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December 30, 2010

Jamie's Top 14 Books from 2010 vs. the World!

Posted by Dana
In today's guest post, Jamie Layton, Manager of Duck's Cottage presents her top 14 books from 2010 and compares her list to well... everyone else's.  Why stop at 10 when you can have 14?

tattoo.jpgAt midnight Christmas Day it seems every news outlet, daily show or radio station starts bringing out the TOP TEN lists. TOP TEN news events of the year… TOP TEN celebrity divorces… TOP TEN baby names… think of something- anything!- and I guarantee there’s an end of year list celebrating its high (and low) lights. 

So out of curiosity, I thought I’d take a look at the Duck’s Cottage top bestsellers of 2010. Then I compared them to the just released ABA 2010 Indie Bestseller Lists. We’re a really, small store, with limited space and a very discriminating inventory, that typically my weekly bestsellers don’t correlate to national lists and I suspected this would be the same for the end of the year as well. Without further ado… (drum roll please)

In the number ONE position at DUCK’S COTTAGE for TWO THOUSAND TEN….. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larrson (trade paperback). Guess what… it also occupied the number one slot over on the ABA list! 

At number TWO, selling 112 books this year, Justin Halpern’s SH*T MY DAD SAYS….over on the ABA list it comes in at number three on the non-fiction hardback list. Hmmm… perhaps we have more in common with THE lists than I thought?

Number 3- TIMELY VISION, a small mass market mystery by Joyce and Jim Lavene that just happens to be set in our little town of Duck. We sold over 100 copies of this book largely due to creative sign placement and hand selling. Don’t think I’ll find this on ANY national lists but one of the beauties of small independent bookstores is that  we sell books the other guys don’t!

Number FOUR is another book of primarily local interest- a photographic collaboration by Steve Alterman and Mark Buckler called Coastal Wild; a beautiful coffee table book of wildlife photographs from the Outer Banks.

STIEG LARSSON- Come on down!!-- well, somebody send his agent… in number 5- The Girl Who Played With Fire which comes in at number 3 on the ABA list. 

Our #6 is another local coffee table book, again by Steve Alterman- Outer Banks Edge: A Photographic Portfolio. For the eight plus years we’ve been in business this book holds the number 3 spot with over 600 copies sold.

NUMBER 7- one of my FAVORITE books of the year- BEFORE I FALL, a YA title by Lauren Oliver. I’ve sold this to teens, moms, book clubs, you name it. And they all LOVED it. Just a really good book. Her next book, Delirium, comes out in February- I can’t wait! 

Number Ocho goes to Elizabeth Gilbert’s EAT, PRAY, LOVE …not one of my favorite books but she can thank Sony Pictures and Julia Roberts for this latest infusion of sales. She shows up as the #1 Non-fiction paperback over on the Indie list.

Number Nine-ah, number nine-ah- The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in its mass market form captures this spot. 

Chris Cleave captures NUMBER TEN with Little Bee, a book popular with local book clubs down here but not one I could get into. It holds the number two position at ABA.

Our number 11 is a popular local cookbook- The Outer Banks Cookbook by Elizabeth Wiegand. She was here for a cooking demo and appearance this summer on top of which its just a really good, authentic cookbook that continuously sells well.

Number 12- another personal favorite of mine that came out in paper at the beginning of the year- CUTTING FOR STONE by Abraham Verghese, an incredible writer. I haven’t met anyone who doesn’t just rave about this book. I highly recommend his previous memoir, My Own Country, as well- great for book group discussions. And he weighs in at number 4 on the ABA Indie list.

Lucky NUMBER 13...Suzanne Collins’ THE HUNGER GAMES. If you don’t know about this book (and trilogy) you either have NO children age 10+ in your life OR you have been living in a cave. This book has been the ‘next big thing’ in YA for several years and with this summer’s release of the final book, Mockingjay, there were serious surges of interest in the series. My daughter has read this book at least five times. I’ve read it twice, so has my son. Yea, its THAT GOOD.

And last but not least, #14... A recent selection of both the Duck’s Cottage Reading Group and my subscription based book-of-the-every-other-month club, Jamie’s Book Club (www.ducks Jonathan Tropper’s caustic, sad, tragic but oh-my-god hysterical novel THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU. Tropper is supposedly working on the screenplay for Warner Bros and I HOPE THEY MAKE THIS MOVIE.  This is a great book to finish up the year with because after a large, heaping helping of holiday family togetherness who can’t use a book about a family who isn’t afraid to put it all out there- warts, scabs and all; with siblings who don’t hesitate to speak their minds, parents who never worry about biting their tongues and families who can love each other so much it hurts. 

I think my list comparison pretty much sums up what’s so great about us local indie bookstores…you can come in when you know what you’re looking for- whether it’s the NYT number one bestseller or the latest in a hot Swedish series; but you can also come in without a clue as to what you want and we’ll help you find a book that maybe didn’t make the cover of Time or garner any pre-publication praise but will capture your heart and mind just the same. We try to cover ALL the bases… and I think that’s what my Top 10 list proves. 

Happy New Year!
-- Jamie Layton, Manager Duck's Cottage