Daily Archives: January 18, 2016

What Makes a Best Seller?

So I started Eleanor & Park for a moment on Saturday and went to bed last night early so I could read. I finished at 3 am (and was awakened by a daughter just a few minutes later. I slept in this morning.). I rarely do that. Read a book in one sitting (or, in this case, in one lying down). But three chapters in, Rainbow Powell  had me.

As I flopped over in bed, the book complete, I thought about what makes a best seller. (The copy of E&P I had was on it’s 27th printing. 27! That’s a best seller to me! Plus I remember being excited when I saw a book I’d written had gone to a third printing.)

Here are a list of questions I wondered. Was it . . .

The way the book looks on the page?

Two dead-on voices?

A romance?

The slow reveal of character development, problems, bullying, nicely contrasted families etc?

Heartbreak. Laughter. Kissing. But not-too-soon kissing? Stress? Aching?

Language? Could strong language grab readers?

Lots of accolades, including A Printz Honor?

No book is perfect, and I didn’t quite believe the ending (this is how I feel now, I may change my mind after I have a few more hours to think), however I love the possibilities that the book leaves the reader with. Was that it? The ending? The hope?

What makes a best seller for YOU?




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