Most popular book titles for Christmas

SARAH-JANE O'CONNOR
Last updated 05:00 24/12/2013

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Eleanor Catton's The Luminaries may be topping the bestsellers list in New Zealand, but Christchurch shoppers are finding plenty of other books to pick up as gifts.

Scorpio Books' Re:Start Mall manager David Ault said along with Catton's 800-page prize-winner, several other fiction books had been popular, including Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch and Shaun Tan The Rules of Summer.

"It's looking like a very good bookish Christmas," Ault said, with shoppers also picking up coffee table-style books, a favourite being Craig Potton Publishing's Molesworth.

Written by Harry Broad and illustrated with photos by Rob Suisted, the book covers New Zealand's largest high-country station.

Joan Shields from the University Bookshop also said Molesworth had been selling well. Other non-fiction books selling strongly included Geoffrey Rice's Christchurch Crimes 1850-75 and Bill Bryson's One Summer.

Nigel Slater's new cookbook, Eat, was a solid choice for foodies.

In fiction "obviously The Luminaries has been rushing out the door," Shields said. "We have sold out of the new Tim Winton, Eyrie, and the new Donna Tartt."

As for children's books, "Margaret Mahy's been selling well, as always".

Children's Bookshop owner Sheila Sinclair said it was nice to have some of Mahy's older work brought back into print.

Although there had not been any one book selling "enormously well," Sinclair said there had been a lot of people coming through looking for "a gift that lasts".

Though her staff tends to "tailor books to each person's needs," some of the favourites have been John Klassen's I Want My Hat Back and the "oldie, but goodie" How Tom Beat Captain Najork and His Hired Sportsmen, written by Russell Hoban and illustrated by Quentin Blake.

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- The Press

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