The Lost Symbol has lost ground. According to Amazon’s best-sellers list, Dan Brown’s blockbuster novel has slipped quietly down to third place. At both Amazon and Barnes & Noble, the top two spots are occupied by pre-orders for the recently moved-up memoir by former Alaska governor Sarah Palin (Going Rogue: An American Life is now due in stores Nov. 17, well before its initial spring 2010 release) and Arguing With Idiots by lachrymose talking head Glenn Beck.
Is Symbol’s slip to be expected? Are we experiencing a Brown-out of sorts, in which everyone who was going to buy the book has already bought it or borrowed it from a friend? The novel will likely see a resurrection in sales once the holiday season rolls around and gift purchases start up, but for now at least its iron grip on the best-seller charts has slackened.
And if that wasn’t bad enough, a bookstore in Chicago is reporting that the latest Windy City-themed issue of Granta, a quarterly literary magazine, has been outselling Symbol. I never thought I’d see the day that Wole Soyinka, whose work is included in the issue, would be more in demand than the author of The Da Vinci Code. Maybe Chicagoans really do have something going for them, and I should start reconsidering my position on deep-dish.