1. The Cuckoo’s Calling By Robert Galbraith (Mulholland Books, $29)
A troubled private investigator, a supermodel’s suspicious death, a moderately successful thriller – until it is revealed that “Robert Galbraith” is none other than that prose wizard herself, J.K. Rowling. The Harry Potter author has the best-selling hardcover and paperback books (her proper non-Potter debut, The Casual Vacancy) in the country. The real suspense here is in how long she can hold the spots.
2. And the Mountains Echoed By Khaled Hosseini (Viking Canada, $30)
And the Mountains Echoed, an instant hit, is getting interactive. Its publishers marked the book’s release with the launch of The Echo Project (echoproject.ca), a lavish multimedia site where readers are invited to offer contributions – film, sound, image – that correspond with each of the novel’s 402 pages. Maybe that’s what keeps it selling.
3. A Tap on the Window By Linwood Barclay (Doubleday Canada, $22.95)
4. The Ocean at the End of the Lane By Neil Gaiman (William Morrow, $27.99)
Neil Gaiman’s latest will vindicate his old fans and win new converts. A story both about childhood and the losses that herald its ending, it may be his best in some time.
5. The Silent Wife By A.S.A. Harrison (Penguin Canada, $18)
A.S.A. Harrison’s The Silent Wife is being hailed as this year’s Gone Girl. From the get-go, we know the marriage unravels and ends in death. But it’s the details – the husband’s philandering; his psychotherapist wife’s slow descent into murderousness – that hold the reader fast.
6. The Silver Star By Jeannette Walls (Scribner, $29.99)
As she told Globe Books in an interview last month, Jeanette Walls loves a bestseller. So she must be rather pleased with herself, as The Silver Star, her third book and first out-and-out novel, has been moving swiftly from our nation’s shelves. Walls argued that a bestselling author doesn’t need literary approval, because they’ve readers, the most important thing. The very positive critical reception for this new book proves that she’s found a way to have it all.
7. Joyland By Stephen King (Hard Case Crime, $12.95)
It’s a good time to be King: The master storyteller has a new book riding high on the bestseller lists (his delightful bit of summertime nostalgia, Joyland), a TV show heating up the airwaves (Under the Dome, the book version of which is selling well, too), and a new novel (Doctor Sleep, a sequel to The Shining) less than two months away.
8. 419 By Will Ferguson (Viking Canada, $20)
When a Nigerian internet scammer and a Calgarian school teacher touch lives, the repercussions travel far in either direction. In this Scotiabank Giller Prize-winning novel, a bestseller list stalwart, four interwoven storylines illustrate how closely technology has linked us, for better or for worse.
9. The Rosie Project By Graeme Simison (HarperCollins, $19.99)
Globe Books described The Rosie Project – a novel about an exceedingly rational guy sidelined by that most irrational of emotions – as “crackling with wit and boasting an almost perfectly calibrated heartbreak-to-romance ratio.”
10. Wild By Cheryl Strayed (Vintage, $18.95)
In her many long hours hiking the Pacific Trail, did Cheryl Strayed ever pass the time with the “who would play me in the movie of my life” game? Well, guess what, Ms. Strayed, it’s Reese Witherspoon, which is pretty sweet. Sweeter still, the screenplay will be penned by Nick Hornby. All those callouses and blisters were well worth it.