Jamie hot favourite to top best sellers' list
Naked chef Jamie Oliver is odds-on favourite to top the best-seller books charts this Christmas.
His new book, Jamie's Great Britain, is tied in with a new Channel 4 series and that publicity combined with Oliver's popularity guarantees healthy sales figures.
Waterstone's spokesman Jon Howells said: "I wouldn't say he is infallible. A few years ago he went head to head with Nigella Lawson and she did better, but this year he has a very strong book. He is talking about the food we know best and it is a lovely looking book as well.
"There will be very few Christmas trees this year that won't have a Jamie Oliver book underneath them and many of them will probably have multiple copies."
Hundreds of books have been released today, on what the book trade calls Super Thursday, with more to come next month in a bid to cash in on the Christmas trade.
Mr Howells also predicted strong sales for titles including Claire Tomalin's biography of Charles Dickens, Robert Harris's financial thriller The Fear Index, Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy's new collection The Bees and the autobiography of Steve Coogan's comic character Alan Partridge.
Bookmakers William Hill made Oliver 1/2 favourite to top the Christmas charts with the Guinness Book of World Records second favourite at 11/2 followed by the Inbetweeners Year Book and the memoirs of former Manchester United star Paul Scholes at 10/1.
William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams said: "After storming the 2010 charts, it is difficult to see past Jamie Oliver, but, the gift of Jamie two year's running perhaps shows a lack of thought and the Inbetweeners Year Book looks a Christmas cracker at 10/1."
Oliver's last book, 30 Minute Meals, topped the charts for half a year and became Britain's biggest selling non-fiction title of all time.