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Werthead

The SFF All-Time Sale List (vol 2) (updated Dec 2018)

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Madeline Miller

selling over half a million books in the U.S. alone.

 

Rick Riordan update (from Edelweiss catalog)

There are currently more than 90 million Rick Riordan books in print in the US

 

Sarah J. Maas update

Her books have sold more than eight million copies

 

Leigh Bardugo update

With over three million copies sold worldwide

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Andrzej Sapkowski's new US numbers (from Edelweiss catalog):

more than two million copies have sold to date

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13 hours ago, Jussi said:

Andrzej Sapkowski's new US numbers (from Edelweiss catalog):

I doubt that these are US numbers. Probably more worldwide sales or something of the kind. Considering the number of installments available, they would have ended up on various bestseller lists and/or continued to sell at a high level for years to reach that amount.

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Doesn't specify American sales. I figure it's the consolidated numbers for English language editions, which would make more sense. If you put Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, the USA, yada yada yada, then 2 million copies make more sense.

And still quite impressive!

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2 hours ago, Lord Patrek said:

Doesn't specify American sales. I figure it's the consolidated numbers for English language editions, which would make more sense. If you put Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, the USA, yada yada yada, then 2 million copies make more sense.

And still quite impressive!

Adding to this: 

The major bookstores here in Sydney (Galaxy/Abbeys, Kinokuniya, QBD, Dymocks) have all started stocking up on copies of the Witcher books - in particular, I'm seeing *lots* of copies of The Last Wish in bookstores, with display copies also being, well, displayed, of each book in the series, to catch the eye of potential readers and buyers. 

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On 9/13/2019 at 3:17 AM, Lord Patrek said:

Doesn't specify American sales. I figure it's the consolidated numbers for English language editions, which would make more sense. If you put Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, the USA, yada yada yada, then 2 million copies make more sense.

Orbit publishes Sapkowski only in the United States and Canada. Gollancz has the other English speaking countries. I believe 2 million copies means North America alone.

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On 9/13/2019 at 1:17 AM, Lord Patrek said:

Doesn't specify American sales. I figure it's the consolidated numbers for English language editions, which would make more sense. If you put Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, the USA, yada yada yada, then 2 million copies make more sense.

And still quite impressive!

The 2 million is for the United States and Canada alone, and is a result of the titanic success of The Witcher 3 video game (which has sold ~12 million copies in North America alone, 30 million worldwide). The previous worldwide figure was between 5 and 6 million, which includes Europe (especially Poland, Russia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Spain, France and other territories where Sapkowski has been a relatively huge seller for 25 years). With this new figure it sounds more like 7-8 million worldwide.

All of these figures will rise when the TV show lands in November, and it it's a success those figures could grow quite a lot.

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5 minutes ago, Werthead said:

The 2 million is for the United States and Canada alone, and is a result of the titanic success of The Witcher 3 video game (which has sold ~12 million copies in North America alone, 30 million worldwide).

Shame Sapkowski doesn't seem to grasp how numbers work. Every interview I've seen with him suggests he's weirdly hostile towards or not grateful for the increase in sales the games (Witcher 3 in particular) produced.

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3 minutes ago, IlyaP said:

Shame Sapkowski doesn't seem to grasp how numbers work. Every interview I've seen with him suggests he's weirdly hostile towards or not grateful for the increase in sales the games (Witcher 3 in particular) produced.

That was because he was very dismissive about the original deal for the game rights and accepted a ridiculously low flat flee (I think it was under the equivalent of $15,000) in lieu of a share of the profits. When the games went on to sell tens millions of copies and made the developers (CD Projekt Red) over a billion in profit, he realised he'd made a colossal error, and trash-talked the games for years until a few months ago, when CDPR made voluntary thank-you payment to him of several million dollars, since when he's been more amenable.

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7 minutes ago, Werthead said:

when CDPR made voluntary thank-you payment to him of several million dollars, since when he's been more amenable.

That's...well, business I guess. 

Except now it'll be hard to know what praise is authentic or sincere. 

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Robin Hobb's new US numbers (from Edelweiss catalog):

MORE THAN 3 MILLION COPIES of Robin Hobb’s books sold, including over 500,000 COPIES OF ASSASSIN’S APPRENTICE.

 

On 9/14/2019 at 2:55 PM, Werthead said:

The previous worldwide figure was between 5 and 6 million, which includes Europe (especially Poland, Russia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Spain, France and other territories where Sapkowski has been a relatively huge seller for 25 years). With this new figure it sounds more like 7-8 million worldwide.

Finnish edition of The Last Wish from 2010 claims that the Witcher books have "more than 20 million readers". I don't know how they got that number.

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36 minutes ago, Jussi said:

Finnish edition of The Last Wish from 2010 claims that the Witcher books have "more than 20 million readers". I don't know how they got that number.

Publishers, agents, and authors have always been reticent to come clean with actual sales. That why most numbers have always been "books in print" and not "books sold".

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3 hours ago, Jussi said:

Robin Hobb's new US numbers (from Edelweiss catalog):

MORE THAN 3 MILLION COPIES of Robin Hobb’s books sold, including over 500,000 COPIES OF ASSASSIN’S APPRENTICE.

Finnish edition of The Last Wish from 2010 claims that the Witcher books have "more than 20 million readers". I don't know how they got that number.

That number seems very low for Hobb, who by now I'd expect to be around ~20 million worldwide on the low end. 3 million in the US alone would suggest worldwide sales are still under 10 million, which for an author with her profile, her local sales clout (she is HarperCollins' second biggest-selling fantasy author in the UK, behind only GRRM and ahead all of their other authors, including Feist who has sold ~30 million worldwide and Eddings who has sold ~20 million worldwide) and her sheer output is mind-bogglingly improbable.

If the Finnish claim had been more recent, I suspect they would have conflated sales of the books and video games (or combined them). From 2010 though, that's a bollocks claim. The first Witcher game did okay but not on that level.

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I suspect that's 4 million copies *sold in the US*. The actual figure is likely twice as much, as it was a huge international hit.

That's interesting because it likely means Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell is the biggest-selling debut fantasy* novel of the 21st Century and not The Name of the Wind (which is of some relief, as JS&MN deserves it far more).

( *Not counting supernatural fiction/paranormal romance because then it would be Twilight and nope )

Edited by Werthead

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Posted (edited)

I believe "4 million copies sold" means global sales. Here are numbers from The Bookseller article:

https://www.thebookseller.com/news/susanna-clarkes-perfectly-constructed-next-novel-goes-bloomsbury-15-years-after-jonathan

Quote

Clarke's previous novel Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell was published by Bloomsbury in 2004. Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and winner of the British Book Awards Newcomer of the Year, the Hugo Award the World Fantasy Award and the Locus Award for Best First Novel, it spent 11 weeks on the New York Times bestsellers list. It has sold 412,622 copies total for £3.2m, with the 2005 paperback edition of Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell selling 230,740 copies, according to Nielsen BookScan.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell was a failure in Finland in 2005. The Finnish translation of the novel (which was ecxellent) sold poorly in hardcover, and there never was a paperback edition. I hoped that the BBC series in 2015 would inspire the Finnish publisher to print a new edition of the novel, but that didn't happen.

Edited by Jussi

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Yep, worldwide sales for sure. The book appeared on the NYT list, but there is no way it could have sold that many units in the USA alone.

On the other hand, for better or worse, the Rothfuss debut was a huge hit and the book has remained a top 100 seller on Amazon pretty much every month since its release. There is no way the Clarke has surpassed it.

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