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Ever since people learned to print, the book trade began. At first, they were quite expensive and were sold in single copies. But the development of industry and technology has led to millions of book copies. As a result, the creations of many authors scattered around the world. The word "bestseller" appeared in everyday life, which means not the number of books printed, but the number of books sold. There will be no textbooks or comics on the list of best selling books. There are no such religious books as the Bible and the Koran. Although they are the most published.
So, according to the Guinness Book of Records, about 6 billion copies of the Bible alone have been printed in history! But after all, religious literature is usually distributed free of charge after printing. We will tell you about those 10 books that sold the best.
A Tale of Two Cities, Dickens. Few suspect, but since the publication of this book in 1859, it has been the most sold book. Since then, there have been about 200 million copies of this book sold. This historical novel tells about the times of the French Revolution. The main characters show love and self-sacrifice against the background of the bloody events of that time. It is curious that Dickens himself is the only historical novel. It immediately became a textbook. The book was filmed several times, for the first time in 1911. But the best film version was filmed in 1935. Opera and musical were created based on the story. Even Leo Tolstoy, in his work "What is Art", mentioned this book as an example of the highest religious creativity based on love for God and neighbor. And in our country, the book turned out to be little known, since revolutionary realities were rather sharply reflected there. Communist literary critics simply did not give the book the green light in the USSR. But the whole world has recognized the genius of the writer's work.
The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien. This novel was written in the fantasy style, becoming a classic of the genre and the most famous work in this style. The Lord of the Rings is a trilogy that continues the book The Hobbit. Although there are three parts here - "The Fellowship of the Ring", "The Two Towers" and "The Return of the King", usually they are all combined into a single book. Tolkien's creation became truly legendary, he was translated into 38 languages. It is believed that "The Lord of the Rings" had a huge impact on literature, on the gaming industry. Based on the book, a trilogy was filmed, which eventually received 17 Oscars. Tolkien himself taught philology at Oxford. In his books, he simply tried to create the world of the English epic. The professor knew the myths of Northern Europe well, he was inspired by the legends of King Arthur, Kalevala. First, "The Hobbit" was born from a fairy tale for children, and then Tolkien began to write the continuation of that story. The novel was not released immediately, the publishers were confused by the volume of the work. In addition, the author spent a lot of time creating a map of the large-scale world he invented. Critics greeted the book rather reservedly, only in America in the 60s there was a real boom in Tolkien. The book tells the story of three hobbits who are on an adventure to destroy the Ring of Omnipotence. The dark lord is hunting him. The ring constantly tempts the owner and tries to enslave him. The Hobbit, or there and back, Tolkien. This book was published in 1937. It all started with a colorful fairy tale told by the professor for his children. This story fascinated the scientist so much that he even drew maps of a fictional country with them. However, the story remained unfinished for a long time, existing in a single handwritten copy. As a result, the fairy tale fell into the hands of one publisher, whose ten-year-old son expressed the opinion that the kids will certainly like the book. The book tells about the treasure hunt of the gnomes. Unexpectedly for himself, the hobbit Bilbo falls into the group, hitherto not inclined to adventurous actions. On a treasure hunt, the company goes through many dangerous adventures, and the hero himself finds the ring. It was this that became the basis for the continuation of this tale. The Hobbit is based on the myths of the ancient Scandinavians and Germans much more than The Lord of the Rings. But there are almost no elements of the epic about Arthur. If "The Lord of the Rings" is created in the fantasy genre, then "The Hobbit" looks more like a fairy tale. The book has been translated into many languages, in 1976 it was published in the USSR. In 2011, director Peter Jackson in New Zealand began filming the film adaptation of the book with his characteristic scale.
Sleep in the Red Chamber, Cao Xueqin. In Chinese literature, there is such a thing as "The Four Great Creations". One of these novels is The Dream in the Red Chamber. It was published in 1763, 80 chapters were written by Cao Xueqing. But three decades later, a certain Gao E published forty more chapters, completing the unfinished plot. Critics still argue about how the ending matches the author's style and intention. The novel recounts the decline of two branches of the Jia family. The narrative has many plans, a large number of relatives and household members pass through it. The composition of the book is rather loose, the autobiography is intertwined with fiction, ordinary events are interspersed with the supernatural. In Europe, the novel was first translated in the 19th century. The book appeared completely in Russian only in 1958. It is worth noting that almost always the book was adapted for the Western reader, or the most interesting excerpts of it were published. It would simply be difficult for us to understand the entire complex Chinese culture of that period. Only in the 1980s did Europe see the book in full. It is curious that the only manuscript is kept outside China itself, in St. Petersburg. But in the country there is a whole institute of "Sleep in the Red Chamber" and a scientific discipline dedicated to the book. In total, more than 100 million copies of this novel have been sold around the world, of course, most of them are in China.
Ten Little Indians, Agatha Christie. This novel by the master of the detective genre is considered the most successful of those that came out of her pen. In total, about 100 million copies of this book have been sold worldwide. Agatha Christie wrote the book in 1939, she considered it her best, and in 1943 she even wrote a play based on it. The plot of the book is that 10 strangers were invited to a certain Negro island. The mysterious owners of the house claim that each of the guests is a murderer in the past. And then the visitors begin to die one by one. The police, arriving on the island some time later, found 10 corpses here and are trying to solve the riddle - who is the killer? The novel was filmed many times, for the first time back in 1945. The work gave rise to the idea of "perfect murder", becoming the first to describe this plan.
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by Clive Lewis. The circulation of this book, published in 1950, reached 85 million books. The novel became the first in the series of the famous "Chronicles of Narnia" and the most famous of all. Time magazine has included the book in the list of the 100 best English books. Playing hide and seek, the four children climb into the closet that turns out to be the gateway to the magical world of Narnia. There is eternal winter, and the animals can talk. Brave and kind children were able to defeat the evil sorceress and rule Narnia for 15 years. When they returned back to England, it turned out that not a minute had passed in our world. The book carries elements of the writer's autobiography. After all, as the main characters came to visit Professor Kirk during the bombing of London, so Lewis himself had children during the war. In his childhood, the writer himself visited Professor Kerkpatrick, who became one of the prototypes of the novel's character. The book closely intertwines elements not only of Christianity, but also of various mythologies. There are also Celtic, Greek and Scandinavian motives. In 1967, a television series based on this book was first released, but the 2005 film adaptation of The Chronicles of Narnia is best known. She even won an Oscar for Best Makeup.
She is an adventure story. Henry Haggard. This book was published in English in 1887. Its circulation was 83 million copies. It is believed that this book is the best of the writer, challenging this right with the "Mines of King Solomon." The story is told in the first person about a trip to Africa. There is a race of natives ruled by a mysterious white queen, the all-powerful She. In his book, Haggard created the concept of the Lost World. Many authors later worked in this genre. The book is an illustrative creation of imperialist English literature of the 19th century. The author was inspired by South Africa and British colonialism. Haggard paid great attention to the study of the topic of female behavior and authority, which was important enough for Victorian Britain. It is believed that "She" is one of the foundational for the entire genre of fantasy. History was one of the first in modern literature to show the intrusion of something unreal into the everyday world. Immediately after its publication, the book became very popular and was well received by critics. Since then, many attempts have been made to interpret this book, in particular from a feminist perspective. They tried to film the book at least 10 times, for the first time back in 1899.
Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery. The French writer published his major work in 1943. Since then, the book has been released in an amount of 80 million. During this time, it was translated into more than 180 languages and dialects. The book's great success was also brought about by the fact that the drawings in it were made by the author himself. It is even believed that this is an organic part of the work, which only emphasizes its uniqueness. The writer told a touching and candid story about a little boy who still lived in himself. Exupery noted sadly that we were all children once, we just forgot about it. The image of the protagonist is largely autobiographical, and the prototype of the capricious Rose is the writer's wife. Many professional philologists believe that the book is the best tool for learning French. Based on the work, films were shot, a musical was staged, and even a satellite of one of the asteroids was named. And the writer himself died in 1944, and remained a child at heart.
The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown. Although the book was published only in 2003, it has already sold 80 million pieces. American writer and journalist Dan Brown has created an intelligent detective thriller. The book is a sequel to another bestseller by the same author - "Angels and Demons". The Da Vinci Code was able to awaken wide public interest in the legend of the Holy Grail and the role of Mary Magdalene in the story of Christ. In the story, Professor Langdon is investigating the murder of the curator of the Louvre. The scientist, one after another, begins to solve a chain of riddles, approaching the main secret. However, the Catholic organization Opus Dei wants to know the whereabouts of the Holy Grail. The action is developing rapidly, first in France, then in England and Scotland. An exciting plot constantly keeps you in suspense, because more and more puzzles appear that re-open the story. A movie was made based on the book in 2006, and the writer himself, with the help of this and his four other books, was able to earn more than $ 260 million. I must say that the idea of the novel is not new. Brown even sued other writers who claimed their idea had been stolen. The novel easily alters and interprets the history of Christianity. The book's success prompted the church to even make an official appeal to Catholics to boycott the text altogether. After all, it is allegedly filled with anti-Christian slander and numerous mistakes regarding Jesus and the Gospel. But all these scandals only served as additional advertising.
The Catcher in the Rye, Salinger. The circulation of this novel was 65 million. It was published in 1951. The story is told on behalf of a 16-year-old teenager who looks at American reality with his own eyes, not wanting to comply with its rules and morality. The guy was kicked out of school, and now he just wanders around New York, constantly thinking about life. Although the book was intended for adults, it became very popular among young people, having played a great influence on world culture in the second half of the 20th century. It is curious that the author himself worked on this work for as long as 9 years. The book turned out to be so poignant that it even spawned several maniacs. She was possessed by John Hinckley, who attempted to assassinate Reagan. It was read by Mark Chapman immediately after Lennon's murder. In 2009, Swedish writer Kolting published a sequel to that story. This time, an old man escaped from a nursing home and now wanders around New York, remembering his young years. However, the book was declared plagiarism by the court.
Alchemist, Paulo Coelho. The Portuguese writer published this book in 1988 and since then 65 million people have bought it. The Alchemist has been translated into 67 languages and published in 117 countries around the world. The main plot comes from European folklore. The main character is an ordinary shepherd who lives in Spain. Once he had a dream in which there was a call to go for treasures to the Egyptian pyramids. The guy is on his way to his goal by selling his sheep. Having met interesting people and having gone through a series of adventures, he meets with the Alchemist. He teaches him self-knowledge. As a result, the shepherd achieves his goal, finds treasures and love. The book is full of allegories, it is for those who want and know how to think. The writer says that you need to follow the set goal, and then the whole world will help you in this.