His Symphony No. 1, op. 30 (1937, premiered by Sir John Barbirolli) won first prize at the New York Philharmonic-Symphony Society's American Composers' Contest, while his second symphony (op. 45, 1943) won first prize in the Paderewski Fund Competition. Another first prize came in the 1986 National Association of Teachers of Singing Art Song Competition, won by his Nocturnal Visions, op. 145. He wrote one opera, Villon, in 1967.
His book Music Notation: A Manual of Modern Practice (1969/1979) attempted to catalogue the rapidly changing landscape of notation for contemporary western art music.
Dodd, Mary Ann, and Jayson Rod Engquist (1996). Gardner Read: A Bio-Bibliography. Greenwood Press. ISBN0-313-29384-8. (Contains a complete list of his compositions.)