Looking for a good book? See what’s on the best-seller list


Rankings based on reports from selected book stores in Southern California:

NONFICTION

1. “Hillbilly Elegy,” by J.D. Vance (Harper: $27.99). The investment banker’s account of growing up poor in Appalachia.

2. “South and West,” by Joan Didion (Knopf: $21). Excerpts from the author’s unpublished notebooks from a Southern road trip and Patty Hearst’s trial.

3. “Dear Ijeawele,” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Knopf: $15). A feminist manifesto in 15 suggestions on raising girls to become strong, independent women.

4. “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” by Marie Kondo (Ten Speed Press: $16.99). The cleaning guru’s method to decluttering your home and simplifying your life.

5. “Sapiens,” by Yuval Norah Harari (Harper: $35). An examination of humanity’s creation and evolution.

6. “Homo Deus,” by Yuval Noah Harari (Harper: $35). A look into the future by the author of “Sapiens.”

7. “Rad Women Worldwide,” by Kate Schatz (Ten Speed Press: $15.99). An illustrated collection of 40 diverse profiles of females who shaped the world.

8. “A Colony in a Nation,” by Chris Hayes (Norton: $26.95). The MSNBC news anchor explores inequality between the affluent, white elite and the urban poor.

9. “The Hidden Life of Trees,” by Peter Wohlleben (Greystone Books: $24.95). The case that trees in the forest are purposeful, social beings living in dynamic relationship with each other.

10. “Portraits of Courage,” by George W. Bush (Crown: $35). Paintings and stories of America’s military veterans by the former president.

FICTION

1. “Norse Mythology,” by Neil Gaiman (Norton: $25.95). A reimagining of the great Norse tales of Thor and other gods.

2. “Lincoln in the Bardo,” by George Saunders (Random House: $28). President Abraham Lincoln grieves the loss of his son and is haunted by ghosts.

3. “Exit West,” by Mohsin Hamid (Riverhead: $26). Two refugees begin a romance and find home with the help of magical realism.

4. “Vicious Circle,” by C.J. Box (Putnam: $27). A recently released prisoner seeks revenge on Wyoming game warden, Joe Pickett.

5. “The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane,” by Lisa See (Scribner: $27). A Chinese tea seller moves to California where her adopted daughter lives.

6. “A Gentleman in Moscow,” by Amor Towles (Viking: $27). In 1922, a Russian count is sentenced to house arrest in a grand hotel for the rest of his life.

7. “Mississippi Blood,” by Greg Iles (Morrow: $28.99). The conclusion to the politically charged Natchez Burning trilogy.

8. “In This Grave Hour,” by Jacqueline Winspear (Harper: $27.99). Investigator Maisie Dobbs is assigned to find the killer of a man who escaped Belgium as a boy during The Great War.

9. “The Idiot,” by Elif Batuman (Penguin Press: $27). A Turkish Harvard freshman develops a crush on an older mathematics student from Hungary.

10. “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Double Down,” by Jeff Kinney (Abrams: $13.95). Greg and Rowley try to make a scary movie after finding an old video camera.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Insight and Books

Letters to the editor: Dec. 18, 2017

Re: Dec. 5 article, “UT seeking 2 percent increase in tuition in 2018, and again in 2019,” and Dec. 7 article, “UT graduate students protest low wages, possible tax on waived tuition.” Two recent articles caught my eye in the Statesman. One was that the cost of tuition could increase at the University of Texas. The other was...
Opinion: Roy Moore debacle wasn’t all Steve Bannon’s fault

Republican politics was starting to feel like a version of Mel Brooks’ “The Producers.” In the play, two scammers devise a tax write-off scheme in which they will make a killing by losing money on a Broadway show. They reach for the most grotesque, tasteless musical the human mind can conceive — “Springtime for Hitler&rdquo...
‘Stormlight Archive’ series continues with gripping third book
‘Stormlight Archive’ series continues with gripping third book

Brandon Sanderson’s “Oathbringer” is an epic fantasy about the return of an ancient, world-destroying evil. God is dead. And Odium, the god who killed the Almighty, is unleashing terrible monsters to destroy humankind. Dalinar Kholin has bonded with the powerful spren known as the Stormfather and led his people to the lost city of...
Facebook comments: Dec. 17, 2017

As reported by the American-Statesman’s Kevin Lyttle, Austin city staffers identified eight city-owned sites that could house a Major League Soccer stadium or practice facility. Precourt Sports Ventures, owners of Columbus Crew SC, announced in October that it was exploring a move to Austin. The possible stadium sites include three pieces of...
Commentary: How housing costs are changing Central Texas’ demographics
Commentary: How housing costs are changing Central Texas’ demographics

The demographic trends in Texas are clear: The combination of a youthful Latino population and an aging white population has led to Latino dominance in the state’s population growth. Between 2006 and 2016, the Latino population grew six times more rapidly than the white population. Of the nearly 4.4 million persons added to the Texas population...
More Stories