Sunday, November 6, 2011

What's Selling This Week? Several Hardcover Editions of Books Already in Paperback, That's What.

Hardcover Nonfiction
1. Everyone Leads, by Paul Schmitz
2. Steve Jobs, by Walter Isaacson
3. Vikings in the Attic, by Eric Dregni
4. Blue Nights, by Joan Didion
5. The Making of Milwaukee, by John Gurda
6. Jerusalem: The Biography, by Simon Seabag Montefiore
7. Jack Kennedy, by Chris Matthews
8. Bad as Me, by Tom Waits
9. Eleven Madison Park, by Daniel Humm
10. A History of the World in 100 Objects, by Neil MacGregor

Lots of new things popping this week. Jason was just going on about how much he likes MacGregor's book, which uses 100 objects from the British Museum to tell the story of human history.  And I think it is based on a BBC radio program. Don't ask me; I haven't even really looked at it yet.

And I was quite taken aback to see a book on the list published by Warner Music, distributed through DAP. It just brings home the dispersal of the Time Warner properties. In the day, a book like that would have come from Little, Brown or Warner Books, but of course, now there's there's not even a "Warner" Books.

Hardcover fiction:
1. The Wedding Quilt, by Jennifer Chiaverini
2. 1Q84, by Haruki Murakami
3. The Marriage Plot, by Jeffrey Eugenides
4. The Sense of an Ending, by Julian Barnes
5. The Art of Fielding, by Chad Harbach
6. The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern
7. The Paris Wife, by Paula McLain
8. The Union Quilters, by Jennifer Chiaverini
9. On Canaan's Side, by Sebastian Barry
10. A Quilter's Holiday, by Jennifer Chiaverini

We always say that an award is only as good as the book that is selected. Barnes is a very sellable Man Booker. Not all of them are. The Nobel is having a small sales pop for us, but poetry is never going to sell as well as fiction, and I think there is some confusion on the part of the customer as to what is the definitive Tomas Transtromer collection.

For our event with Craig Thompson, we brought in the hardcover of Blankets, which I guess a lot of folks have never seen, as it was our #12 title this week.  We sold 4 of our 5 I brought in; I'm hoping to get more.

Paperback nonfiction:
1. Homegrown and Handmade, by Deborah Niemann
2. Your True Home: The Everyday Wisdom of Thich Nhat Hanh, by Thich Nhat Hanh
3. Cleopatra, by Stacy Schiff
4. Eat Smart in Norway, by Joan Peterson
5. The Death and Life of the Great American School System, by Diane Ravitch

With so many stores having first edition clubs, we're sort of feeling left out and feeling that the market is crowded. That said, there are opportunities out there. At one point, it seemed like we could have had a Thich Nhat Hanh book of the month club. We don't see quite as many of late, which might have been part of the reason for the sales pop of this new collection.

Paperback fiction:
1. The Tiger's Wife, by Tea Obreht
2. Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, by Jamie Ford
3. A Visit from the Goon Squad, by Jennifer Egan
4. A Quilter's Holiday, by Jennifer Chiaverini
5. Old Filth, by Jane Gardam

We actually held onto the hardcover Quilter's Holiday for the event, and if I'd extended our bestsellers to top ten, it would have made the list. Usually there's not too much backlist sale at Chiaverini's events as most of the attendees have everything, but there are always folks filling in their collections, and since Chiaverini did not do an event for the hardcover of Quilter's Holiday with us, I think some folks missed purchasing it.  Oh, and it's only $5 more than the paperback.

Books for Kids
1. Mercy Lily, by Lisa Albert
2. I am a Bunny, by Ole Risom
3. Lego Star Wars Character Encyclopedia
4. Wildwood, by Colin Meloy
5. You Have to Stop This, by Pseudonymous Bosch

Not all, but many series come to an end, and #5 in the Secret series from Bosch involves a missing mummy and yes, one more Secret to be revealed. Returning to hardcover fiction, Chiaverini noted that there is clamor that this is the last book in the Elm Creek Quilts series, as it ends in the future. The answer is no, but it is the final story in that now everyone will know how life wraps up for at least some characters. But as readers know (especially ones who read the ending early), much of the fun is in the journey.

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