Sunday, May 6, 2012

What's Selling at Boswell for the Week Ending May 5, 2012?

Hardcover Fiction:
1. Sacré Bleu, by Christopher Moore
2. The Art of Fielding, by Chad Harbach
3. Newlyweds, by Nell Freudenberger
4. Robert B. Parker's Lullaby, by Ace Atkins
5. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs

Harbach's hardcover pop was from our Literary lunch. Paul Saltzman in the Chicago Sun-Times notes that Atkins does a better job channeling Robert Parker in Lullaby than Michael Brandman did in the Jesse Stone novel, The Killing Blues (oops, we corrected this from Sixkill), released last year.

Ransom Riggs' weaves from adult (where it's officially at Boswell) to kids' (where it's reported by many bestseller lists). I haven't seen someone under 21 buy the book in six months so that's today's ruling. And Freudenberger's front-page NYTBR review helped pop her novel; this week's cover is Robert Caro's The Passage of Power.

One book that hit the lower reaches of our bestseller list this week is connected to our top fiction seller. Moore recommended The Private Lives of the Impressionists as great source material for Sacré Bleu, and very entertaining in its own right, and we've been selling it well ever since.

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. Kentucky Derby Dreams, by Susan Nusser
2. We Can All Do Better, by Bill Bradley
3. The Passage of Power, by Robert Caro
4. Are You My Mother?, by Alison Bechdel
5. Bill Veeck: Baseball's Greatest Maverick, by Paul Dickson

Events with Nusser and Dickson gave them sales pops, as did Bechdel's upcoming event tomorrow (Monday, May 7, 7 pm). This week I heard from our old bookselling pal Liz, now a librarian in New Mexico, who ordered a signed copy of Are You My Mother ? from us. Note that you could also do this.

And Bradley's We Can All Do Better? He seems to be encouraging folks to order books from indie bookstores. Jason chatted with him on the phone for a bit about his new book, which criticizes the growing partisan nature of government.

Paperback Fiction:
1. The Art of Fielding, by Chad Harbach
2. Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
3. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James
4. Fifty Shades Darker, by E. L. James
5. Caleb's Crossing, by Geraldine Brooks

Most indie bookstores (and really, all bookstores) need bulk sales as part of our business. I don't generally report them, but they sometimes sneak into our numbers. This week includes a school order for Lord of the Flies, in between Harbach and the James sisters. It's nice to see a pop for Caleb's Crossing, which also this week hit the New York Times paperback bestseller list. It will also be one of the books I'll be talking about on Tuesday, May 8, 7 pm, at the Lynden Sculpture Garden.

Paperback Nonfiction:
1. In the Garden of Beasts, by Erik Larson
2. Steal Like an Artist, by Austin Kleon
3. Midwest Sweet Baking, by Jenny Lewis
4. Cabin Fever, by Tom Montgomery-Fate
5. Uprising, by John Nichols

Jason noted that Larson's NPR interview this week didn't literally stop cars in their tracks, but a whole lot of people sure called Boswell to hold a copy of the paperback edition of In the Garden of Beasts. Three other books get sales pops in advance of their Boswell events. On Wednesday, May 9, Kleon speaks at The Plankinton Aracade's Open MiKE for Steal Like an Artist at 7:30 am for a brief presenation and meetup, and then at Boswell at 7 pm, co-sponsored by Cedar Block. More on that tomorrow.

On Wednesday, May 16, 7 pm, Tom Montgomery-Fate discusses Cabin Fever, his modern contemplation of Thoreau at the Urban Ecology Center, 1500 E Park Place. Admission is $5 or free for UEC members. Proceeds of course go to the UEC. And on Monday, May 21, 7 pm, John Nichols is at Boswell for Uprising, with an introduction by Roger Bybee, one of the contributors to It Started in Wisconsin, for which Mr. Nichols contributed an introduction.

Hardcover Kids' Books:
1. N.E.R.D.S. Volume 3: The Cheerleaders of Doom, by Michael Buckley
2. The Sisters Grimm Volume 9: The Council of Mirrors, by Michael Buckley
3. The Sisters Grimm: A Very Grimm Guide, by Michael Buckley
4. Catching Fire, by Suzanne Collins
5. The Kane Chronicles Volume 3: The Serpent's Shadow, by Rick Riordan

Paperback Kids' Books:
1. N.E.R.D.S. Volume 1: National Espionage, Rescue, and Defense Society, by Michael Buckley
2. N.E.R.D.S. Volume 2: M is for Mama's Boy, by Michael Buckley
3. The Sisters Grimm Volume 2: The Unusual Suspects, by Michael Buckley
4. The Sisters Grimm Volume 1: Fairy Tale Detectives, by Michael Buckely
5. The Sisters Grimm Volume 4: Once Upon a Crime, by Michael Buckley

Hope you enjoyed our Michael Buckley event at the Shorewood Public Library this past Monday.If you didn't go, I think we have signed copies of almost every book. Pictured is a first look at the cover for NERDS Volume 4: The Villain Virus.  Stay tuned for more kids' events this fall, and who knows? Maybe one will sneak in this summer.

So what's likely to be on next week's bestseller list? In today's Journal Sentinel, Mike Fischer reviews Toni Morrison's Home, which goes on sale this Tuesday, May 8. And Chris Foran covers Geoffrey Ward's A Disposition to be Rich: How a Small-town Pastor's Son Ruined an AmericanPresident, Brought On a Wall Street Crash, and Made Himself the Best-Hated Man in the United States. Notes Foran in the Journal Sentinel:

"Family memoirs are nothing new, but Ward's A Disposition to Be Rich--Ferdinand is his great-grandfather--has the advantage of being written by an award-winning historian. Best known for his longtime partnership with documentary filmmakers Ken and Ric Burns, Ward has a solid perspective on American history, particularly the nation's growing pains of the second half of the 19th century."

And it's not on the Journal Sentinel site, but in the print edition is a comprehensive review of The Passage of Power by Colette Bancroft in the Tampa Bay (formerly St. Petersburg) Times, but we can link to it on the Tampa Bay website. Plus there's Jim Higgins's interview with Alison Bechdel. I'm not linking to that one because I'm trying to encourage the old-fashioned joys of reading a print newspaper.