13. Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison by Charles Shaw
In 1952, Crown Publishing Group in New York took a chance on the story of a shipwreck in the South Pacific. Shaw, an Australian author, was rejected by dozens of publishers on his own continent and by an estimated 20 British publishing firms, too. By 1957, this humorous tale was made into a movie starring Deborah Kerr and Robert Mitchum. The story and the movie are considered war classics and garnered several Academy Award nominations, including one for Best Writing.