7 YA and Adult books by Indigenous authors you need to read

On my quest to read more novels set in Australia in 2021, I’ve compiled this handy list of great books written by Indigenous authors with Indigenous main characters. I’m planning on making my way further through this list throughout 2021 and hope that you will join me and pick up a few titles from this list for yourself!

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Please Don’t Hug Me by Kay Kerr | Review

The first book by debut author Kay Kerr is a heart-filled, #OwnVoices story following Erin, an autistic female teenage navigating her final months of high school. This book is both parts laugh out loud funny and heart wrenching and will leave a mark on your heart long after you slip this beautiful book onto your shelf.

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map of books I read in 2020

I live in Australia, and very few of the worlds I dived into in 2019 were my own. I also personally dislike how America centric the internet and media is. This is why I decided to map out the locations of the books I read in 2020. There are plenty of stories set in other countries that don’t expect me to understand what different areas of a state look like without telling me. Or even where a state is located. As a way to visualise my reading I added the covers of books as I read them in 2020 to this map:

Map of Books I Read In 2020

I have listed them all below in the order I read them by country. If you’re curious for my thoughts on any of these, feel free to ask below!

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favourite reads of this crazy year

Despite how topsy-turvy this year has been, I managed to read the most books I’ve ever read in a year. The start of lockdown for me was composed of five week waits on books sent in the mail but by the end I was burnt out. But we’ve made it. The end of this crazy year is upon us. We can’t know that 2021 will be better but forgive me for being hopeful for the first time all year that some normalcy may resume.

Here are the books that left a resounding impact on me this year.

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It Sounded Better in My Head by Nina Kenwood | Review

The Text Prize winner of 2018, Nina Kenwood’s young adult romance deals with the teenage self in every way of the term. From our protagonist Natalie’s self image and how her acne has impacted her life, to self exploration as she finds first love in unlikely places and people. The realistic depictions of teenagers and their views will stay with you long after you put this down.

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Book Spine Poetry – my latest fascination

I was sat watching the mornings vlogbrothers video (a youtube channel run by John and Hank Green who, if you know anything about books, you are likely familiar with) when a new idea was introduced to me. At the start of the video, John created two ‘book title portraits’. I implore you to see how great they are for yourself once you read this post. This idea I found is known by many names, namely: book title portraits, book title poetry and book spine poetry. I rather like the last one.

Screen Shot 2020-04-16 at 2.49.03 pm

Later that day I went to my room, sized up my bookshelves and decided to try my hand at some ‘book title portraits’ of my friends. These turned more into poetry, finding myself unable to build such complete sentences as many examples online do. Here is one:

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Why I avoided audiobooks

When the internet was feverishly debating the pros and cons of physical books versus ebooks, I leaned strongly to the side of physical books. The experience of holding the weight of a book in your hands to me was unparalleled. Feeling the corse paper as you turn the pages and viewing your progress in a tangible product. This intrinsic journey couldn’t possibly be replicated digitally. The little progress bar along the bottom of the screen would not do!

My feelings towards ebooks has changed fairly recently, something me two years ago would never have been able to believe, leaving me to tackle the final book form I’ve long avoided: audiobooks.

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