The Margin: Prince Harry’s ‘Spare’ sold 629,300 print copies in its first week, but it still didn’t top Obama’s ‘A Promised Land’

by | Jan 19, 2023 | Stock Market

When it comes to first-week book sales, Prince Harry may be ruling the roost. But former President Barack Obama still has him beat. “Spare,” the newly released tell-all tome by Prince Harry, sold 629,300 print copies in the U.S. during its first week, according to NPD BookScan, the leading tracker of book sales. That made “Spare” the top-selling book in this country by a wide margin — the closest competitor, Colleen Hoover’s romantic novel “It Starts with Us,” sold 51,000 copies.

Still, “Spare” doesn’t come close to the first-week tally of 831,300 copies that President Obama recorded with “A Promised Land,” his 2020 release. NPD BookScan said “A Promised Land” is the first-week record-holder for adult non-fiction. For that matter, “Spare” didn’t beat Michelle Obama’s 2018 book “Becoming,” which posted first-week sales of 645,900, according to NPD BookScan. Still, “Spare” is proving itself in other ways. The book is ranked the top seller on Amazon
and Barnes & Noble. And it is the fastest-selling nonfiction book in U.K. history, according to numerous press reports, which indicate that 400,000 copies across numerous formats (print, e-book and audio) were snapped up on the day of release. “We always knew this book would fly but it is exceeding even our most bullish expectations,” said Transworld Penguin Random House Managing Director Larry Finlay in a statement. Transworld is the British publisher behind “Spare”; Random House is the U.S. publisher. The strong sales for “Spare” shouldn’t come as a surprise. Prince Harry — the Duke of Sussex and second-born child of Charles and Diana — and his wife Meghan Markle are two of the most-watched members of the royal …

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