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BOOK WORLD - October 17, 2010

Best Sellers

Newbies for the charts covering sales for the past week include ---

Ron Chernow's sweeping new biography of the nation's first president, George Washington. Has received rave early reviews, and may yet become the definitive book on the subject. Most certainly a present lots of bookish dads will be receiving this holiday season ... (Book World's review will run Oct. 24.)

Bill Bryson's quirky and insightful look at domesticity as seen through a history of his own home, a parsonage in England. We should all be so lucky!

Historian James Swanson mines Civil War history once more to bring us the tale of the hunt for Confederate States president Jefferson Davis in the aftermath of Lincoln's murder ... a follow-up of sorts to Swanson's "Manhunt," which was the furtive search for John Wilkes Booth.

And, to round out the new nonfiction list, the latest from the (dare we say brilliant?) bestselling writer Steven Johnson, author of "Everything Bad Is Good for You" and "Mind Wide Open."

In fiction sales, no real surprises --- Michael Connelly and the late Robert B. Parker's latest join the list --- EXCEPT that after weeks and weeks of strong sales, Kathleen Stockett's "The Help" has finally fallen off the top 10 list. Can't remember the last time it was below #5 on the list, much less not on it at all. But, don't be surprised to see it bounce back soon, especially with the holidays approaching ...

NONFICTION HARDCOVER


1. OBAMA’S WARS (Simon & Schuster, $30)
By Bob Woodward. An exhaustively researched look at the president as commander-in-chief. (2)

2. EARTH (THE BOOK)
(Grand Central, $27.99). By the Daily Show with Jon Stewart. A cheeky guide to the human race and its myriad accomplishments. (3)

3. WASHINGTON: A LIFE (Penguin Press, $40)
By Ron Chernow. A comprehensive, humanizing portrayal of perhaps our most revered Founding Father. (1)

4. AT HOME: A SHORT HISTORY OF PRIVATE LIFE
(Doubleday, $28.95). By Bill Bryson. An illuminating tour of Bryson’s own home, an English parsonage. (1)

5. THE ROOTS OF OBAMA’S RAGE (Regnery, $27.95)
By Dinesh D’Souza. A controversial take on how the president’s upbringing colors his perspective. (2)

6. PINHEADS AND PATRIOTS: WHERE YOU STAND IN THE AGE OF OBAMA
(Morrow, $27.99). By Bill O’Reilly. Rehashing familiar themes. (4)

7. GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS 2011
(Guinness World Records, $28.95). A new design and an emphasis on American-specific stats. (4)

8. THE GRAND DESIGN (Bantam, $28)
By Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow. Theories that aim to unravel the nature of existence. (5)

9. BLOODY CRIMES: THE CHASE FOR JEFFERSON DAVIS AND THE DEATH PAGEANT FOR LINCOLN’S CORPSE
(Morrow, $27.99). By James Swanson (1)

10. WHERE GOOD IDEAS COME FROM: THE NATURAL HISTORY OF INNOVATION (Riverhead, $26.95). By Steven Johnson. The influences that inspire. (1)


FICTION HARDCOVER


1. FALL OF GIANTS (Dutton, $36)
By Ken Follett. The debut of a historical trilogy following five families through the upheavals of the 20th century. (2)

2. THE REVERSAL (Little, Brown, $27.99)
By Michael Connelly. Legal wrangling brings Mickey Haller, his ex-wife and Harry Bosch together on a case. (1)

3. SQUIRREL SEEKS CHIPMUNK (Little, Brown, $21.99)
By David Sedaris. Wry, dark animal tales comprise this modern bestiary with illustrations by Ian Falconer. (2)

4. FREEDOM (FSG, $28)
By Jonathan Franzen. The relentless fracturing of the suburban Berglund family in St. Paul, Minn.; author of “The Corrections.” (6)

5. DON’T BLINK (Little, Brown, $27.99)
By James Patterson & Howard Roughan. It’s all out war between the Italian and Russian mafias in NYC. (2)

6. THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET’S NEST
(Knopf, $27.95). By Stieg Larsson. The Millennium Trilogy ends as Salander hunts for her failed assassin. (20)

7. SAFE HAVEN (Grand Central, $25.99)
By Nicholas Sparks. An enigmatic young woman arrives in the small North Carolina town of Southport. (4)

8. GETTING TO HAPPY (Viking, $27.95)
By Terry McMillan. The lively cast of “Waiting to Exhale” returns 15 years later, and things are rocky. (5)

9. PAINTED LADIES (Putnam, $26.95)
By Robert B. Parker. The late Parker’s final novel finds P.I. Spenser embroiled in a case of priceless art. (1)

10. LEGACY (Delacorte, $28)
By Danielle Steel. A genealogical quest uncovers a unique history—a Sioux princess who marries a French marquis. (2)


NONFICTION HARDCOVER


1. EAT PRAY LOVE: ONE WOMAN’S SEARCH FOR EVERYTHING ACROSS ITALY, INDIA AND INDONESIA
(Penguin, $15). By Elizabeth Gilbert. New feature film. (149)

2. PERFECT PHRASES FOR PERFORMANCE REVIEWS
(McGraw-Hill, $9.95). By Douglas Max andRobert Bacal. A glossary of hundreds of options. (3)

3. THE OFFICIAL SAT STUDY GUIDE (SECOND EDITION)
(College Board, $21.99). This revised manual offers 10 practice tests and loads of tips. (45)

4. THREE CUPS OF TEA: ONE MAN’S MISSION TO PROMOTE PEACE
(Griffin, $19.95). By Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin (178)

5. LINCOLN ON LEADERSHIP: EXECUTIVE STRATEGIES FOR TOUGH TIMES (Warner, $14.99)
By Donald T. Phillips. Tips from a wartime president. (1)

6. SECRETARIAT (Hyperion, $16.99)
By William Nack. The reissue of Nack’s classic look at the Triple Crown thoroughbred; basis of the film. (2)

7. WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU’RE EXPECTING
(Workman, $14.95). By Heidi Murkoff andSharon Mazell. Fourth edition of the popular guide. (8)

8. THE GLASS CASTLE (Scribner, $14)
By Jeannette Walls. A daughter’s memoir of her eccentric parents and unorthodox upbringing. (120)

9. MENNONITE IN A LITTLE BLACK DRESS: A MEMOIR OF GOING HOME (Holt, $14). By Rhoda Janzen
Coping, all at once, with a stray husband and car crash. (24)

10. FREAKONOMICS (HarperPerennial, $15.99)
By Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner. Exploring behavioral economics—revised and expanded. (19)


FICTION PAPERBACK


1. THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO
(Vintage, $14.95). By Stieg Larsson. First book in the late Swede’s “Millennium Trilogy”; basis of new film. (68)

2. THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE
(Vintage, $15.95). By Stieg Larsson. Sex trafficking between Sweden and Eastern Europe is exposed. (29)

3. I, ALEX CROSS (Vision, $9.99)
By James Patterson. A relative’s murder leads Cross and his girlfriend on the hunt for a vicious killer. (2)

4. 61 HOURS (Dell, $9.99)
By Lee Child. Ex-military cop Jack Reacher finds himself stranded in a small town with big (drug) problems. (2)

5. PIRATE LATITUDES (Harper, $9.99)
By Michael Crichton. A daring pirate captain plots to commandeer a Spanish galleon laden with treasure. (2)

6. ROUGH COUNTRY (Berkley, $9.99)
By John Sandford. This third Virgil Flowers caper involves the murder of an ad exec at a wooded resort. (2)

7. PLAY DEAD (Signet, $9.99)
By Harlan Coben. A NBA star fakes his own death in this reissue of the bestselling suspense writer’s first novel. (2)

8. CRAVE (Signet, $7.99)
By J.R. Ward. In this second “Fallen Angel” novel, Jim Heron aids a special ops soldier AWOL from his unit and wanted for murder. (1)

9. STYX’S STORM (Berkley, $7.99)
By Lora Leigh. A new tale in the author’s paranormal romance “Breed” series. (1)

10. LITTLE BEE (Simon & Schuster, $14)
By Chris Cleave. This wry second novel from a British journalist explores the state of war and refugees. (33)

Rankings reflect sales for the week ended October 10, 2010. The charts may not be reproduced without permission from Nielsen BookScan. Copyright © 2010 by Nielsen BookScan. The numbers following each entry represent the total weeks on The Post's bestseller lists.

By Christopher Schoppa  | October 16, 2010; 11:00 AM ET
Categories:  Best Sellers  
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