Sunday, February 3, 2013

Sunday Bestsellers--It's Double Duty Week, as Three Authors (Ian Rankin, William Davis, Margaret Wise Brown) Each Chart Twice.

Hardcover fiction:
1. Standing in Another Man's Grave, by Ian Rankin
2. Tenth of December, by George Saunders
3. Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn
4. Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker, by Jennifer Chiaverini
5. A Hologram for the King, by Dave Eggers (event today at 2 pm)

While Rankin blows out the competition, based on sales from his Friday event, Saunders has the real momentum, having yet another week in the top five. The backlist has begun a bit, with some of his longtime fans saying they don't like the new collection so much, but come on, you have to be happy that a short story collection is selling like crazy.

Speaking of happy, I'm thrilled that Chiaverini's new book, Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker, has the best legs I've seen of any of her books since we opened. Another post-event book doing quite well is Stuart Neville's Ratlines, coming in at #6 this week. It doesn't hurt that my fellow booksellers are great at reading a lot of our event books, and that, along with the press and the customer enthusiasm and word of mouth, helps keep the books selling. We still have a few signed copies of each.

Hardcover nonfiction:
1. Lessons from the Heartland, by Barbara Miner
2. Going Clear, by Lawrence Wright
3. My Beloved World, by Sonia Sotomayor
4. The Wheat Belly Cookbook, by William Davis
5. Wheat Belly, by William Davis

The post-event pop continues in nonfiction, where Barbara Miner takes the top spot. One event that hasn't had legs, however, is Thinner This Year, and I've noticed it hasn't competed well with 2013's crop of diet books, including our double dipping Davis. I honestly don't know why, as Younger Next Year was a true phenom.

Paperback fiction:
1. A Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Hansberry
2. Beowulf, by Seamus Heaney
3. The Marriage Plot, by Jeffrey Eugenides
4. The Age of Miracles, by Karen Thompson Walker (event 2/12/13)
5. The Complaints, by Ian Rankin

Our top two are not texts for college but high school. One district here is experimenting with lowering fees and in exchange, having kids buy their books. I have no idea how this is going, but we are grateful for the business, and more than one parent has inadvertently discovered the store. It's fascinating to me that potential Boswell customers often don't believe they are going to like it as much beforehand, and are surprised when they come in.All I can say is that it's pretty heartwarming when we get a new fan.

Paperback nonfiction:
1. Imperfect Spirituality, by Polly Campbell
2. Invisible, by Ruth Silver
3. Schuster's and Gimbels, by Paul Geenen
4. Mo, a Loeys Dietz Syndrome Memoir, by Kate Jurgens
5. Quiet, by Susan Cain

Four of the top five are former events in this category, with the lone non-attendee being Susan Cain's Quiet, just out in paperback. Her book has quietly sold 50 copies at Boswell. Not yet convinced? Read (or listen to) her interview with Audie Cornish on NPR last year.

Children's books:
1. The Giving Tree, by Shel Silverstein
2. Goodnight Moon board book, by Margaret Wise Brown
3. Llama Llama Mad at Mama, by Anna Dewdney
4. Pat the Bunny, by Dorothy Kunhardt
5. The Runaway Bunny, by Margaret Wise Brown

Alas, no pop yet for the Caldecott and Newbery winners. Maybe next week!

What might hit next week? In the Journal Sentinel, Chris Foran reviews I Do and I Don't: A History of Marriage in the Movies, by Jeanne Basinger. His take? "After more than a century of exploring the topic, they can't figure out how marriage works either." Read the whole review here.

Jim Higgins has been a fan of Yoko Ogawa since The Housekeeper and the Professor, a book I was also taken by, but I have to say the new collection might be too creepy for me, if not for you. The Higgins rec for the new book? "At the end of Revenge, Ogawa's readers may not quite have the desire, say, to strangle an offending husband and bury him in the garden, but they'll certainly wonder a little more about the state of the mind of the person standing next to them in the line at the bakery."

And don't forget that Eggers is signing at 2 pm, not the later time originally promised.

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