Sunday, January 29, 2023

Boswell bestsellers, week ending January 28, 2023

Boswell bestsellers for the week ending January 28, 2023

Hardcover Fiction:
1. Remarkably Bright Creatures, by Shelby Van Pelt
2. The Boy, the Mole, the Fox, and the Horse, by Charlie Mackesy (3 editions)
3. Lessons in Chemistry, by Bonnie Garmus
4. Demon Copperhead, by Barbara Kingsolver
5. The Passenger, by Cormac McCarthy
6. How to Sell a Haunted House, by Grady Hendrix
7. The Shards, by Bret Easton Ellis
8. Emily Wilde's Encyclopaedia of Faeries, by Heather Fawcett
9. Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow, by Gabrielle Zevin
10. Everyone in My Family Has Killed Someone, by Benjamin Stevensonn

It turns out there are weeks in publishing where pretty much nothing that makes a dent in our bestseller lists are released. It's the second week in our top ten for Bret Easton Ellis's The Shards, which got five raves, seven positives, five mixed, and three pans on Lit Hub.  From Sam Byers in The Guardian: "Others before Ellis have attempted to retool the serial narrative for the internet age. Nothing has felt quite as thrilling as Ellis’s year-long, hour-by-hour performance of The Shards" (on his podcast.)

Hardcover Nonfiction:
1. The Creative Act, by Rick Rubin
2. Rough Sleepers, by Tracy Kidder
3. Your Table Is Ready, by Michael Cecchi Azzolina
4. South to America, by Imani Perry
5. Path Lit by Lightning, by David Maraniss
6. Life on Delay, by John Hedrickson
7. The Good Life, by Robert Waldinger and Marc Schulz
8. Unraveling, by Peggy Orenstein
9. What's for Dessert?, by Claire Saffitz
10. Spare, by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex

It's the second week out for Rough Sleepers: Dr. Jim O'Connell's Urgent Mission to Bring Healing to Homeless People. Much like Tracy Kidder followed Paul Farmer in Mountains Beyond Mountains, the new book looks at O'Connell's work as a doctor with homeless people in Boston. From Alex Kotlowitz: "I’m in awe of this book. I’m in awe of Jim O’Connell. What a compellingly beautiful, inspiring read."

Paperback Fiction:
1. The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida, by Shehan Karunatilaka
2. Pandora, by Susan Chapman Stokes
3. Hamlet, by William Shakespeare
4. Slaughterhouse Five, by Kurt Vonnegut
5. Nothing to Hide, by Elizabeth George
6. The Ninth House, by Leigh Bardugo
7. The Priory of the Orange Tree, by Samantha Shannon
8. A Court of Wings and Ruin, by Sarah J. Maas
9. In the Woods, by Tana French
10. The Thursday Murder Club, by Richard Osman

From the publisher on paperback original Pandora, breaking into our top 10 on its second week of publication: "A rich historical novel steeped in mystery set in Georgian London where the discovery of a mysterious ancient Greek vase sets in motion conspiracies, revelations, and romance." There's a nice roundup for the book in The Washington Post, but I never know whether the author of these in-shorts reads each title. It was a (UK) Sunday Times number one bestseller.

Paperback Nonfiction:
1. The Invention of Nature, by Andrea Wulf
2. All About Love, by bell hooks
3. The Good Country, by Jon K. Lauck (see below)
4. Brewtown Tales, by John Gurda
5. The Bright Ages, by Matthew Gabriele and David M Perry
6. Evicted, by Matthew Desmond
7. Rough Magic, by Jonathan Gillard Daly
8. Mushrooms of the Upper Midwest, by Teresa Marrone
9. Walking Milwaukee, by Royal Brevvaxling and Molly Snyder
10. Tacky, by Rax King

We're pretty quiet for in-person programming in the first half of February but Jon K. Lauck is doing a Midwestern tour for The Good Country, his history of the Midwest. Bill Glauber profiled Lauck in the Journal Sentinel, and will be the conversation partner for his Wednesday, February 1, 6:30 pm event. Don't forget to register at  

Books for Kids:
1. Finding Mighty, by Sheela Chari
2. One Came Home, by Amy Timberlake
3. White Smoke, by Tiffany D. Jackson
4. Lulu and Rocky in Milwaukee, by Barbara Joosse and Renée Graef
5. The Stolen Heir, by Holly Black
6. They Both Die at the End, by Adam Silvera
7. Peekaboo Love, by Camilla Reid, illustrations by Ingela Arrhenius
8. Peekaboo Apple, by Camilla Reid, illustrations by Ingela Arrhenius
9. Spaced Out, by Stuart Gibbs
10. Waste of Space, by Stuart Gibbs

Sometimes its hard to distinguish the series from former YA authors (Sarah J. Maas and Leigh Bardugo are listed above) and current YA authors like Holly Black, who nonetheless have a very strong audience from adult readers. It seems that a good portion of Boswell has read and enjoyed Holly Black's latest, The Stolen Heir, and only have a year to wait before #2 comes out, The Prisoner's Throne. I can't quote traditional reviews, even from PW, Library Journal, Kirkus, or Booklist - probably because they didn't offer advance copies. Jenny found the rec card from Oli Schmitz: " This delightfully dark adventure in Faerie is a story with a bite ...and some truly satisfying twists."

As of this week, the Monday upcoming event post will now be on The Boswellians blog. 

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