Bits and Pieces Tips

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What are the five best selling books of all time?

The Five Best-Selling Books of All Time

Direct from the Internet Public Library, with caveat: "When we get asked these questions about bestselling books, we always have to remind our patrons that their question is basically unanswerable. Probably the most often cited estimates come from a book titled "The Top 10 of Everything" by Russell Ash. The Top Five Bestselling Books of All Time: 1. The Bible "No one really knows how many copies of the Bible have been printed, sold, or distributed. The Bible Society´s attempt to calculate the number printed between 1816 and 1975 produced the figure of 2,458,000,000. A more recent survey, for the years up to 1992, put it closer to 6,000,000,000 in more than 2,000 languages and dialects. Whatever the precise figure, the Bible is by far the bestselling book of all time." 2. Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung (Little Red Book) "Chairman Mao´s Little Red Book could scarcely fail to become a bestseller: between the years 1966 and 1971 it was compulsory for every Chinese adult to own a copy." 3. American Spelling Book by Noah Webster "First published in 1783, this reference book by the American man of letters Noah Webster (1758-1843) remained a bestseller in the U.S. throughout the 19th century." 4. The Guinness Book of Records "First published in 1955, The Guinness Book of Records stands out as the greatest contemporary publishing achievement. There have now been 37 editions in the UK alone (it was not published annually until 1964), as well as numerous foreign-language editions." 5. The McGuffey Readers by William Holmes McGuffey "Published in numerous editions from 1853, some authorities have put the total sales of these educational textbooks, originally compiled by American anthologist William Holmes McGuffey (1800-73), as high as 122,000,000. It has also been claimed that 60,000,000 copies of the 1879 edition were printed, but - since this is some 10,000,000 more than the entire population of the U.S. at that time - the publishers must have been extremely optimistic about its success." If you wish, there is also a list of bestselling fiction on this page: Bestselling Fiction

Where can I buy used books?

Buying Used Books

Used books are a great idea, particularly for enthusiastic readers. If you don´t have a book exchange in your town (and even if you do!), the internet is a terrific place to find bargains on used books. Check out the links in ´Recycled Books´ in the Book-tips link section.

Can I save money on books online?

Check Online Before You Buy

Before you pay full price at a local bookstore, check for discounts online. Sometimes, the larger bookstores will have online specials that aren´t available at their own retail stores!

Where can I find cheap books?

Used Books

Unless you´re into "books for looks", check around for a local paperback exchange. Almost all communities have someplace where you can trade in the books you´ve finished, and get some you haven´t read at a very low price.

Where can I find good books that are not on the best seller lists?

Buried Treasure

Don´t miss the Buried Treasure link at the bottom of Amazon´s start-up page. There are thousands of excellent books that don´t make the "best sellers" lists!

Do any online bookstores accept Australian currency?

Online Bookstores in Australia

If you are looking for an online bookstore that deals in Australian currency, try these: VICNET: Australian Bookstores Page McGill´s (Brisbane): Secure page Angus & Robertson´s

How do I write a book review?

Write Your Own Review!

Have you read a book you really enjoyed? One that was special to you, one you told your friends about? Tell the world! Write your own book reviews, and publish them on your website, or better yet, submit them to review publications to reach a wider audience. Pass your enthusiasm on to others, so that they can enjoy the book as well ... you might even gain a moment of fame when your review is published for others to read! Begin your review by listing: Title Author Publisher Publisher´s Address ISBN number You can also include the price, date of publication, and page count. All this information is available right in your book, on the publisher´s page (usually the first left-hand printed page). Then list: "Your Name" reviewer You can include your e-mail or snail mail address (usually not required, but helpful) Now, write your review. Tell your readers why you think it was a great book and what you liked about it. This can include your opinion on the skills of the author, a brief excerpt from the book, a synopsis of the plot, why you liked the book, and other information you feel would interest the reader. If it´s a book of poetry, include a poem; if it´s a joke book, include your favorite joke ... a cookbook review could feature a sample recipe. Try to be concise, but let your enthusiasm for the book shine through. Avoid "spoilers" ... don´t give away the ending, or provide too much detail. If you wish, you can also provide information about the author, including his or her other books. Where to publish? Check with your local library. Many libraries put out review newsletters and would be pleased to have your contribution. Put the review up on your own website, or submit it to other review websites ... or send it to me ( and be published right here in Book-tips!

What are the most popular books right now?

Going for the Good Read

If you´re looking for an enjoyable read, you´re sure to find something that suits your fancy in the various bestseller lists. Check out the links section for some of the better bestseller lists ... you can read reviews, and even buy your books online!

Are there newsgroups about books?

Buy and Sell Books through Newsgroups

If you haven´t discovered the online newsgroups yet, get with the program! There are over a hundred English-language newsgroups pertaining to books, and dozens more in the languages of your choice. If you´re seeking a place to buy and sell books, check out rec.arts.books.marketplace.

Where can I find the book I want for less?

Comparison Shop for the Best Price

If you´re buying a book online, don´t just settle for the first site that has it ... you never know when someone else might be having a sale! To save yourself time, use one of the Comparison Shopping links you´ll find under "Booksellers" in the links section.

How can I research book prices online?

Buying used books at auction

When buying older books through the online auction sites, check out the price of the book before making a bid. Prices can be checked out through,, and other similar sources. Before I started doing this, I paid higher prices at the auction sites for several books than the online book dealers were charging.

How can I keep my eyes from getting tired when I read?


When reading, always have adequate light. Besides finding a good lamp, keep your reading material at least 12 inches away from your eyes. And take a break from reading every 20 minutes or so to give your eyes a rest. Simply blinking keeps your eyes wet and clears away dust. Try to blink more often when you feel your eyes getting tired.

How can I get the books I love inexpensively?

Books on a Budget

Buy books at yard sales. It doesn´t matter if you like the particular titles or not, as long as they are popular titles, in good shape and cheap: you can take them to your local used store and trade them in for the books you want.

How do I write a book review?

Publish Your Review Online!

Here are a few of the best places to publish online ... click on the link and go for it! Just locate your chosen book on the Amazon site, scroll down to the review area, and click on "write an online review." Check over their requirements, then cut-and-paste your review and information. If you manage to be the FIRST person to review a book at Amazon, you could be eligible for a $50.00 prize! The Midwest Book Review The Midwest Book Review is a respected book review site featuring thousands of reviews and a vast amount of book information. Join their ranks by submitting your review via e-mail to If they use your review, they will send you an official tear sheet for your records. Barnes and Noble BN´s submission system for reviews is much like Amazon´s. Just locate your book in their online catalog, and click on "Write Your Own Review." Be sure to read their rules. The BookCart The BookCart is always glad to receive reviews from its users of any paperback books you may have read and enjoyed. Join up for FREE paperbacks ... and send your reviews via e-mail to Don´t forget to visit the site often, to swap your own books and get FREE books (you pay only shipping). Book-tips Of course, you can always submit your review to me, right here at Book-tips. Just e-mail it to Language Arts for Kids Children and young people can submit book reviews to this site ... it´s also a great place to find reviews of books kids enjoyed!

What do I need to do to book an author for my event?

Booking an Author for Your Event

TIps for Booking an Author (FROM THE PUBLISHER´S VIEWPOINT) 1. Plan as far in advance as possible: (6 months is reasonable). 2. Put the request in writing and give all known details: name of the sponsoring organization, location of event, date, time, anticipated size/age/make-up of audience, name of contact person... 3. State exact nature of event and the author´s participation: book and author lunch/breakfast/dinner, lecture, school class(es), conference address/panel... with other authors, alone... length of the presentation, question and answer period... state the theme of the event; the author´s particular topic... 4. DO NOT ASK FOR THE MOST FAMOUS AUTHOR OF THE MOMENT!!! Consider local talent, first novelists, mid-list, genre, backlist, self-help, how-to authors. 5. Request several authors In order of preference. (Make sure they are actually published by the company from which you´ve requested them!) 6. Be up-front and specific about expenses you can cover (or not). This includes speaker´s fees, transportation, hotel, meal costs... Try to take advantage of publisher´s tours where at least some of these costs are covered. 7. Say if you will have an autographing opportunity/sell books and state who will handle this: the library or school, the Friends or PTA, a local bookstore. Find out how to get the books from the publisher or wholesaler. Books should be on-hand well in advance of the event. 8. Once the author has said "yes," confirm all arrangements/ agreements with a follow through letter. Putting details in writing eliminates later confusion. 9. Make the trip as worthwhile as possible from the authors/ publishers point of view: get all the staff informed and involved; educate your audience in advance with flyers, booklists, etc.; try to set up other appearances at the local bookstore, local radio, TV, newspaper... Give the publisher credit by using their name in all PR items. 10. After your successful event, follow-up with a thank you and report to the author/publisher: (You may need to approach the same publisher in the future.) If something went wrong state suggestions/plans for improvement. and remember...plan as far in advance as possible...

Where can I comparison shop for best buys on books?

Comparison Shopping for Books Online

Here are my favorite sites when I´m looking for the best price on a particular book, whether it´s new or used: EvenBetter -- Choose the category Books and enter a keyword or book title. When it brings up your book, click on the title ... then on the next page click "Start Price Comparison." BookCompare -- A part of the CompareItAll network. Get in touch with the best sellers (and the best prices!). Robo Shopper -- Search by Book Title, Author, or Keyword. Just choose your search, enter a word and hit Go Shop! PriceSearch -- You never know when someone might be having a sale! Choose the category Books and enter a keyword or two.

What do I do if the book I want is not sold in the U.S.?

Books from the U.K.

Have you ever read a book review, decided it was a book you just HAD to read, and then discovered it was ONLY available in the U.K.? NOT a problem! Just hop over to Amazon´s U.K. site at and order it online!

How can I improve my reading comprehension?

Increase Your Reading Comprehension!

Here´s a terrific book to improve your reading comprehension! "Reading Comprehension Success in 20 Minutes a Day" by by Elizabeth Chesla. Use this link to go directly to the book on Click Here

Do I always have to pay full price for books?

Save half on previously owned titles

Looking for last month´s bestseller? Check out online They are prompt and reliable, and offer a huge collection of books, CDs, movies and computer games. All the stuff is rated, so you are unlikely to get ripped off.

Where can I find book reviews, and purchase the books I want?

Don't miss the reviews

Don´t judge a book by its cover ... check the reviews listed at! For a professional opinion about the story, check ´editorial reviews.´ To see what other readers like yourself think, look into ´customer reviews´

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Guru Spotlight
Jerry Mayo