Grady Hendrix lands at #5 on our hardcover fiction list with How to Sell a Haunted House, a “wildly entertaining” tale, per our review, animated by “grief, generational trauma, and some sinister puppets.” In a prepub interview with PW, Hendrix speculated on the enduring fascination with ghostly domiciles. “We really like to form connections with things that aren’t human,” he said. “Maybe it’s a two-way street and the place has feelings about you back.”
After a limited theatrical release on December 30, the Tom Hanks vehicle A Man Called Otto opened nationwide on January 13. It’s a retitled adaptation of Swedish author Fredrik Backman’s blockbuster debut, A Man Called Ove, which has sold in the neighborhood of two million print copies. The tie-in edition pubbed at the end of November and debuts at #15 on our trade paper list.
I DIG U
The Valentine’s Day–themed Construction Site: You’re Just Right by Sherri Duskey Rinker, illus. by A.G. Ford, a lift-the-flap board book, is the latest in the series that began with 2011’s Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site (illus. by Tom Lichtenheld). It pubbed in December, and sales have been building in the run-up to the holiday. This week, it moves up nine positions on our picture book list to #13.
NEW & NOTABLE
THE CREATIVE ACT
#2 Hardcover Nonfiction, #4 overall
The Grammy-winning music producer debuts with “a meditative manual on how to boost one’s creativity,” according to our review. “The dispatches read like ancient spiritual texts in their Zen-like wisdom, as when Rubin writes, ‘Accessing childlike spirit in our art and our lives is worth aspiring to.’ ”
MASTER SLAVE HUSBAND WIFE
#18 Hardcover Nonfiction
“Woo seamlessly knits together an in-depth portrait of antebellum America and a thrilling account of an enslaved couple’s escape to freedom,” per our review. The author “expertly portrays the gruesome details of slave auctions [and] the exploits of antislavery activists including William Still and Mifflin Wistar Gibbs. This novelistic history soars.”