Sunday, August 30, 2020

Bestsellers Around the World: Canada and Australia

A couple of months ago I came up with an idea to start a regular feature where I take a look at the bestseller lists for a particular country and compare them to the Australian one! The first month I looked at the British bestseller list, and then last month it was France.  This month I am taking a look at a Canadian bestseller list.

Here is the Top 10 Fiction list from the Toronto Star for the week ending August 19:
  1. The Book of Lost Names, Kristin Harmel Gallery 
  2. American Dirt, Jeanine Cummins, Flatiron 
  3. The Silent Wife, Karin Slaughter, William Morrow 
  4. The End of Her, Shari Lapena, Doubleday Canada 
  5. Where the Crawdads Sing, Delia Owens, G.P. Putnam’s 
  6. The Midwife Murders, James Patterson, Richard DiLallo, Grand Central 
  7. The Woman Before Wallis, Bryn Turnbull, Mira 
  8. The Guest List, Lucy Foley, William Morrow 
  9. Their Last Secret, Rick Mofina, Mira 
  10. The Order, Daniel Silva, HarperCollins Canada 
And here is the Top 10 for Australia as at 15 August from

  1. When She Was Good by Michael Robotham (Hachette)
  2. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens (Hachette)
  3. The Yield by Tara June Winch (Hamish Hamilton)
  4. 1st Case by James Patterson (Century)
  5. The Order by Daniel Silva (HarperCollins)
  6. Boy Swallows Universe by Trent Dalton (Harper Collins)
  7. Say No More by Karen Rose (Hachette)
  8. A Room Made of Leaves by Kate Grenville (Text Publishing)
  9. The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams (Affirm Press)
  10. The Silent Wife by Karin Slaughter (HarperCollins)
The last time I looked at the Australian bestsellers list was in mid June. Of the books on this current list Boys Swallows Universe, The Dictionary of Lost of Words and Where the Crawdad Sing were there two months ago.  I still need to get around to reading the first two of these books. I own Dictionary of Lost Words having bought it when it first came out, but I haven't quite managed to crack it open yet.

The two other books on this list that call to me are both Australian authors, and I heard them speaking at Melbourne Writers Festival. I am very interested in reading The Yield by Tara June Winch  and the other is A Room Made of Leaves by Kate Grenville. I have read Grenville's previous historical novels so I will get to this one eventually.

It is interesting that Where the Crawdads Sing is still appearing on lists around the world even thought the book was released two years ago. I don't see this book disappearing off the lists any time soon given that there is now going to be a movie made of it.

When I look at the Canadian list, the two historical fiction novels are the two that I am drawn to the most. The Book of Lost Names is a WWII novel based on a true story. The title of The Woman Before Wallis is kind of self explanatory if you have any knowledge of 20th century English history but it also includes links to American "royalty", the Vanderbilts. It sounds like quite a read.

The two Canadian authors are Shari Lapena and Rick Mofina. Both of these novels are crime novels, with Shari Lapena's appearing to be a twisty turny suspense novel. It turns out that Mofina has written around 25 novels, and won multiple writing prizes, and he has a very interesting life story.

Are there any of these titles that you find interesting? Have you read any of these books or authors?

Next month, I am planning to take a look at the bestsellers list in South Africa!

I am sharing this post with Sunday Salon, which is hosted by Deb at Readerbuzz


  1. I find it interesting to compare lists. I often find it frustrating to hear about a good book in another country only to learn that it is not available in my country. I understand this when a book has to be translated, but why would this happen in countries where English is the primary language spoken? Legal reasons? Do some books only appeal to people in certain countries? I would think historical fiction and mysteries would appeal to people everywhere. I'm not sure about other genres.

    1. I think it is all about being able to sell the books into different markets and therefore getting more money. And publishers make assumptions about what will appeal in which markets. Maybe they are right and it is only avid readers like us who would go out of our way to buy these books.

      That doesn't stop it from being frustrating?

  2. Such a fun idea! I have a few from both lists on my TBR

  3. I love this idea! I have to laugh at myself because I misread your bit about the author having an interesting life story. I thought you were talking about Shari Lapena so I Googled her and could not find anything that really stood out (other than driving onto the tarmac with a rifle to stop an airplane) but now I see you said HE has a very interesting life story so now I'm off to Google Rick Mofina. LOL

    1. LOL. It was definitely Rick Molina who seems to have had an interesting life!

  4. I really enjoy these posts, Marg. Thanks for sharing the lists with us. You mentioned that Where the Crawdads Sing is still on the list, which reminds me of how long The Help remained on the bestseller lists in the U.S. I'm pretty sure it was there for several years. Gosh, that was a good book.

    1. That definitely was a good read! I think now it is seen to be a bit problematic with some of the things that are portrayed but still a good read!

  5. This is an interesting comparison; I like the idea. A friend of mine likes Daniel Silva but, didn't care for the one on this list.

    1. Was it you that recently said you didn't enjoy one of the authors on this list? Someone reviewed one recently and didn't like it.

  6. Hi there Marg! Yea!! I am looking forward to doing this post with you next month.

    There are a few of the books on your list that I know are quite popular in SA at the moment and might still be on the list end of September.

    Hope you will have a wonderful week! Here's myThe Sunday Post #9

    1. I am looking forward to it too! Can't wait to see what we find to talk about!

  7. I've read one of the books on the Australian list - Say No More.

    1. I've only read Where the Crawdads Sing myself!

  8. I’m glad to see so many Australian authors on the Australian list, it’s not always the case. The only one on both lists I’ve read is Michael Robotham When She Was Good. I still need to read Boy Swallows Universe before Shimmering Skies comes out. I have read Rick Mofina before but don’t remember being impressed. Thanks for sharing the comparisons, it’s a great feature

    1. I really need to read Boy Swallows Universe too Shelleyrae!

  9. This is a fun idea! Being from North Carolina, I find it fascinating that Where the Crawdads Sing is on bestseller lists all over the world. I liked it a lot but the geography was all wrong so that drove me crazy (towns that are a full day's drive away sound like they're on the coast).

    My husband and I are very slowly making our way through The Crown even though neither of us pays much attention to royalty in the news and tabloids. So The Woman before Wallis caught my eye a bit. What really caught my attention is your mention of the Vanderbilts in connection to the book. The largest privately-owned home in the US was built by the Vanderbilts and it's practically in my backyard in North Carolina! I may have to seek that book out for that connection!

    1. I hope you do get to read the book, and then visit the house!



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