< back to full list of articles
The First IBPA Bestsellers Sampler

or Article Tags




The First IBPA Bestsellers Sampler

Lewis Carroll’s Humpty Dumpty would be right at home in the wonderland of bestseller lists, where any compiler could say, “When I use a word, it means just what I choose it to mean.”

What bestseller usually means is, “book whose sales in certain parts of certain channels during a very short time topped the sales of most other books in those parts of those channels during that very short time.”

But it’s easy to argue that how many readers a book reaches throughout its life matters a whole lot more than how many readers it reaches in limited arenas within a tiny time frame.

That’s because, as independent publishers demonstrate every day, a book is not just a physical or digital object. It’s a mechanism for delivering benefits. Maybe it provides a way to solve a problem or understand an event, a trend, a syndrome, or a person. Maybe it offers entertainment, even escape. Whatever a book does, if it does it well—and if its publisher is intelligently active on its behalf—early readers will talk about it, and what they say will ripple out, often creating a lengthy soaring sales curve.

In this issue of the Independent (“See More Bestsellers Stories”), and in the May, June, and July 2011 issues, we’ve been highlighting some of these sales curves through stories members sent about the books that have sold best for them over time. The list below features the top sellers among those bestsellers.

We’ve set the floor for the list at cumulated sales of 100,000 copies. Figures, as you’ll see, are rounded in almost all cases, and many of them reflect sales of book content in various formats and languages through various intermediaries. Some of the figures—particularly those for books featured in the earlier installments of our series—are probably outdated at this point, and some books featured earlier that hadn’t yet leaped over the 100,000-copy barrier may have done so by now.

Updates are welcome, and all of you who haven’t yet shared stories about books with sales above 100,000 are hereby invited to do that.

—Judith Appelbaum (judithappelbaum@aol.com)

Bestsellers Sampler #1

A Framework for Understanding Poverty by Ruby K. Payne

1.5 million

aha! Process, Inc. 

To Train Up a Child by Michael and Debi Pearl


No Greater Joy

Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon Morell and Mary G. Enig


NewTrends Publishing

Good and Evil by Michael Pearl


No Greater Joy

How to Raise a Puppy You Can Live With by Clarice Rutherford and David Neil


Alpine Publications

The Girl Who Owned a City by O.T. Nelson


Lerner Publishing Group

Created to Be His Help Meet by Debi Pearl


No Greater Joy

The Way I Feel by Janan Cain


Parenting Press

It’s MY Body by Lory Freeman, illustrations by Carol Deach


Parenting Press

Canadian Rockies Trail Guide by Brian Patton and Bart Robinson


Summerthought Publishing

Monet’s Passion: Ideas, Inspiration, and Insights from the Painter’s Gardens with text and photographs by Elizabeth Murray


Pomegranate Communications, Inc

Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves



Credit Card and Debt Management: A Step-by-Step How-To Guide for Organizing Debt and Saving Money on Interest Payments by Scott Bilker


Press One Publishing

Aura Reading Through All Your Senses by Rose Rosetree


Women’s Intuition Worldwide

Shaman: The Paintings of Susan Seddon Boulet


Pomegranate Communications, Inc.

Your Pregnancy and Newborn Journey by Jeanne Warren Lindsay and Jean Brunelli 


Morning Glory Press

Your Present: A Half-Hour of Peace by Susie Mantell


Relax Intuit™ LC

Lose Weight, Have More Energy and Be Happier in 10 Days by Peter Glickman



104 Activities That Build: Self-Esteem, Teamwork, Communication, Anger Management, Self-Discovery, and Coping Skills by Alanna Jones


Rec Room Publishing LLC

Save Your Hands! The Complete Guide to Injury Prevention and Ergonomics for Manual Therapists by Lauriann Greene and Richard W. Goggins


Body of Work Books



Connect With Us

1020 Manhattan Beach Blvd., Suite 204 Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
P: 310-546-1818 F: 310-546-3939 E: info@IBPA-online.org
© Independent Book Publishers Association