"East of Eden" just behind Harry Potter in book sales? What am I missing here?

I’d post the link, but the New York Times bestseller page doesn’t seem to like my attempts at direct linking.

Anyway, East of Eden is #1 on the bestseller paperback fiction list – just behind Harry Potter in overall sales. What an I missing here? The movie (as far as I can tell) hasn’t been re-released in theaters nor any Steinbeck bio-flicks.

Also, best selling paperback? Do people not know how many copies are mouldering on shelves of used bok stores (let alone the Salvation Army)?


I read recently that Oprah Winfrey recommended East of Eden on her show. That would account for the sales spike.

Ah, here’s a link. Say what you will of Oprah, but this was an great choice.

Ahhhh! I knew something weird was involved (I suspected hackers, actually). Nice to see Ms. W has broadened (ha!) her scope from ‘The Bridges of Madison County’ et al (feh!).

Thanks N.

She’s apparently doing classic books now. One every month.

It should do interesting things to the best seller list.

If I remember correctly, this story on book sales is talking about “over time,” so any book that has been regularly assigned will have an edge. Wasn’t “Dune” listed as one of the all-time best sellers? Anyone ever had this assigned?

Wonder what it would look like if someone made a graph showing A) the number of copies of “The Scarlet Letter” sold and B) the number of copies actually read and C) the number of used copies sold to people who bought those copies in order to copy the margin notes.

Oh and speaking of “bestseller lists” - the New York Times bestseller list does not list those books which most people buy.

Those who shop online will notice you can “pre-order” with a “New York Times bestseller” discount… as much as 8 months before a book is released.

Hey, dammit! I loved The Bridges of Madison County. And as for “et al,” she had a few good ones mixed in with the tearjerking, woman-goes-through-major-life-change ones, i.e.

Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison - One of my all-time favorite books. Engrossing, entertaining, funny and pithy.

Stones from the River by Ursula Hegi - Another must-read. I grew up in Germany and recognized the people.

C’mon Inky-, where are those props?


Off to Cafe Society.

East of Eden has been my favorite novel since High School. From here on out, Oprah can officially Do No Wrong by me.

It’s my favorite too. I’m in the middle of re-reading it right now, and it’s even more amazing than I remembered.

East of Eden is one of my all time favorites too. The timshel discussion is brilliant. The character, Samuel, would have been a great Doper.

I’ll just chime in and say that I think “East of Eden” is Steinbeck’s greatest book. Glad to see that Oprah plugged it.

To be fair, The Bridges of Madison County was never an Oprah pick.

Complete list here.

Isn’t it true that the NY Times quit letting the Bible on the list? It might have made the list boring, but isn’t it fair to leave it there? The story I heard was that it’s pretty much always No. 1.

Perhaps they thought it unfair to put it in fiction? Or in non-fiction?

[temporary hijack]

Now that we’re approaching the 48th anniversary of James Dean’s death (Sep/30/55), maybe there’s some secret negotiations or planning to do a remake within the next year or two.

Perish the thought!

[/temporary hijack]