Archive for the ‘Bestsellers’ Category

O’Reilly’s Book Brand Survives

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

9781250092335_665e3Bill O’Reilly is out at Fox News but not at Macmillan imprint Holt.

USA Today reports that the ex-broadcaster has the backing of his book publisher. “Our plans have not changed,” says Holt publicity director Patricia Eisemann, of the next book in the highly profitable Killing series that O’Reilly writes with co-author Martin Dugard.

The Killing books, which examine the deaths of public figures such as Killing Kennedy (2012) and  Killing Patton (2014), have made a killing for Holt. They have also been the source of money-making movies for National Geographic. The cable network has also announced that they plan to continue to develop a TV movie based on Killing Patton.

The NYT reports that “more than 17 million copies [of the series are] in print and [it] is a reliable source of annual revenue for the [publisher]. In recent years, new books in the series have sold 1.1 million copies in the first few months after release.”

9781250135797_5bf07Recent press stories about the reasons behind O’Reilly’s ouster shine an ironic light on his newest book, Old School: Life in the Sane Lane (Macmillan/Holt; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample), which Janet Maslin described in her NYT review as “meant to set forth the code of decency, honor and determination that made O’Reilly what he is today.” It debuted at #2 on the USA Today best-seller list, moving down slightly to #5 this week.

The NYT questions whether that will continue, writing “Even if Holt sticks with Mr. O’Reilly, sales of his books will almost certainly decline without his perch at Fox, which he used to promote his books to millions of viewers.” That seems borne out by Amazon’s sales rankings where the book has slipped to #19.

The next Killing book is set for a Sept. 2017 publication. With no title, no cover art, no advance reviews and no description on the publishers site, there is no information on what subject it addresses.

default_jacket_mmUntitled O’Reilly
Bill O’Reilly, Martin Dugard
On Sale Date: September 19, 2017
Hardcover | 304 pages |
$30.00 USD, $38.99 CAD
ISBN 9781627790642, 1627790640

 

To The Movies: HILLBILLY ELEGY

Wednesday, April 12th, 2017

9780062300546_9dafbRon Howard’s Imagine Entertainment production company has won the film rights to Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis (Harper; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample), reports Deadline Hollywood. Howard will direct.

Vance’s memoir arrived as the presidential campaign was heating up. The media embraced his sympathetic portrait of life in the Rust Belt as an explanation for the deep divides that drove the election. As a result of growing media attention, the book landed on best seller lists several weeks after publication. It is currently #2 on the NYT Hardcover Nonfiction list after 36 weeks.

It came to define what Slate‘s Laura Miller calls a new genre of nonfiction, the on-the-ground Trump explainer … illuminating the desperation driving white small-town Americans, as told by a native son.” She calls Vance’s book the genre’s “vanguard title.”

In a statement, Imagine describes it as “a powerful, true coming-of-age memoir … Through the lens of a colorful, chaotic family and with remarkable compassion and self-awareness, J.D. has been able to look back on his own upbringing as a ‘hillbilly’ to illuminate the plight of America’s white working class, speaking directly to the turmoil of our current political climate.”

MISSISSIPPI BLOOD Tops The Lists

Monday, April 3rd, 2017

9780062311153_82abcDebuting at #1 on the NYT Hardcover Fiction best seller list is the conclusion to Greg Iles’s Natchez Burning trilogy, Mississippi Blood (HarperCollins/Morrow; HarperLuxe; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample). Moreover, it’s #1 on the USA Today list, indicating that it’s the top-selling book regardless of format or category.

This is Iles’s first time at #1 for both lists. The previous titles in the series rose as high as #2 on the NYT list for the first book, Natchez Burning and as high as #3 on the USA Today list, for second book,  The Bone Tree.

The NYT Book Review‘s “Behind the Best Sellers” columnist Gregory Cowles interviews Iles asking how it feels to complete this over 2,300 page long series about “race, murder and a fraught father-son relationship spanning half a century in the Deep South.” He replies,

“… when I started writing the trilogy, people were talking about America becoming a ‘postracial’ society, and I worried that my epic exploration of the secret realities of race had begun too late. Today, no one on earth would argue that America is postracial. Race is the wound in America’s side, and we still have far to go to heal it. ”

USA Today calls the book “searing” and quotes the Booklist review which says “This trilogy is destined to become a classic of literary crime fiction.”

Meyers and Saunders, Redux

Tuesday, March 28th, 2017

On Monday, Seth Meyers hosted George Saunders on Late Night, a return of sorts.

As a result, Saunders’ novel, Lincoln in the Bardo (PRH/RH; RH Audio/BOT; Overdrive Sample), having already been a #1 on the NYT best seller, is moving up Amazon’s sales rankings this morning.

The two-part interview is a remarkable contrast to usual late-night celebrity fare.

Meyers introduces the second part of the interview with a phrase that may never have been uttered by a late night network host before, “the common architecture between writer and reader.”

Meyers has had experience with the author. He interviewed Saunders in February when he served as  the substitute host on the Charlie Rose Show.

Saunders To Silver Screen

Thursday, March 23rd, 2017

Lincoln in the BardoMegan Mullally (Will & Grace, Infinity Baby) and husband Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation, The Founder), have bought the film rights George Saunders’s NYT bestseller, Lincoln in the Bardo (PRH/RH; RH Audio/BOT; Overdrive Sample).

The couple will produce alongside the author. Both worked on the audiobook version with him.

I am thrilled to be in artistic cahoots with Megan and Nick, two artists I’ve long admired,” Saunders told Deadline Hollywood, “This is going to be big fun. My hope is that we can find a way to make the experience of getting this movie made as wild and enjoyable and unpredictable as the experience of writing it — I am so happy to have such fearless companions on the trip.”

The A.V. Club points to the challenges facing the adaptation, “The book has more than 150 narrators … then there’s the matter of the archival texts intercutting the musings of Willie and his new neighbors. And that’s all before you get into those neighbors’ appearances.” However, the producers have already dealt with those issues for the audiobook version.

BERNADETTE Begins Filming This Summer

Monday, March 20th, 2017

9780316204262Richard Linklater’s adaptation of Where’d You Go, Bernadette starring two-time Oscar winner Cate Blanchett will start filming July 2017, reports Austin360.

The movie is based on the novel of the same name by Maria Semple (Hachette, 2012). Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber (500 Days of Summer and The Fault in Our Stars) wrote the screenplay.

Fans of the book will have to wait to find out who will play Bernadette’s 15-year-old daughter, Bee Branch, the story’s narrator.

Semple won an Alex Award for the book in 2013. It spent a few weeks on the NYT Hardcover Bestseller list, and many more in trade paperback, hitting a high of #2.

As we noted earlier, Semple has another title headed to a screen. Julia Roberts will star in HBO’s adaptation of her newest novel, Today Will Be Different (Hachette/Little, Brown; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample).

No stranger to TV herself, Semple, who worked on Beverly Hills, 90210, Mad About You, Suddenly Susan, and Arrested Development, will write the script, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Spring Cleaning with Kondo

Monday, March 20th, 2017

9781607747307_9d11aAfter spending over two years (and counting) on the NYT bestseller list and building months long holds queues in libraries (some systems are still working through their lists), Marie Kondo is back atop the Amazon sales rankings thanks to a feature on CBS Sunday Morning.

It seems there are still a few people who haven’t discovered Kondo. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, moved back up to #1, after dropping to #34 and her second book, Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up (both from Ten Speed Press), is #15, after falling to #1,320.

Life-Changing Magic is a global sensation. It has been translated into 40 languages and has sold over 7 million copies. NYT ran a feature about her last July, writing her “name is now a verb  … [her] life has become a philosophy.” The Wall Street Journal even applied her methods to digital life.

As an aid to those facing spring cleaning, CSB Sunday Morning offers a short profile of her system, including her special ways of folding clothes so they can be stacked upright in drawers. They also note she is working on a smart phone app and training a horde of cleaning consultants.

Finding THE STRANGER IN THE WOODS

Monday, March 20th, 2017

9781101875681_5fe86When he was in his 20s Christopher Thomas Knight became a hermit, living in self-imposed isolation in the Maine woods for close to 30 years. His story, and that of his arrest for a string of robberies, is the subject of the new book The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit, Michael Finkel (PRH/Knopf; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample).

It debuts on the NYT Hardcover Nonfiction best seller list at #11 this week, having been both a LibraryReads and an Indie Next pick and is receiving some belated critical attention.

The NYT reviews it, saying it will have “mass appeal … It’s campfire-friendly and thermos-ready, easily drained in one warm, rummy slug. It also raises a variety of profound questions — about the role of solitude, about the value of suffering, about the diversity of human needs.”

The Atlantic says that Knight “avoided humanity with the guile of a samurai … He entered the woods like a suicide, leaving his keys inside the car. He had no destination, nor a map; he carried a tent but had never spent a night in one before. Most of his family members and friends assumed he had died. In one sense they were right.”

USA Today gives it three out of four stars and writes it is an “intriguing account of Knight’s capture and confessions, and while it amasses the inventive details of Knight’s solitary life, it can’t quite explain the man himself. Knight is opaque — more than a loner, hardly a lunatic.”

The 2014 GQ story that launched the book is the magazine’s most-read story ever. They now offer an interview with Finkel.

The Guardian runs an illustrated extract.

Holds vary widely across the systems we checked, with a high of 8:1 and a low below 1:1. However, if the GQ article is any guide, this is the kind of book that grows an audience over time.

Adichie’s Nonfiction Best Seller

Friday, March 17th, 2017

9781524733131_bfaa3The Nigerian-born novelist and feminist, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author of the novels Americanah and Half of a Yellow Sun, is on the bestseller lists again. Her short nonfiction guide to raising children, Dear Ijeawele, or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions (PRH/Knopf; RH Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample), just landed at #4 on the NYT Nonfiction bestseller list.

The author is profiled by both The New York Times and The Washington Post. She tells the Post that she wrote the book “to help create the world my daughter will love.”

She was recently been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, saying that girls are raised to be likable. forcing them to “mold and shape what [they] do and say based on what [they] imagine the other person wants to hear.”

The Guardian writes “In the new book, Adichie’s advice is not only to provide children with alternatives – to empower boys and girls to understand there is no single way to be – but also to understand that the only universal in this world is difference. In terms of the evolution of feminism, these are not new lessons, but that is rather Adichie’s point. She is not writing for other feminist writers.”

EXIT WEST Hits NYT Bestseller List

Friday, March 17th, 2017

9780735212176_8834cAfter weeks of critical attention, Mohsin Hamid’s newest novel, Exit West (PRH/Riverhead; Penguin Audio/BOT; OverDrive Sample) debuts on the NYT Bestseller list at #5.

Coverage is continuing. PBS Newshour and The Wall Street Journal released video interviews. The Seattle Times reviews it, saying the “penetrating, prescient new novel feels like bearing witness to events that are unfolding before us in real time.” The Guardian writes:

Exit West shifts between forms, wriggles free of the straitjackets of social realism and eyewitness reportage, and evokes contemporary refugeedom as a narrative hybrid: at once a fable about deterritorialisation, a newsreel about civil society … and a speculative fiction that fashions new maps of hell.”

Holds are strong across libraries we checked, with the majority showing holds at 5:1 or higher.

Documenting Protest

Friday, March 3rd, 2017

9781419728853_71c28Debuting on the latest NYT Paperback Nonfiction list at #9 is Why I March: Images from the Woman’s March Around the World (Abrams Books), a collection of photos from the global Women’s March held the day after this year’s  inauguration ceremonies. The American marches may have been the largest single-day demonstrations in U.S. history. Websites and newspapers were full of images of the record-setting crowds.

9781579658281_89d6cA related book Why We March: Signs of Protest and Hope–Voices from the Women’s March (Workman/Artisan) has also been published, featuring images of the creative and notable signs carried that day.

Royalties from both books will be donated to organizations that deal with some of the issues supported by the marchers.

NYT Bestseller Debuts

Monday, February 27th, 2017

Lincoln in the BardoAlready in the top ten on USA Today‘s best seller list, Lincoln in the Bardo (PRH/RH; RH Audio/BOT; Overdrive Sample), debuts at #1 on the NYT Hardcover Fiction list, a first for author George Saunders.

Featured in the “Inside the List” column Saunders says that “private grief made Lincoln a better public servant.” and,

“What moved me about Lincoln’s arc during his presidency was the way that the burdens of the office — the floundering war effort, intense public criticism, the mistakes he made that were costing so many lives, the death of his son — beat him down and made him sorrowful, but also, almost causally, seemed to expand the reach of his empathy, so that, by the end, it included soldiers on both sides and the millions of Americans being enslaved by other Americans. It seemed to me that the empathy was somehow a byproduct of the sorrow — a burning-away of his hopes and dreams that resulted in a kind of naked seeing of things as they really were.”

As we have noted, critical praise has been growing.

9780718090197_e4980On the Nonfiction Hardcover list, This Life I Live: One Man’s Extraordinary, Ordinary Life and the Woman Who Changed It Forever (Thomas Nelson; Thomas Nelson Audio; OverDrive Sample) debuts at #2, written by Rory Feek, one-half of the Grammy-winning duo Joey+Rory. He gained national attention when his wife, Joey Martin, was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

The book pays tribute to her and their life together. It is #12 on the USA Today list, doing very well against other formats and categories. Holds are growing at a number of libraries we checked.

Feek appeared on the Today show last week:

Saunders a Bestseller, Again

Thursday, February 23rd, 2017

9780812995343_73f0aLincoln in the Bardo (PRH/RH; RH Audio/BOT; Overdrive Sample), George Saunders’s first novel, debuts at #9 on the USA Today list. Expect to see it in the top five on the NYT Hardcover Fiction list when it arrives tomorrow.

Saunders made the leap from well-respected short story writer to household name four years ago when the NYT Magazine declared on its cover, “George Saunders Has Written the Best Book You’ll Read This Year.” That book, the short story collection Tenth of December then landed at #26 on USA Today‘s list.

Glowing reviews continue to mount for Lincoln, adding to those we rounded up two weeks ago. In the Chicago Tribune, author Charles Finch says it is “profound, funny and vital, a meditation on loss and power … The work of a great writer.” It was People’s “Book of the Week. They call it “Devastatingly moving.” Tor.com writes that the book “will still be necessary in three hundred years.” The NPR reviewer says “there are moments that are almost transcendently beautiful, that will come back to you on the edge of sleep.”

Saunders continues to make the talk show rounds as well. Filling in for Charlie Rose, Saunders talks with Seth Meyers on the Charlie Rose show.

Holds are growing and there is pent-up demand for the audio. In libraries we checked, where audio copies have yet to enter into circulation, holds are running as high as 115 to 1.

NORSE MYTHOLOGY A Best Seller

Friday, February 17th, 2017

9780393609097_a8601Neil Gaiman lands at #1 on the NYT Hardcover Fiction bestseller list for his newest work, Norse Mythology (Norton; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample). It is also doing very well against other formats and categories, debuting at #2 on the USA Today list.

The strong sales track alongside high demand in libraries and largely glowing reviews. The Guardian says “The halls of Valhalla have been crying out for Neil Gaiman to tell their stories to a new audience. Hopefully this collection will be just the beginning.” Tor.com calls it a must read.”

The book marks something of a full circle for the bestselling author. Last summer he told the NYT that the stories “have accompanied me through pretty much everything I’ve done.”

Gaiman discusses the book with NYT Book Review editor, Pamela Paul, on the “Inside the New York Times Book Review” podcast.

BEHIND HER EYES Getting Looks

Sunday, February 12th, 2017

9781250111173_74e10Positioned as her breakout title Sarah Pinborough’s Behind Her Eyes (Macmillan/Flatiron Books; Macmillan Audio; OverDrive Sample) has fulfilled expectations by making the author a New York Times best seller for the first time. The book arrives at #15 on this week’s list.

The British author has written over 20 YA and fantasy novels, few of which have been released in the US. Her first foray into the hot genre of domestic thrillers, it was a hot commodity at the 2015 Frankfurt Book Fair. Reviewing it her most recent NYT BR Crime column. Marilyn Stasio calls it “an eerie thriller calculated to creep you out … [a] terrifying mind game.”

The Guardian reports the much hyped plot twists deliver, “When the first of her twists is revealed, it is fantastically creepy, if not entirely unexpected. The second twist turns the creepy factor up to 11 and is a total wrong-footer. #WTFthatending indeed – the sort that makes you go back to the beginning to check if it all pans out. And it does.”

That hashtag was developed by the publisher to promote the book but has been adopted by others. It was even applied to the outcome of the Super Bowl.

Librarians were early adopters. It was a January LibraryReads pick and a GalleyChat title. Holds are strong in most libraries we checked, with some topping 4:1 ratios.