I wasn't surprised to hear that the latest Harry Potter tops the list for each country shown below except for Japan, where it is third on the list. These lists are based on Amazon's bestsellers by country. We all seem to fit neatly into the stereotypes of our own cultures. Those in the UK preferred books by TV personalities, the US prefers self-help books, French readers prefer meaningful "deep" fiction, Germans prefer travel/outdoor books, and the Japanese read manga (a kind of adult comic book/novel). While this is perhaps not the most scientific study, it is fun to see the titles and read the newspaper articles below.
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, J. K. Rowling 2. Nigella Express, Nigella Lawson 3. Jamie at Home: Cook Your Way to the Good Life, Jamie Oliver 4. Do Ants Have Arseholes?: And 101 Other Bloody Ridiculous Questions, Jon Butler 5. On the Edge, Richard Hammond 6. My Booky Wook, Russell Brand 7. QI: The Book of General Ignorance, QI 8. Half of a Yellow Sun, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 9. The God Delusion, Richard Dawkins 10. A Thousand Splendid Suns, Khaled Hosseini.
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, J. K. Rowling 2. The Secret, Rhonda Byrne 3. Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert 4. A Thousand Splendid Suns, Khaled Hosseini 5. The Dangerous Book for Boys, Conn Iggulden 6. Deceptively Delicious, Jessica Seinfeld 7. Strengthsfinder 2.0, Tom Rath 8. Good to Great, Jim Collins 9. Water for Elephants, Sara Gruen 1 10. Now Discover Your Strengths, Marcus Buckingham
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, J. K. Rowling 2. I Do Not Know How to Lose Weight, Dr. Pierre Dukan 3. The Elegance of the Hedgehog, Muriel Barbery 4. School Blues, Daniel Pennac 5. Secret, Philippe Grimbert 6. Volume 18: The Irish, Jean Van Hamme 7. Volume 19: The Last Round, Jean Van Hamme 8. A Life, Simone Weil 9. Fitness: 110 Exercises Without Equipment, Olivier Lafay 10.The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, J. K. Rowling 2. I Am Off for a Bit, Then, Hape Kerkeling 3. For Every Solution a Problem, Kerstin Gier 4. Volume 3: The Inkworld Trilogy, Cornelia Funke 5. The Secret, Rhonda Byrne 6. A Fjord, Angelo Colagrossi 7. The Joy of Life Calendar, 2008 8. The Civil Code 9. The Cleaner, Paul Cleave 10. The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini
1. Yukuko Tanaka's Face Massage, Yukuko Tanaka 2. Inspiring Exercise, Micaco 3. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, J. K. Rowling 4. Michelin Guide to Tokyo, 2008, Michelin 5. Nodame Cantabile 17 (manga), Tomoko Ninomiya 6. The Homeless Junior High School Student, Hiroshi Tamura 7. Between Living Organisms and Inanimate Objects, Shinichi Fukuoka 8. Moyashimon, Volume 6 (manga), Masayuki Ishikawa 9. The Secret, Rhonda Byrne 10. Nodame Cantabile 18 (manga), Tomoko Ninomiya.
The Times Online