New to USA Today & NYT Bestsellers

The bestseller lists get pretty dull at this time of the year, as buyers focus on the tried-and-true for gift-giving and few new titles break onto the lists.

The new lists reflect the prime gift-buying week (USA Today, 12/15 through 12/21, dated 12/25; NYT, 12/14 through 12/20, dated 1/4/09), so there’s precious little to report.

The New York Times has just two debut titles (with “gift-giving” written all over them).

Nonfiction, #13


The New York Times: The Complete Front Pages1851-2008, with an introduction by Bill Keller. (Black Dog & Leventhal, $60.) Over 300 covers are reproduced in this weighty tome, the rest are on three DVD’s included in the package. It appeared last week on the NYT Extended list and is at #95 on USA Today. Some libraries are showing this available as an eBook. 

Childrens Picture Books, #9


The Latke Who Couldn’t Stop Screaming, by Lemony Snicket. Illustrated by Lisa Brown. (McSweeney’s, $11).

Published last year, this is the book’s first appearance on the NYT list.

Breaking on to the USA Today list, at #140, is a title that may not sound like the perfect stocking-stuffer;

Grandma’s Dead: Breaking Bad News with Baby Animals (Collins).


Borders included it in one of their holiday front-of-store displays, labelled, “Weird, Wacky and Fun.” Zan Farr, Borders humor buyer says  this collection of postcards,

…almost makes you wish you had some bad news to share with friends. For example, there is no better way to let them know ‘It’s only sunny because there’s a hole in the ozone layer’ than with a darling photo of two puppies playing in a wagon.”

Just two other new titles make their USA Today debuts:


#129 Blood SinsKay Hooper, Bantam (also on NYT Extended Fiction list, at #23)


#146 Marley & Me: Meet MarleyNatalie Engel, HarperCollins

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