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Controversial Books

This page shows your 100 most controversial books, as measured by the standard deviation of members star ratings. (This is also the source of the Zeitgeist category "25 Books People Can't Agree on.") To be included, a book must have been rated at least 20 times. Work titles are given.

Standard
Deviation
RatingTitle
1.1323.64Show Boat by Edna Ferber
1.1093.39The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
1.1033.61Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
1.0913.8The Man Who Would Be King and Other Stories by Rudyard Kipling
1.0853.53The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp
1.0763.43What Maisie Knew by Henry James
1.0654.24Bleak House [Norton Critical Edition] by Charles Dickens
1.0413.99Confessions of an Advertising Man by David Ogilvy
1.023.89Cousin Bette by Honoré de Balzac
1.0033.27This year it will be different and other stories by Maeve Binchy
0.9993.85Cloudsplitter by Russell Banks
0.9983.91Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
0.9963.54The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne
0.9953.93The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne
0.9953.9Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ by Lew Wallace
0.9873.5Hard Times by Charles Dickens
0.9853.69Eugénie Grandet by Honoré de Balzac
0.983.77Thérèse Raquin by Émile Zola
0.9753.99The Betrothed by Alessandro Manzoni
0.9713.8Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
0.9673.87The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens
0.9663.54Bonjour Tristesse by Françoise Sagan
0.9644.06Precious Bane by Mary Webb
0.9643.7120,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
0.9624.03Old New York by Edith Wharton
0.9494.13Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin
0.9463.76Shosha by Isaac Bashevis Singer
0.9424.15The Man Who Laughs by Victor Hugo
0.9343.76The Tortilla Curtain by T. Coraghessan Boyle
0.9213.83The Warden by Anthony Trollope
0.9213.91Daniel Deronda by George Eliot
0.9123.85Two on a Tower by Thomas Hardy
0.9124.03The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton
0.9113.9Pnin by Vladimir Nabokov
0.9093.42The Mistress's Daughter: A Memoir by A. M. Homes
0.9083.55The Women by T.C. Boyle
0.9073.69How Doctors Think by Jerome Groopman
0.9073.66Staying On by Paul Scott
0.9043.7The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
0.93.57Pompeii by Robert Harris
0.93.71SuperFreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance by Steven D. Levitt
0.8973.99The End of the Affair by Graham Greene
0.8963.8Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne
0.8943.85Martin Chuzzlewit by Charles Dickens
0.8913.84The Shape of Mercy: A Novel by Susan Meissner
0.894The Jewel in the Crown by Paul Scott
0.8843.63Promise Me by Harlan Coben
0.8823.75Ruth by Elizabeth Gaskell
0.8824.14The Far Pavilions by M. M. Kaye
0.883.83Freakonomics: a Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything by Steven D. Levitt
0.883.86The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy
0.8794.05Oblomov by Ivan Goncharov
0.8783.77The Other Hand by Chris Cleave
0.8754.11Evidence of Things Unseen: A Novel by Marianne Wiggins
0.8754.28Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
0.8723.8Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell
0.8724.04The Beast Within by Émile Zola
0.873.88Small Island by Andrea Levy
0.8683.87Saint Maybe by Anne Tyler
0.8673.98The Sweet Hereafter by Russell Banks
0.8673.92The Belly of Paris by Émile Zola
0.8644.19West with the Night by Beryl Markham
0.863.97The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins
0.8594.16God's smuggler by Andrew van der Bijl
0.8574.06Straight Man by Richard Russo
0.8543.73Tell Me Where It Hurts: A Day of Humor, Healing, and Hope in My Life as an Animal Surgeon by Nick Trout
0.8543.75Poor Miss Finch by Wilkie Collins
0.8544.09L'Assommoir by Émile Zola
0.8523.67The Observations by Jane Harris
0.8483.8Last Night at the Lobster by Stewart O'Nan
0.8444.35Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
0.8443.92Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World by Mark Kurlansky
0.8413.71East Lynne by Ellen Wood
0.8414.09The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
0.8414.16Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell
0.8394.19Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset
0.8294.04Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons
0.8254.02Dombey and Son by Charles Dickens
0.8174.21The Way We Live Now by Anthony Trollope
0.8164.22Independent People by Halldór Laxness
0.8163.86A Commonwealth of Thieves: The Improbable Birth of Australia by Thomas Keneally
0.8114.11South Riding: An English Landscape by Winifred Holtby
0.814.34A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
0.813.76Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life by Steve Martin
0.8064.18The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl by Timothy Egan
0.8054.05A splendid exchange : how trade shaped the world by William J. Bernstein
0.7983.94He Knew He Was Right by Anthony Trollope
0.7913.86The Wal-Mart Effect: How the World's Most Powerful Company Really Works--and How It's Transforming the American Economy by Charles Fishman
0.7894A Terrible Glory: Custer and the Little Bighorn - the Last Great Battle of the American West by James Donovan
0.7883.9Sacred Country by Rose Tremain
0.774.18The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt's Darkest Journey by Candice Millard
0.7673.76The Snapper by Roddy Doyle
0.7664.09Here If You Need Me: A True Story by Kate Braestrup
0.7663.93The Town by Conrad Richter
0.7644.07The Red Queen: Sex and the Evolution of Human Nature by Matt Ridley
0.7613.78The Law and the Lady by Wilkie Collins
0.7574.12The Midwife by Jennifer Worth
0.7434.21Collected Short Stories, volume 2 by W. Somerset Maugham
0.743.84Hospital Sketches by Louisa May Alcott
0.7393.79A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage
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