When looking for a good book to read, so many of us begin with The New York Times’ Best Seller list—thinking that if everyone in the Nation is reading something, then we should too. But how do books make it on that list? Do you ever wonder? Unfortunately, I don’t know; it’s a trade secret!
Despite the name, we do know that the “Best Seller” list we see weekly is not entirely based on sales of a book title. The New York Times was sued over this in 1983, but they won the case. The courts ruled that because the list is considered editorial content, and not objective factual content, the Times had the right to exclude books from the list!
Additionally, book titles tend to linger and linger on the list! And, since the list can be manipulated by retailers, wholesalers, authors and publishers, it can sometimes seem like we only ever see the Pattersons, Grishams, Evanoviches making the list. Given these issues, it can be a bit frustrating if you are looking for a new book or a new author to try.
So, how do avid readers learn of new authors? Well, there’s plenty of online resources out there, including several here at Rocky River Public Library! In fact, start here on this very blog you are reading. Read it or Weep is chock-full of book suggestions! After that, click on our Reading Room for more book reviews! Oh, you like personal interaction too? Stop in to the library and check out our staff favorite displays! And don’t forget to ask us what we are reading too! We’ll help you get Beyond those Best Seller lists! -Carol