With the demise of the brick-and-mortar bookstore and the rise of e-commerce, Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) has become the largest bookseller in America, by far. As a matter of fact, when Jeff Bezos founded the company in July 1994, it was only an online book store. It added other items over time, and now has almost a million employees and a website with over 2 billion visits a month. The public company that owns it is worth over $1.4 trillion.
Amazon promotes books in several ways. Other than standard listing, buyers can rate books. It has online book clubs, based on categories such as fantasy, biography, thrillers and non-fiction. Books are also sorted by the author. The Holy Grail for authors and publishers is Amazon’s “Best books so far this year,” chosen by Amazon editors.
Amazon also pioneered the move from paper books to e-books and e-readers. The Kindle e-reader was introduced on November 19, 2007. It allowed many books, no matter how large, to be portable and readable anywhere someone could carry a Kindle and connect to the internet to download a book. It began the demise of the need for libraries. Amazon currently sells most books in paper and e-book form. Amazon also sells used copies of many books.
Among the top five selling books at Amazon.com this year, reader ratings of the books at the site average over 35,000. Most of these five books are rated at five stars, the highest rating, or very close.
The list is remarkably diverse. One is a children’s book, one is a biography and one is a book about vampires.
These are the five best-selling books on Amazon so far this year.
5. “Untamed.” Author Glennon Doyle has written three best sellers. The other two are “Love Warrior” and “Carry On, Warrior.” She has suffered from bulimia and addiction and often writes about mental health issues. In the book, she describes her challenges with a divorce, starting a new family and facing the challenges of emotional upheaval. The book has received 20,790 ratings on Amazon. It was published on March 10, 2020.
4. “Midnight Sun.” Author Stephenie Meyer also wrote the best seller “Twilight,” which has sold over 100 million copies. The book was part of a series of four fantasy novels about vampires. Her new novel further develops one of the characters from this series. The book has received 33,659 ratings on Amazon. It was published on August 4, 2020.
3. “My First Learn to Write Workbook: Practice for Kids With Pen Control, Line Tracing, Letters and More!” Author Crystal Radke is well known for her inspirational children’s books. Most of these are workbooks to teach new skills. She is an expert on teaching children to write. This book, almost 80 pages long, is meant to train writing muscles and encourage children to learn new words, and it offers tracing exercises to improve word comprehension. The book has received 27,977 ratings. It was published on August 27, 2019.
2. “Where the Crawdads Sing.” Author Delia Owens is also a zoologist. This book has been on The New York Times Fiction Best Sellers of 2019 for 25 nonconsecutive weeks. It is her first work of fiction. Her earlier books are based on her study of wildlife in Africa. The book is primarily a murder mystery. It has received 103,834 ratings at Amazon and was published on August 14, 2018.
1. “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.” Author Mary L. Trump, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist and Donald Trump’s niece. She delivers a controversial look at the president and the family that shaped him. She uses her decades-long experience with the Trump family to expose early trouble in Trump’s life and the history of his powerful father. It has received 64,260 ratings at Amazon since it was published on July 14, 2020.