Diana Gabaldon's Newest Novel Last Week's Top Seller as Holiday Shoppers Get Busy Buying

Nicholas Barron

Readers are gobbling up Diana Gabaldon’s Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone, the latest novel in her Outlander series.

According to Publishers Weekly, the book sold nearly 183,000 copies in its first week. That figure makes Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone the best-selling book right now in the country.

And the sales numbers show Gabaldon still has fans. It’s been seven years since Gabaldon released an Outlander novel, 2014’s Written in My Own Heart’s Blood.

Not only are readers buying Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone, but most seem to enjoy it. With more than 4,000 ratings, the novel currently has a 4.6 out of five rating on Goodreads and 4.7 out of five stars on Amazon.

Gabaldon’s series is the basis for Starz’s TV show Outlander.

Trailing Gabaldon’s novel on Publishers Weekly’s top ten list of weekly book sales is Jeff Kinney’s newest Wimpy Kid book. The children’s book sold 88,320 copies last week and has sold nearly 625,000 copies since hitting shelves in October.

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Photo by Julia Larson from Pexels

Other top-selling books last week

Second in adult fiction book sales last week was Nora Roberts’ The Becoming: The Dragon Heart Legacy, Book 2.

The novel sold just over 42,000 copies last week. The Becoming is the second in a trilogy that Roberts kicked off with the previous year’s The Awakening.

St. Martin’s Press, Roberts’ publisher, hasn’t announced when the series’ third book will come out. But if the trilogy’s first two novels are any indication, both of which came out in subsequent Novembers, readers can expect the final Dragon Heart Legacy book to publish in Nov. 2022.

James Patterson’s latest Alex Cross novel, Fear No Evil, was third in sales last week. The book sold nearly 37,000 copies.

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Image from Publishers Weekly

Topping the nonfiction list last week was Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.’s, The Real Anthony Fauci: Bill Gates, Big Pharma, and the Global War on Democracy and Public Health. Readers bought nearly 47,000 copies of the book.

The book claims to uncover efforts between Bill Gates, Dr. Anthony Fauci, and others to spread misinformation about vaccines and COVID-19. Kennedy is a well-documented anti-vaccine crusader.

Following Kennedy’s book is The 1619 Project: An Origin Story. The book, an expansion of a 2019 New York Times Magazine story documenting slavery in America’s history, sold just over 37,000 copies.

Holiday shoppers buy books early.

Book publishing in the U.S. is a nearly $26 billion industry.

Book sales rose 12% during last year’s holiday season. However, this year, publishers started warning in Sep. that supply chain issues could make it more difficult to buy physical books.

Many shoppers seem to have gotten the message, starting their holiday shopping earlier than usual.

According to NPD BookScan, children’s print book sales rose by 7% in Oct. from Oct. 2020 and by 19% from Oct. 2019. NPD also found in an Oct. survey that 42% of holiday shoppers had already started gift buying.

By the time Santa arrives on Dec. 24, NPD analyst Kristie McLean expects publishers will see a 5%-9% increase in holiday book sales this year.

Are you planning to give any books as gifts this year? If so, have you already bought them? Let me know in the comments.

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