Child's play for Lee as he tops charts

Child's play for Lee as he tops charts

Lee Child's 15th Jack Reacher thriller, Worth Dying For (Bantam), was the bestselling book in the UK last week, scoring impressive sales of 32,275 copies in just three days upon its release on Thursday.

The mass-market novel, which sold 125,000 copies in hardback, takes top spot in the Official UK Top 50 helped by a better-than-half-price offer at Waterstone's and a spot in W H Smith's half-price "book of the week" promotion. Transworld stablemate Sophie Kinsella's Mini Shopaholic (Black Swan) takes second position overall, ahead of Dawn French's A Tiny Bit Marvellous (Penguin).

In addition to Worth Dying For, new entries into the Official UK Top 50 include Dorothy Koomson's The Woman He Loved Before (Sphere), Karen Rose's You Belong to Me (Headline), Elizabeth Noble's The Way We Were (Penguin), and Robert Muchamore's People's Republic (Hodder). The latter, Muchamore's 13th CHERUB thriller, was the bestselling hardback book in the UK last week, scoring sales of 7,839 copies and taking £58,000 through bookshop tills. It was also the bestselling children's book in the UK, scoring the Islington-born novelist his first number one in three years.

Katie Price's The Comeback Girl (Century) was narrowly the bestselling hardback fiction book of the week, selling 6,818 copies in the seven days to 6th August. James Patterson and Michael Lewdwidge's Now You See Her (also Century) takes second position in this week's Original Fiction chart, helped by a half-price "deal of the week" at W H Smith, while Julian Barnes overtook Alan Hollinghurst to become the bestselling Man Booker longlistee.

Barnes' The Sense of an Ending (Cape) sold 4,550 copies in its first week in bookshops—three times as many copies as the Hollinghurst's The Stranger's Child (Picador).

Two BBC cookery-show tie-ins continue to top the Hardback Non-fiction bestseller list: Rick Stein's Spain (BBC) and Simon Hopkinson's The Good Cook (BBC). Former footballer Paul Lake, whose career was cut short through injury, is the highest new entry in the Hardback Non-fiction chart—his memoir, I'm Not Really Here (Century), débuts in 12th.

Bill Bryson's At Home (Black Swan), meanwhile, regains its position at the summit of the Paperback Non-fiction bestseller list following a two-week hiatus. In the past 12 months, just two other paperback non-fiction books have managed to return to top spot after losing it: Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love (Bloomsbury) and Edmund de Waal's The Hare with Amber Eyes (Vintage).

In total, £27.7m was spent at UK book retail outlets in the seven days to 6th August—down just 1.4% on the previous week, but down 10.3% on the same week last year. Once again, poor sales of physical fiction books is to blame, with sales through Nielsen BookScan's Top 5,000 bestseller list down 20% year-on-year. Comparatively, spending on non-fiction and children's novels was up 5% year-on-year last week.