This year, a book narrated by both a well-to-do white South Carolina girl and an African-American slave living in the 19th century was Amazon’s top-selling new work of the year.
Sue Monk Kidd’s novel “The Invention of Wings” was the online bookselling giant’s biggest-selling work this year of all books published in 2014 (print and digital sales combined). Here at the Monitor, we touted the novel as one of the best books of January, 2014. Monitor critic Elizabeth Brown said that that Kidd's vision for the book "succeeded brilliantly.”
The second-top-selling book was John Grisham’s “Gray Mountain.” Monitor critic Erik Spanberg wrote of this one, “Grisham sets his players in motion, chapters breeze by, and, before you know it, a weekend has disappeared. With ‘Gray Mountain,’ John Grisham makes a powerful closing argument against Big Coal, but the message never obscures a satisfying, old fashioned, good guy-bad guy legal thriller.”
Amazon’s third-top-selling book was yet another critical favorite, Anthony Doerr’s novel “All the Light We Cannot See.” The Monitor named it as one of the 10 best fiction works of 2014, with Monitor fiction critic Yvonne Zipp writing of the plot, which involves a lost jewel, “[Protagonists] Marie-Laure, Werner, and their companions are so compelling, readers don’t need a shiny trinket to keep turning pages…. [this] may be [Doerr's] best work to date.”
Lee Child’s “Twenty Seconds Ago,” the 19th book in the Jack Reacher series, came in fourth on the list, while Liane Moriarty’s “Big Little Lies” came in fifth. David Baldacci’s “The Target” came in sixth, while the romance trilogy “The Fixed Series” by Laurelin Paige was seventh. Rick Riordan was the highest-selling children’s author with his book “The Blood of Olympus,” the fifth in his Heroes of Olympus series. The books “Top Secret Twenty-One” by Janet Evanovich, the next in the Stephanie Plum series, and “Killing Patton” by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard rounded out the list at ninth and tenth, respectively.
Check out the full list here.