We had a good ride with our Winter/Spring 2012 Turnrow 20 list. Thanks to all our friends and customers who were interested in our selection and who kept us up to speed on their reading likes/dislikes. We loved all of these books, but it's always interesting to see which ones customers chose and recommended. Here is a look at our top sellers...
1. The Rebel Wife by Taylor Polites ... This was the dark-horse, a Southern debut that caught readers with its jacket and our description as "The Help 100 years earlier." Sales were bolstered by book club interest, as well as our event with Taylor back on Leap Day, see picture at left. Signed copies still available.
2. The Sisters Brothers by Patrick DeWitt ... The legs on this book have amazed us. A Booker Prize finalist, this novel came out last spring but arrived in paperback in time to make the list. Again, sales were helped by the riveting cover image and a fascinating talk about the craft of fiction by the author, Patrick DeWitt, here in February. Signed copies still available.
3. Stoner by John Williams ... Our first retro pick, this is a quiet, unassuming and completely, wonderfully devastating novel from the 1960s about a Midwestern college English professor. We dared customers to read it by calling it "a perfect novel," and of all the books on this list, we heard the most raves on this one.
4. The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey ... Another excellent debut by an Alaskan writer and bookseller. Readers oohed and ahhed over the plot description of this one -- set in Depression-era Alaska, it's about a homesteading couple whose lives are touched by a mysterious child who arrives at their door -- and word-of-mouth praise helped drive sales.
5. A Good American by Alex George ... A winning debut by a British expat who found the soul of America in this rousing novel, a customer favorite. Signed copies still available.
6. Roger Williams and the Creation of the American Soul by John Barry ... Readers enjoyed the author's presentation at Turnrow back in January. He has earned plenty of loyal readers here following his account of the '27 Mississippi River flood, Rising Tide. Signed copies of both books still available.
All of this end-of-season wrap-up heralds a new Summer Turnrow 20 list. Watch here in the coming days for our exciting third list of bookseller favorites.