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Sales Charts: Barnes & Noble Graphic Novel Bestsellers

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When I worked on the front lines of retail, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was unofficially the end of our holiday sales period, which usually started the first weekend of November.  Of course, our clearance sale would continue on through the end of February, but this was the day we could finally relax and “get back to normal”.  (As well as take vacations, which usually were frozen during the Holiday shopping season.

So, here’s a snapshot of what’s selling over on Barnesandnoble.com .  For simplicity’s sake, I’m only listing those titles which chart above #1000 for all books on BN.com .  This is a snapshot taken at 3 PM today.  This is the order they were displayed, so rankings might be a bit disorganized.  I have no understanding how their algorithms work, I’m just reporting what I saw.  The dates after the title are when that particular edition was published.  Titles and authors link to BN.com .

#175

by Naoko Takeuchi

Volume #1 charts a bit lower, volume #2 is around #8,000.  The first six volumes are listed for pre-order.

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# 209

by Robert Kirkman

The first of six Walking Dead titles here.

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#265

by Hergé

Volumes 1 and 2 chart here, the rest are selling nicely.  Of the seven 3-in-1 volumes, #5 charts the lowest, in the 25,000s.  The new mini-albums sales are intersperese with the regular albums.  I suspect that customers don’t know the size of each book.  Volume Zero of this series is not available here in the States.  Order if from the UK if you want to complete your set.  There is also a boxed set of all eight volumes available overseas. Or buy the deluxe editions published by Last Gasp.

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#408

by Frank Miller

A perennial title.  The first of five Batman titles.  Unknown if the Fire 100 has any effect on these sales, as Batman sells around the calendar.  Oh, and there’s a movie coming out soon, so some of these sales might be curiousity.

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#526

by Neil Gaiman

A $50 black-and-white hardcover.  I would suspect that DC will eventually publish a similar edition for Kingdom Come.

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#586

by Yana Toboso

One of three manga titles on this list (the others are Sailor Moon).  Set in Victorian England.  Volume #1 charts around #22,000.  A New York Times bestselling series.

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#664

by Walt Kelly

This shipped before the holidays, and I suspect these sales are from “year’s best” and word-of-mouth reviews.  The Union Square B&N had a full pocket, so it was well-merchandised in stores.

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#701

by Alan Moore

“We have met the enemy, and he is us.”

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#709

by Robert Kirkman

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#716

by Bill Willingham

The latest Fables collection, where the protagonists prepare for a dire battle with an evil nemesis.  I’m waiting for the action figures.

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#844

by Grant Morrison

Three more years, and DC can issue a 25th anniversary edition to tie-in with the “75 years of DC” celebration, and the creation of Batman.

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#730

by Hergé

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#685

by Robert Kirkman

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#753

by Scott Snyder

“A NEW YORK TIMES #1 Bestseller and Amazon Best Book of 2011
Sure…  Out of all the titles DC published, including some amazing titles from Vertigo, and this gets picked?  Oh, okay, they did pick “Daytripper” as well.  But look at the other books listed.  Okay… maybe it is worthy.  I wait for the Eisner nominations to be posted.
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#844

by Robert Kirkman

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#811

by Robert Kirkman

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#888

by Matt Fraction

What’s this?  A Marvel superhero title charting?  Perhaps readers were “waiting for the trade”?  With the 45% discount, it works out to about $2.40 an issue ($4.40 without, making the book more expensive than the single issues).

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#904

by Naoko Takeuchi

Volume 1, on sale since September.  Is there a media tie-in?

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#919

by Robert Kirkman

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#979

by Jeph Loeb

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#988

by Alan Moore

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  1. Re: ‘Batman: The Black Mirror’ being a “Best of 2011” pick:

    “Sure… Out of all the titles DC published, including some amazing titles from Vertigo, and this gets picked?”

    Heck yes. It’s a very good book, and I suspect it will be a perennial seller.

  2. Hmm… Now I remember it. Dick Grayson breaking up an auction that deals in villain paraphernalia. Perhaps it reads better as a collection.

    If it’s a good Batman story, self-contained, then, yes, it will sell for quite some time. Although, most of the volumes from the Batman series tend to fade into obscurity, just like most superhero serials.

  3. “Heart of Hush” was a best-seller for a month as well, if I remember right. It was from Paul Dini and Dustin Nguyen’s run on Detective Comics. I have yet to try Snyder’s “Black Mirror,” though.

  4. Snyder’s run on Detective was incredible. It was more than Dick Grayson breaking up the second-hand market on bad guy stuff. Black Mirror is the best modern day run for any superhero comics.

  5. The Black Mirror is good but tends to be wildly overrated by people who like it. Snyder is a very tedious writer. Great ideas, but often very wordy execution with tons of expositional tangents that add little to the story and become really annoying once you read the fourth issue in row in which the protagonist is reminiscing about some barely relevant detail from his childhood, for no reason at all, during an action scene.

    Snyder does cool concepts well, though. And great set pieces. A bit like Hickman in a way, though not as original in his “big ideas”. His take on Gordon’s son was great, though it kind of ended in a predictable way. The end of the story may have been cut short due to the New 52 relaunch. I dunno. I guess he’s a good writer. But he needs an editor like Bendis does, because he tends to run off with diarrhea of the pen at times.

    Hope this comment wasn’t too long. If Scott Snyder wrote it, it would have been twice as long and would have included an anecdote about my childhood that really added nothing to what I was saying.

  6. If ‘Batman: The Black Mirror’ included nothing else, it would be worth buying for diner scene with Gordon and his son. One of the most compelling comic moments ever. Although I personally enjoy it, I could see not liking Snyder’s style, but that scene is simply put, classic, and worth the price of admission by itself.

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