Two Memoirs Debut on NYT List

The memoir industry keeps chugging along. Two new titles in the genre hit the NY Times hardcover non-fiction bestseller list this week:

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#11 Her Last Death
Susanna Sonnenberg

  • Hardcover: $24
  • Publisher: Scribner (January 1, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0743291085
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743291088
  • UNABRIDGED Audio CD
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio; $39.95 (January 1, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0743569806
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743569804

Michiko Kakutani (the “Mikey likes it!” of book reviewers) gave Her Last Death a strong review in the daily NY Times on Dec. 21, calling it a “fiercely observed, fluently written book that captures the chaos and confusions of [Sonenberg’s] youth, the daughter of an unpredictable pill-and-coke addicted mother.” A starred LJ review in the 12/15 issue called it “one of the best memoirs to come on the scene since Jeanette Walls’s The Glass Castle.”

The title is on library catalogs, but perhaps not in the quantities needed (the major libraries I checked had no more than two copies in their largest branches), especially if it has the staying power of The Glass Castle (currently at #7 on the NYT Paperback Nonfiction list, after 106 weeks).


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#16 The Middle Place
Kelly Corrigan

  • Hardcover: $23.95
  • Publisher: Hyperion (January 8, 2008)
    ISBN-10: 1401303366
    ISBN-13: 978-1401303365

The Middle Place makes its first appearance on the NYT print harcover nonfiction list (last week it was at #23 on the extended list. This week it’s tied with the #15 title, Lone Survivor). It was reviewed in LJ XPress online-only reviews on 12/18, “Corrigan’s cancer memoir is relentlessly upbeat, an optimistic celebration of life, love, and family.” It was also featured in USA Today, with an excerpt

This new title is part of Hyperion’s “Voice” imprint, a line for women “in the second half of their life”, according to editorial director Pam Dorman. Launched last year, it’s an imprint with an advisory council, which includes booksellers (but no librarians at this point).

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