Five new fiction hardcover titles made the top 15 list this week, with two more coming in at #16 and #17 -- HarperCollins's Worst Fears Realized by Stuat Woods and Doubleday's Cuba by Stephen Coonts. Leading the pack is Patricia Cornwell's Black Notice, which enjoyed a one-day laydown on August 2. Putnam's first printing was one million copies, enough for the newest Kay Scarpetta thriller to unseat Hannibal from its two-month stay in teh top fiction slot. The author has been drawing SRO audiences at her appearances nationwide, but it was her hometown of Richmond, Va., that got a special thrill. The author, who recently earned her helicopter pilot's license flew herself -- in her new copter with a Scarpetta logo emblazoned on the side -- and landed in the parking lot of the local Barnes & Noble for her September 7 book signing, in front of a lot of cheering fans. She also piloted a local Richmond news station's traffic helicopter a day earlier while reporting the rush hour traffic.
Putnam places another new fiction bestseller in the top 10: Catherine Coulter's The Edge, also published August2; first printing is 238,500 copies. A bestselling author of historical romances, Coulter has been equally successful with her thrillers (earlier bestsellers were The Maze and The Target). Her newest was lauched with a national TV ad campaign and she is currently on a 12-city book-signing tour. Thirty of the 45 novels written by Coulter have been national bestsellers.
LOVE AND MARRIAGE
...as the 1955 Sammy Cahn song observed, "Go together like a horse and carriage." Well, sometimes. Readers can form their own opinions about one especially noted pairing with Bill and Hillary: The Marriage, which jumps onto our nonfiction list at #4, less than two weeks after its August 3 pub date. Their latest bestseller by Christopher Andersen, a former contributing editor at Time and senior editor at People, continues in the vein of his other ripped-from-the-headlines titles, The Day Diana Died, Jack and Jackie and Jackie After Jack. Not surprisingly, the publicity blitz for this Morrow release (first printing 350,000) has been intense. Andersen's already been interviewed on Today, Larry King Live, CBS This Morning, Rivera Live, etc.; print coverage includes a front-page Washington Times story plus People, EW, USA Today and lots more. One of the greatest publicity breaks, however, wasn't even planned: guess who's on the cover of Tina Brown's Talk magazine, which was launched two weeks ago (with a glitzy bash on New York's Liberty Island, no less) amid a flurry of media attention? (Hint: it's one of the subjects of Andersen's dishy, unauthorized bio.)
A RELIGION TRIO ON THE BROADWAY BEAT
PW's monthly religion bestseller charts this week include three new titles from Broadway Books: one hardcover, Awakening to the Sacred: Creating a Spiritual Life from Scratch by Lama Surya Das, and two trade paper reprints, Mark Epstein's Going to Pieces Without Falling Apart: A Buddhist Perspective on Wholeness and Tich Nhat Hanh's The Heart of the Buddha's Teaching. Das, the most highly trained American lama in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, offers instruction on spiritual practices that people could incorported in their daily lives. Published in May, copies in print total 41,5000 after two trips to press. Epstein's book won a 1998 Books for a Better Life Award, presented by the National MS Society. The trade paperback was published in June and has 33,000 copies after two trips to press. Hanh's The Heart has 32,500 copies in print after three trips to press. The Vietnamese monk's books have sold more than a million copies; this bestseller offers an introduction to core Buddhist teachings.
WHAT'S JANE UP TO?
In this space last week, we noted Crown's newest bestseller, about women who've achieved success in their careers. We evidently got our verbs confused, however: the correct title is See Jane Win, not See Jane Run. In either case, we still say You Go, Girl.
With reporting by Dick Donahue.