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L.A. Times bestsellers, featuring Rosanne Cash

August 25, 2010 |  4:59 pm

Anyone who follows Rosanne Cash on Twitter knows she's funny, candid and smart. "Must check celebrity health & beauty blogs to discern inability to sleep. Probably repressing inner Goddess or not eating enough seaweed," she Tweeted earlier this week, following later with, "Too much excess energy. I hate that. Wish I could REALLY relax. #ProbablyTooMuchInfoForYou." This week, Southern Californians showed they'd like more than 140 characters of Cash's writing at a time, please, sending her first book, "Composed," to debut on the nonfiction bestseller list at No. 6.  In a story in Wednesday's L.A. Times, Randy Lewis talks to Cash about her memoir.

With her autobiography "Composed," Cash saw an opportunity to sort through her life via the music that's always been at the heart of it. She was inspired to some extent by the work of 20th century food writer M.F.K. Fisher, which her editor at Viking had sent her way.

"That kind of cemented the deal for me," she said. "She wrote about her life by writing about food. And I thought, I could write about my life by writing about songs. I liked that peripheral way of approaching things."

Also debuting on the nonfiction bestseller list this week: Larry McMurtry's "Hollywood," "The Murder Room" by Mike Capuzzo and "Ill Fares the Land" by recently deceased scholar Tony Judt.

Rankings are based on a weekly poll of Southland bookstores; our extended L.A. Times Bestseller List for Sunday, Aug. 29 is after the jump.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers
Place Book Weeks on list
1 The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson (Knopf: $27.95) The final book of the Millennium Trilogy finds Lisbeth Salander in grave peril. 12

2 Star Island by Carl Hiaasen (Knopf: $26.95) A young pop star's undercover stunt double is kidnapped by an obsessed paparazzo. 4

3 The Help by Kathryn Stockett (Putnam: $24.95) The Southern lives of a maid, cook and college graduate intertwine. 63

4 Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart (Random House: $26) A satirical, twisted, futuristic love story. 4

5 Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic: $17.99) In a post-apocalyptic future, kids are forced to fight in gladiator-like matches to the death 13

6 The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell (Random House: $26) A pious Dutch official finds love in turn-of-the-19th-century Japan. 6

7 The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender (Doubleday: $25.95) Rose Edelstein's gift of taste is bittersweet. 9

8 My Hollywood by Mona Simpson (Knopf: $26.95) The relationship between a TV writer's wife and her Filipina nanny. 2

9 The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory (Touchstone: $25.99) The tale of Henry VII's mother and her wish to see him crowned King of England. 2

10 The Rembrandt Affair by Daniel Silva (Putnam: $26.95) Murder and a stolen Rembrandt portrait. 5

11 Tough Customer by Sandra Brown (Simon & Schuster: $26.99) A rule- breaking detective fights to keep a stalker from killing his daughter. 1

12 The Passage by Justin Cronin (Ballantine: $27) An apocalypse with fangs: a military experiment with vampires goes wrong and imperils humanity. 9

13 The Adventures of Ook and Gluk, Kung-Fu Cavemen from the Future by Dav Pilkey (Blue Sky Press : $9.99) The adventures of two time-traveling caveboys from the author of the "Captain Underpants" series. 1

14 A Dog's Purpose by W. Bruce Cameron (Forge: $22.99) A dog is reborn several times before finding his true purpose. 5

15 The Vigilantes by W.E.B. Griffin (Putnam: $26.95) A group of vigilantes take credit for a surge of murders in Philadelphia. 1

16 Veil of Night by Linda Howard (Random House: $26) When a bridezilla is murdered, all involved with the wedding plans become suspects. 1

17 The Postcard Killers by James Patterson (Little, Brown: $27.99) A postcard precedes a killer, murdering young couples in Europe, next victims. 1

18 The Cookbook Collector by Allegra Goodman (Dial Press: $26) A Jane Austenesque tale set in the dotcom era. 3

19 Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic: $17.99) The winners of the annual Hunger Games face the consequences of their victory. 6

20 Savages by Don Winslow (Simon & Schuster: $25) Laguna Beach drug dealers take on a violent Baja Cartel. 5

Hardcover Nonfiction Bestsellers
Place Book Weeks on list
1 Women, Food and God by Geneen Roth (Scribner: $24) How the connection between eating and core beliefs brings fulfillment. 19

2 Packing for Mars by Mary Roach (W.W. Norton: $25) The science and oddities required for space travel. 2

3 Tattoos on the Heart by Gregory Boyle (Free Press: $25) A Jesuit priest recounts working with L.A. youth through his gang intervention program. 20

4 Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern (HarperCollins: $15.99) A son's compilation of his elderly father's ramblings and observations. 14

5 The Murder Room by Mike Capuzzo (Gotham: $26) A portrait of the Vidocq Society, crime fighters who join forces to investigate unsolved true crimes. 1

6 Composed by Rosanne Cash (Viking: $26.99) The daughter of Johnny Cash recounts her early years, career success and personal life. 1

7 Medium Raw by Anthony Bourdain (Ecco: $26.99) A gastronome's journey for foodies everywhere. 9

8 Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M. by Sam Wasson (Harper: $5) How "Breakfast at Tiffany's" and a little black dress influenced a generation. 6

9 Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell (Little, Brown: $27.99) An exploration of the background of high achievers. 72

10 Hollywood by Larry McMurtry (Simon & Schuster: $24) This final installment of the memoir trilogy focuses on the author's time in Tinseltown. 1

11 The Secret by Rhonda Byrne (Atria: $23.95) Life's secrets, distilled. 2

12 Angelina by Andrew Morton (St. Martin's Press: $26.99) An inside look at the Oscar-winning actress, mother and humanitarian. 2

13 The Big Short by Michael Lewis (W.W. Norton: $27.95) How the U.S. economy was driven to collapse by the bond and real estate markets. 21

14 Strength Finders 2.0 by Tom Rath (Gallup Press: $22.95) An upgraded assessment on how to find your top talents. 10

15 LEGO Star Wars: The Visual Dictionary by DK Publishing (DK Publishing: $21.99) Details, history and lingo about all the Star Wars characters and vehicles. 5

16 Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert (Viking: $26.95) The author tackles her fears of marriage by delving into the institution's history. 9

17 Orange Sunshine by Nicholas Schou (Thomas Dunne: $24.99) The history of a band of '60's LSD-dealing hippies, the Brotherhood of Eternal Love. 6

18 Ill Fares the Land by Tony Judt (Penguin Press: $25.95) Alternatives to the status quo of our societal woes. 1

19 Getting Pretty Back by Molly Ringwald (It Books: $25.99) The actress shares insights and tips on finding inner and outer beauty after 40. 4

20 The Fifth Agreement by Don Miguel Ruiz (Amber-Allen : $19.95) How to recover your authentic self. 4

Paperback Fiction Bestsellers
Place Book
1 The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson ($14.95)

2 The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson ($15.95)

3 Little Bee by Chris Cleave ($14)

4 Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese ($15.95)

5 Tinkers by Paul Harding ($14.95)

6 One Day by David Nicholls ($14.95)

7 Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann ($15)

8 The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho ($13.95)

9 Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer ($14.99) The final book in the "Twilight" saga finds Bella choosing immorality.

10 Scott Pilgrim by Bryan O'Malley ($11.99)

11 The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein ($14.99)

12 The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver ($16.99)

13 To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee ($7.99)

14 Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon ($16)

15 Hoot by Carl Hiaasen ($6.99)

Paperback Nonfiction Bestsellers
Place Book
1 Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert ($16)

2 Zeitoun by Dave Eggers ($15.95)

3 Awkward Family Photos by Doug Chernack and Mike Bender ($15)

4 Slake: The Los Angeles Quarterly by Joe Donnelly et al. ($18)

5 Where Men Win Glory by Jon Krakauer ($15.95)

6 Crazy for the Storm by Norman Ollestad ($14.99)

7 What to Expect When You're Expecting by Heidi Murkoff and Sharon Mazel ($24.95)

8 Three Cups of Tea by David Oliver Relin and Greg Mortenson ($16)

9 Mennonite in a Little Black Dress by Rhoda Janzen ($14)

10 A Bright & Guilty Place by Richard Rayner ($15.95)

11 The Official SAT Study Guide, 2nd Edition by the College Board ($21.99)

12 The Good Soldiers by David Finkel ($15)

13 Lit by Mary Karr ($14.99)

14 Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain ($15.99)

15 Freakonomics by Stephen J. Dubner and Steven D. Levitt ($15.99)