Sunday, March 7, 2021

What's selling at Boswell this week? The Boswell Bestseller list for the week ending March 6, 2021 has the answers

Here's what's selling at Boswell for the week ending March 6, 2021

Hardcover Fiction:
1. Klara and the Sun, by Kazuo Ishiguro (Tickets for March 16 event here)
2. The Committed, by Viet Thanh Nguyen
3. Send for Me, by Lauren Fox
4. Vines, by Shelly Nolden
5. The Four Winds, by Kristin Hannah
6. A Desolution Called Peace, by Arkady Martine
7. Hamnet, by Maggie O'Farrell
8. The Midnight Library, by Matt Haig
9. Milk Blood Heat, by Dantiel W Moniz
10. Homeland Elegies, by Ayad Akhtar

At least for this indie, the major new release that we're not having an event for is The Committed, Viet Thanh Nguyen's follow-up to the Pulitzer-Prize-winning The Sympathizer. We're not hosting an event with Nguyen, but you can find one here to attend here. Most are $5 or upgrade to a book-with-ticket option. I think it's a little weird that it's hard to tell which bookstore is hosting without clicking to the ticket link. Thúy Dinh at NPR's website wrote: "The Committed's revolutionary core is its plasticity — a novel of ideas that continuously shapeshifts to question its raison d'être. This fluidity can be seen in Vo Danh's meandering approach to self-knowledge. After a harrowing reckoning, he is committed to a psychiatric ward, where he must write his confession as a form of recovery and self-defense. As in The Sympathizer, Vo Danh - being 'a man of two minds' - refuses to tell a cohesive narrative."

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man, Emmanuel Acho
2. The Sum of Us, by Heather McGhee
3. Dusk Night, Dawn, by Anne Lamott
4. Caste, by Isabel Wilkerson
5. How to Avoid a Climate Disaster, by Bill Gates
6. Untamed, by Glennon Doyle
7. A Promised Land, by Barack Obama
8. Four Hundred Souls, by Ibram X Kendi and Keisha N Blain
9. The Black Church, by Henry Louis Gates
10. Three Ordinary Girls, by Tim Brady (Register for March 24 event here)

No, it wasn't the announcement that Emmanuel Acho was replacing Chris Harrison for the after-the-rose special of The Bachelor that drove Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man, though I'm sure it helped nationally - that was a school order. More about the change in Bryan Pietsch's article in The New York Times right here. Here's a link to his podcast. And here's Acho talking to Tonya Mosely on NPR's Here and Now.

Paperback Fiction:
1. The Girl with the Louding Voice, by Abi Daré (Register for March 25 event here)
2. Behind the Lens, by Jeanée Sacken (Register for March 23 event here)
3. Oona Out of Order, by Margarita Montimore (Register for March 10 event here)
4. Hamlet, by Wiliam Shakespeare (Ignatius Press edition)
5. Valentine, by Elizabeth Wetmore (Watch our interview here)
6. In Five Years, by Rebecca Serle
7. The Samurai's Garden, by Gail Tsukiyama (Watch her conversation with Jane Hamilton here)
8. The Children's Bible, by Lydia Millet
9. The Underground Railroad, by Colson Whitehead (The 60 Minutes interview linked here)
10. The Knockout Queen, by Rufi Thorpe (PEN/Faulkner Prize finalist) (and Watch our interview here)

Nice to see some fresh releases on the list. If you'd like to watch our interviews with Elizabeth Wetmore or Rufi Thorpe for Valentine and The Knockout Queen, I've linked to them above. You can also see Gail Tsukiyama talk to Jane Hamilton for her latest novel, The Color of Air, which is out in paperback on May 4. And if all goes well, our upcoming events with these top three paperback sellers should all be recorded, so we should have conversations with The Girl with the Louding Voice, Behind the Lens, and Oona Out of Order in our archive about two weeks after the event.

No event yet for Lydia Millet for The Children's Bible, but it was just announced as our June pick for my not-in-store-In-Store Lit Group.

Paperback Nonfiction:
1. Somewhere in the Unknown World, by Kao Kalia Yang
2. Braiding Sweetgrass, by Robin Wall Kimmerer
3. Hidden Valley Road, by Robert Kolker
4. We Do This 'til We Free Us, by Mariame Kaba
5. Devotions, by Mary Oliver
6. The Warmth of Other Suns, by Isabel Wilkerson
7. Daring Greatly, by Brené Brown
8. The Body, by Bill Bryson
9. Nomadland, by Jessica Bruder (playing at the Downer Theatre)
10. Healing the Human Body with God's Remedies, by Lester Carter

Speaking of book clubs, the Lynden Sculpture Garden has one too, and they are discussing Somewhere in the Unknown World: A Collective Refugee Memoir on March 18 and April 22.This event is cohosted by the HOME Refugee Steering Committee. More information here. For more about the book, read Christine Brunkhorst's review in the Star Tribune, where she writes, "Reading these stories is like opening doors and finding yourself in the living rooms of neighbors you’ve hardly talked to. Thank you, Kao Kalia Yang, for opening these doors."

Books for Kids:
1. Escape Goat, by Ann Patchett, with illustrations by Robin Preiss Glasser
2. Max and the Midknights, by Lincoln Peirce
3. How High the Moon, by Karyn Parsons
4. The Giver graphic novel, by Lois Lowry
5. Lambslide, by Ann Patchett, with illustrations by Robin Preiss Glasser
6. Nancy Clancy: Late Breaking News V8, by Jane O'Connor/Robin Preiss Glasser
7. Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Black Boy, by Tony Medina
8. The Assignment, by Liza Wiemer
9. Wow in the World, by Mindy Thomas/Guy Raz, with illustrations by Jack Teagle
10. Fancy Nancy (the original), by Jane O'Connor with illustrations by Robin Preiss Glasser  

Another podcast drives sales and this time it's a kids book - Wow in the World isn't a school order - it's demand for the book based on the #1 podcast for kids, with episodes like "Are Your Smarter than a Toilet," "Listen to Your Mummy," and "The Buzz on Bee Barf." That Guy sure can host a podcast!

Over at the Journal Sentinel, Jim Higgins reviews American Betiya, the debut YA novel from Anuradha Rajurkar. He writes: "Anuradha D. Rajurkar's American Betiya is a 21st-century variant of an archetypal tale: the first-generation American navigating between her parents' old-country values and the exciting world around her as she figures out who she is. Stir in hormones and a love both first and forbidden, and that journey of self-definition becomes an urgent one." Expect to see it debut at #1 next week. Register for the March 9 event here.

More about our event with Anuradha Rajurkar and our other upcoming events tomorrow.

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