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Political Bookworm
Posted at 09:08 AM ET, 12/12/2011

BOOK WORLD Bestsellers — Dec. 11, 2011

Just a handful of changes this crisp, holiday season weekend. Some authors with muscle (and a devoted fan base) join the new fiction list (Michael Connelly, Diana Gabaldon), while in nonfiction, psychology professor Daniel Kahneman’s latest rejoins the list after a hiatus of several weeks (look for Book World’s review very soon), and Neil MacGregor, director of the British Museum, finds his hefty, illustrated tour of history (told via 100 man-made objects) hit the list at #10. A refreshing addition, indeed.

[click on the author’s name to be linked to Book World’s review]

NONFICTION HARDCOVER

1. STEVE JOBS (Simon & Schuster, $35)

By Walter Isaacson. The life of the offbeat, visionary founder of the Apple corporation, based on numerous interviews with Jobs himself. (6)


2. KILLING LINCOLN: THE SHOCKING ASSASSINATION THAT CHANGED AMERICA FOREVER

(Henry Holt, $28). By Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard (10)


3. BACK TO WORK: WHY WE NEED SMART GOVERNMENT FOR A STRONG ECONOMY

(Knopf, $23.95). By Bill Clinton (3)

4. GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS 2012

(Guinness World Records, $28.95). The series unveils a “wide-screen” design, new topics and previously unseen photos. (9)


5. CATHERINE THE GREAT: PORTRAIT OF A WOMAN

(Random House, $35). By Robert K. Massie. The remarkable life of German princess turned Russian empress. (4)


6. JACK KENNEDY: ELUSIVE HERO

(Simon & Schuster, $27.50). By Chris Matthews. The political pundit’s biography of President Kennedy, drawn from multiple sources. (5)


7. UNBROKEN: A WORLD WAR II STORY OF SURVIVAL, RESILIENCE, AND REDEMPTION

(Random House, $27). By Laura Hillenbrand (53)


8. THINKING, FAST AND SLOW (FSG, $30)

By Daniel Kahneman. The Nobel Prize winner (economic sciences) examines the modes of thought that fuel our decision making. (2)


9. BEING GEORGE WASHINGTON: THE INDISPENSABLE MAN, AS YOU’VE NEVER SEEN HIM

(Threshold, $26). By Glenn Beck. A new biography of the Founding Father, flaws and all. (2)


10. A HISTORY OF THE WORLD IN 100 OBJECTS

(Viking, $45). By Neil MacGregor. Civilization’s rise through the prism of man-made artifacts. (1)




FICTION HARDCOVER

1. THE DROP (Little, Brown, $27.99)

By Michael Connelly. With little more than three years before mandatory retirement, Harry Bosch is eager for cases — and then gets handed two, each bearing serious ramifications. (1)


2. 11/22/63 (Scribner, $35)

By Stephen King. A modest English professor is offered the chance to change history — by preventing the JFK assassination. (4)


3. KILL ALEX CROSS (Little, Brown, $28.99)

By James Patterson. The president and his daughter are kidnapped as a biological attack on Washington, D.C.’s water supply is unleashed. (3)


4. EXPLOSIVE EIGHTEEN (Bantam, $28)

By Janet Evanovich. A Hawaiian sojourn goes terribly wrong for Stephanie Plum, as her seatmate on the flight is murdered — and she could be next. (2)


5. THE LITIGATORS (Doubleday, $28.95)

By John Grisham. The fortunes of a sketchy law practice may change thanks to a new recruit and one major lawsuit. (6)


6. MICRO (Harper, $28.99)

By Michael Crichton and Richard Preston. Graduate students from diverse scientific disciplines are recruited by a mysterious microbiology firm. (2)


7. THE SCOTTISH PRISONER (Delacorte, $28)

By Diana Gabaldon. Lord John Grey summons Jaime Frasier (of Outlander fame) to aid his efforts to expose a conspiracy, while another Jacobite revolt may be in the offing. (1)


8. ZERO DAY (Grand Central, $27.99)

By David Baldacci. A top notch U.S. Army CID investigator finds something amiss in a rural West Virginia Town. (5)


9. V IS FOR VENGEANCE (Marion Wood, $27.95)

By Sue Grafton. Kinsey Millhone’s ID of a shoplifter leads to unexpected, tragic consequences — including a punch in the face. (3)


10. THE BEST OF ME (Grand Central, $25.99)

By Nicholas Sparks. A funeral calls former high school sweethearts back to their rural North Carolina town. (8)



NONFICTION PAPERBACK

1. HEAVEN IS FOR REAL: A LITTLE BOY’S ASTOUNDING STORY OF HIS TRIP TO HEAVEN AND BACK

(Thomas Nelson, $16.99). By Todd Burpo (47)


2. THE ELDER SCROLLS V: SKYRIM: OFFICIAL GAME GUIDE

(Prima, $26.99). By David Hodgson. Navigating the popular role-playing video game. (3)


3. THE WORLD ALMANAC AND BOOK OF FACTS 2012

(World Almanac, $12.99). The one-volume classic, a reference staple since 1868. (3)


4. THE IMMORTAL LIFE OF HENRIETTA LACKS

(Broadway, $16). By Rebecca Skloot. How one woman’s death from cervical cancer in 1951 led to the creation of the prodigious HeLa cell line. (39)


5. UNLIKELY FRIENDSHIPS: 47 REMARKABLE STORIES FROM THE ANIMAL KINGDOM (Workman, $13.95)

By Jennifer S. Holland. Heartwarming tales accompanied by full color photos. (7)


6. LINCOLN ON LEADERSHIP: EXECUTIVE STRATEGIES FOR TOUGH TIMES

(Warner, $14.99). By Donald T. Phillips (5)


7. THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE & THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES

(Bantam, $3.99). Introduced by Pauline Maier (3)


8. POCKET POSH© CHRISTMAS SUDOKU 2

(Andrews McMeel, $7.99). By The Puzzle Society. Seasonal mindteasers for the young at heart. (3)


9. OUTLIERS: THE STORY OF SUCCESS

(Back Bay, $16.99). By Malcolm Gladwell. Assumptions about success challenged. (19)


10. TEACHING SOCIAL SKILLS TO YOUTH: A STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO 182 BASIC TO COMPLEX SKILLS

(Boys Town, $32.95). By Tom Dowd & Jeff Tierney (1)



FICTION PAPERBACK

1. THE HELP (Berkley, $16)

By Kathryn Stockett. A frank chronicle of the lives of several black maids working in a town in 1960s Miss. (34)


2. THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO

(Vintage, $14.95; $7.99). By Stieg Larsson. First book in the late Swede’s “Millennium Trilogy.” (113)


3. THE NEXT ALWAYS: BOOK ONE OF THE INN BOONSBORO TRILOGY

(Berkley, $16). By Nora Roberts. A love story set in the very real Maryland town. (5)


4. TOYS

(Vision, $9.99). By James Patterson & Neil McMahon. Hays Baker, part of a genetically engineered perfect family complete with super strength, has his do-gooder world turned upside down. (1)


5. SMOKIN’ SEVENTEEN (Bantam, $8.99)

By Janet Evanovich. Bail bondsman Stephanie Plum is faced with a string of murders and pressure to settle down with ... who? (3)


6. THE TIGER’S WIFE (Random House, $15)

By Téa Obreht. While on a humanitarian mission, a doctor in the Balkans is confronted by the riddles of her own family’s past. (4)


7. LEARNING TO LOVE (Mira, $7.99)

By Debbie Macomber. The romance novellas “Sugar & Spice” and “Love by Degree.” (2)


8. THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE

(Vintage, $15.95; $7.99). By Stieg Larsson. Sex trafficking between Sweden and Eastern Europe is exposed. (58)


9. SING YOU HOME (Atria, $16)

By Jodi Picoult. Three characters take turns narrating this emotional tale of parenting, relationships and love. (7)


7. TICK TOCK (Grand Central, $14.99)

By James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge. A trio of twisted killers stalk NYC; cop Michael Bennett is summoned from vacation to lead the charge. (1)


10. CUTTING FOR STONE (Vintage, $15.95)

By Abraham Verghese. Medicine, political upheaval and the African continent woven into a sweeping saga. (50)


Rankings reflect sales for the week ended December 4, 2011. The charts may not be reproduced without permission from Nielsen BookScan. Copyright 2011 by Nielsen BookScan. (The right-hand column of numbers represents weeks on this list, which premiered in Book World on Jan. 11, 2004. The bestseller lists in print alternate between hardcover and paperback; the complete list can be found online.)

By  |  09:08 AM ET, 12/12/2011

Categories:  Political Bookworm

 
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