Move over New York Times. There’s a new best-seller list in town.
This one comes from Amazon, already one of the world’s largest purveyors of books and a hotbed for customer reviews. Now, it’s leveraging those two aspects to create Amazon Charts, heralded as “the new landscape of reading.”
The new best-seller list keeps tabs on the “most read” and “most sold” books of the week. As the names suggest, the most read category tracks the books customers appear to be reading most frequently, whereas most sold shows what people are buying and borrowing. Amazon currently has hourly best-seller lists that apply across a range of genres, but this overarching list will aggregate all the information into a single, convenient location. But don’t worry, those other lists aren’t going away.
Rather than sorting by genre, Amazon Charts will instead delineate its rankings into two categories — nonfiction and fiction. Data from physical books bought through Amazon.com, Kindle Books, and Audible Audiobooks will be taken into consideration.
“Many well-known best-seller lists today add, remove, or rerank books based on editorial considerations,” David Naggar, Amazon’s vice president, told the Verge. “Customers have asked for a best-seller list that is based on reading engagement and sales data, rather than an opinion-based list of what books they should be paying attention to.”
Amazon’s list will be entirely data-driven, and for this week, it looks as though both the most read and most sold book is Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale,” which has been made popular once again by the new Hulu series of the same name. Also perennially popular are the books in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, which actually took up five spots on the most read list (though they’re notably absent from the most sold list).
Amazon Charts will also show you how quickly readers complete a book in comparison to others on the list, a book’s customer rating, and links to reviews and sample chapters. Of course, Amazon has also made it very easy for you to buy a book, with an option to add any title to your shopping cart directly in Charts.
So if you’re planning on doing some summer reading, Amazon Charts may just be the place to start.