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Alex Good issues a challenge

The publication of bestsellers lists derived from data released by BookNet Canada in Q&Q‘s January/February issue has led litblogger Alex Good to comment on the state of bestsellers lists in Canada. Good cites a statement in the National Post that says that “the BookNet numbers — which are based on figures obtained from retailers making up 65% — 70% of the total book market — throw ‘into question the accuracy of some previously published, widely quoted bestseller lists.’ According to the new system, not one Canadian book was among the top 20 sellers in the pre-Christmas season. Mass-market books from foreign authors dominated.”

This leaves Good wondering where the figures in the Canada-friendly Globe and Mail and Maclean’s bestseller lists come from, calling them “useless exercises in cultural politics,” and ultimately challenging the aforementioned publications to scrap their lists altogether.

Related links:
Click here for Good’s piece
Click here for a September 2004 Q&Q article expanding on the ugly truths revealed by BNC bestsellers lists