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Petaluma’s Besteseller List: ‘Warlight’ shines, ‘How to Be a Lion’ inspires

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The top-selling titles at Petaluma’s Copperfield’s Book Store, for the week of July 2-8, 2018.

Petaluma readers held steady this week, keeping David Sedaris’ cheeky essay collection “Calypso” and Andrew Sean Greer’s Pulitzer-winning comic novel “Less” in the same No. 1 and No. 2 spots, respectively, that they occupied on the previous week’s list.

Returning after a brief disappearance is Bill Clinton and James Patterson’s recent thriller “The President is Missing” (No. 3).

At No. 4 is Scottish novelist Gail Honeyman’s award-winning novel “Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine,” one of those can’t-stop-reading-this kind of books, about a lonely office worker in Glasgow and her journey from safety and solitude, to the rich pitfalls of a life lived fully.

In the No. 5 slot is part-time Petaluman Michael Ondaatje’s mesmerizing “Warlight,” about a pair of teens surviving alone (sort of) in WWII London during the blitz. The book, released last month, was possibly given a boost by Mr. Ondaatje’s riveting appearance last Sunday on KQED’s City Arts & Lectures radio program. The rest of the list is occupied mainly by recent residents of the Petaluma Top Ten, shifting positions a bit just to keep things interesting.

On the Kids and Young Adults list, meanwhile, only one title from last week returns: Tui Sutherland’s “Wings of Fire: Lost Continent,” plummeting from No. 1 to No. 10. Most of the others are titles that have been seen on the list before, but dropped off for a week or two, including Vera Brosgol’s entertaining graphic novel about summer camp, “Be Prepared” (No. 2) and Jeff Kinney’s “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Getaway” (No. 4).

Some titles have been away for years, notably Martin Handford’s “Where’s Waldo” (No. 3), assisted a bit by Copperfield’s current “Where’s Waldo” downtown treasure hunt game, Stephanie Collins’ “Hunger Games” (No. 5), and Jason Segal’s “Otherworld” (No. 7).

There’s one complete newcomer, however, in the No. 1 spot. That’s Ed Vere’s delightfully poignant picture book, “How to Be a Lion,” in which — a bit reminiscent of Ferdinand the Bull — Leonard is a large and strong lion who loves poetry, thinking gentle thoughts, and hanging out with ducks, who faces some fierce pressure from the rest of his pride that he start behaving more like a “normal” lion.

Here’s predicting “How to Be a Lion” is a book that will be appearing on this list many times in the future.

FICTION & NON-FICTION

1. “Calypso,” by David Sedaris

2. “Less,” by Andrew Sean Greer

3. “The President Is Missing,” by Bill Clinton and James Patterson

4. “Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine,” by Gail Honeyman

5. “Warlight,” by Michael Ondaatje

6. “How to Change Your Mind,” by Michael Pollan

7. “Pachinko,” by Min Jin Lee

8. “Crazy Rich Asians,” by Kevin Kwan

9. “The Other Einstein,” by Marie Benedict

10. “Sing, Unburied, Sing,” by Jessmyn Ward

KIDS & YOUNG ADULTS

1. “How to Be a Lion,” by Ed Vere

2. “Be Prepared,” by Vera Brosgol

3. “Where’s Waldo? 30th Anniversary Edition,” by Martin Handford

4. “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Getaway,” by Jeff Kinney

5. “Hunger Games,” by Suzanne Collins

6. “Sleep Like a Tiger,” by Mary Logue

7. “Otherworld,” by Jason Segel

8. “Phoebe and Her Unicorn,” by Dana Simpson

9. “Marauders Map Guide to Hogwarts,” by Erinn Pascal

10. “Wings of Fire: Lost Continent,” by Tui Sutherland

(Data compiled by Amber-Rose Reed of Copperfield’s Books)