Brown's Inferno paperback takes top spot

Brown's Inferno paperback takes top spot

Dan Brown's mass market paperback for his latest thriller, Inferno (Corgi), debuts at number one in the charts for the week ending 10th May, selling 38,888 copies.

Although this was comfortably ahead of nearest rival and former chart topper Minecraft: The Official Construction Handbook (Egmont, 21,050 copies) first week sales were down an astonishing 67% on Brown's previous paperback, The Lost Symbol, which topped the chart in its debut week in July 2010 (week ending 24th July) with 118,320 copies. Some of the shortfall can perhaps be attributed to Inferno's average selling price for most of 2014; between mid-February and April, the hardback's average selling price was just £5.55, just £1.89 more than the average selling price of the paperback last week.

Nevertheless, this is Brown's fourth bestselling title to reach the top spot in the 50.

With the exception of Jonas Jonasson's The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden (Fourth Estate) in ninth place, all of the titles in the top 20 are priced at £7.99 and all seven new entries in the 20 are paperbacks. The highest new entry is Khaled Hosseini's And the Mountains Echoed (Bloomsbury). The novel, which has already been released in hardback, trade and slip-case limited edition has now sold 218,438 copies across editions including the 19,767 sold last week to take third place. Rising 462 places and rounding off the top five, Robert Harris' critically acclaimed thriller An Officer and a Spy (Arrow) sold 13,464. Further thrills were to be had from Terry Hayes who narrowly misses the top 10 with I am Pilgrim, another hit for Corgi debuting at 11. Described by Dame Gail Rebuck CBE as "The best debut thriller since The Day of the Jackal", the hardcover has shifted 16,143 in less than twelve months, which bodes well for the paperback, which sold 10,662 copies in its first week on the chart.

In Original Fiction, Maeve Binchy's Chestnut Street (Orion) slips to number two this week and is sandwiched between two titles featuring grisly serial killing murderers. Jeffrey Deaver claims his second number one on the chart with The Skin Collector (Hodder) selling 3,624 copies. The novel, which features a tattoo artist using poisonous ink to murder victims, is joined by Tony Parsons first crime novel The Murder Bag (Century, 2,420 copies) at three.

Made in Chelsea star Binky Felstead is the latest cast member to release an autobiography and enters at six on the Non-fiction chart with Being Binky (Simon & Schuster) selling 1,571 copies but there is a new number one on the chart as Mary Berry relinquishes the top spot after 10 weeks with Mary Berry Cooks (BBC) falling to second place behind Guy Martin, the British bike racing legend's autobiography which takes first selling a slim 120 copies more than Berry- 5,761.

In paperback Non-fiction there were no changes to the top three since last week's chart.

Overall, 2.8m book sales registered through Nielsen BookScan last week for a combine value of £20.8m. Sales were down 1.8% week on week but up 2.6% on the same week last year.