Monday 24 November 2014

Secret Scripture the only Irish book in best-sellers

By Clodagh Sheehy

Published 21/07/2014 | 07:47

Sebastian Barry.
The Secret Scripture by Sebastian Barry

Just one Irish novel has made it to the top 20 best-selling books in Ireland for the past 12 years.

Booker-nominated Sebastian Barry's The Secret Scripture came in at 18th with 87,697 sales.

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown is firmly in top position, selling 221,126 copies here and making more than €2m in Ireland alone.

Brown's Angels and Demons reached fourth place, giving 
the author sales of almost 350,000 copies between his two titles.

This is still way behind the total sales of El James' Fifty Shades series which totalled 433,260 copies, taking second, fifth and ninth places.

The figures compiled by Nielsen Bookscan cover about 70pc of all books sold in the country.

Not all books on the chart 
were novels, with The Official Driver Theory Test and the Rules of the Road taking 15th and 16th places with sales of just under 200,000 between them.

Barry, whose novel is being made into a film this year by filmmaker Jim Sheridan, said he was very proud his novel was the best-selling Irish 
book.

Meanwhile, this year's IMPAC literary award cost Dublin City Council just over €163,000 but the city's chief executive, Owen Keegan, reckons the event was worth every cent.

The Council calculates 
that the event reached a potential audience of 520m people around the world. "The purchase cost of such coverage is €12.5m which we regard as an excellent return on investment," said Mr Keegan.

csheehy@herald.ie

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