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BooksJanuary 12, 2018

The return of the Unity Books bestseller chart!

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This week’s best-selling books at the two best bookstores in the world.


1 Women and Power: A Manifesto by Mary Beard (Profile Books, $23)

Named one of the 20 best books of non-fiction of 2017 at the Spinoff Review of Books.

2 Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House by Michael Wolff (Little Brown, $38)

This chart was compiled by Unity at 6pm on Wednesday. The Wolff book arrived in the store at 4:30pm.

(Read our review by Danyl Mclauchlan here)

3 Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders (Bloomsbury, $33)

Booksellers New Zealand noted of the top selling titles in 2017, “The Man Booker Prize winner, Lincoln in the Bardo, by George Saunders was also a great seller – this is often, but not always the case for Booker winners. Perhaps Hera Lindsay Bird’s fandom of Saunders made an impact.”

4 The Power by Naomi Alderman (Penguin, $26)

“Naomi Alderman’s novel The Power has a fantastic premise: women are suddenly able to inflict pain and death at will. They can shoot electricity from their fingers, and direct them at men. Those who had been victims become stronger than the men who had abused them, and are able to conquer their oppressors. Suddenly powerful men have to face the consequences of their actions…. Sound familiar?”: Andra Jenkin, Spinoff Review of Books.

5 Mythos: A Retelling of the Myths of Ancient Greece by Stephen Fry (Michael Joseph, $37)


6 Collusion: How Russia Helped Trump Win the White House by Luke Harding (Guardian Faber, $33)

From the office of the President this week: “Did Dems or Clinton also pay Russians? Where are hidden and smashed DNC servers? Where are Crooked Hillary Emails? What a mess!”

7 Out of the Wreckage: Finding Hope in the Age of Crisis by George Monbiot (Verso, $27)

“With neoliberalism in crisis, it’s time to emphasise the importance to people of belonging and co-operation, argues this optimistic call to action”: The Guardian.

8 La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust Trilogy by Philip Pullman (David Fickling Books, $35)

“If you’re already a Dark Materials denizen, then I say unhesitatingly that this book, for all its darkness, is just about perfect”: Scarlett Cayford, Spinoff Review of Books.

9 A History of Bees by Maja Lunde (Simon & Schuster, $38)

“Pesticides kill the bees. Crops die. We die. Speculative fiction? Even for the genre, this first novel by Norwegian Maja Lunde feels uncomfortably close to non-fiction that hasn’t quite happened yet. She creates the strong sense of already being halfway down an apocalyptic path”: Catherine Woulfe, The Listener.

10 Tinkering: The Complete Book of John Clarke by John Clarke (Text Publishing, $40)

The late genius at work.


1 Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman (Picador, $35)

The book of the movie.

2 Mythos: A Retelling of the Myths of Ancient Greece by Stephen Fry (Michael Joseph, $37)

3 Solar Bones by Mike McCormack (Canongate, $23)

This is that novel written in a single motherfucking sentence.

4 The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur (Simon & Schuster, $30)

When the Moon is in the seventh house, and Jupiter aligns with Mars, then peace will guide the planets – and love will steer the stars.

5 Pachinko by Min Jin Lee (HarperCollins, $25)

“A vivid, immersive multi generational saga about life for Koreans in Japan is a tale of resilience and poignant emotional conflict”: The Guardian.

6 Tinkering: The Complete Book of John Clarke by John Clarke (Text Publishing, $40)

7 Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari (Vintage, $30)

Actually he has a new book out later this year, 21 Lessons for the 21st Century, which asks “what should we teach children today to prepare them for the world of tomorrow?”

8 Good Night Stories For Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli & Francesca Cavallo (Particular Books, $40)

Actually the New Zealand version is due soon, although unfortunately it’s called Go Girls.

9 Talking to My Daughter About the Economy by Yanis Varoufakis (Bodley Head, $35)

From the author’s website: “Talking To My Daughter About the Economy explains everything you need to know in order to understand why economics is the most important drama of our times.”

10 A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles (Random House, $26)

Novel set just after the Russian Revolution. “How delightful that in an era as crude as ours this finely composed new novel by Amor Towles stretches out with old-World elegance. A Gentleman in Moscow offers a chance to sink back into a lost attitude of aristocracy — equal parts urbane and humane”: The Washington Post.

The Spinoff Review of Books is brought to you by Unity Books.

The Spinoff Review of Books is proudly brought to you by Unity Books, recently named 2020 International Book Store of the Year, London Book Fair, and Creative New Zealand. Visit Unity Books Wellington or Unity Books Auckland online stores today. 

Mad Chapman, Editor
Aotearoa continues to adapt to a new reality and The Spinoff is right there, sorting fact from fiction to bring you the latest updates and biggest stories. Help us continue this coverage, and so much more, by supporting The Spinoff Members.Madeleine Chapman, EditorJoin Members

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