By the Numbers

Half of the 10 bestselling titles in the country address racism, racial polarization, and the work that needs to be done to combat them. The oldest, Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?, first pubbed in 1997; the most recent, How to Be an Antiracist, arrived more than 20 years later.

#2 So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo (2018)

#3 White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo (2018)

#5 Stamped from the Beginning by Ibram X. Kendi (2016)

#7 How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi (2019)

#8 Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? by Beverly Daniel Tatum (1997)

The New Hotness

Burn After Writing is a guided journal by graphic designer Sharon Jones. It pubbed in 2015 and weekly print unit sales stayed in the double digits until June 2019, when, says Avery/TarcherPerigee assistant marketing director Farin Schlussel, the hashtag #BurnAfterWriting began trending on TikTok. Videos using the hashtag have garnered more than 33 million views. Then a TikTok user launched an account inviting other readers to go through the book together; that video has garnered 4.1 million views and 11.9K comments. Burn After Writing is the #6 book in the country, selling five and a half times as many copies as it did the previous week.

Now Hear This

Our Time Is Now by potential Democratic vice-presidential nominee Stacey Abrams debuts at #9 in hardcover nonfiction. “In this impassioned and carefully researched account,” our review said, “former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Abrams examines the methods and consequences of voter suppression in America and explains why she won’t officially concede her 2018 race against Republican Brian Kemp.” The week after the book pubbed, Amazon Studios acquired an as-yet-untitled documentary on voting rights featuring Abrams, who is also coproducing. Also that week, pop star Selena Gomez turned over her Instagram account to Abrams, whose message about the necessity and power of protest has been viewed 1.9 million times.


Chris Wallace
#1 Hardcover Nonfiction, #4 overall
“Fox News Sunday host Wallace debuts with a propulsive account of the final months of WWII leading up to atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki,” our review said. Praising the author’s “eye for cinematic detail,” the review called the book “accessible, evenhanded,” and “an entertaining introduction to one of the most momentous decisions in world history.”

Connie Schultz
#12 Hardcover Fiction
Our review said this “sweeping, heartfelt” first novel from Pulitzer Prize–winning columnist and two-time memoirist Schultz “packs its plot with enough bitter pills to fill a Bruce Springsteen album.” Spanning the mid-1940s to mid-1990s, “this story of family secrets rises above—and is tougher than—the rest.”