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Are you stacked?

Here's what Chicago was reading, buying in 2013

By Elise De Los Santos, @elisekdelo

7:23 PM CST, December 19, 2013

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A poll conducted by L.A. Fitness in December 2012 showed that the top New Year's resolution for 2013 was not the usual health-conscious promise to exercise more or to drink less. No, people wanted to read more books.

And read they did ... or at least, they wanted to. Goodreads users pledged to read more than 25 million books in the social media site's 2013 Reading Challenge, though only a fraction of the challenges were completed by Dec. 10.

People also bought more books this year, even if those books ended up gathering dust on bedside tables or taking up memory on e-readers. After the industry took a hit in 2012 from self-publishers, Forbes reported in October that publishing houses had made a comeback, mostly by signing indie authors to traditional publishing contracts.

Hollywood had a big effect on book sales as well. While most of the best-selling books of the year were new releases, "The Great Gatsby" (the movie adaptation starring Leonardo DiCaprio came out in May) was the eighth-best-selling e-book on Amazon and the fourth-most popular book on Goodreads.

Movies will continue to take its cues from reading lists in 2014 with two highly anticipated releases that have ties to Chicago. "Gone Girl," starring Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike, is based on the novel by Gillian Flynn, who lives in the city; "Divergent," based on the series by Chicago-area native Veronica Roth, was filmed in Chicago.

Here's how Chicago 2013 book sales shake out:

Women and Children First (5233 N. Clark St.)
Best-sellers from Oct. 1 to Dec. 10)
1. "Critical Mass" by Sara Paretsky*
2. "Every Day Is Election Day" by Rebecca Sive*
3. "Taste Memories" by Ina Pinkney*
4. "Dollface" by Renee Rosen*
5. "Allegiant" by Veronica Roth*
6. "Dear Life" by Alice Munro
7. "The Lowland" by Jhumpa Lahiri
8. "The Goldfinch" by Donna Tartt
9. "Public Enemy" by Bill Ayers*
10. "Excluded: Making Feminist and Queer Movements More Inclusive" by Julia Serano
*Chicago author


Women and Children First recommended reading 2014
(based on current sales and staff picks)
"Claire of the Sea Light" by Edwidge Danticat
"I Am Malala" by Malala Yousafzai
"Good Kings Bad Kings" by Susan Nussbaum
"My Brilliant Friend" by Elena Ferrante
"Hyperbole and a Half" by Allie Brosh


Goodreads' most popular books (based on 2013 lists, as of Dec. 10)
1. "The Fault in our Stars" by John Green
2. "Gone Girl" by Gillian Flynn
3. "Divergent" by Veronica Roth
4. "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald
5. "Allegiant" by Veronica Roth


Goodreads 2013 Reading Challenge (as of Dec. 10)
437,545 Participants
25,052,871 Total Books Pledged
57 Average Books Per Challenge
6,638 Challenges Completed


Amazon e-books best-sellers (as of Dec. 10)
1. "Inferno" by Dan Brown
2. "Gone Girl" by Gillian Flynn
3. "Safe Haven" by Nicholas Sparks
4. "The Husband's Secret" by Liane Moriarty
5. "Divergent" by Veronica Roth

 

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