Romance author Danielle Steel’s name is synonymous with hot-and-heavy novels. We’ve compiled 16 of the best Danielle Steel books for your reading list.
Born Danielle Fernandes Dominique Schuelein-Steel, the romance writer, is one of the bestselling authors alive today, selling more than 800 million copies of her books. The prolific author has written nearly 200 books and is known for working on many projects—from romance novels to children’s books to non-fiction works—at the same time.
Steel’s fan base runs deep, and all of the novels she’s written have been bestsellers. Readers are familiar with the New York-born author’s formula. Typically, the main character of her book is part of a wealthy family facing a crisis.
Steel likely takes some of her inspiration from her own life. Born in 1947, just after the end of World War II, the author got to enjoy a newly stable European environment. Steel spent time in Paris as a child, where she was included in her parents’ ritzy dinner parties. Following her time in Paris, she attended New York University as a young adult and later moved to San Francisco.
- Popular Danielle Steel Books
- 1. Safe Harbour
- 2. The Gift
- 3. All That Glitters
- 4. Finding Ashley
- 5. His Bright Light
- 6. Kaleidoscope
- 7. Lost and Found
- 8. Turning Point
- 9. Accidental Heroes
- 10. Silent Honor
- 11. The Promise
- 12. Blue
- 13. Zoya
- 14. Echoes
- 15. Spy
- 16. Prodigal Son
- The Final Word On The 16 Best Danielle Steel Books
- How I Chose the Best Danielle Steel Books
- FAQs On The 16 Best Danielle Steel Books
- What’s The Bestselling Danielle Steel Book Of All Time?
- Is Danielle Steel Still Writing?
- How Much is Danielle Steel Worth?
- How many hours a day does Danielle Steel write?
- What should I read if I like Danielle Steel?
- How many books does Danielle Steel have published?
- How many books does Danielle Steel write per year?
Popular Danielle Steel Books
Here, we’ve gathered a collection of the author’s most celebrated novels. Add these ten books to your nightstand to help you drift off to dreamland with thoughts of love and romance.
1. Safe Harbour
This 2003 New York Times bestselling novel describes how two lovers who have lost the things they hold near and dear find hope—and each other. The story begins with a young girl befriending an older artist at the beach; the young girl, Pip, and her new friend, Matt, enjoy drawing lessons together, and Matt begins to notice Ophélie, Pip’s beautiful mother. Their time together is cut short when Pip and Ophélie must return to the city.
Ophélie and Matt share long phone conversations and some beach getaways as the leaves change color, but betrayal from a friend and unfinished past issues haunt the two struggling to find happiness. The pair starts to support one another and develop hope for the future, and they begin to realize how lucky they are to have found one another as they navigate the dark parts of life together.
“In truth, she just liked the silent companionship of being close to someone, even a stranger.”Danielle Steel
2. The Gift
Set in the 1950s, The Gift (released in 1994) allows readers to return to a simpler time. The novel opens with a beautiful young lady, Maribeth, stepping off of a bus in the Midwest, passing through on her way to the Windy City. She falls in love with the tiny town that was only meant to be a pit stop. Steel takes the reader on a journey through the town’s tree-lined streets.
Maribeth falls in love with a young man she meets in the small town, and together, they work to restore family dreams and create a lasting impression. While Maribeth does not stay in the area forever, the story touches on the lasting impact a person’s positivity, love, and generosity can have on others, even if the connection can’t last a lifetime.
“Maybe some people just aren’t meant to be in our lives forever.”Danielle Steel
3. All That Glitters
In this 2020 novel, Coco is dazzling and is used to life going her way. She has fantastic parents, men revere her beauty, and she’s about to graduate from Columbia University. She gets plenty of time to relax on the weekends and loves hanging out with her best friend.
Suddenly, Coco experiences an unexpected family tragedy and has no idea what to do next after her parents are killed while on vacation; she’s left to pick up the pieces and must find her way through life without their guidance.
As Coco begins to weave her way through creating her path through life, she falls in and out of love, learning many lessons along the way. Coco’s sudden tragedy teaches her about love, loss, and strength.
“She had been transformed into a lethal machine to gather information, and destroy anyone who interfered with her.”Danielle Steel
4. Finding Ashley
In this 2021 bestseller, former author Melissa Henderson lives a harsh life in New England. She lost her son to cancer years prior, and soon after, her marriage fell apart.
She felt she could no longer carry on as a writer. Melissa purchased and renovated an old house and slowly began to find her purpose again.
After a wildfire came close to her new home, Melissa received a call from Hattie, her estranged sister. Together, the two discuss the daughter Melissa gave up as a teen, and the sisters decide to begin finding Melissa’s long-lost child. This story of love, sisterhood, family connection, and rebuilding long-burnt bridges keeps readers invested from start to finish.
“It had replaced everything else in her life, even people. It was the outlet for her to soothe all her sorrows…”Danielle Steel
5. His Bright Light
This non-fiction work details Steel’s arduous journey through her son Nick Traina’s fight with manic depression and his eventual death. Of sharing her story, Steel stated, “I want to share the story, and the pain, the courage, the love, and what I learned in living through it. I want Nick’s life to be not only a tender memory for us but a gift to others.”
Manic depression affects more than two million Americans. After losing Nick at just 19 years old, Steel wanted to share their family’s story with others dealing with similar circumstances. The novel is a tribute to Nick and shares his battle with mental illness in a way that provides the reader with hope and healing.
“It’s so lonely when you don’t even know yourself. I’m empty. I’m weak. I just want to be filled with good feelings and happiness.”Danielle Steel
Wartime Paris is fraught with stress and fear, and a family is ripped apart by tragedy in this 1987 bestselling novel. Megan, Alexandra, and Hilary are three suddenly orphaned sisters who are cruelly separated after their parents pass away. Each sister begins a new life.
An Appalachian family adopts Megan; Alexandra is raised in a rich family and marries a wealthy man. Hilary moves on to professional success but struggles with the memory of her sisters and her separation from those she loves the most.
A private investigator is asked to find the women and begins to work to bring the sisters back together. Kaleidoscope takes readers from New York to Boston to Paris to Appalachia as the search for the sisters continues. Finally reunited, Megan, Alexandra, and Hilary are forced to work together to overcome a brutal truth. You might be interested in exploring more romance books, check out our round-up of best erotic novels.
“He was unable to explain to her why he felt so compelled to speak to her, but the moment he had laid eyes on her, he knew he had to.”Danielle Steel
7. Lost and Found
In this 2019 romance, Maddie, a New York City photographer, lives in a gorgeous Manhattan home that once served as a firehouse. While sorting through personal mementos and family albums, Maddie breaks her ankle and is forced to pause her demanding schedule and reevaluate her life.
Maddie gets into an argument with her adult daughter and decides that it’s time to do some soul-searching. She embarks on a solo road trip, hoping to find answers about love, life, and motherhood. Her journey takes her across the country with stops in Wyoming, Chicago, and Boston, revisiting men she once loved.
“…you should never prepare for old age, just let it happen and deal with it when it does.”Danielle Steel
8. Turning Point
Medical drama fans love Steel’s 2019 novel Turning Point, which focuses on four doctors in charge of the trauma unit at a prominent San Francisco hospital. Bill, Stephanie, Wendy, and Tom work together to overcome personal challenges and support one another as they move forward in their careers. The group is given an exciting opportunity to work through a mass-casualty training program with their Parisian colleagues.
As the doctors enjoy their time in Paris, readers are taken on wild rides as each of them experiences incredible highs and devastating lows in their personal lives. A shocking tragedy strikes and forces the doctors into action, causing each doctor to make a difficult choice with lasting consequences.
“Bill Browning had seen just about everything that humans could inflict on themselves and each other during his career as an ER and trauma doctor. Nothing shocked him anymore.”Danielle Steel
9. Accidental Heroes
Steel turns from her usual romance genre to dip her toe into the thriller world with this 2018 novel.
This fast-paced story takes readers on a journey through a potential tragedy at JFK Airport. An employee finds a postcard with a warning message, and her supervisor brushes off her concerns. She’s not sure what to do—the postcard doesn’t have enough information for her to take action, but she also doesn’t feel like she can sit back and let the tragedy occur.
This novel celebrates the bravery of the everyman and helps the reader understand how they can make a difference by listening to their intuition in the face of doubt.
“We were kids in college with no responsibilities. It takes more than a wedding to make a marriage,”Danielle Steel
10. Silent Honor
Set in Japan, Silent Honor (released in 1996) follows the story of Hiroko, an 18-year-old woman on her way to California to live with her uncle Takeo and begin college at Berkeley. The year is 1941, and suddenly, Hiroko’s world is shaken by the bombing of Pearl Harbor. She desperately wants to return to Japan but is forbidden to do so by her father.
Hiroko is forced to go to an internment camp with her uncle. Readers learn more about the incredible story of resilience and injustice faced by Japanese-Americans during World War II.
“He sat alone in the garden all night, thinking about her and the year they had shared, how much she meant to him, how gentle and kind she was and how much he loved her.”Danielle Steel
11. The Promise
Aspiring architect Michael Hillyard and artist Nancy McAllister promised each other eternal love, as symbolized by the necklace they hid under a rock. As this jewelry remains unshaken, so would their relationship.
However, Michael’s affluent mother strongly objects to their relationship. She believes Nancy will only ruin Michael’s career and their family business. Despite her disapproval, the young lovers want to get married. Minutes before the ceremony, Michael and Nancy are torn apart by a terrifying accident, as a cruel trickery further forbids their reconnection. Years passed, and the two led separate lives and careers. Still, fate pulls them together as they reunite and eventually keep their promise.
Danielle Steel’s “The Promise” narrates the gripping romance of Michael and Nancy and what it truly means never to say goodbye.
“Not ‘it’s’ beautiful, silly girl. You’re beautiful. It is you.”Danielle Steel
Rising TV sensation Ginny Carter is at a loss after losing her husband and three-year-old son in a devastating freeway accident two days before Christmas. In an attempt to pick up the pieces of her life and find another purpose, she pursued a second job as a humanitarian relief worker.
On the accident’s anniversary, Ginny struggles with the thought and allure of death. She then fatefully met Blue Williams, a thirteen-year-old homeless boy who had been neglected by his own family. Ginny follows her gut and approaches him. As they create a strange friendship and become each other’s family in place of the ones they lost, Ginny discovers a stunning betrayal he has been keeping from her.
This page-turner by Steel centers on the true essence of healing and nurturing newfound relationships, including how to keep them.
“Every day, good stuff and bad stuff happens to us. It’s what you do about it and how you handle it that matters.”Danielle Steel
Set in the Russian Revolution, “Zoya” follows the story of the title character’s life and misadventures. Zoya, the cousin of the Tsar, was forced to flee with her grandmother to Paris. A few months later, she finds herself in the arms of American General Clayton Andrews amidst the heat of World War II. She then goes to New York in search of new opportunities. As she settles in, her happiness is short-lived as the Great Depression strikes her back to rock bottom.
By incorporating historical events and creating relatable characters, Steel proves her versatility as a novelist in this masterpiece. The novel demonstrates how one’s life can drastically change instantly and how determination can eventually help one build a life worth living.
“Sometimes, I think one should only live in the present. The past is only a heavy burden to carry with you.”Danielle Steel
It was never meant to be for French Catholic Antoine and German Jew Beata. But the star-crossed lovers brave all odds to fight for their relationship, eventually leading them to the altar. As World War I is just around the corner, neither of their folks supports their marriage. Thus, they are later disowned by their respective families, and the lovers choose to start their own lives.
When World War II breaks out, the secrets Beata had kept from her kids become impossible to ignore. Her mother’s past also threatens the safety of their family, especially her daughter Amadea. But Amadea has inherited more than her family name; if she can muster the same determination as her ancestors, she may yet escape this dangerous world.
“Echoes” is an inspiring reminder that our true strength doesn’t reveal itself until we’re at our wits’ end.
“The essence of prayer is not to think a lot, but to love a lot.”Danielle Steel
Despite growing up in an aristocratic lifestyle, Alexandra Wickham yearns for more than a pampered life and looks for every opportunity at the height of World War II. Starting as a First Aid Nursing Yeomanry volunteer in London, Alexandra is recruited by another military unit for her exceptional linguistic skills.
She later found herself learning the art of espionage and navigating her double life as a member of society, a diplomat’s wife, and a top-secret spy. She may be an expert at lying on the job, but she has trouble keeping up the facade in her personal life.
“Spy” chronicles the enthralling wartime adventures of Alexandra across different parts of the globe. As the world transitions from postwar to Cold War, the protagonist must also find a way to keep her secret while trying to live her life.
“Just be careful. Learn your lessons well, and always follow your instincts.”Danielle Steel
16. Prodigal Son
Peter McDowell has always had a deep-seated animosity toward his sibling Michael. The two brothers differed dramatically despite being identical twins and growing up in the same family and community. Such differences inevitably turned them into enemies and drove them apart.
Eventually, Peter became a successful investment banker after leaving his town behind. Michael remained and established himself as a local doctor. When Wall Street crashed, and his wife left, Peter had no choice but to return to his childhood home. Although the brothers made amends, things take a turn when Peter meets Michael’s son Bill.
From the best-selling author Steel comes another page-turning tale of hidden family history, divine intervention, and second chances. This book makes readers reevaluate their moral compass and consider whether they truly know what constitutes good and evil.
“Life wasn’t always easy, and had a way of filing down the sharp corners and rough edges.”Danielle Steel
The Final Word On The 16 Best Danielle Steel Books
Steel’s familiar writing style and descriptive character evolution will keep you engaged from start to finish, whether you’re craving a touching memoir, a hope-fueled romance novel, or an edge-of-your-seat thriller. Be sure to add the ten books above to your must-read list the next time you’re craving an escape from the daily grind. Want to read more romance books? Discover our list of best gay romance novels.
How I Chose the Best Danielle Steel Books
My quest began on Goodreads, where I delved into Danielle Steel’s top-rated titles and studied readers’ passionate feedback. I then turned to bestseller lists to discern which of Steel’s novels truly resonated with a wider audience over the years. But I didn’t stop there. I reached out to romance novel aficionados, literature circles, and dedicated Steel fans to gain deeper insights into her most impactful and beloved works.
I aimed to highlight books that not only exemplified Steel’s signature storytelling prowess but also spanned the diverse themes and rich character explorations she’s known for. While the emotional depth and narrative strength of each book were primary criteria, I also weighed in sales figures to understand which tales truly stood out in popularity. Bringing all this information together, I’m confident in presenting a list that captures the best of Danielle Steel’s illustrious writing career.
FAQs On The 16 Best Danielle Steel Books
What’s The Bestselling Danielle Steel Book Of All Time?
Safe Harbour has sold more copies than any other Danielle Steel book.
Is Danielle Steel Still Writing?
Steel continues to write and plans to release several new books over the coming years. While the author could undoubtedly retire, she chooses to forge ahead, sharing her stories with the world.
How Much is Danielle Steel Worth?
Danielle Steel is one of America’s most prolific novelists, having written nearly 200 books and had sales of more than 800 million copies. Her current net worth is 600 Million, and she also holds a Guinness World Record from 1989, as one of her books held the top spot on the New York Times bestseller list for an unprecedented 381 consecutive weeks.
How many hours a day does Danielle Steel write?
In an interview for Glamour Magazine given in 2019, she explained that she often writes 20-22 hours a day, as well as 24-hour day sessions a few times a month when she ‘feels the crunch’. Equally, she considers four hours of sleep a very restful night by her standards, and she considers this work ethic to be the secret of her success.
What should I read if I like Danielle Steel?
While Danielle Steel is unique among authors, there are other popular writers who publish books with a similar style. Some examples would be Barbara Taylor Bradford (A Woman of Substance), Nora Roberts (Vision in White), and Nicolas Sparks (The Notebook), while fans of Steel’s have also taken to Lucinda Riley’s Seven Sisters series.
How many books does Danielle Steel have published?
As of 2022, Danielle Steel has published 190 books, 141 of which are novels. Some of the remaining fifty titles include six non-fiction titles, three picture books, and the Max & Martha series and Freddie series of books written for children. Her books have been translated into 43 languages and can be found in 69 countries around the globe.
How many books does Danielle Steel write per year?
A rough estimate of how many books Steel publishes per year would be around six or seven. In both this year and last year she’ll have published seven novels each. For most of her career, she typically published a commendable three novels a year, but since 2016 she has released at least six books a year, and that’s only accounting for the novels.