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BooksFebruary 10, 2017

The Unity Books best-seller chart for the week ending February 11


The weekly Unity Books best-seller chart at their stores in Wellington and Auckland.


1 Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family & Culture in Crisis (HarperCollins, $35) by JD Vance

Number two over at Amazon, behind Orwell’s 1984; Vance’s book about America’s so-called “rust belt” has set the US on fire, and is seen as the portrait of America in these times.

2 The Sellout (Oneworld, $28) by Paul Beatty

“Trump,” the author said at the Jaipur literary festival in India last month, “is America’s dick pic. Everyone’s looking at it.”

3 Norse Mythology (Bloomsbury, $30) by Neil Gaiman

Includes Andhrímnir, the chef of the gods. He kills a mighty boar. The cooked beast is then fed to the gods and fallen warriors in Valhalla. At night, the boar comes back to life so Andhrímnir can kill him and cook him again.

4 Fucking Apostrophes (Icon Books, $19) by Simon Griffin

Grammar sort of thing.

5 4 3 2 1 (Faber, $37) by Paul Auster

866 pages of intellectual bullshit by one of fiction’s most prized intellectual bullshitters.

6 Constitution for Aotearoa NZ (Victoria University Press, $25) by Geoffrey Palmer and Andrew Butler

Many regard Palmer-Butler as the Lennon-McCartney of constitutional law.

7 Mimicry Journal #2 (Mimicry, $15) edited by Holly Hunter

Over 200 people attended the launch; excitement and a sense of adventure surround this lively new addition to New Zealand letters.

8 The Vegetarian (Portobello Books, $30) by Han Kang

Winner of the 2016 Man Booker prize for international fiction.

9 The Sympathizer (Piatkus, $28) by Viet Thanh Nguyen

Winner of the 2016 Pulitzer prize for fiction.

10 Goneville: A Memoir (Awa Press, $39) by Nick Bollinger

 Charming story of NZ rock, on the road and on the cheap, told by the respected critic.



1 Swing Time (Hamish Hamilton, $37) by Zadie Smith

“A story of two young dancers is a convincing study of rootlessness and the alienation of fame”: Financial Times.

2 Norse Mythology (Faber, $30) by Neil Gaiman

3 Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis (William Collins, $35) by JD Vance

4 Lion: A Long Way Home (Penguin, $28) by Saroo Brierley

The book of the movie which has got Nicole Kidman in it.

5 Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers (Vermillion, $38) by Timothy Ferris

Ferris gave a sneak look inside his book when he told Forbes magazine, “Here are a few habits or tools that popped up surprisingly often. 1) More than 80% of the interviewees have some form of daily mindfulness or meditation practice. Several use Tara Brach’s Smile Meditation 2010 audio, as well as apps like Headspace 2) Use of odd physical tools or supplements like the Rumble Roller or exogenous ketones 3) Practicing the worst-case scenario is common, and it’s done to decrease fear of taking risks — for example, one guest routinely takes a few days each month to sleep in a sleeping bag in his kitchen and eat nothing but instant oatmeal. Others fast, and others wear the same cheap clothing for week every quarter or so. Once you practice what ‘losing it all’ would feel and look like, it ceases to control your decisions.”

6 The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate – Discoveries from a Secret World (Black Inc., $37) by Peter Wohlleben


7 Fates and Furies (Windmill Books, $26) by Lauren Groff


8 Goneville: A Memoir (Awa Press, $39) by Nick Bollinger

9 Ghosts of Gondwana (Potton & Burton, $60) by George Gibbs

Natural history.

10 Red Notice: How I Became Putin’s No. 1 Enemy (Corgi Books, $36) by Bill Browder

Bill O’Reilly, interviewing Donald Trump this week on Fox TV: “Putin’s a killer.” Trump: “There are a lot of killers. We’ve got a lot of killers. What, you think our country’s so innocent?” 

Keep going!