The Soul of a Bestseller

Debuting at #1 in children’s frontlist fiction, and at #2 overall, Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs is the third of the author’s Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children books. The series has found a huge crossover audience among adults, and the first two books combined have sold 1.9 million units in hardcover and trade paper. A film adaptation of the first book, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, is scheduled for release on Dec. 25, 2016; Tim Burton directs. Here, we compare first-week sales for the three titles.

(See all of this week's bestselling books.)

Movie Tie-In Watch

Black Mass by Dick Lehr and Gerard O’Neill, originally published in 2001, edges onto the trade paperback list at #25, with 5,000 print units sold. This tie-in to the Johnny Depp vehicle, which opened September 18, pubbed in August and has been slowly building ever since, with 27K print units sold to date. In other Hollywood news, Andy Weir’s The Martian continues its strong chart presence, with 52K print units sold this week alone, in mass market and trade paper tie-in editions, plus a conventional trade paperback.

Precise Calculations

J. Kenji López-Alt, managing culinary director of the food-centric website Serious Eats, takes a science-nerd approach to cooking in “The Food Lab,” his James Beard Award–nominated column for the site. His new book of the same name delves into everything from heat vs. temperature (no, they’re not the same) to how to make Hollandaise sauce in two minutes. The book debuts at #7 with 9,219 print units sold, stats that are all the more impressive given the book’s $49.95 retail price.

Notable Debuts

Come Rain or Come Shine
by Jan Karon
#1 Hardcover Fiction; #3 Overall
32.5K print units

The 13th Mitford novel is hardly unlucky for the author—or for a beloved character, whose impending wedding drives the plot.

Big Magic
by Elizabeth Gilbert
#3 Hardcover Nonfiction,
25.5K print units

In her first self-help book, the Eat Pray Love author offers her perspective on creativity, advising readers, “If you’re alive, you’re a creative person.”

Furiously Happy
by Jenny Lawson
#6 Hardcover Nonfiction
16K print units

The author, who also goes by the moniker the Bloggess, earned a strong following for her irreverent take on serious subjects. In her second memoir, she addresses her battles with anxiety and depression.

Making a Killing

The #1 book in the country is Killing Reagan by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard, with almost 112K print units sold. To see how that number stacks up against first-week sales for the duo’s other Killing titles, see “Bestseller Stat Shot.”

Rank Title Author Imprint Units
1 Killing Reagan O’Reilly/Dugard Holt 111,880
2 Library of Souls Ransom Riggs Quirk 39,450
3 Come Rain or Come Shine Jan Karon Putnam 32,555
4 The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up Marie Kondo Ten Speed 26,025
5 Big Magic Elizabeth Gilbert Riverhead 25,508
6 The Girl in the Spider’s Web David Lagercrantz Knopf 24,401
7 The Martian Andy Weir Broadway 23,743
8 Gray Mountain John Grisham Dell 21,030
9 Why Not Me? Mindy Kaling Crown Archetype 20,170
10 Make Me Lee Child Delacorte 18,752

All unit sales per Nielsen BookScan except where noted.