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  1. #1

    Default Is this list accurate and what do you think?

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Worlds-All-T...ch_f_2_rsrssi0

    I've always heard that the bible is the most best selling book in the world, which I can understand for reasons other than simply being of scriptural importance to believers or those curious about Christian beliefs, I believe it has literary merit and there are those who are athiests even who remain devoted fans.

    The possibility that the thoughts of chairman Mao would be second doesnt surprise me or that the Quran could be next, those are major works within the belief systems which dominate in populous parts of the world.

    Then its switches lanes into Harry Potter and The Alchemist? Really? I read The Alchemist and thought it was shite, I understand the devoted following for the Potter books even if I dont like them myself. However, it seems to be an amazing mix of the serious and trivial or merely diversionary and entertaining.

    Is life just like that?

  2. #2
    Away with the fairies Southern Kross's Avatar
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    I don't know about you but when a book says "international bestseller!" that actually makes me want to run in the opposite direction. Popular books tend to be terrible because most people have terrible taste in literature. Although I admit I like Harry Potter.

    And I do own a bible, in spite of being an atheist. I have to get on to the Quran sometime too.
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  3. #3
    Doesn't Read Your Posts Haight's Avatar
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    Is it based on total books sold over the last couple thousand years, most books in circulation, or some current sales number?
    "The only time I'm wrong is when I'm questioning myself."
    Haight

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    lab rat extraordinaire CrystalViolet's Avatar
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    Okay, I may be confirming my geek credentials here a bit, but the fact LOTR is on that list gives me a happy
    Currently submerged under an avalanche of books and paper work. I may come back up for air from time to time.
    Real life awaits and she is a demanding mistress.

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  5. #5
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Is life just like that?
    Life is like a Shakespearean play - high seriousness with comic relief to refresh us for the serious business ahead.

  6. #6
    Honor Thy Inferior Such Irony's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Southern Kross View Post
    I don't know about you but when a book says "international bestseller!" that actually makes me want to run in the opposite direction. Popular books tend to be terrible because most people have terrible taste in literature. Although I admit I like Harry Potter.
    That just sounds like snobbery. Sometimes international bestsellers are bestsellers because they *are* good. I'm not saying that every international bestseller is good literature but some are.
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  7. #7

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    There are a lot more people on Earth and a lot more people with access to books in the last couple of decades, so the slant toward recent books doesn't surprise me. And yeah, life just IS like that. And thank God it is. I love a gourmet meal, but damn if a cheeseburger isn't the most perfect food in the world.
    Everybody have fun tonight. Everybody Wang Chung tonight.

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  8. #8
    Feline Member kelric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haight View Post
    Is it based on total books sold over the last couple thousand years, most books in circulation, or some current sales number?
    Yeah, this. I'd be a little interested in knowing how the numbers were compiled... the Amazon listing mentions, for instance, the Oxford World Classics version of the King James Bible by Robert Carroll. Is this single version the best-selling version only, or does this include all versions of the Bible (which is my assumption, or multiple versions would likely appear on the list) -- if so, how were numbers for long-past versions counted (or are those numbers considered insignificant?).

    Things being what they are, I'm completely unsurprised at the rankings, really. Religious books have a *huge* base -- there are many people, and have been throughout history, many people whose only exposure to books has been through scriptures (and just think about how many Bibles have been bought to sit in hotel room nightstands, for instance... that alone probably puts it at #1 in the U.S., at least). So the Bible, Koran, Book of Mormon, etc. are obvious inclusions. Probably the same for Mao's writings. Xinhua Zidian is the most popular dictionary for the world's most common "first language" (and if you've ever tried learning how to read/write Chinese, it's no surprise why a reference like this is so common).

    Next comes Harry Potter. Which, given the incredibly widespread audience and relevance in a period in history where books are relatively cheap and available, isn't too unreasonable. Although it does look a little odd on the list :p. Although I am sort of surprised why book 6 has sold more copies than books 2-5... bad statistics?
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Critical Hit's Avatar
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    I believe at one point in time every family in China was required to own a Red Book. So yeah, list doesnt seem very off.
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  10. #10
    Intergalactic Badass mujigay's Avatar
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    Yeah, life is just like that.

    Serious and silly and every shade of shallow in between.

    I wish I knew what basis this list was made on, though. Total sold over time? Copies in circulation?
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