While last week’s list saw a dirth of entries, there has been flood of titles joining the list this week ... driven, it seems, by a shared concern over the deficit and the budgetary crisis still unfolding in Washington. It’s a mix of titles from 2010 (which have surfaced on this list before) and those newly published — from a look at the origins of the financial crisis to pundit Glenn Beck’s take on America’s finances to a new title on (Wall Street culprit?) Goldman Sachs and its outsized influence.

In the political vein, we see the return of Donald Rumsfeld’s memoir (at #1 of all things), conservative blogger Andrew Breitbart expounding on his beliefs and influential business model and Deval Patrick, the governor of Massachusetts, reflecting on his life’s trajectory.

A welcome, and sobering, break from all the partisan rhetoric comes by way of “Poor Economics,” a new book that is the result of 15 years of research and control trials around the globe by two respected professors of economics at MIT. They examine the myriad effects of poverty on people and societies, upending much of the conventional wisdom held by governments, aid organizations and NGOs, perceptions which in turn drive the way they provide financial assistance and humanitarian aid.


Political Bestsellers — April 24, 2011

1 . Known and Unknown: A Memoir


2. The Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution

(FSG, $35). By Francis Fukuyama

3. A Chance to Make History: What Works and What Doesn't in Providing an Excellent Education for All

(PublicAffairs, $25.99). By Wendy Kopp

4. America by Heart : Reflections on Family, Faith, and Flag

(Harper, $25.99). By Sarah Palin

5. A Reason to Believe: Lessons from an Improbable Life

(Broadway, $21.99). By Governor Deval Patrick

6. All the Devils Are Here: The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis

(Portfolio, $32.95). By Bethany McLean & Joe Nocera

Market prices are reflected in a glass window as a man wears a tie at the Tokyo Stock Exchange March 10, 2011. (Toru Hanai/REUTERS)

7. Obama’s Wars (Simon & Schuster, $30)

By Bob Woodward

8. 63 Documents the Government Doesn't Want You to Read

(Skyhorse, $24.95). By Jesse Ventura with Dick Russell

9. Broke: The Plan to Restore Our Trust, Truth and Treasure

(Threshold Editions, $29.99). By Glenn Beck

10. Rawhide Down: The Near Assassination of Ronald Reagan

(Henry Holt, $27). By Del Quentin Wilber

(Spencer Platt/GETTY IMAGES)

(PublicAffairs, $26.99). By Abhijit V. Banerjee & Esther Duflo

12. Wild Bill Donovan: The Spymaster Who Created the OSS and Modern American Espionage

(Free Press, $30). By Douglas Waller

A man holds onto his umbrella outside the New York Stock Exchange, March 10, 2011. (BRENDAN MCDERMID/REUTERS)

13. Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World!

(Grand Central, $27.99). By Andrew Breitbart

14. Money and Power: How Goldman Sachs Came to Rule the World

(Doubleday, $30.50). By William D. Cohan

FILE - In this March 8, 2010 file photograph, a sign for Wall Street is shown near the New York Stock Exchange. (Mark Lennihan/AP)

Drawn from Book World’s bestseller data supplied by Nielsen BookScan for the week ending April 17, 2011 (culled from the top 50 titles sold). The chart may not be reproduced without permission from Nielsen BookScan. Copyright © 2011