Sunday, September 18, 2011

What's Selling This Week and Why? September 11-17, 2011

Here's what sold this week at Boswell. I've linked to titles where either we have signed stock, or will have signed copies after their event. And don't forget, we sell Google Editions ebooks on our website.

Hardcover fiction:
1. Good Graces, by Lesley Kagen (signed copies available)
2. The Art of Fielding, by Chad Harbach
3. On Canaan's Side, by Sebastian Barry (see below)
4. The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern
5. The Paris Wife, by Paula McLain
6. A Man of Parts, by David Lodge
7. The Troubled Man, by Henning Mankell
8. Second Nature, by Jacquelyn Mitchard
9. A Trick of the Light, by Louise Penny
10. The Cut, by George Pelecanos

It's nice to see a pop for David Lodge's new novel about H.G. Wells. I find myself still recommending Mr. Lodge when a customer starts pontificating on British comic authors. I have trouble focusing on a particular title, as I read them all so long ago.  I've got to work on that.

We're not hosting Erin Morgenstern, but should have signed copies after she passes through town.

Hardcover nonfiction:
1. Jacqueline Kennedy, by Caroline Kennedy et al
2. In my Time, by Dick Cheney
3. America's Quarterback, by Keith Dunnavant
4. That Used to be Us, by Thomas Friedman and Michael Mandelbaum
5. The Eighty-Dollar Champion, by Elizabeth Letts

We had a few other bulk orders that I included in some lists, but it was one customer, one order, so it doesn't seem so interesting.  In the case of our top three, there we had other sales to count towards the ranking so the quantity sale improved their ranking but was not the sole cause of it.

Oh, and we have no stock left of the $60 Kennedy book.  Jason looked at me and said, "Huh" and I said "Really?" and we were both wrong, at least for the initial pop.  We've got some stock on reorder, so email us and we'll hold one for you. Go figure!

Paperback fiction:
1. The Help, by Kathryn Stockett
2. Whistling in the Dark, by Lesley Kagen
3. The Reservoir, by John Milliken Thompson
4. The Secret Scripture, by Sebastian Barry
5. The Finkler Question, by Howard Jacobson

Kagen's event gave her not just our #1 hardcover fiction title, but the prequel had a nice bump in sales as well at the event.  And you'd think that we already hosted Sebastian Barry, what with two titles on our bestseller list, but his event is actually Saturday, October 1, at 3 pm.

Reservation has at least one book club reading it, maybe two.  I've got to take a better look at that one.

Paperback nonfiction:
2. Cleopatra, by Stacy Schiff (event is 10/4 at Centennial Hall)
3. Paris Without End, by Gioia Diliberto (event is 9/24 at Boswell)
4. The Hare with Amber Eyes, by Edmund de Waal
5. A Spirited History of Milwaukee Brews and Booze, by Martin Hintz (event 9/30)

You might think this was a list of upcoming events, but I guess when you display a lot of event books, it drives sales. Shocking. Alas, you missed Wade Rouse, which was last Thursday.

Children's books:
1. The Unwanteds, by Lisa McMann (event at West Allis Library, 9/22, 4 pm)
2. Wonderstruck, by Brian Selznick
3. Otis and the Tornado, by Loren Long
4. Wildwood, by Colin Meloy
5. Children Make Terrible Pets, by Peter Brown

Jason and Amie got to go to a pre-pub dinner with Colin Meloy after having read advance copies of the book.  Glad to see these things can help.  And Colin's sister Maile is sort of responsible for another book, The All of It, often being on our bestseller list of late (it's #13 this week).  She recommended the novel to Ann Patchett, whose recommendation has given the book months of sales momentum, at least at Boswell.

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