Sales of Clinton's 'Hard Choices' drop by over 40% in second week
June 26th, 2014
08:10 AM ET
9 years ago

Sales of Clinton's 'Hard Choices' drop by over 40% in second week

Washington (CNN) – Hillary Clinton's new memoir "Hard Choices" experienced a 43% drop in sales in its second week on bookshelves, according to numbers from Nielsen BookScan.

After 85,721 copies of "Hard Choices" were purchased in the book's first week, 48,227 copies of the memoir sold in the second week, according to Nielsen numbers, which make up roughly 85% of all retail book sales and were provided to CNN by a publishing source.

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These figures do not include e-books or digital downloads, but could foretell problems for "Hard Choices" to sell the first run of copies that the book's publisher, Simon & Schuster, has already ordered. The publisher told CNN last week that the book sold roughly 100,000 copies in the first week when you include digital purchases.

There is good and bad news in the numbers for Clinton and her allies.

The good news: While her first memoir, "Living History," sold 438,000 copies in its first week, it experienced a 62% drop off in the second week. So comparatively, "Hard Choices" didn't have as big a fall.

"Living History" would go on to sell 1.1 million copies, according to Nielsen.

The bad news is that Clinton critics who have been closely watching how her 656-page tome to American diplomacy and her time at state will likely be given ammunition with this first to second week drop off.

Jason Pinter, founder and publisher of Polis Books, said the decline is "not at all" surprising.

"Publicity-driven books like this are always front-loaded," Pinter said. "Which is why the first week numbers were likely a cause for concern-they were only going to go down from there."

Clinton has been on a frenetic, cross-country book tour since her memoir went on sale on June 10. She has held events in every American time zone, as well as in Canada, and has sat down for high profile interviews with all major TV networks.

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But Pinter said no matter how much Clinton sells the book, the "reviews were tepid enough to squelch interest from everyone but hardcore Hillary devotees."

Simon & Schuster has maintained that they are happy with how the book has performed. Last week, Jonathan Karp, the president and publisher of Simon & Schuster, said in a statement that they were "confident we have a major bestseller."

"Simon & Schuster is thrilled with Hard Choices' strong start right out of the gate, and the terrific feedback we're hearing from reviewers, retailers, and, most importantly, readers,” Karp said. β€œHard Choices is on a trajectory to being the best-selling nonfiction book of the year."

While "Hard Choices" topped the New York Times bestseller list in hardcover nonfiction for its first week, it finished fourth when you included hardcover and paperback sales. The book has also dropped out of the top 20 on Amazon's bestsellers list.

In an effort to boost international book sales, the former secretary of state will make appearances in France and Germany in July, according to Simon & Schuster.

– CNN's Brianna Keilar contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2016 • Hillary Clinton
soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. Lynda/Minnesota

    Bill from GA
    Lynda/Minnesota – " the ONLY alternative is to vote against them. "

    While I feel the same, it is really disappointing to me that the Dems seem to be counting on our vote and feel no compulsion to offer us a choice.

    I see nothing Hillary has done to qualify as President of the United States, and certainly nothing she has done convinces me that she is the best we can find. Yet because her poll numbers are high enough, more than two years out, voters leaning left accept her as the chosen candidate already.

    I personally think that a couple of repubs might be better candidates, but would not vote for them simply because it would empower the republican agenda. I hope the Dem political machine will wake up and give us a choice.

    I've never been a fan of either Clinton. That being said, I've spent time evaluating her ... both during her last campaign against Obama, and since. I won't get into my personal thoughts as such (getting past my rhetoric, I do hold my personal thoughts close to my vest and consider such thoughts off limits to the blogosphere of bickering and sniping) but I will go on record as stating that I can't ... simply can't ... vote for Republicans who have spent the better part of this past decade doing absolutely nothing but whine, finger point, throw temper tantrums, use race baiting, and otherwise show contempt for my vote ... such as it is. And then ask that I give unto them what they refused to give unto me: respect.

    Frankly it won't matter to me who they run. No one from the right interests me as presidential material. That being said, I would support either a Democrat or a Republican as my duly elected president once elected. I certainly won't be spending my time insulting the next President of the United States day in and day out decisions.

    June 26, 2014 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    "The McDaniel side says that black voters should not have voted for a Republican in a primary if they have no intention of voting for that candidate in the general election."

    Funny thing about that: that law is completely and utterly unconstitutional and was declared unenforceable by a federal court. McDaniel's attempts to rely on it are steeped in his denial of federal authority and evidence his complete and utter contempt for the Constitution and voting rights. You can't tell be HOW they are allowed to vote. Period. How many times? Sure. When? Sure. Other things like how to properly mark the ballot or validly poke out a chad? Sure. But you cannot corral their CHOICE of candidate. People change their minds in politics and should be free to do so... no matter how hard that is to understand for the stagnant ideology plaguing the rabidly entrenched minds the GOP/Teatrolls.

    June 26, 2014 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  3. Bill from GA

    Dominican mama 4 Obama – " The McDaniel side says that black voters should not have voted for a Republican in a primary if they have no intention of voting for that candidate in the general election. "

    I agree with the McDaniel camp; non-repubs should not have voted against the tea-bagger repub. Just to show em what-for, the tea-baggers in Mississippi oughta vote DEM in November. That'd learn them main-stream repubs. πŸ™‚

    June 26, 2014 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
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