Sunday, September 18, 2022

Boswell bestsellers, week ending September 17, 2022

Boswell bestsellers for the week ending September 17, 2022

1. Beyond Belief, by John Koethe (signed copies available)
2. Fox Creek, by William Kent Krueger (signed copies available)
3. Nona the Ninth v3, by Tasmyn Muir
4. Fairy Tale, by Stephen King
5. Lessons, by Ian McEwan
6. Last Summer on State Street, by Toya Wolfe (Register for September 28 in-person event here)
7. Carrie Soto Is Back, by Taylor Jenkins Reid
8. The Wheel of Doll, by Jonathan Ames (signed copies available)
9. The Marriage Portrait, by Maggie O'Farrell
10. The Rising Tide, by Ann Cleeves

Nona the Ninth is the third in the Locked Tomb series, which has been building steam since the first entry, Gideon the Ninth. I think this was originally projected as a trilogy, but based on the Kirkus review ("A deceptively quiet beginning rockets to a thrilling finish, preparing us for the next volume's undoubtedly explosive finale"), I think it's now at least a quartet. The Kelly Link quote: "If you've read the first two books in this trilogy, I don't need to say anything to persuade you to pick up Nona the Ninth. If you don't know Muir's characters and worlds yet, then, my god, I envy you. It's hard to think of anyone more inventive, more audacious - more fun! - who is writing science fiction now."

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. Crying in the Bathroom, by Erika L Sánchez (signed copies available - our website might say we are out, but it's complicated - we have books)
2. I'm Glad My Mom Died, by Jennette McCurdy
3. Black Food, by Bryant Terry
4. Dinners with Ruth, by Tina Totenberg
5. What If 2, by Randall Munroe
6. The Mosquito Bowl, by Buzz Bissinger
7. Vegetable Kingdom, by Bryant Terry
8. Solito, by Javier Zamora
9. A Game Maker's Life, by Jeffrey Breslow
10. Slenderman, by Kathleen Hale (Register for October 13 event here)

Buzz Bissinger is getting some attention for The Mosquito Bowl: A Game of Life and Death in World War II, his first book with him as lead writer* since 2012's Father's Day. From Kirkus: "A uniquely focused World War II history interweaving military heroics and college football. Many books describe the consequential Battle of Okinawa in 1945, but this one deserves serious attention. Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Bissinger, author of Friday Night Lights, makes good use of his sports expertise to deliver a vivid portrait of college football before and during WWII, when it was a national obsession far more popular then professional leagues." Bissinger talked to David Bianculli about The Mosquito Bowl on Fresh Air

Paperback Fiction:
1. The Sentence, by Louise Erdrich
2. The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches, by Sangu Mandanna
3. Slow Fire Burning, by Paula Hawkins
4. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, by Taylor Jenkins Reid
5. Where the Crawdads Sing, by Delia Owens
6. It Ends with Us, by Colleen Hoover
7. The Ecco Anthology of Contemporary Short Fiction, edited by Joyce Carol Oates
8. Malibu Rising, by Taylor Jenkins Reid
9. Ordinary Grace, by William Kent Krueger
10. The Witches of Moonshyne Manor, by Bianca Marais (Register for September 20 ticketed event here)

Could it be possible for a paperback reprint to break into the trade paperback bestseller list? According to our sales this week, Louise Erdrich's The Sentence might have a shot, but boy, it's been amazing how many reprints have not been able to break through the Colleen Hoover/Emily Henry/Taylor Jenkins Reid/Where the Crawdad Sings/one other lucky romance blockade. From Ron Charles in The Washington Post: "The coronavirus pandemic is still raging away and God knows we’ll be reading novels about it for years, but Louise Erdrich’s The Sentence may be the best one we ever get. Neither a grim rehashing of the lockdown nor an apocalyptic exaggeration of the virus, her book offers the kind of fresh reflection only time can facilitate, and yet it’s so current the ink feels wet."

Paperback Nonfiction:
1. Growing Up Little Chute, by John Van Lieshout (Register for October 21 event here)
2. Braiding Sweetgrass, by Robin Wall Kimmerer
3. Llorando en el baño, by Erika L Sánchez
4. Ewaso Village, by Chip Duncan
5. Vegan Soul Kitchen, by Bryant Terry
6. All the Frequent Troubles of Our Days, by Rebecca Donner
7. Fuzz, by Mary Roach
8. Making a Good Script Great, by Linda Sieger
9. How to Focus, by Thich Nhat Hanh
10. Fever of Unknown Origin, by Judith Ford (Register for September 23 event here)

A new reprint breaking onto the nonfiction paperback bestseller list has been a rare thing for much longer. Unlike the fiction list, there are mostly reprints present, but they never leave. All the Frequent Troubles of Our Days and Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law were both hardcover bestsellers,  but only Fuzz has popped onto the paperback list. Both authors did virtual events with us and should be available on our event archive. Publishers Weekly on Fuzz: "Roach's writing is wry, full of heart, and loaded with intriguing facts."

Books for Kids:
1. All Are Neighbors, by Alexandra Penfold, illustrations by Suzanne Kaufman
2. Our World of Dumplings, by Francie Dekker (Register for September 24 event here)
3. I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter (two editions), by Erika L Sánchez
4. What Feelings Do When No One's Looking, by Tina Oziewicz, illustrations by Aleksandra Zajac
5. All Are Welcome, by Alexandra Penfold, illustrations by Suzanne Kaufman
6. Spy School Project X, by Stuart Gibbs
7. Shot Clock, by Caron Butler, illustrations by Justin Reynolds
8. Baby Monkey Private Eye, by Brian Selznick
9. Dog Man V8: Fetch, by Dav Pilkey
10. The Summer I Turned Pretty, by Jenny Han

I was recently at the Spy Museum in DC and they have a large display of Stuart Gibbs's Spy School series and then I heard kids talking about the books and then I went back to Boswell and I heard more kids talking about the books and I thought to myself, how this series has grown since we hosted Gibbs for school visits years ago. I can only imagine how big a public event would be now. And you know you've made it when you get a graphic novel adaptation. It looks Spy School Project X was submitted for advance reviews - non listings. I did glance at Goodreads and saw a 4.73 rating out of 5. Let's just say that's better reviews than just about any book I have read and enjoyed.

*under his name - he worked with Caitlyn Jenner on her memoir, so there may have been other projects I don't know about.

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