Jones and Wax bestsellers during Hay

Jones and Wax bestsellers during Hay

Books by Tom Jones, Ruby Wax and Laura Bates were the biggest sellers at the Hay Festival Bookshop, which saw a 15% increase in overall book sales this festival in comparison to last year.

Jones’ Over the Top and Back (Michael Joseph), Wax’s A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled (Penguin Life) and Bates’ Girl Up (Simon & Schuster) were the top three overall biggest sellers at the Hay Bookshop during the festival which ran from Thursday 26th May to Sunday 5th June. Peter Frankopan’s Silk Roads (Bloomsbury) and Jeanette Winterson’s The Gap of Time (Hogath) rounded out the top five in fourth and fifth place respectively.

The bestselling children’s book was Rent a Bridesmaid by Jacqueline Wilson (Doubleday Children's) which was the seventh bestselling book overall. In second place on the children's bestsellers list was Sam & Mark’s The Adventures of Long Arm (Scholastic Press) which was in eighth place in the overall chart and in third was Cressida Cowell’s How to Fight a Dragon’s Fury (Hodder Children's) which was 10th place overall.

The bookshop, which was 20% larger than in previous years, saw an increase in books sold on last year, with sales tracked for the first time this year by Nielsen BookScan.

Speakers during the 11 days of the festival included Caitlin Moran, Sam Mendes, Michael Palin, Simon Schama, Germaine Greer, Salman Rushdie, Gordon Brown, Yanis Varoufakis, Mervyn King, Monty Don and Tom Holland, and two all-star Letters Live events led by Benedict Cumberbatch, Maxine Peake, Louise Brealey, Olivia Colman and Tom Hollander.

Director of Hay Festival, Peter Florence, said: “What a thrilling adventure we’ve had. What a ride! We’ve had guests from 36 countries. There’ve been events in Farsi, Russian, Italian, Spanish, Welsh and English; thousands of ideas and stories, and new friends, new heroes, and new beginnings. What a perfect way to honour Shakespeare’s humanity and genius in this quattro-centenary year. And what an inspiring way to think about Britain’s greatness and our place in the world.”

Top 15 Overall Book Sales at Hay Festival:

1. Tom Jones - Over the Top and Back (Michael Joseph)
2. Ruby Wax - A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled (Penguin Life)
3. Laura Bates - Girl Up (Simon & Schuster)
4. Peter Frankopan - Silk Roads (Bloomsbury)
5. Jeanette Winterson - The Gap of Time (Hogath)
6. Yanis Varoufakis - And the Weak Suffer What They Must? (Nation)
7. Jacqueline Wilson - Rent A Bridesmaid (Doubleday Children's)
8. Sam & Mark - The Adventures of Long Arm (Scholastic Press)
9. Angela Duckworth - Grit (Scribner)
10. Cressida Cowell - How to Fight a Dragon's Fury (Hodder)
11. Julia Donaldson - Detective Dog (Pan Macmillan)
12. Cailtlin Moran - Moranifesto (Ebury)
13. Patrick Ness - The Rest of Us Just Live Here (Walker Books)
14. Tracy Chevalier et al - Reader, I Married Him (Borough Press)
15. Janine Di Giovanni - The Morning They Came for Us (Bloomsbury)