1. J.K. Rowling ($95 million) I have not read any of her books. Judging from the sales of the Harry Potter series at my floating book shop (fbs), she is not a flash in the pan. It seems her popularity will span generations.
2. James Patterson ($87 million) I read only one of "his" novels, a co-write, and didn't like it. I don't recall the title but it had a number in it. I suppose I should try one from early in his career, but I hesitate because I'm almost always disappointed by the mystery genre. His books go quickly at the fbs.
3. Jeff Kinney ($21 million) His Diary of a Wimpy Kid series sell fast at the fbs. I don't read children's books, so I have no opinion on the series.
4. Dan Brown ($20 million) I haven't read any of his work. I fell asleep watching the 2006 adaptation of The Da Vinci Code on DVD.
5. Stephen King ($15 million) I've read only Thinner, which he wrote under the pseudonym Richard Bachman. I enjoyed it, although it was no more than light reading.
6. John Grisham ($14 million) & Nora Roberts. I read one each of their novels and didn't like either. The titles escape me.
8. Paula Hawkins ($13 million) I didn't read The Girl on the Train, but I enjoyed the 2016 movie.
9. E.L. James ($11.5 million) I've been tempted to sample her work, but the books are so long. If someone tells me they have actual substance, I might try one.
10. Danielle Steel ($11 million, tie) & Rick Riordan of the Percy Jackson series. I read one of Steel's long ago, a Hollywood saga, and was lukewarm about it. She, Rowling, Patterson, Roberts and Grisham are the best-selling living authors at fbs. Sidney Sheldon is by far the most popular of the deceased. I haven't read any of Riordan's work. A while ago a dad bought the entire box set for his son, who beamed.
In case you're wondering, here are the top ten best selling authors of all-time:
1. Agatha Christie - estimated between two and four billion copies sold.
2. Shakespeare - also between two and four billion.
3. Barbara Cartland (romance) - between 500 million and one billion.
4. Danielle Steel - 500 to 800 million.
5. Harold Robbins - 750 million.
6. Georges Simenon (French, chiefly Inspector Maigret mysteries) - 500 to 700 million.
7. Sidney Sheldon -370 to 600 million.
8. Enid Blyton (Children's) - 300 to 600 million.
9. J. K. Rowling - 450 to 500 million. (I'd bet she moves up to number three within a decade.)
10. Dr. Seuss - 100 to 500 million.
From Yahoo's Odd News, in my own words: What are the odds? While in a gas station's store recently, a waitress had her purse stolen from her car. A few days later a man she served tried to pay with a credit card - hers! She called the cops, who found her Social Security card and driver's license on the slimeball, who was arrested on the spot.
All the action came in the final half hour of operation today. My thanks to the gentleman who bought the huge pictorial on Native-American art; to Michael, who purchased two Catherine Coulter romances; to the woman who selected a large paperback on vitamins; to Matt, who chose The Spinoza of Market Street by Isaac Bashevis Singer, one of my favorite authors; and to Andy F-Bomb, who donated The Diary of an Ugly Stepsister by Gregory Maguire.
My Amazon Author page: https://www.amazon.com/Vic-Fortezza/e/B002M4NLJE
Read Vic's Stories, free: http://fictionaut.com/users/vic-fortezza