Top 10 Best-Selling US Authors Worth Millions

Whether you’re in the mood for some tear-jerking romance or fond of action-packed thrillers, there comes a broad variety of books that are sure to drive the best emotions in you. From historical fiction to relatable coming-of-age, moving crime stories, and many more, US readers are offered a lengthy list of remarkable works that are sure to take them into worlds far from their own.

As the literary realm continues to advance and transform, it is no wonder that dozens of writers have already managed to imprint their names in the public conscious.


If you’re one among the many who aspires to become one of these story masters, here are the top 10 best-selling US authors that are worth millions.

10. Janet Evanovich

10. Janet Evanovich
@janetevanovich /, @janetevanovich /

Net Worth: $80 million

Known for her contemporary mystery novels, Janet Evanovich is the woman behind the popular Stephanie Plum Series, Knight & Moon Series, Wicked Series, and many more. 

Starting her writing career in 1987 under the pseudonym Steffie Hall, Janet Evanovich soon rose into prominence with over 200 million books in print worldwide and a staggering $80 million net worth.

Today, she is regarded as the 10th best-selling US author of 2019 and the 19th richest author in the world.

9. Stephenie Meyer

9. Stephenie Meyer
@bookdragonborn /, goodreads

Net Worth: $125 million

Many readers love her. Many critics despise her. Whatever the case, it is no exaggeration that Stephenie Meyer stands as one of the most popular writers of the 21st century. Best known for her fantasy romance series The Twilight Saga, Stephenie Meyer has proven herself to be far from the ordinary writer with a whopping net worth of $125 million.

In an article published by Forbes, it was revealed that Meyer earned a staggering $40 million in earnings as of 2010. A year later, her earnings were reported to be about $14 million. Today, although her novels rarely make it into the top list anymore, Meyer still keeps the 9th spot among the richest US authors.

8. Dean Koontz

8. Dean Koontz
@createexploreread /, @deankoontzofficial /

Net Worth: $145 million

Individuals who love to embark on a world of suspense and mystery are sure to have heard the name Dean Koontz before. Hailed by Rolling Stone as “America’s most popular suspense novelist”, Koontz is mostly known for his unparalleled mastery in blending horror, fantasy, science fiction, mystery, and satire. 

Among his most famous novels include Odd Thomas, which follows the story of a fry cook who can communicate with the dead; Watchers, a straightforward thriller that exhibits sci-fi elements; and Midnight, which takes readers into the horrifying world of Moonlight Cove.

To date, Dean Koontz’s net worth is estimated to be about $145 million.

7. Dan Brown

7. Dan Brown
YouTube, NPR / © Dan Courter

Net Worth: $178 million

No one has dared to read Dan Brown and looked at the world the same way after immersing themselves in a world of theories, intrigue, secret codes, and symbols. Identified by Wealthy Gorilla as the highest-paid author in the world and a part of the elite circle of writers whose works reached 100 million in sales, Dan Brown is most famous for his controversial and thrilling works, such as The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons, and Origin.

Brown’s net worth is said to be at $178 million as of 2019.

6. John Grisham

6. John Grisham
@johngrishamauthor /, @johngrishamauthor /

Net Worth: $220 million

Landing on our 6th spot is none other than American thriller writer John Grisham. Recognized for his popular legal thrillers, including A Time to Kill, The Client, and The Rainmaker, this full-time lawyer turned full-time novelist takes pride in over $220 million in net worth.

In 2017, Grisham has managed to publish 40 novels with over 300 million printed copies. As of 2019, eight of his novels have already been adapted into films, covering The Chamber, The Client, A Painted House, The Pelican Brief, The Rainmaker, The Runaway Jury, Skipping Christmas, and A Time to Kill.

5. Barbara Taylor Bradford

5. Barbara Taylor Bradford
@btbnovelist /, Prime Women

Net Worth: $300 million

Hailed by The Telegraph as “the queen of ‘squire and scullery maid’ fiction”, Barbara Taylor Bradford stands as the 5th richest, best-selling US author as of 2019. Her first novel, titled A Woman of Substance, is reported to have sold over 30 million copies worldwide.

To date, she takes pride in writing a total of 35 best-seller novels and having a staggering $300 million in net worth.

4. Danielle Steel

4. Danielle Steel
Amazon, Glamour / © Brigette Lacombe

Net Worth: $310 million

No other American woman author has managed to leave a name as big as Danielle Steel. Best known for her romance novels, Steel now stands as one of the biggest icons in the space reserved for popular lit. In fact, in all of her five-decade career, Steel has written 179 books, with 22 of them having been adapted to television.

Among her most popular books include The Gift, Kaleidoscope, and Zoya.

3. Nora Roberts

3. Nora Roberts
@norarobertsauthor /,

Net Worth: $390 million

Identified as the mind behind over 215 novels, Nora Roberts holds the title of the undisputed queen of romance. To date, she stands as the 3rd richest best-selling US author with a reported net worth of $390 million.

Her novels, which include the best-selling Bride Quartet, Black Hills, and Birthright, were described to be under the category of suspense romance and are sure to leave any reader in a state of shock and wonder.

2. Stephen King

2. Stephen King
@stephenking /, @stephenking /

Net Worth: $400 million

It’s hard to find a person who hasn’t heard the name of Stephen King before. From the supernatural world of Carrie to the terrorizing realm of IT, this American best-selling author stands as one of the most recognized horror and suspense masters.

Today, he sits on the second spot among the richest American authors as of 2019, with a whopping net worth of $400 million.

1. James Patterson

1. James Patterson
@jamespattersonbooks /, Mystery Sequels

Net Worth: $560 million

No one wears the crown for the richest American best-selling author other than James Patterson. He is most well-known as a prolific author of thrillers, mysteries, and many more

Starting his writing career in 1976, Patterson soon grew as one of the most widely recognized names, earning millions each year for his works. He was identified by the Guinness World Records as the author with the most New York Times best-selling hardcover fiction books, and his success even became a case study at Harvard Business School.

To date, his total net worth is estimated to be $560 million, making him the top player among all American best-selling authors as of 2019.


NPR / © Dan Courter,

Who says there’s no money in writing? Possessing remarkable mastery in language and millions in net worth, these 10 individuals prove that words carry much power and weight within them.

Who among these authors inspires you the most?

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