A weekly feature at the Spinoff Review of Books: the best-selling books at the Auckland and Wellington stores of Unity Books.
THE BEST–SELLER CHART FOR THE WEEK JUST ENDED: May 27
UNITY BOOKS AUCKLAND
1. A Little Life ($25) by Hanya Yanagihara
The novel you have to read, apparently; it’s been the number one best-seller all year.
2. How Did We Get Into this Mess? ($39) by George Monbiot
The great Guardian essayist on inequality and other states of crisis.
3. When Breath Becomes Air ($37) by Paul Kalanithi
A neurosurgeon asks: what makes life worth living?
4. All the Light We Cannot See ($25) by Anthony Doerr
Improbable but beautiful novel about a blind French girl and a German boy who try to survive the devastation of World War II.
5. Chronicles: On Our Troubled Times ($37) by Thomas Piketty
Essays by the economist du jour.
6. Coming Rain ($37) by Stephen Daisley
Hm! The only New Zealand writer in this week’s top 10. Winner of the 2016 Ockham NZ novel of the year
7. My Life On the Road ($37) by Gloria Steinem
Memoir by the superstar feminist legend.
8. The Night Manager ($26) by John Le Carre
In the shadowy recesses of Whitehall and Washington an unholy alliance operates between the intelligence community and the secret arms trade, etc.
9. The Silk Roads: A New History of the World ($33) by Peter Frankopan
Most immodest sub-title of the year.
10. The Romanovs: 1613-1918 ($50) by Simon Sebag Montefiore
Three centuries of cruelty, barbarism and vodka.
UNITY BOOKS WELLINGTON
1. The Sympathizer ($28) by Viet Thanh Nguyen
Winner of the 2016 Pulitzer prize for fiction.
2. Silencing Science (Bridget Williams Books, $15) by Shaun Hendy
Essays about the moral and social obligations of scientists.
3. How Did We Get into This Mess? ($39) by George Monbiot
Essays by the pessimist du jour.
4. Coming Rain ($37) by Stephen Daisley
5. Chronicles On Our Troubled Times ($37) by Thomas Piketty
6. My Brilliant Friend ($30) by Elena Ferrante
First of the series of Neapolitan novels by the new great master of fiction.
7. In Gratitude ($30) by Jenny Diski
One of the best books of the year without a doubt: cancer diary by the London Review of Books essayist.
8. Being Chinese: A New Zealander’s Story ($40) by Helene Wong
9. Silk Roads: A New History of the World ($33) by Peter Frankopan
10. Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047 ($35) by Lionel Shriver
A bloodless world war will wipe out the savings of millions of American families: such is the gloomy, terrifying premise of the new novel by the author of the gloomy, terrifying We Have to Talk About Kevin.
The Spinoff Daily gets you all the day's best reading in one handy package, fresh to your inbox Monday-Friday at 5pm.