Skip to main content
Media Releases

A decade of New Zealand Bestsellers to celebrate this NZ Bookshop Day

By September 24, 2018September 25th, 2018No Comments

Seven NZ novels, eight children’s & YA books and five non-fiction titles comprise the Top 20 Bestsellers voted as favourites by booksellers from all over New Zealand. Now, the public have their opportunity to vote for their Bestseller of the Decade, in celebration of the fourth annual NZ Bookshop Day on Saturday, 27 October.

The Nielsen Bestsellers list is the pinnacle of cooperation within the book industry. Without the efforts of authors, publishers, booksellers, media and of course our end users the readers, our homegrown titles can easily disappear within a crowded shelf in a bookstore. Chair of Booksellers NZ and Manager of VicBooks and Café Juliet Blyth says, ‘Knowing what is selling week in and week out is incredibly important to the book industry, and we are excited to celebrate 10 years of Nielsen bestsellers this year. Our booksellers have chosen their Top 20 bestselling titles, and they are the experts, so you can be sure these are all quality books.’

Nielsen BookScan began recording book sales in New Zealand in December 2008, showing booksellers, publishers and the public where our national interest lies. The 60 titles which our expert booksellers voted from comprised our 20 top selling NZ Fiction, Non-fiction and Children’s & YA books.

Here is the list the experts picked as their Booksellers’ Top 20 Bestsellers of the Decade:

• All Blacks Don’t Cry, by John Kirwan (Penguin NZ)
• Annabel Langbein: The Free Range Cook, by Annabel Langbein (Annabel Langbein)
• As the Earth Turns Silver, by Alison Wong (Penguin NZ)
• Badjelly the Witch, by Spike Milligan (Puffin)
• Chappy, by Patricia Grace (Penguin NZ)
• Eat, by Chelsea Winter (Penguin NZ)
• Edmonds Cookery Book, by Goodman Fielder (Hachette NZ)
• Grandma Joins the All Blacks, by Helen McKinlay (HarperCollins NZ)
• Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy, by Lynley Dodd (Puffin)
• Herbert: The Brave Sea Dog, by Robyn Belton (Potton & Burton)
• Mister Pip, by Lloyd Jones (Penguin NZ)
• Moo and Moo and the Little Calf Too, by Deborah Hinde & Jane Millton (Allen & Unwin NZ)
• New Zealand Landscapes, by Andris Apse (Potton & Burton)
• The 10pm Question, by Kate De Goldi (Longacre)
• The Conductor, by Sarah Quigley (Vintage)
• The Hut Builder, by Laurence Fearnley (Vintage)
• The Little Yellow Digger, by Betty Gilderdale (Scholastic NZ)
• The Luminaries, by Eleanor Catton (VUP)
• The Wish Child, by Catherine Chidgey (VUP)
• The Wonky Donkey, by Craig Smith & Katz Cowley (Scholastic NZ)

Bookshops all over New Zealand will be celebrating these titles with events and celebrations on NZ Bookshop Day, Saturday 27 October. And there is a chance to win one of two prizes $500 of Book Tokens to fuel your future reading habits! While the Bestseller of the Decade will be decided by whichever title receives the most votes, all voters both online and offline will be entered into a random draw for $500 Book Tokens.

Voting is now open at Join in and celebrate our nation’s literary success stories this NZ Bookshop Day.

NZ Bookshop Day is the national celebration of NZ bookshops, and is run by Booksellers NZ, the membership association of NZ booksellers, representing over 190 bookshops, online and offline, nationwide. Nielsen BookScan provides the world’s only continuous retail monitoring service for English-language books in the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, India, South Africa, Italy, Brazil and Spain.

NZ Bookshop Day Facebook: NZ Bookshop Day Twitter: #nzbookshopday
Media Contact for interviews with bookshops, authors or publishers: Sarah Forster,, 021 1767684

Media Notes:
• Children’s title The Wonky Donkey is now receiving further international bestselling success thanks to The Scottish Granny’s recent viral hit.
• The 20 titles have cumulatively sold over 771,000 titles over the decade, earning $23m in value.
• The Man Booker Prize influenced the bestselling status of both The Luminaries prior to and after winning the 2013 Man Booker Prize and Mister Pip after its shortlisting for the 2007 Man Booker Prize.
• The most recently published of these bestsellers is The Wish Child, by novelist Catherine Chidgey, released in November 2016. The Wish Child won the second annual $50,000 Acorn Foundation Literary Prize, in 2017, and has gone on to find success in the UK.