Australia’s Favourite Author 2016 – 50-41

by |January 25, 2016

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After three weeks of nominations and voting, with over 80,000 votes cast, today we begin our countdown towards Australia’s Favourite Author for 2016!

Today we look at authors 50-41. Be sure to visit The Booktopia Blog at midday every day this week before the Top 10, as voted by you, is announced on Friday!

And whew, what an incredible bunch of authors we have kicking off the countdown. Congratulations to all!


50. Paul Jennings

The Paul Jennings phenomenon began with the publication of Unreal! in 1985. Since then, readers all around the world have devoured his books.

Paul Jennings has written over one hundred stories and has been voted ‘favourite author’ over forty times by children in Australia, winning every children’s choice award.

Our Pick

The top-rating TV series Round the Twist and Driven Crazy are based on a selection of his enormously popular short-story collections such as Unseen! which was awarded the 1999 Queensland Premier’s Literary Award for Best Children’s Book.

In 1995 he was made a Member of the Order of Australia for services to children’s literature and was awarded the prestigious Dromkeen Medal in 2001. Paul has sold more than 8 million books worldwide.

Click here to go to Paul Jenning’s author page


49. Ruth Park

Another in a long line of writers born elsewhere yet able to capture Australian life so beautifully, Ruth Park’s writing has had a lasting effect on both adults and children for over 60 years.

Born in Auckland to a Scottish father and a Swedish mother, Park moved to Australia in 1942 where she had lined up a job with another newspaper.

Our Pick

Her first novel was The Harp in the South, a graphic story of Irish slum life in Sydney, which has been translated into 37 languages. Even though it was acclaimed by literary critics, the book proved controversial with sections of the public due to its candour. It remains her most popular novel and has never been out of print.

Between 1946 and 2004, she received numerous awards for her contributions to literature in both Australia and internationally including the Miles Franklin Award for Swords and Crowns and Rings in 1977. She was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1987.

Click here to go to Ruth Park’s author page


48. Fiona Palmer

Fiona Palmer lives in the tiny rural town of Pingaring in Western Australia, three and a half hours south-east of Perth.

She discovered Danielle Steel at the age of eleven, and has now written her own brand of rural romance.

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Our Pick

She has attended romance writers’ groups and received an Australian Society of Authors mentorship for her first novel, The Family Farm.

She has followed on from its success with many more novels all bestsellers.

Click here to go to Fiona Palmer’s author page


large_Anh_Do_Cropper_201247. Anh Do

Anh Do (born 2 June 1977) is a Vietnamese-born Australian author, actor and comedian. He has appeared on many Australian TV shows such as Thank God You’re Here and Good News Week, and was runner-up on Dancing With The Stars in 2007. He studied a combined Business Law degree at the University of Technology, Sydney.

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Our Pick

He is the brother of film director Khoa Do and has acted in several of Khoa’s films, including Footy Legends, which he co-wrote and produced. In 2012, his TV show Anh Does Vietnam began airing.

Click here to go to Anh Do’s author page


46. Anna Campbell

Anna Campbell has written six multi award-winning historical romances and her work is published in eleven languages.

She has won numerous awards for her Regency-set romances including Romantic Times Reviewers Choice, the Booksellers Best, the Golden Quill (three times), the Heart of Excellence (twice), the Aspen Gold (twice) and the Australian Romance Readers Association’s favorite historical romance (four times).

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Our Pick

Her books have twice been nominated for Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA Award and three times for Australia’s Romantic Book of the Year. She launched her first series, “Sons of Sin”, with Seven Nights in a Rogue’s Bed in October 2012.

Click here to go to Anna Campbell’s author page


45. Colleen McCullough

Colleen McCullough was born in western New South Wales in 1937. A neuroscientist by training, she worked in various Sydney and English hospitals before settling into ten years of research and teaching in the Department of Neurology at the Yale Medical School in the USA.

Our Pick

Our Pick

In 1974 her first novel Tim was published in New York, followed by the bestselling The Thorn Birds in 1977 and a string of successful novels, including the acclaimed Masters of Rome series.

Click here to go to Colleen McCullough’s author page


A110158_246x55044. Banjo Paterson

Andrew Barton “Banjo” Paterson was an Australian bush poet, journalist and author.

He wrote many ballads and poems about Australian life, focusing particularly on the rural and outback areas, including the district around Binalong, New South Wales, where he spent much of his childhood.

Paterson’s more notable poems include Waltzing Matilda, The Man from Snowy River and Clancy of the Overflow.

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Our Pick

On the night of Paterson’s death, Vance Palmer broadcasted a tribute: ‘He laid hold both of our affections and imaginations; he made himself a vital part of the country we all know and love, and it would not only have been a poorer country but one far less united in bonds of intimate feeling, if he had never lived and written’.

Click here to go to Banjo Paterson’s author page


43. Anita Heiss

Anita is a writer, poet, activist, social commentator and academic. She is the author of Yirra and her deadly dog, Demon, I’m not racist, but…, My Story: the diary of Mary Talence, and a series of bestselling chick lit novels including Not Meeting Mr Right, Manhattan Dreaming and Paris Dreaming.

Our Pick

Her work has been shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards Young People’s History Prize and she has won the DEADLY award for writing a number of times.

She is a member of the Wiradjuri nation of central New South Wales, but grew up in Matraville, Sydney.

Click here to go to Anita Heiss’ author page


42. Helene Young

Helene won the Romance Writers of Australia (RWA) Romantic Book of the Year Award in 2011 and 2012 and was shortlisted in 2013.

She was also voted most popular romantic suspense author by the Australian Romance Readers Association (ARRA) in 2010 and 2011, and was shortlisted for the same award in 2012. Burning Lies was shortlisted for the 2013 Daphne du Maurier Award Mystery/Suspense in America.

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Our Pick

When she’s not writing or flying with Australia’s largest regional airline you can find Helene sailing the high seas with her partner, Capt G, and Zeus the salty sea dog, aboard their catamaran Roo Bin Esque.

Click here to go to Helene Young’s author page


41. Melina Marchetta

Melina Marchetta’s first novel, Looking for Alibrandi, swept the pool of literary awards for young adult fiction in 1993, winning the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Book of the Year Award (Older Readers) among many others. In 2000 it was released as a major Australian film, winning an AFI award and an Independent Film Award for best screenplay as well as the NSW Premier’s Literary Award and the Film Critics Circle of Australia Award.

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Our Pick

Melina taught secondary school English and History for ten years, during which time she released her second novel, Saving Francesca, in 2003, followed by On the Jellicoe Road in 2006, and Finnikin of the Rock in 2008. Saving Francesca won the CBC Book of the Year Award for Older Readers. On the Jellicoe Road was also published in the US as Jellicoe Road, and it won the prestigious American Library Association’s Michael L Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature in 2009. In 2008, Melina’s first work of fantasy, Finnikin of the Rock, won the Aurealis Award for Best Young Adult Novel and was shortlisted for the 2009 CBCA Award for Older Readers.

Click here to go to Melina Marchetta’s author page


Love Australian authors? Buy anything from our Australian Stories collection and you could win a prize pack of Australian titles valued at $370!

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About the Contributor

Andrew Cattanach is a regular contributor to The Booktopia Blog. He has been shortlisted for The Age Short Story Prize and was named a finalist for the 2015 Young Bookseller of the Year Award. He enjoys reading, writing and sleeping, though finds it difficult to do them all at once.

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