Top 10 books in 2019

 

This year’s book popularity list is a great example of the rich Australian literary titles that have dominated our Top 50 books for 2019. Of the 50 most-demanded titles, 29 are written by Australian authors.

Magda Szubanski’s memoir Reckoning [B2266] has maintained the #1 spot as most demanded book, while Georgia Blain’s final novel, Between a Wolf and a Dog [B2242] released in Dialogue 2017, has dropped four spots and is sitting in a comfortable seventh place.

Out of the 90 titles our CAE Book Group teams read and reviewed, we’ve curated 20 new titles for Dialogue 2019, 10 of them Australian literary titles. Of our 2019 additions, popular fiction titles are most in demand this year with Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine [B2283], Together [B2282] and The Dry [B2274], taking second, third and fourth place.

There were a few surprise movers on our list, with J.L. Car’s A Month in the Country [B0783] climbing a massive 385 spots, from #428 to #43. Isabel Allende’s Of Love and Shadows [B1349] climbed 140 spots, from #157 in 2018 to #17, and Madeleine [B2194] by Helen Trinca rose by 55 spots, from #66 in 2018 to #11, no doubt in light of the recent movie adaptation Ladies in Black starring Julia Ormond and Racheal Taylor.

 

  1. Reckoning: A Memoir by Magda Szubanski [B2266]
  2. Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman [B2283]
  3. Together by Julie Cohen [B2282]
  4. The Dry by Jane Harper [B2274]
  5. The Trauma Cleaner by Sarah Krasnostein [B2281]
  6. On the Java Ridge by Jock Serong [B2279]
  7. Between a Wolf and a Dog by Georgia Blain [B2242]
  8. The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris [B2275]
  9. Hello, Goodbye by Emily Brewin [B2271]
  10. Rain Birds by Harriet McKnight [B2290]

CAE Book Groups: Reading Reflections from 2018

For the avid reader, the New Year is never complete without reading goals. This year, we asked the CAE Book Groups team to reflect on their reading experience and share with us their 2019 reading resolutions, favourite books from 2018, and the books they are looking forward to in 2019.

 

Jessica

 

What’s your 2019 Reading Resolution?

2018 was an absolutely crazy year for me, with most of my reading for work, study or my book group. While it did mean I got to read a whole range of books, it did mean my ever-growing list of personal reading titles remained untouched. This year, I have made it a resolution to read a book per week with at least 15 novels for personal interest. I’m also a big believer in reading widely, and I’ve made it a resolution to include at least five titles from different genres and at least one translated novel.

 

Favourite book in 2018?

The standout books for me in 2018 is a tie between The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin and Normal People by Sally Rooney. Both books were unique literary reads that dealt with universal themes from a unique perspective. While Benjamin’s The Immortalists explores fate, choice and destiny in the lives of four siblings, Rooney’s Normal People was an addictive read that explored the complexities of romantic relationships and identity. I was captivated by the depth of characterisation, how the authors explored the relationships of the protagonists and consequently, their fates.

 

What are you looking forward to reading in 2019?

I am really looking forward to returning to Gilead in The Testament, Margaret Atwood’s long-awaited follow up to The Handmaid’s Tale [B1189], which I read in my early twenties. I’m really interested to see how she writes the testimonies after the release of The Handmaid’s Tale as a TV series. So many themes in The Handmaid’s Tale are just as relevant today as it was 34 years ago, and it would be interesting to see if her new stories reflect how society has shifted in the era of #MeToo.

 

 

Rhonda

 

What’s your 2019 Reading Resolution?

After reaching my 2018 goal (just in the nick of time), I plan to add a few extra just to stretch my sense of accomplishment. I’ve already set 20 books as my goal with Goodreads to monitor my progress. I’m also looking to expand my reading to include a diverse range of literary titles, read more books that have been recommended to me by friends and work colleagues and get to those books that have been leftover from my 2018 reading goals.

Favourite book in 2018?

How to stop time by Matt Haig – excellent concept for a book with the protagonist having a rare condition. I loved how he lived through centuries having Shakespeare, Napoleon and wars. It was an engaging read and I enjoyed this enormously!

 

What are you looking forward to reading in 2019?

I’m looking forward to reading The Girl from Munich by Tania Blanchard. I love books set in wartime and this promises to be a tale of an ordinary German girl and her experiences during this most defining era in history.

 

Ashley

 

What’s your 2019 Reading Resolution?

In 2018, I haven’t read as many books as I’d hoped. So for 2019, my reading goal is to get into a strict reading habit by reading at least one chapter every night before bed.

 

Favourite book in 2018?

My favourite read for 2018 was B Model by Miranda Darling. I found it eye opening how different the standards of beauty are for B-grade models compared to A-grade models. It was an in-depth look at how society defines beauty and the length models go through to starve themselves in order to attain the standards of perfection demanded by the fashion industry.

 

What are you looking forward to reading in 2019?

I am looking forward to reading The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris [B2275]. I find WW2 history interesting and I am looking forward to the unique exploration of Lale’s outlook and the love story that began within the walls of the Auschwitz prison. I strongly believe that history cannot be forgotten and it’s important we keep reading books that challenge us to never forget the atrocities of the past.

 

Larriana

 

What’s your 2019 Reading Resolution?

Last year I read a total of 81 books, so this year I’ve committed myself to reading 100 books!

 

Favourite book in 2018?

My favourite book of 2018 was Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine [B2283]. The book took such a surprise turn mid-way through, and it moved me to tears. I think it addressed some really important themes around loneliness and mental health. But at the same time, the novel was funny and uplifting at times. It’s hard to believe it was the author’s debut novel.

 

What are you looking forward to reading in 2019?

I really loved On The Java Ridge by Jock Serong [B2279], and for me it was one of those books I could not put down. I read the entire novel in one sitting. This year, I’m really looking forward to picking up Serong’s latest novel, Preservation, and I’m hoping it delivers the political tension and shocking twists that made On The Java Ridge memorable for me.