
1
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: 1959 AD
Birthplace: Donostia-San Sebastian, Spain

 38 Pedro Salinas y Serrano

Pedro Salinas y Serrano
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: November 27, 1891
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: December 4, 1951

Part of the Generation of '27, renowned Spanish poet Pedro Salinas y Serrano had also been a professor at the Johns Hopkins University. Educated at the Sorbonne, he also taught Spanish at Seville and later joined Cambridge, too. He is also known for his research on Rubén Darío and Jorge Manrique.

 39 Carmen Martín Gaite

Carmen Martín Gaite
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: December 8, 1925
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Salamanca, Spain
Died: July 22, 2000

Carmen Martín Gaite graduated with romance philology when it was rare for women to attend universities. The Premio Nadal-winning author is best remembered for her iconic works such as Entre visillos and El balneario. She was also one of only two female Spanish Royal Academy members back in her time.

 40 Juan Antonio de Zunzunegui

Juan Antonio de Zunzunegui
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Famous As: Spanish novelist
Birthdate: December 21, 1901
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Portugalete, Spain
Died: May 31, 1982

Spanish author Juan Antonio de Zunzunegui was primarily known for his novels and short stories that reflected the life of Bilbao and Madrid. A Spanish Academy member, he is remembered for masterpieces such as El premio and El supremo bien and for his realistic narrative.

 41 Gonzalo Torrente Ballester

Gonzalo Torrente Ballester
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: June 13, 1910
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ferrol, Spain
Died: January 27, 1999

 42 Francisco Ayala

Francisco Ayala
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Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: March 16, 1906
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Granada, Spain
Died: November 3, 2009

 43 Juan Marsé

Juan Marsé
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: January 8, 1933
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: July 18, 2020

 44 Pedro Antonio de Alarcón y Ariza

Pedro Antonio de Alarcón y Ariza
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Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: March 10, 1833
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Guadix, Spain
Died: July 19, 1891

 45 Elena Santiago

Elena Santiago
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: February 8, 1941
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Castile and León, Spain
Died: January 3, 2021

 46 Ramón J. Sender

Ramón J. Sender
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Famous As: Novelist
Birthdate: February 3, 1901
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chalamera, Spain
Died: January 16, 1982

 47 José Cadalso

José Cadalso
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Famous As: Author
Birthdate: October 8, 1741
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Cádiz, Spain
Died: February 26, 1782

José Cadalso was a colonel of the Royal Spanish Army in the 18th century. He was also a well-known author, playwright, poet, and essayist. As an army man, he traveled through Italy, Germany, England, France, and Portugal and studied the literature of these countries. He is credited to have made massive contributions to Spanish Enlightenment literature. 

 48 Eugenio d'Ors y Rovira

Eugenio d'Ors y Rovira
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Famous As: Author and philosopher
Birthdate: September 28, 1881
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: September 25, 1954

Spanish philosopher and author Eugenio d'Ors y Rovira initially studied law but later worked as a journalist and gained fame with the column Glossari. Over the years, he gained excellence as an essayist and a caricaturist, too. He penned works such as The Secret of Philosophy.

 49 Francisco Umbral

Francisco Umbral
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Famous As: Journalist
Birthdate: May 11, 1932
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: August 28, 2007

 50 Àngel Guimerà

Àngel Guimerà
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Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: May 6, 1845
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain
Died: July 18, 1924