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Jamie Oliver, holiday bestseller

December 28, 2010 |  8:55 am

Jamieoliver_wv Jamie Oliver, the energetic British chef who won over Americans -- and picked up an Emmy -- with his television show "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution" had the bestselling book in Britain in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

From Dec. 15  to Dec. 22, "Jamie's 30 Minute Meals" sold just shy of 150,000 copies, according to Nielsen BookScan.

The BBC reports that the cookbook is Oliver's third to top the holiday bestseller list, after "Jamie's Italy" in 2005 and "Happy Days with the Naked Chef" in 2001.

But "Jamie's 30 Minute Meals" has moved past those earlier books in popularity. Earlier this month, it became Britain's fastest-selling nonfiction book ever.

"It's obviously a very zeitgeist book, as people like quick and easy cooking," Philip Stone of industry magazine The Bookseller told the Daily Mail. "Sales have been absolutely huge considering the TV series has now finished, and it's certainly not cheap in these uncertain economic times."

"Jamie's 30 Minute Meals" costs about $40 and has now sold more than 1 million copies. It's been on sale in Britain since September, but is not yet available in the U.S.

When it does reach our shores, will it sell as well?

Oliver has at least one leg up. He may not be on television in Britain, but his American reality show "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution," which broadcast in spring 2010 and showed him trying to change eating habits in Huntington, W.Va., won the Emmy for outstanding reality program. In September, ABC announced that it will broadcast a second six-episode season -- although he won't be taking on the lunch ladies of the LAUSD., it may be set here in Los Angeles.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Photo: Jamie Oliver in West Virginia during the filming of "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution." Credit: ABC