January 07, 2013

Novel Rank: a Box Score for Authors

If following a favorite sports team makes sense, then how much more a favorite author? Thus I'm hyp-mo-tized by Novel Rank, which allows you to track up to one hundred books and see how sales line up.

Of course there's some wailing and gnashing of teeth involved since many of my favorites are doing as well as I think they should. It's like a box score for authors although it'd be nice if there was more of a cumulative look at how a given book has done rather than just a snapshot of current sales.

Surprises include:

Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality by Donald Miller (an older book) is at an astonishing number 736. Must be a lot of evangelical interest or "seeker" interest in it (Miller's not Catholic).

33 Days to Morning Glory by Fr. Gaitley at a strong 1,749 despite the book not having a Kindle edition. Fr. Gaitley seems to be slaking a spiritual need these days.

Style, Sex, and Substance: 10 Catholic Women Consider the Things that Really Matter seems pretty strong despite presumably being limited to an audience of mostly Catholic women. Plus it's been out awhile. It's ahead of the recently released The Complete Thinker: The Mind of GK Chesterton by Alquist, for example.

Scott Hahn's more scholarly book not doing too well (Kingdom of God as Liturgical Empire, The: A Theological Commentary on 1-2 Chronicles). More surprisingly, Dawn Eden's book My Peace I Give to You isn't doing nearly as well as it deserves.

Heather King's Redeemed is ahead of the excellent (and more recent) Shirt of Flame.

Cardinal Schoenberg's We Have Found Mercy really doing poorly at number 657,691. No mercy on the mercy book. Kind of surprising given his position in the church.


I'm torn between my democratic instincts - if a book is selling well then it's likely good and meeting a need - and the elitist point of view that thinks the truth doesn't sell well because often people (including me of course) don't like to hear it.


MrsDarwin said...

Here's your bit of daily gossip from the oh-so-small Catholic world: the author of the chapter on the single life in Style, Sex, and Substance is getting married this fall to my brother.

TS said...

Almost incestuous!