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What is Australia's most borrowed book?

7/08/2020 2:08 PM
What is Australia's most borrowed book?

Civica and the Australian Library Information Association are launching the 2020 Civica Libraries index today in celebration of Library and Information Week. The index is an insightful list of Australia and New Zealand’s most borrowed library books, e-books and audiobooks.

The 2020 data is showing that readers are gravitating more and more toward local, home-grown authors, with 12 out of the top 20 borrowed books across Australian and New Zealand penned by Australian authors.

Popular Australian author Liane Moriarty has taken the top spot, with her latest novel, Nine Perfect Strangers being the most borrowed book. Last year it sat at 20th.

Also in the top 10 are Jane Harper’s crime novel, The Lost Man, which came in at number four, Trent Dalton’s critically acclaimed novel Boy Swallows Universe, coming in at number eight, and Markus Zusak’s Bridge of Clay, at number nine.

Demand for e-books and audiobooks has also significant increased, with libraries closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘Since libraries were forced to close due to the pandemic, reading and borrowing patterns have changed and we’ve seen a huge spike in the number of e-resources including audio and e-books borrowed by citizens across all age groups,’ said Sue McKerracher, CEO of the Australian Library and Information Association.

‘From aspirational and self-help guides to crime, thrillers, and historical fiction, books are a true form of escapism in this unprecedented time.’

Australian author Scott Pape’s The Barefoot Investor: The Only Money Guide You’ll Ever Need came in second, beaten only by Michelle Obama’s popular memoir, Becoming. Third place went to Mark Manson’s bestselling self-help book, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k.

‘In terms of uptake since closure, we’ve had 50 per cent increase of e-loans in the first four weeks of closure compared to the monthly average for the rest of this financial year,’ said Linda Seymour, Manager Library Services from Cockburn Libraries in Western Australia.

Iain Finlayson, the Managing Director of Libraries and Education Solutions at Civica has confirmed he believes that libraries will continue to flourish beyond COVID-19.

‘Libraries have always been and will be an integral part of communities in a post-pandemic world. Not only as a form of escapism, but also as a means to keep connected with others during long periods of self-isolation,’ he said.