One of our book store chains here did a survey recently to determine what Australia's favourite books are. This is the top 20:
1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. The Lord of the Rings Series - J.R.R. Tolkien
3. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
4. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
5. Gone With the Wind - Margaret Mitchell
6. The Hobbit - J.R.R. Tolkien
7. Harry Potter Series - J.K. Rowling
8. The Power of One - Bryce Courtenay
9. Magician - Raymond E. Feist
10.Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
11.The Time Traveler's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
12.Cloudstreet - Tim Winton
13.Cross Stitch - Diana Gabaldon
14.Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
15.The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
16.Tuesdays with Morrie - Mitch Albom
17.Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
18.The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho
19.Mao's Last Dancer - Li Cunxin
20.Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
Some other interesting entries -
22. The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons
23. The Bible
24. Eragon by Christopher Paolini
27. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
37. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
44. Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
47. Tully by Paullina Simons
82. The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde
84. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
89. The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards
94. Atonement by Ian McEwan
100. The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
101. The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
From what I can see there were only 13 books by Aussie authors in there, although I may have missed a couple when I was counting them up because there were a couple of authors that I hadn't heard of before. Actually that can't be right...will have to recount tomorrow morning when my brain is a bit fresher.
I was a little surprised to see Eragon and The Memory Keeper's Daughter on the list. I haven't read either myself, and I know they are popular books, but one of the best books ever written? Not sure - especially when I have seen so many iffy reviews of them. Of the other newish books on the list I was pleased to see both The Book Thief and Twilight on there, both deservedly in my opinion.
Oh, and one of these days, I really, really should get around to reading Pride and Prejudice!
You can see the rest of the books that were voted for by us Aussies over at Dymocks website.
Completely unrelated, but I was soooo happy to see on the website that Marian Keyes has a new book coming out in April called This Charming Man - can't wait!!! I have already got my name down on the hold list at the library!