Book shops vote on alternative Christmas best-sellers

Fed up with Jamie Oliver? Tired of E.L. James? High street book retailers have come up with an alternative list of books that they think will be best-sellers this Christmas. Of course An Adventure must be in your top ten for Christmas presents this year, and judging by various articles the biography is doing very well both in terms sales and recommendations. Here is just one of them by James Hall from the Telegraph.

Around 200 independent bookshop owners voted on the ten books they think will appeal to people looking for something a little different this year.

The list includes titles such as 101 Uses for a Dead Kindle by Adrian Searle and Wenceslas: A Christmas Poem by Carol Ann Duffy, the Poet Laureate.

The number one book is Horologicon: A Day’s Jaunt Through the Lost Words of the English Language by Mark Forsyth. The book examines “extraordinary” words from the English language arranged by the hour of the day.

In second place is Artemis Cooper’s biography of the war hero and travel writer Patrick Leigh Fermor.

Patrick Neale, president of The Booksellers Association, said that the list contains “bizarre”, “obscure” and “undiscovered” titles.

“These out of the ordinary, off-beat titles were nominated during the Association’s annual conference, which brought together around 200 booksellers. These were carefully selected with the imaginative book buyer in mind, who may be looking for something a little different to bestseller books,” said Mr Neale.

The Alternative Top Ten

1. Horologicon by Mark Forsyth

2. Patrick Leigh Fermor by Artemis Cooper

3. The Middle Class ABC by Fi Cotter-Craig and Zebedee Helm

4. Wenceslas by Carol Ann Duffy

5. 101 Uses for a Dead Kindle by Adrian Searle

6. First Class by Chris West

7. On the Map by Simon Garfield

8. Paper: An Elegy by Ian Sansom

9. Fir Tree by Sanna Annukka

10. Bring Me Sunshine by Charlie Connelly


3 thoughts on “Book shops vote on alternative Christmas best-sellers

  1. Anniina Weckman

    They really choose those very best book.In fact i read some of them.In Finland most of the book i seen are christian books which many of people use to read and it seem that this year they got the good sales for it.Anyway i am glad to see those top 10 book they are all great.

  2. Willie Scraggs

    Ms Cooper’s biography packs in a lot of information – much of it of interest to those of us impressed when we first read Leigh Fermor’s work. Yet Ms Cooper’s writing is not always elegant in style, relaxed or paced in exposition of her subject. There is relatively little management of the diverse themes, or reflection upon her subject’s life, his works and the relationship between them; there is scarcely any humour. I expect that she was working to a deadline. At least she does not shrink from the truth about Leigh Fermor; for instance, for me, this biography confirmed my earlier suspicions that he was a snob, albeit a gifted one.

    1. Julia E Bishop

      I look forward to reading Cooper’s biography. I am in the process of reading “In Tearing Haste” at the moment. I have quite mixed feelings for who PLF was. I have admired his writing and talent for many years, almost to hero worship, for I am a person who has struggled to learn another language, and as a girl from the age of 10, dreamed of traveling or sailing the world. While others were reading “Nancy Drew”, I was reading about exotic Samarkand or sailing the world with Irving Johnson or Alan Villiers. As an older person with more perspective, I am not sure I really would have enjoyed knowing PLF. Perhaps, his charm and tales would have captivated me like he did so many, but I, too, glimpse a snob and a personality, that as he grew older was not as engaging as the adventuresome young man. His writing survives.


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