Reading is more of a dictatorship than a democracy – the author hands over the country of the imagination to the reader who becomes Supreme Leader and makes of it what she will.

UPDATE: I’ve thought about it more and I think reading is an inter-dependent dictatorship, a collusion of writers and readers. 

But this post is less of a philosophical thing and more of a cool round-up of notable books in South Africa over the last 20 years. The Sunday Times team put together an infographic on award-winning, best-selling and interesting books from every year since our first democratic election in 1994, from Long Walk To Freedom to Killing Kebble, Nadine Gordimer to Deon Meyer to K Sello Duiker, The Restless Supermarket to Heart of Redness.

If you’re looking for a reading primer to get you in to SA literature and non-fiction, this is a pretty damn good place to start.

You can read the full thing over at Bookslive, including write-ups on each of the books.

Zoo City made the grade for 2010 along with Imraan Coovadia’s High Low Inbetween and Damon Galgut’s In A Strange Room, and, oh yeah, a bad boy cricketing memoir, because hey, readers dictate…

Sunday Times Zoo City Read Your Way Through Democracy