What Was the Best Seller the Year You Were Born?

Last week, I got so excited when I saw the BookBub Feature, the Best Selling Book the Year You were Born.  What book would it be?  Something by Michum?  Wouk?  Uris?

The list started with 1920. As I scrolled down to my year, I noticed an interesting combination of books and author I know, even if I haven’t read them, and books I had never heard of.

The known list includes Zane Grey, a favorite among my grandparents, Sinclair Lewis, Pearl Buck and Margaret Mitchell, Unknown, to me, books and authors, include Kathleen Winsor, Mika Waltari (a Finnish novelist), and Morris West.

Then I got to my year.  Here is the description of my book.  “Dolls: red or black; capsules or tablets; washed down with vodka or swallowed straight—for Anne, Neely, and Jennifer, it doesn’t matter, as long as the pill bottle is within easy reach. These three women become best friends when they are young and struggling in New York City and then climb to the top of the entertainment industry—only to find that there is no place left to go but down—into the Valley of the Dolls.”  Valley of the Dolls by Jacquelin Susann. Not a book I remember either my mother or grandmother reading.

I scrolled down to the end of the list because I wanted to see what the most recent titles were.  The list goes up to 2016 and I have to admit that I saw something that surprised me.  In the last ten listed years, two of the books were for young readers.  They were The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (2014) The Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Hard Luck by Jeff Kinney (2013).

Wow.  That is so cool that more recently a book for young readers can outstrip a book for adults.  Too, too cool.