J.K. Rowling's 'The Casual Vacancy' Tops U.K. Fiction Chart, Sells 124,603 Copies

J.K. Rowling The Casual Vacancy Cover - P 2012

J.K. Rowling The Casual Vacancy Cover - P 2012

The first adult novel from the "Harry Potter" author confirms her as the best-selling author in Britain on record.


LONDON - J.K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy sold 124,603 copies in the U.K. in its first week to take the top spot on the country's fiction chart.

The first adult novel from the Harry Potter author sold 10 times more copies than Bernard Cornwell's second-ranked 1356, which sold 12,231, according to data from Nielsen Book Scan.


STORY: J.K. Rowling Admits to Some Similarities Between 'The Casual Vacancy' and 'Harry Potter'

The sales figure was more than 20 times bigger than that of the next new entry, Jackie Collins' The Power Trip, the Guardian reported.

The new Rowling book is the fastest- selling hard cover novel in Britain since Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol came out in 2009. That book sold more than 550,000 copies in its first week.

The Guardian said the sales data since Thursday's publication makes the novel number 25 on the fiction chart year- to-date and number one for 2012 to-date in the hard cover fiction ranking.

STORY: J.K. Rowling's 'Casual Vacancy': What the Critics Are Saying About Her First Post-Harry Potter Book

In comparison, the final release of the Potter franchise, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, sold more than 2.6 million copies in its first week in 2007.

"J.K. Rowling's U.K. sales to date are of a value in excess of £238 million ($383 million), making her by far the highest-selling author in the U.K. since our records began," a Nielsen BookScan spokesman told the Guardian.

In India, The Casual Vacancy is facing criticism and a potential ban amid criticism about its description of a Sikh character.

In the U.K., the book has drawn mixed reviews and caused some debate as it deals with such issues as child abuse, prostitution and drugs. Some British conservatives have called it a liberal attack on their values.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com
Twitter: @georgszalai