East Bay Best-Sellers 

What you're buying this month.

East Bay Best-Sellers lists this month's top-selling books as reported by independent bookstores throughout the East Bay, including Analog Books, Bay Books, Black Oak, Cody's, Diesel, and Pegasus.

Nonfiction

1. Freakonomics, by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner (William Morrow, $25.95). An expansion of Dubner's praiseful New York Times profile of trendy economist Levitt, with new revelations.

2. The Tipping Point, by Malcolm Gladwell (Back Bay Books, $14.95). Gladwell's Blink has reawakened interest in this earlier rehashing of the trendology and social patterning first popularized in 1981's The Hundredth Monkey.

3. Don't Think of an Elephant, by George Lakoff (Chelsea Green, $10). Berkeley linguist Lakoff argues that the 2004 election hinged on semantics -- how the candidates used language to frame the terms of debate.

4. Blink, by Malcolm Gladwell (Little, Brown, $25.95). Tipping Point cognition maven once again affirms what we already know: that snap judgments are often more accurate than careful decisions.

5. Guns, Germs, and Steel, by Jared Diamond (Norton, $16.95). The circular reasoning of this grandiose attempt to explain away the civilizational achievements of different continents has become the premier palliative for Euro-guilt.

6. 1776, by David McCollough (Simon & Schuster, $32). Refreshing and factually precise analysis of the revolutionary year, when American colonists fought a desperate war for democracy and freedom.

7. NEW Truth & Beauty, by Anne Patchett (Perennial, $13.95). Hauntingly written reminiscences of Patchett's obsessive and disturbingly dysfunctional friendship with doomed colleague Lucy Grealy.

8. NEW The Devil's Teeth, by Susan Casey (Henry Holt, $25). A gory biological adventure tale of the great white sharks that stalk the Farallon Islands just outside the Golden Gate.

9. NEW New Rules, by Bill Maher (Rodale, $24.95). TV comedians are America's most perceptive political analysts. Just kidding!

10 . NEW Everybody Into the Pool: True Tales, by Beth Lisick (Regan Books, $23.95). A local gossip maven recounts vignettes of her gleeful descent from homecoming queen to grungy urban hipster.

FICTION

1. NEW No Country for Old Men, by Cormac McCarthy (Knopf, $24.95). A postmodern Western thriller weaving together drugs, stolen money, and a philosophical manhunt across the Texas landscape.

2. NEW Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, by J.K. Rowling (Scholastic, $29.99). See, there's this boy who wants to be a wizard. ... Oh, wait. You know that, right?

3. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini (Riverhead, $14). Afghanistan's political upheavals are a striking backdrop for this powerful examination of cultural and personal morality.

4. NEW Until I Find You, by John Irving (Random House, $27.95). Irving's latest 800-page doorstopper follows a fatherless boy's lifelong quest, involving tattoo parlors, Academy Awards, and countless prepubescent sexual escapades.

5. NEW Snow, by Orhan Pamuk (Vintage, $14.95). This kaleidoscopic novel follows a melancholy poet snowbound in a desolate mountain town with Islamic fundamentalists, Turkish communists, and Kurdish nationalists.

6. The Jane Austen Book Club, by Karen Joy Fowler (Plume, $14). This light-and-breezy romp through the lives of six Austen aficionados is riven with Austen in-jokes.

7. Gilead, by Marilynne Robinson (Picador, $14). In a letter to his young son, an Iowa preacher traces his family's remarkable spiritual maturation and the Midwest's turbulent history.

8. Shadow of the Wind, by Carlos Ruiz Zafón (Penguin, $15). This convoluted literary thriller set in 1945 Barcelona aspires to be a Spanish Da Vinci Code with Satanic overtones.

9. A Long Way Down, by Nick Hornby (Riverhead, $24.95). A quartet of would-be suicides meet by accident on a London rooftop and share cathartic -- and comic -- tales of woe.

10. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, by Mark Haddon (Vintage, $12). Last year's most unusual debut novel features an autistic narrator emulating his hero Sherlock Holmes to solve a canine murder.

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