Fiction Friday: Popular Novels and Bestseller Lists

Popular BooksWelcome to Fiction Friday.

I thought for fun today instead of excerpts, I would look for popular novels in four different places. Last week I listed ten novels from the most recent entrants in my July book giveaway.  In order to be eligible to win one of three copies of Somewhere Between Luck and Trust, Book Two of the Goddesses Anonymous series, my newsletter readers had to email me with the name of a book on their summer reading list.

Today I thought it would be fun to check other sources for books to consider for your own list.Popular Books

First I went to Goodreads, a website where readers can and do make their opinions known. Goodreads has a “popular” menu and the number one spot today was Beautiful Oblivion by Jamie McGuire. This romance is #1 in the Maddox Brothers series about a woman who tends bar and a man who works in a tattoo parlor.

While I’m not familiar with McGuire’s work, from the review she clearly already has a following for other series of novels she’s written. Goodreads is certain this one will be a huge hit, as well.

Popular NovelsNext I visited the USA Today Bestseller List where I found The Fault in Our Stars in the number one slot. The USA Today list combines fiction and non-fiction and doesn’t segment books into types.

This novel has been a major bestseller on every list, and right now it’s also tops at Amazon, which was my third source.

My book club has already put this one on our to-be-read schedule for the year.  The Fault in Our Stars is the story of Hazel, a young woman with terminal cancer and the young man who changes her life. I’ve seen the movie trailer and look forward to both novel and film. How about you?

Popular NovelsFinally I visited the New York Times list, possibly the most prestigious of all. The Times does divide lists into categories, so I visited the fiction list, which includes both print and ebooks. Number 1 this week is Invisible by James Patterson and David Ellis. The story is about Emmy Dockery, an FBI researcher obsessed with finding the connection to hundreds of unsolved cases.

Do you choose books by reading bestseller lists? Do you choose by the recommendations of friends? Of the three books I’ve listed here, which sounds like the one you might want to try first?

So many factors go into making a book a bestseller. If you’ve read any of these, let us know what you thought. Now that I’ve read the blurb about Invisible, I might just look for this one myself the next time I’m in the mood for a thriller.

If you want to purchase any of these novels here are some online links:

Beautiful Oblivion at Amazon, or B&N

The Fault in Out Stars at Amazon, or B&N

Invisible at Amazon,or B&N

To find an independent bookseller near you who has these books, go here.


  1. Martha on July 18, 2014 at 8:04 am

    Good morning Emilie. Rain, rain, rain today in WNC, but we can use a little. I would choose “The Fault in our Stars” to read. I was intrigued by the statement that it was based on fiction and non-fiction. A lot of my choices are based on friends’ recommendations but my book club forces me to read things that I would not ordinarily choose, and that is good. There are six of us and we all have input into the selections and we try to include as many different genres as possible – always lively discussions, even though some choices are difficult to get through. Isn’t it wonderful that we each have different tastes in books? Bring on the smorgasborg.

    • Emilie Richards on July 18, 2014 at 8:41 am

      It’s been rainy AND cold here in Western NY. I’m wearing fleece at night when I go out. Interesting weather, huh? As for your book club? Mine does exactly the same. I’ve read many books simply because I wanted to be part of the discussion, and I’m so glad I have. Although a few have been beyond tedious, I’m still happy I had the chance to try them. Viva la book clubs!

      • Pamela on July 18, 2014 at 9:23 am

        We also do the same in our book club. We have just compiled our list for the year. Although a couple of my books were chosen, most of the selections I wouldn’t have even given a second look. Like you said, it gives us a chance to read different genres that we normally don’t read. We also have great discussions. In one of my book clubs we even read one one of Emily’s books, Somewhere Between Luck and Trust.

        • Emilie Richards on July 18, 2014 at 9:34 am

          I should say more often than I do that if any group wants to read one of my books and do a phone-in interview or a Skype interview with me, I love doing them. Sometimes it’s fun for readers to query an author’s choices and find out what was really behind them. And I love knowing what appeals to readers about my novels–even what doesn’t, it’s instructive.

  2. Kim B. on July 19, 2014 at 9:53 am

    I read “The Fault in Our Stars” a few months ago after seeing it on a list. Very lovely book….. Also read “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” a few weeks ago and LOVED it! Even though I’m a middle aged married mom of two, I could certainly identify with the characters and their coming of age stories. I welcome book lists – great way to discover new authors, especially those who write about characters in a series of books!

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