Tarkington, Best-Seller

“100 Years. 94 Books.” That’s the title of a new reviewing project by blogger Matt Kahn. The idea? To read and review every book to top the year’s best sellers list at Publisher’s Weekly since 1913. Says Kahn:

Beyond just a book review, I’m going to provide some information on the authors and the time at which these books were written in an attempt to figure out just what made these particular books popular at that particular time.

I decided to undertake this endeavor as a mission to read books I never would have otherwise read, discover authors who have been lost to obscurity, and to see how what’s popular has changed over the last one hundred years.  I plan to post a new review every Monday, with links, short essays, and the like between review posts.

You can visit Kahn’s blog for a complete list of the 94 titles (some, like Gone With the Wind, topped the list in more than one year).

Two Tarkington titles appear on the list: The Turmoil (1915) and Seventeen (1916), a rather impressive back-to-back accomplishment.

The copy of The Turmoil in my own library is a limited advance edition of specially-printed pages from the serial publication in Harper’s Magazine, bound in red cardboard with a paper label.

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