Sunday, 1 September 2013

Australia's Top 100 Favourite Homegrown Reads

I do love a good book list, and always enjoy checking off how many I've read on any new list I find. Although it tends to be more how many I haven't read. So many gaps!

This week the Get Reading! initiative published Australia's Top 100 Favourite Homegrown Reads, the results of a survey undertaken earlier in the year. Nearly 6,000 votes for more than 1100 titles is quite impressive. As with any list there's some books (and authors) I've never even heard of- there's always more to read.

1. Tomorrow, When the War Began - John Marsden
2. The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
3. Cloudstreet - Tim Winton (I gave up half way through)
4. A Fortunate Life - A.B Facey
5. Possum Magic - Mem Fox
6. Ice Station - Matthew Reilly
7. Jasper Jones-  Craig Silvey
8. Jessica - Bryce Courtenay
9. The Harp in the South - Ruth Park
10. Where is the Green Sheep? - Mem Fox
11. The Power of One - Bryce Courtenay
12. April Fools Day - Bryce Couretnay
13. Breath - Tim Winton
14. The Thorn Birds - Colleen McCullough
15. Looking for Alibrandi - Melina Marchetta (see my review)
16. Dirt Music - Tim Winton
17. The Secret River - Kate Grenville
18. Snugglepot and Cuddlepie - May Gibbs
19. You Wouldn't be Dead for Quids - Robert G. Barrett
20. Shantaram - Gregory David Robert
21. Seven Little Australians - Ethel Turner
22. My Place - Sally Morgan
23. My Brilliant Career - Miles Franklin
24. Obernewtyn - Isobelle Carmody
25. Jillaroo - Rachael Treasure
26. Playing Beatie Bow - Ruth Park (see my review)
27. The Magic Pudding - Norman Lindsay (see my review)
28. The Shifting Fog - Kate Morton
29. The Slap - Christos Tsiolkas (see my review)
30. Heart of the Dreaming - Di Morrissey
31. Blinky Bill - Dorothy Wall
32. The Light Between the Oceans - M.L. Stedman
33. A Little Bush Maid - Mary Grant Bruce
34. Picnic at Hanging Rock - Joan Lindsay (see my review)
35. The Potato Factory - Bryce Courtney
36. Mallawindy - Joy Dettman
37. Hade's Daughter - Sara Douglass
38. Wombat Stew - Marcia K Vaughan, Pamela Lofts
39. I Can Jump Puddles - Alan Marshall



40. My Brother Jack - George Johnston
41. Poor Man's Orange - Ruth Park
42. The Rosie Project - Graeme Simsion (see my review)
43. The Silver Brumby - Elyne Mitchell (see my review)
44. The Messenger - Markus Zusak (see my review)
45. Eucalyptus - Murray Bail
46. The Forgotten Garden - Kate Morton
47. Oscar and Lucinda - Peter Carey
48. Pearl in a Cage - Joy Dettman
49. Two Weeks with the Queen - Morris Gleiltzman
50. Koala Lou - Mem Fox
51. The Riders - Tim Winton
52. The Ancient Future - Traci Harding
53. For the Term of his Natural Life - Marcus Clarke
54. Magic Beach - Alison Lester
55. A Town Like Alice - Neville Shute
56. All That I Am - Anna Funder
57. Matthew Flinders Cat - Bryce Courtney
58. Diary of a Wombat - Jackie French, Bruce Whatley
59. True History of the Kelly - Gang Peter Carey
60. Ranger's Apprentice - John Flanagan
61. Storm Boy - Colin Thiele
62. Cry of the Curlew - Peter Watt
63. Poor Fellow My Country - Xavier Herbert
64. Bliss - Peter Carey
65. Once - Morris Gleitzman
66. Adam's Empire - Evan Green
67. The Sound of One Hand Clapping - Richard Flanagan
68. Foal's Bread - Gillian Mears
69. Monkey Grip - Helen Garner
70. Voss - Patrick White
71. Power Without Glory - Frank Hardy
72. All The River Run - Nancy Cato
73. The Happiest Refugee - Anh Do
74. Burial Rites - Hannah Kent



75. Four Fires - Bryce Courtney
76. Year of Wonders - Geraldine Brooks
77. Schindler's Ark - Thomas Keneally
78. Saving Francesca - Melina Marchetta
79. People of the Book - Geraldine Brooks
80. On the Beach - Nevil Shute
81. Battle Axe - Sara Douglass
82. The Fortunes of Richard Mahony - Henry Handel Richardson
83. The Man Who Loved Children - Christina Stead
84. On the Jellico Road - Melina Marchetta
85. Hating Alison Ashley - Robin Klein
86. Animalia - Graeme Base
87. Scarecrow - Matthew Reilly
88. Tandia - Bryce Courtney
89. The Tree of Man - Patrick White
90. The Muddle-Headed Wombat - Ruth Park
91. Rhubarb - Craig Silvey
92. Salvation Creek - Susan Duncan
93. Wake in Fright - Kenneth Cook
94. Candy - Luke Davies
95. Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge - Mem Fox
96. Puberty Blues - Gabrielle Carey and Kathy Lette
97. Hope's Road - Margareta Osborn
98. We of the Never - Never Anaes Gunn
99. Joe Cinque's Consolation - Helen Garner
100. Mao's Last Dancer - Li Cunxin

36.5/100, my usual rather dismal result. I have read 6.5 of the top ten though, that's not too bad. And I have meant to read at least 80% of these books at least once. That must count for something.

I was somewhat surprised not to see Cloudstreet in the typical top spot. I really must try it again some time. I tried reading it 10 years ago when I was working night shifts and permanently jet lagged- I've always wondered if that was why I couldn't get into it, I've liked every other Winton that I've read. I do wonder if this survey may have had a younger demographic than often vote in such surveys. There are a lot of YA and kids titles. Although I suspect it is parents and not toddlers giving Mem Fox two titles in the top 10.

Bryce Courtenay is the big winner with 7 titles making the list. Tim Winton comes in second with 4. Mem Fox, Melina Marchetta, Peter Carey and Ruth Park all have 3 titles a piece.

Nov 2013 Now 37.5/100. Inching forward.

September 2015 38.5/100. Scant progress.

4 comments:

Cathy said...

This is a fascinating list - thank you for sharing. I've read quite a few of these books - certainly not all 100. There are ones that I would like to read that I haven't yet.

vicki (skiourophile) said...

I always fail these sort of lists, but I suspect I could match your '80%' here in intention!

Brona Joy said...

Interesting list Louise and obviously fairly recent with Burial Rites in there (I suspect it would be even higher up the list now).

Like you, it's the first time I've NOT seen Cloudstreet on top!

I'm hosting an AusReading Month in November & I've added a link to your post on my Info page
http://bronasbooks.blogspot.com.au/2013/09/australia-in-print.html

Louise said...

Thanks for the link Brona, I will be sure to check out your AusReading Month, it sounds great.