Top Ten Tuesday 13. Books Set In Australia

Top Ten Tuesday 13. Books Set in Australia

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish (click on the picture to visit their blog). A new Top Ten list is posted every week for fellow bloggers to participate in.

I have been on a bit of an ‘Australian Author’ kick lately, partly because of the AWW 2013 challenge, and partly because Australian authors are amazing and I continue to find great novels.  So what better list to compile than my Top Ten Books with an Australian setting?  In no particular order…


1. Good Oil by Laura Buzo – if you’ve read it you will know that it isn’t really all that ‘Australian’ in the stereotypical way.  But that’s sort of why I chose it.  It’s about a girl who lives in the ‘burbs’ and works at a supermarket.  There are no kangaroos, no ‘bush tucker’, no beaches or blonde bikini babes, nothing that makes it stereotypically ‘Strayan’.   But that’s how I see my world.  I don’t walk down the street thinking ‘Wow, it looks so Australian’ so that’s what I liked about it.

2. Raw Blue by Kirsty Eager – Unlike Good Oil, Raw Blue shows the ‘beach culture’ that Australia is known for.  But despite the fact that I actually am not a huge fan of the beach and have no surfing abilities, this book made me want to learn.  I thought the way the setting was imposed into the story was really well done.  I felt like I could almost smell the saltwater when I was reading it.

3. The Tomorrow Series by John Marsden – This is just one of those books that every Aussie kid should read, even if you come from the city and have never spent 1 night of your life camping.  John Marsden uses the Australian outback as a way of giving power and advantage back to a group of kids who are thrown into a situation which they have no control over.

4. All of Melina Marchetta’s contemporary novels.  – No explanation needed.

5. Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley – Where Good Oil showcases the suburbs, The Tomorrow Series the country and Raw Blue the beach, Graffiti Moon takes you into the heart of Melbourne.  Not only that, but it highlights the fantastic graffiti art culture that we have and the little alleys and secret places that are hidden all over Melbourne.

6. Jessica by Bryce Courtney – Generally I am not a Bryce Courtney fan, but Jessica is fantastic.  It shows the Australian outback, but the way it was years ago when living on the land wasn’t a choice, it was a necessity.

7. Stolen by Lucy Christopher – One of the very few books I’ve read that has the red centre as it’s setting.  I like how Lucy was able to make it seem so dangerous, but quite pretty at the same time.  I think that’s an accurate depiction.

8. Life In Outer Space by Melissa Kiel – Set in Melbourne (best city in the world).  I liked that.  Plus it’s a great book and I hope it makes people want to come visit.

9. Girl Defective by Simmone Howell – This is one of those books that every loved but I sort of just liked it.  Nevertheless, it’s set in St. Kilda and I think the setting is perfect for the story and just generally well done.

10. Six Impossible Things by Fiona Wood – Much like Life in Outer Space, a Melbourne based book with quirky characters and a fun storyline. The setting was a major player in the telling of the story, but it’s just nice to read a book that’s set in your hometown.

– Annette


8 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday 13. Books Set In Australia

  1. Everything on this list that I haven’t read is on my ‘to read’! I actually just started Life in Outer Space. I don’t think I’ll read Jessica, though, I remember watching the TV adaptation years ago and found it soooo depressing.

    • thesideofwonder says:

      We must have very similar taste in books. How are you liking Life in Outer Space? I loved that book, haven’t had a chance to re-read it yet though.

      Jessica is suuuper depressing, the book even more so…and infuriating. They did a pretty good job of the adaptation though, so you’re not missing out by just sticking to that!

    • thesideofwonder says:

      It absolutely must! If I could make a suggestion, start with a classic in Looking for Alibrandi and slowly work your way through her novels. Life in Outer Space is a really great debut novel too.

  2. I love books set in Australia! I borrowed Raw Blue from the library the other day (I saw it was set in Manly beach and I love that place!) and John Marsden and Bryce Courtenay are always favourites. Great list!

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