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Booker longlist sales increase
06.08.08 | Philip Stone
All eleven of the published books longlisted for the Man Booker Prize increased their sales in the week of the announcement, according to Nielsen BookScan. But Helen Garner's The Spare Room (Canongate), which sparked controversy when it missed out on the longlist, saw sales decline.
Salman Rushdie's The Enchantress of Florence (Cape) remains the early sales leader, with 698 copies sold through Nielsen BookScan's Total Consumer Market last week, an increase of 56.5% on its previous weekly sale of 446. Proportionally, the biggest increase was enjoyed by Linda Grant's The Clothes on Their Backs (Virago), which saw its sales increase from just 13 copies during the week ending 26th July to 144 during the seven days to 2nd August.
Ross Raisin's God's Own Country (Viking), widely discussed as the most deserving title not included on the list, also enjoyed a small sales increase, by 57.1% week-on-week.
Meanwhile, Canongate publisher Jamie Byng's much-publicised comments regarding the omission of The Spare Room did not boost sales. The book sold 222 copies through the TCM last week, down 19% week-on-week. Child 44, which Byng criticised for its inclusion in the longlist, grew sales by 250%.
Gaynor Arnold's Girl in a Blue Dress (Tindal Street) and John Berger's From A to X are yet to hit retailer shelves, but the latter is being brought forward by publisher Verso from September to take advantage of its inclusion on the longlist.