To Kill a Mockingbird, written by Monroeville native, the late Harper Lee, is the fifth most checked out book in the history of the New York Public Library, and the second most checked out novel.
In celebration of its 125th anniversary, the New York Public Library researched its most popular books. The Snowy Day, the award-winning 1962 children’s story—written and illustrated by Ezra Jack Keats—is the most checked out book. Children’s books dominate the library’s top ten list.
- The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats / 485,583 checkouts
- The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss / 469,650 checkouts
- 1984 by George Orwell / 441,770 checkouts
- Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak / 436,016 checkouts
- To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee / 422,912 checkouts
- Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White / 337,948 checkouts
- Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury / 316,404 checkouts
- How To Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie / 284,524 checkouts
- Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling / 231,022 checkouts
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle / 189,550 checkouts
Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird was published in 1960. It won the 1961 Pulitzer Prize and has become a classic of modern American literature, read in most high schools and middle schools. The plot and characters are loosely based on Lee’s experiences in Monroeville in the 1930’s. To Kill a Mockingbird was Lee’s only published book until Go Set a Watchman, an earlier draft of the novel, was published in 2015. Lee died in 2016 at the age of 89.