10 Top-Selling Books of the Decade

ConstantinosZ/iStock via Getty Images
ConstantinosZ/iStock via Getty Images

Despite predictions that the publishing industry would perish, books were as popular as ever in the 2010s. As 2019 comes to a close, here are the 10 books that sold the most copies in the last decade, according to LitHub.

LitHub compiled their list of the best-selling books of the past 10 years using market trend data from NPD Bookscan. Taking up the top three slots are books that originated as R-rated fan fiction for a YA book series that topped best-seller lists in the 2000s. The books in the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy, which was inspired by Twilight, have collectively sold 35 million copies since they were released in the early 2010s.

The list also includes several books intended for younger readers. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, and Divergent by Veronica Roth represent the YA genre. Also appearing on the list are the thrillers The Girl on the Train and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the historical fiction novel The Help.

If you want more reading inspiration after checking out the full rankings below, take a look at our summer 2019 reading list.

  1. E. L. James, Fifty Shades of Grey (2011) // 15.2 million copies
  1. E. L. James, Fifty Shades Darker (2011) // 10.4 million copies
  1. E. L. James, Fifty Shades Freed (2012) // 9.3 million copies
  1. Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games (2008) // 8.7 million copies
  1. Kathryn Stockett, The Help (2009) // 8.7 million copies
  1. Paula Hawkins, The Girl on The Train (2015) // 8.2 million copies
  1. Gillian Flynn, Gone Girl (2012) // 8.1 million copies
  1. John Green, The Fault in Our Stars (2012) // 8 million copies
  1. Stieg Larsson, The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo (2008) // 7.9 million copies
  1. Veronica Roth, Divergent (2011) // 6.6 million copies

[h/t LitHub]

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J.K. Rowling to Release New Children’s Book The Ickabog for Free Online

J.K. Rowling is helping kids (and adults) pass the time in quarantine with a story about a mysterious creature called the Ickabog.
J.K. Rowling is helping kids (and adults) pass the time in quarantine with a story about a mysterious creature called the Ickabog.
John Phillips/Getty Images

In the middle of writing Harry Potter novels, J.K. Rowling began work on a new book called The Ickabog, which she read to her children in installments as a bedtime story and planned to release once Harry Potter was behind her. Instead, she ended up taking a well-earned hiatus from publishing children’s books that lasted more than a decade.

Today, however, Rowling announced that not only will she publish The Ickabog, but she’s doing it for free as a serialized novel online. The first two chapters have already been posted on The Ickabog website, and you can look forward to a new section each weekday between now and July 10, 2020. The story, which isn’t related to Harry Potter or the Wizarding World, takes place in the fictional kingdom of Cornucopia, where King Fred the Fearless rules with his best friends, Lords Spittleworth and Flapoon, by his side. There, a young boy named Bert Beamish is terrified by the legend of the Ickabog, a mysterious, malevolent creature that allegedly snatches up unsuspecting children all over the countryside. According to Rowling, the story is about “truth and the abuse of power,” and it’s best suited for children up to age 9.

This November, the book will be published in print, e-book, and audiobook formats, and Rowling will donate all author royalties to as-yet-unspecified “groups who’ve been particularly impacted by the pandemic.” She’s also asking readers to enter their illustrations of the story in a competition for a chance to be featured in the print edition this fall. Suggestions of what images the publishers might need for each chapter are listed on the website—the first two chapters, for example, call for pictures of King Fred and his friends, the Ickabog, a map and flag of Cornucopia, Lady Eslanda, and pastries, cheese, sausages, and wine—but it’s made clear that “nobody should feel constrained by these ideas.”

You can find out more about The Ickabog, read the story, and enter the illustration competition here.