Fools Rush In

Two nearly surefire ways to get onto the bestseller list: be a viral video sensation or a Fox News commentator.

Battling it out for regional supremacy this week are the #1 and #2 book in the country, which together sold more print copies than the next five books combined. The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith and Katz Cowley, a 2010 picture book, surged in popularity after a video of a Scottish grandmother reading it to her four-month-old grandson went viral. In Ship of Fools, the eponymous host of Fox’s Tucker Carlson Tonight takes aim at what he sees as an American elite out of touch with the average voter.

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

Mad Props

Rebecca Traister debuts at #11 in hardcover nonfiction with Good and Mad, a “trenchant analysis,” our starred review said, of what the author calls the “nexus of women’s anger and American politics.” First-week print units sales eclipsed those of her two previous books: 2010’s Big Girls Don’t Cry, about how, in the words of the subtitle, the 2008 presidential election “changed everything for American women,” and 2016’s All the Single Ladies, which looks at the massive social change engendered when woman have options beyond early marriage.

New & Notable

A Spark of Light
Jodi Picoult
#1 Hardcover Fiction, #6 overall
“Drama abounds in Picoult’s latest issue-driven novel,” our review said, “in which a hostage crisis in a women’s health center/abortion clinic provides a look at a volatile subject.”

The Fifth Risk
Michael Lewis
#5 Hardcover Nonfiction, #8 overall
Journalist Lewis (The Big Short) examines a “significant danger posed by the Trump administration’s approach to governance,” our starred review said, and “persuasively documents the dangers that result from placing people without the necessary skills” in charge of vital government agencies.

A Map of Days
Ransom Riggs
#2 Children’s Frontlist Fiction
The fourth book in the Miss Peregrine’s series is the first to feature color images. “The peculiar children travel through 20th-century America,” Riggs told PW, “which I associate with loud, kitschy, square-format Kodachrome color.”

Top 10 Overall

Rank Title Author Imprint Units
1 The Wonky Donkey Smith/Cowley Scholastic 95,132
2 Ship of Fools Tucker Carlson Free Press 82,220
3 Fear Bob Woodward Simon & Schuster 42,319
4 Girl, Wash Your Face Rachel Hollis Nelson 39,875
5 Lord of the Fleas (Dog Man #5) Dav Pilkey Graphix 31,309
6 A Spark of Light Jodi Picoult Ballantine 26,750
7 Whiskey in a Teacup Reese Witherspoon Touchstone 25,491
8 The Fifth Risk Michael Lewis Norton 23,766
9 Just Jessie Jessie James Decker Dey Street 23,670
10 Instant Loss Cookbook Brittany Williams Harmony 20,158

All unit sales per Nielsen BookScan except where noted.