Amazon just released their list of 2011's Top 10 Best Selling Books of the Year. The list includes two indie ebook authors who published through Amazon's own Kindle Direct Publishing: Darcie Chan, at #4 with "The Mill River Recluse," and Chris Culver, at #9 with "The Abbey."
Darcie Chan's story was recently featured in a Wall Street Journal article: How I Became a Best-Selling Author. You can learn more about Darcie at DarcieChan.com. Chris Culver's blog is IndieCrime.com.
Another interesting indie author fact... Christopher Paolini's "Inheritance," #10 on this list, is the last book in a series that began with "Eragon," a self-published book. I've written more about that, below.
Amazon's Best Selling Books of 2011 overall are:
- “Steve Jobs” by Walter Isaacson
"So close on the heels of his passing, it's difficult to read Isaacson's portrait of Steve Jobs--his youth, his promise, and his relentless press to succeed--without feeling melancholic. Few have transformed their era like Jobs, and this book's intensity mirrors his intensity and vision. A timely and complete portrait, it pulls no punches and gives welcome insight into a man whose contradictions were his greatest strengths."
- “Bossypants” by Tina Fey
"From her humble roots growing up in Pennsylvania to her days doing amateur improv in Chicago to her early sketches on Saturday Night Live, Fey gives a fascinating glimpse behind the curtain of modern comedy with equal doses of wit, candor, and self-deprecation. Bossypants is short, messy, and impossibly funny--an apt description of the comedian herself. Fey shows that you're no one until someone calls you bossy."
- “A Stolen Life” by Jaycee Dugard
"In 1991, eleven-year-old Jaycee Dugard was abducted from a school bus stop. For the next eighteen years, she was held captive by Phillip Craig and Nancy Garrido and gave birth to two daughters. A Stolen Life is Jaycee's story, told in her own words. In this stark, compelling narrative, she opens up about what she experienced during nearly two decades of captivity and offers an extraordinary account of courage and resilience."
- “The Mill River Recluse” by Darcie Chan Indie Author
"Disfigured by abuse and suffering from a severe anxiety disorder, the widow Mary McAllister spends almost sixty years secluded in a mansion overlooking the town of Mill River, Vermont. An arsonist, a covetous nurse, and the village idiot are among the few who have seen Mary. But only Father Michael O'Brien knows the secret she keeps--one that will change all of their lives forever. Darcie Chan's tale of triumph over tragedy reminds us that love can come from the most unexpected places."
- “In the Garden of the Beasts” by Erik Larson
"Erik Larsen's vivid portrait of 1930s Berlin through the lives of William Dodd, America's first ambassador to Hitler's regime, and his carefree daughter, Martha. Mesmerized by Berlin's salon society, Martha flings herself into heedless affairs, most notably with the head of the Gestapo and a Soviet spy. Both become players in the terrifying story of Hitler's obsession for absolute power. A gripping narrative with a climax that reads like a political thriller."
- “A Dance with Dragons” by George R.R. Martin
"George R. R. Martin has earned international acclaim for his monumental cycle of epic fantasy, A Song of Ice and Fire. In fifth book in his spellbinding landmark series, familiar faces and surprising new forces vie for a foothold in a fragmented empire. In a time of rising restlessness, the tides of destiny and politics will lead inevitably to the greatest dance of all."
- “The Paris Wife” by Paula McLain
"In The Paris Wife, Paula McLain captures a remarkable period of time and a love affair between two unforgettable people: Ernest Hemingway and his wife Hadley Richardson. After a whirlwind courtship and wedding, the pair set sail for Paris and become the golden couple of the fabled "Lost Generation." Though deeply in love, the Hemingways are ill prepared for the hard-drinking, fast-living Jazz Age life. A poignant portrayal of ambition, betrayal, and love."
- “The Litigators” by John Grisham
"Fired by his fancy downtown firm, David Zinc joins the “boutique law firm” of Finley & Figg. His first case: track down patients who have suffered heart attacks while taking the popular cholesterol-reducing drug, Krayoxx, and convince them to join a class action suit against a giant pharmaceutical company. The partners at Finley & Figg smell fame and fortune. It almost seems too good to be true. And it is. A tremendously entertaining romp from America’s favorite storyteller."
- “The Abbey” by Chris Culver Indie Author
"Ash Rashid is a former homicide detective who can't stand the thought of handling another death investigation--until his niece's body is found in the guest home of one of his city's most wealthy citizens. The coroner calls it an overdose, but against orders, Ash launches an investigation to find his niece's murderer. The longer he searches, the more entangled he becomes in a case that hits increasingly close to home. If he doesn't solve it fast, his niece won't be the only family member he has to bury."
- “Inheritance (The Inheritance Cycle)” by Christopher Paolini
"The much-anticipated conclusion to Christopher Paolini's blockbuster Inheritance cycle. Not so very long ago, Eragon was nothing more than a poor farm boy, and his dragon, Saphira, only a blue stone in the forest. Now the fate of an entire civilization rests on their shoulders. The Rider and his dragon have come further than anyone dared to hope. But can they topple the evil king and restore justice to Alagaësia? And if so, at what cost?"
The first book of The Inheritance Cycle was self-published:
Christopher Paolini's Inheritance Cycle began in 2001 with the self-published book, "Eragon." Paolini wrote the first draft of "Eragon" when he was 15, and his family self-published it two years later. In 2002, author Carl Hiaasen's stepson bought a copy of "Eragon" and loved it. This led Hiasson to bring the book to the attention of Alfred A. Knopf, who published it in 2003. At 19, Paolini became a New York Times Best Selling author.
Since then, The Inheritance Cycle series has been translated into 49 languages and has sold 25 million copies worldwide. The fourth and final book in the series, "Inheritance," has a first print run of 2.5 million copies.
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