Sunday, July 7, 2013

Sunday Bestseller Round Up for Boswell Book Company, Week Ending July 6, 2013.

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. The Guns at Last Night, by Rick Atkinson
2. Let's Explore Diabeters with Owls, by David Sedaris
3. The Unwinding, by George Packer
4. Dad is Fat, by Jim Gaffigan
5. I Could Pee on This, by Francesco Marciuliano

When Rick Atkinson's new The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945, volume three of his Liberation Trilogy, came out, it had a huge first week nationally, but was relatively quiet here. Now in our eighth week of sales, we have our best week yet. Among its champions is David Shribman in the Boston Globe, who states "this volume is a literary triumph worthy of the military triumph it explores and explains."

Hardcover Fiction:
1. And the Mountains Echoed, by Khaled Hosseini
2. The Ocean at the End of the Lane, by Neil Gaiman
3. The Illusion of Separateness, by Simon Van Booy
4. Sisterland, by Curtis Sittenfeld
5. TransAtlantic, by Colum McCann

Last week's top five in this category was a boys' club, but this week we at least have Curtis Sittenfeld's Sisterland, about two psychic twins. Alana Semuels in the Los Angeles Times writes "by the end of the book readers will wish that Kate and Violet were real people, both because they're relatable women and because it's fun to imagine that psychics exist who can know things with such an impressive degree of accuracy — that they're out there in the American heartland, living in this world, but also in one that's full of mystery and adventure."

Paperback Nonfiction:
1 Daughter of the Queen of Sheba, by Jackie Lyden
2. Bicycle!: A Repair and Maintenance Manfesto, by Sam Tracy
3. The Stolen Dog, by Tricia O'Malley (event on Fri. July 12)
4. Wild, by Cheryl Strayed
5. Sic, by Joshua Cody

I'm happy to say that ex-Milwaukeean Joshua Cody's memoir Sic has done as well in paperback as it did in hardcover. Adam Curry, who interviews Cody in this video, compares reading the book to first hearing the Rolling Stones.

Books for Kids:
1. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs
2. Mockingjay, by Suzanne Collins
3. The School for Good and Evil, by Soman Chainani
4. Dork Diaries V6: Tales from a Not-so-Happy Heartbreaker, by Rachel Renee Russell
5. Little Blue Truck, by Alice Schertle and Jill McElmurray

Here's our rec from Mel for The School for Good and Evil: "In this book, you will find a completely original idea, several layers of meaning, and a few meta moments. Soman Chainani's The School for Good and Evil is a splendid tale of friendship and growth between two girls who are trying to figure out who they are while stuck in the clutch of a school divided in which labels are necessary for survival. Sophie and Agatha demonstrate the value of friendship, regardless of social expectations. This entertaining novel takes the young adult fantasy genre to new places with strong female protagonists, and will give Harry Potter fans something new to look forward to."

Piet Levy reports that Shank Hall hosting the lauch party for Steve Nodine's The Cease is Increase: An Oral History of Milwaukee's Punk and Alternative Music Scene on Saturday, July 13, 9 pm. Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door. And here's a piece from Jim Higgins on the same subject.

Levy also talks to Rick Springfield at Summerfest about his forthcoming novel, Magnificent Vibration (May 2014).

Jim Higgins reports on The Best of Connie Willis, which he contends includes "both one of the most poignant World War II time-travel tales and, I feel completely confident in writing this, the greatest alien-first-contact-at-Christmas story ever."

And finally, Jim Higgins also reports on new short story collections by speed-dating through eight collections, including those of Shawn Vestal, Eliot Treichel, Rebecca Lee, and Ethan Rutherford, who recently appeared at Boswell for The Peripatetic Coffin.

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