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
4
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
(Novelist widely known for his 2001 novel La sombra del viento)

Carlos Ruiz Zafón
3
Birthdate: September 25, 1964
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: June 19, 2020

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.

 3 

Miguel de Unamuno
3
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. 

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 4 
Lope de Vega
(Writer and One of the Key Figures in the Spanish Golden Age of Baroque Literature)

Lope de Vega
3
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
4
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
(Winner of 1989 Nobel Prize in Literature)

Camilo José Cela
3
Birthdate: May 11, 1916
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Iria Flavia, Spain
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
(politician, novelist, poet, author, autobiographer)

Pedro Paterno
3
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
(Novelist)

Javier Marías
3
Birthdate: September 20, 1951
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain

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
(Polymath)

Ibn Tufail
3
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
(Writer Known for Introducing Naturalism Into Spanish Literature)

Emilia Pardo Bazán
2
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 

Dolores Redondo
2
Birthdate: February 1, 1969
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: San Sebastián, Spain

 12 

David trueba
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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.

 13 

Benito Pérez Galdós
2
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.

 14 
Vicente Blasco Ibáñez
(Bestselling Spanish Novelist Known for His Novel ‘Blood and Sand')

Vicente Blasco Ibáñez
2
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.

 15 

Fernando Fernán Gómez
2
Birthdate: August 28, 1921
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Lima, Peru
Died: November 21, 2007

 16 
Corín Tellado
(Novelist)

Corín Tellado
2
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.

 17 

Ildefonso Falcones
2
Birthdate: 1959 AD
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain

 18 

Ana María Matute
2
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.

 19 
Pío Baroja
(Former Spanish writer, one of the key novelists of the Generation of '98)

Pío Baroja
2
Birthdate: December 28, 1872
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Donostia-San Sebastian, Spain
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.

 20 

Federica Montseny
2
Birthdate: February 12, 1905
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: January 14, 1994

 21 
Juan Goytisolo
(Poet, Essayist and novelist)

Juan Goytisolo
2
Birthdate: January 6, 1931
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: June 4, 2017

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.

 22 

Carmen Laforet
2
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.

 23 
Miguel Delibes
(One of the Leading Figures of Post-Civil War Spanish Literature)

Miguel Delibes
2
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.

 24 
Rosa Montero
(Journalist)

Rosa Montero
2
Birthdate: January 3, 1951
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Madrid

 25 

Jorge Semprún
2
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.

 26 
Ramón del Valle-Inclán
(Dramatist, novelist and member of the Spanish Generation of 98)

Ramón del Valle-Inclán
2
Birthdate: October 28, 1866
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vilanova de Arousa, Spain
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.

 27 
Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
(Novelist and Creator of Spain’s Most Famous Fictional Detective, ‘José “Pepe” Carvalho')

Manuel Vázquez Montalbán
2
Birthdate: June 14, 1939
Sun Sign: Gemini
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.

 28 
Leopoldo Alas
(Realist Novelist)

Leopoldo Alas
1
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.

 29 
Juan Gómez-Jurado
(Journalist)

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

 30 

Mercè Rodoreda
2
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.

 31 

José Martínez Ruiz
1
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.

Pedro Salinas y Serrano
1
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.

 33 

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

Alonso Fernández de Avellaneda
1
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.

 35 
Juan Antonio de Zunzunegui
(Spanish novelist)

Juan Antonio de Zunzunegui
1
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.

 36 
Carmen Martín Gaite
(Spanish Author Known for Her Short Novel 'The Nightmarish El Balneario' (The Spa))

Carmen Martín Gaite
1
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.

 37 
Francisco Ayala
(Novelist)

Francisco Ayala
1
Birthdate: March 16, 1906
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Granada, Spain
Died: November 3, 2009

Gonzalo Torrente Ballester
1
Birthdate: June 13, 1910
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ferrol, Spain
Died: January 27, 1999

 39 

Fernando del Paso
1
Birthdate: April 1, 1935
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Mexico City, Mexico
Died: November 14, 2018

Fernando del Paso was a Mexican poet, novelist, and essayist. He is best remembered for his 1986 novel Noticias del Imperio, which was chosen as the best Mexican novel of the last three decades by Nexos magazine in 2007. An admired and respected figure, Fernando del Paso won many prestigious awards such as the Premio Miguel de Cervantes.

 40 
Juan Marsé
(Writer)

Juan Marsé
1
Birthdate: January 8, 1933
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Barcelona, Spain
Died: July 18, 2020

Pedro Antonio de Alarcón y Ariza
1
Birthdate: March 10, 1833
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Guadix, Spain
Died: July 19, 1891

 42 

Ramón J. Sender
1
Birthdate: February 3, 1901
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Chalamera, Spain
Died: January 16, 1982

 43 

José Cadalso
1
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. 

 44 

Elena Santiago
1
Birthdate: February 8, 1941
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Castile and León, Spain
Died: January 3, 2021

 45 
Francisco Umbral
(Journalist)

Francisco Umbral
1
Birthdate: May 11, 1932
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: August 28, 2007

 46 
Eugenio d'Ors y Rovira
(Author and philosopher)

Eugenio d'Ors y Rovira
1
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.

 47 

Àngel Guimerà
1
Birthdate: May 6, 1845
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain
Died: July 18, 1924

 48 

Ángel Ganivet
1
Birthdate: December 13, 1865
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Granada, Spain
Died: November 29, 1898

 49 
Mateo Alemán
(Novelist)

Mateo Alemán
1
Birthdate: December 13, 1865, 1547
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Seville, Spain
Died: 1614 AD

 50 
Juan Benet
(Novelist)

Juan Benet
1
Birthdate: October 7, 1927
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
Died: January 5, 1993