Dirt Music by Tim Winton (2001)
Australian literature doesn't get much better than this. You can almost taste the dust in the air reading this. A story of loss and redemption set in the vast landscape of Western Australia. Highly recommended.
The Harp in the South by Ruth Park (1948)
A heart-wrenching story of a poor Irish family living in the slums of inner Sydney during the depression.
Oscar and Lucinda by Peter Carey (1988)
An unusual love story between two expatriates who meet on their way to Australia. Set in Sydney and New South Wales in the mid 19th century. Peter Carey is a celebrated and prolific Australian writer. Oscar and Lucinda has won numerous literary awards and was adapted into a film which starred Ralp Fiennes and Cate Blanchett.
Bliss by Peter Carey (1981)
Again, another exceptional and award winning novel by Peter Carey. Harry Joy, an advertising executive after a near death experience realises the life he's been living is actually hell, and sets out to change it. A confronting and darkly funny portrayal of an Australian family.
The Fatal Shore by Robert Hughes (1987)