Sunday, November 7, 2021

Boswell bestsellers for the week ending November 6, 2021

Here's what's selling at Boswell this week.

Hardcover Fiction:
1. Our Country Friends, by Gary Shteyngart (register for November 17 virtual event here)
2. The Lincoln Highway, by Amor Towles
3. Cloud Cuckoo Land, by Anthony Doerr
4. Oh, William!, by Elizabeth Strout 
5. State of Terror, by Hilary Clinton and Louise Penny
6. The Stranger in the Lifeboat, by Mitch Albom
7. The Judge's List, by John Grisham
8. Bewilderment, by Richard Powers
9. Crossroads, by Jonathan Franzen
10. Beautiful World, Where Are You?, by Sally Rooney

While I can't say that Our Country Friends is Chris's top book of the year, I know it's in the running. So excited that he will be talking to Shteyngart for this event. Reviewers are equally enthusiastic (about the books, about Chris's conversation, I don't know). Here's Laura Miller in Slate: "When members of the creative class (the ones who could afford it, at least) fled from their customary urban habitats to the safety of rural retreats last year, the literary reference that seemed to come to nearly everyone’s mind was Boccaccio’s The Decameron, a collection of tales traded by characters waiting out the Black Death in a Tuscan villa. But the novelist Gary Shteyngart, born in St. Petersburg, Russia, found a much richer vein to mine: the plays of Anton Chekhov, particularly Uncle Vanya, the apparent inspiration for his fifth novel, Our Country Friends."

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. The Storyteller, by Dave Grohl (We're out of signed copies)
2. Gastro Obscura, by Cecily Wong and Dylan Thuras (Register for November 15 event here)
3. The Book of Hope, by Jane Goodall and Douglas Abrams
4. Renegades, by Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen
5. Giannis, by Mirin Fader
6. Taste, by Stanley Tucci
7. Lyrics 1956 to Present, by Paul McCartney
8. A Carnival of Snackery, by David Sedaris (Tickets to December 10 Riverside Theater event here)
9. Cravings All Together, by Chrissy Teigen
10. A Fullness of Uncertain Significance by Bruce H Campbell

When the industry worries about running out of stock, a likely candidate is Renegades: Born in the USA, based on the eight episode podcast from Higher Ground productions by Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen. Here's an interesting story on Higher Ground buying the podcast rights to The Sum of Us, which is a new thing. And here's one from Deadline about podcasts selling adaptation rights.

Another music superstar with a hard to reprint book is The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present, by Paul McCartney. No, there aren't any copies at the Ingram wholesaler. From Kenneth Womack in Salon: "Edited by celebrated Irish poet Paul Muldoon, the anthology is a feast for the eyes. Dyed-in-the-wool Beatles fans will be bowled over by the sheer profundity of unpublished photographs, previously unseen lyrics sheets, journal entries, paintings, and the like. Indeed, The Lyrics easily represents the finest collection of illustrations associated with McCartney's life and work. And it's beautifully rendered, to boot. Drop-dead gorgeous as books go, The Lyrics rivals the finest art imprints, including the handsome limited editions from the likes of Taschen and Genesis."

Paperback Fiction:
1. We Ride Upon Sticks, by Quan Barry
2. Dune, by Frank Herbert
3. The Overstory, by Richard Powers
4. Circe, by Madeline Miller
5. Detransition, Baby, by Torrie Peters (Boswell-run book club selections here)
6. Foundryside, by Robert Jackson Bennett
7. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, by Taylor Jenkins Reid
8. It Ends with Us, by Colleen Hoover
9. The Glass Hotel, by Emily St John Mandel
10. To Have and To Hoax, by Martha Waters

If you're curious about how We Ride Upon Sticks is our #1 paperback, a group of high schoolers are reading it for a book club. This was onen of my top picks for 2020 and it also have one of my top paperback treatments - same image on a different background color. They are also doing that for The Five Wounds from Kirstin Valdez Quade. I should also note that Barry will be doing a virtual event with Boswell for her next novel, When I'm Gone, Look for Me in the East. It comes out February 22 and that's when our event is. Details to come.

Paperback Nonfiction:
1. Healing the Human Body with God's Remedies, by Lester Carter
2. Voices of Milwaukee Bronzeville, by Sandra E Jones (Register for the in-store November 18 event here or register for the virtual broadcast here)
3. Being Adopted, by Amy Wilkerson
4. Braiding Sweetgrass, by Robin Wall Kimmerer
5. Hope Is the Thing, edited by BJ Hollars
6. Northwest Side Community Development Corporation, by Howard Snyder
7. Milwaukee River Greenway, by Eddee Daniel
8. Ottolenghi Test Kitchen, by Murad Noor and Yotam Ottolenghi
9. Sapiens: A Graphic History V1, by Yuval Noah Harari, David Vandermeulen, and Daniel Casanave
10. Sapiens, by Yuval Noah Harari

Big question - are #9 (Sapiens) and #10 (Sapiens: A Graphic History) the same book? If they were the mass market and trade paperback edition, it wouldn't be an issue. But isn't artwork an important part of a graphic adaptation? I think so, which is why I added the artist to our bibliographic data. In addition, it's only the first part of the adaptation. Part 2 of Sapiens: A Graphic History, came out October 25.

Books for Kids:
1. Animal Architects, by Amy Cherrix
2. African Icons, by Tracey Baptiste (Register for November 9 virtual event here - great for school classrooms)
3. Big Shot: Diary of a Wimpy Kid V16, by Jeff Kinney
4. Pony, by RJ Palacio
5. How to Find What You're Not Looking For, by Veera Hiranandani
6. The Beatryce Prophecy, by Kate DiCamillo, with illustrations by Sophie Blackall
7. Change Sings, by Amanda Gorman, with illustrations by Loren Long
8. Our Table, by Peter H Reynolds
9. Clarice the Brave, by Lisa McMann (Register for November 30 event here - great for school classrooms)
10. How to Train Your Dad, by Gary Paulsen

Peter H Reynolds (among other things, the illustrator for Peace Train, which was a multi-week Boswell bestseller earlier this year) has a new book, Our Table, about a family whose dining room table shrinks away when they stop using it for family meals. Don't worry, Violet figures out a way to solve this problem. From the starred Booklist: "Reynolds tells the story simply and illustrates it expressively. The scenes depicting the child's isolation are drawn in black lines with moody purple-gray washes on white backgrounds, but when Violet reminisces about the past happiness and later, when the family comes together again, colorful washes brighten the pages. A reminder of what really matters."

Over at the Journal Sentinel, Carol Deptolla profiles Ron Faiola's third entry in his supper clubs series The Wisconsin Supper Clubs Story: An Illustrated History, with Relish, where she breaks the news that Lawry's: The Prime Rib in Beverly Hills was hardly the first supper club. Don't trust Wikipedia!

From Faiola, via Deptolla: "'It looked pretty fishy to me because they name a guy, but they don’t name a supper club,' Faiola said by phone. And another thing: 'Why in Beverly Hills? I mean, why not, but still.' Certainly, Beverly Hills boomed in the 1920s and developed its ritzy reputation, but it was no New York City, more playground for movie stars than center for innovation."

Look for the event roundup on Monday.

No comments: