Books: Vitamin Pills

All through the summer, fiction sales have been in a slump. Most of the books at the top of the bestseller lists (The Cardinal, The Wall, Star Money, Jubilee Trail) have perched there for months, not because they are great novels but because the competition has not been good enough to dislodge them. The term bestseller itself became almost a misnomer. "Bestseller sales," complains the Retail Bookseller, "are down to depression levels." What is needed, says Bookseller, is "vitamin pills."

This week, booksellers had three name-brand pills that have always been sure-fire remedies. One of them runs to tried formula; the other...

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