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Seeking a Slimmer Summer
Daisy Maryles -- 4/27/98
Summer is just around the corner, and all the fitness and health books are climbing the charts. Back on the charts are The Zone (ReganBooks) and Eat Right 4 Your Type (Putnam), and lurking right under the top 15 are Simon &Schuster's Shed 10 Years in 10 Weeks by Dr. Julian Whitaker and Carol Colman and Ballantine's Sugar Busters. Zone's in-print figure is about 1.6 million copies after a whopping 76 trips to press. And those are the kind of gains that are always welcome, especially since the book's first printing, back in May 1995, was a light 25,000 copies. Eat Right... has also enjoyed some swell-ing sales: after debuting in January 1997 with about 46,000 copies, the book now has more than 422,500 copies in print; Penguin Putnam CEO Phyllis Grann says the book's success is due to "the school of relentless publishing."Whitaker has made great use of TV for a diet book. Three volunteers appeared on a January 26 segment of The Gayle King Show; on a program 10 weeks later, all three exhibited significant changes in appearance. Shed 10 Years began with a 32,000-copy printing; after 11 trips to press that figure has increased to 118,000. Sugar Busters!: Cut Sugar to Cut Fat by four New Orleans residents was originally self-published and sold 165,000 copies locally in less than 18 months (Book News, Feb. 16). For Ballantine's expanded national version (first printing: 125,000), the authors-H. Leighton Steward, former CEO of a Fortune 500 firm; cardiologist Morrison C. Bethea; endocrinologist Samuel S. Andrews; and gastr nterologist Luis A. Balart-will take turns touring during the first two weeks of May. Practically a fixture on the mass market charts is Avon's Dr. Atkins' New Diet Revolution; it's still up there (#3 this week) after 65 weeks on our list. Copies in print after 24 trips to press total 2,423,000.Nashville-based author Gwen Shamblin continues to enjoy strong sales of her bestseller, The Weigh-Down Diet, an inspirational guide to weight loss from Doubleday's religion department. Launched with a 60,000-copy printing, the book has been on the religion charts for 13 months; after 22 trips to press, the print figure exceeds 300,000 copies. Look for it to climb even higher when a 20/20 segment about Shamblin airs in May.

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