Southern California Ranking


1. MEMOIRS OF A GEISHA by Arthur Golden (Knopf: $25) The life and loves of a teahouse entertainer growing up in Kyoto during World War II. Last Week: 3 ; Weeks on List: 27

2. A WIDOW FOR ONE YEAR by John Irving (Random House: $27.95) From childhood to middle age, a woman learns that one must wait a long time to fall in love. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 1


3. N IS FOR NOOSE by Sue Grafton (Marian Wood/Henry Holt: $25) Kinsey Millhone risks her neck investigating an unexplained death in an unfriendly town. Last Week: 1 ; Weeks on List: 2

4. DAMASCUS GATE by Robert Stone (Houghton Mifflin: $26) Extremists plot to blow up Jerusalem’s Temple Mount and usher in the biblical apocalypse. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 4

5. MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE by Nicholas Sparks (Warner: $20) A single mother searches for a lonely heart who tossed his lover’s plea into the ocean. Last Week: 7 ; Weeks on List: 4

6. YOU BELONG TO ME by Mary Higgins Clark (Simon and Schuster: $25) A psychologist’s interest in a missing woman attracts a killer with an ear for music. Last Week: 2 ; Weeks on List: 3

7. A PATCHWORK PLANET by Anne Tyler (Knopf: $24) A quirky young man pursues his destiny with a good-natured woman and her eccentric family. Last Week: 12; Weeks on List: 3

8. CAVEDWELLER by Dorothy Allison (Dutton: $24.95) A hard-boiled recovering alcoholic’s efforts to reclaim her daughters and stay on the wagon. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 6

9. BLACK AND BLUE by Anna Quindlen (Random House: $23) A battered wife’s past looms menacingly on the horizon of her new life in another town. Last Week: 6 ; Weeks on List: 14

10. BLOOD WORK by Michael Connelly (Little, Brown: $23.95) An ailing FBI investigator gets a new heart from a murder victim and probes the donor’s death. Last Week: 14 ; Weeks on List: 10


11. PANDORA by Anne Rice (Knopf: $19.95) A 2,000-year-old vampire remembers life with Caesar Augustus, Louis XIV and the man who made her. Last Week: 5 ; Weeks on List: 8

12. THE STREET LAWYER by John Grisham (Doubleday: $27.95) After being confronted on a city street, an arrogant lawyer becomes a hero for the homeless. Last Week: 4 ; Weeks on List: 13

13. DON’T ERASE ME by Carolyn Ferrell (Houghton Mifflin: $20) A debut collection of stories about young people searching for transcendence in an imperfect world. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 1

14. IDENTITY by Milan Kundera (HarperFlamingo: $23) Portrait d’une femme who craves new sensations apart from familiar Parisian life and her lover. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 1


15. THE LONG ROAD HOME by Danielle Steel(Delacorte: $25.95) A woman’s desperate effort to shake the specters of childhood abuse and lead a positive life. Last Week: 13; Weeks on List: 4


1. DIVINE SECRETS OF THE YA-YA SISTERHOOD by Rebecca Wells (HarperCollins: $13) Sisterhood in the South.

2. SERPENT’S TOOTH by Faye Kellerman (Avon $6.99) Tracking the culprit behind a mass murder at an L.A. eatery.


3. LONDON by Edward Rutherfurd (Fawcett Crest: $7.99) The city’s history, from primeval to present.

4. THE HORSE WHISPERER by Nicholas Evans (Dell: $7.50) A woman discovers love on the range.

5. THE PARTNER by John Grisham (Dell: $7.99) A lawyer’s on the lam with $90 million.

6. AMERICAN PASTORAL by Philip Roth (Vintage: $14) The sorrows of Swede Levov, as told by Nathan Zuckerman.


7. THE COAST OF GOOD INTENTIONS by Michael Byers (Mariner Books: $12) Stories of unresolved lives in the Pacific Northwest.

8. THE ALCHEMIST by Paulo Coelho (HarperFlamingo: $13) Turning life experiences into gold.

9. THE NOTEBOOK by Nicholas Sparks (Warner Vision: $5.99) Old flames recall their former combustion.

10. OUT TO CANAAN by Jan Karon (Penguin: $12.95) Competing real estate interests threaten life in idyllic Mitford.



1. EASY RIDERS, RAGING BULLS by Peter Biskind (Simon & Schuster: $25) How the sex-drugs-and rock ‘n’ roll generation of filmmakers saved Hollywood. Last Week: 1 ; Weeks on List: 4

2. TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE by Mitch Albom (Doubleday: $19.95) A sportswriter’s empowering story of his weekly visits to see an older dying friend. Last Week: 2 ; Weeks on List: 19

3. THE 2,000-YEAR-OLD MAN IN THE YEAR 2000 by Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner(HarperCollins: $18) Conversations with Methuselah. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 5


4. TRIUMPH OF JUSTICE by Daniel M. Petrocelli with Peter Knobler(Crown: $25.95) Lessons learned from watching the errors of the O.J. Simpson criminal trial. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 1

5. HIGH CONCEPT by Charles Fleming (Doubleday: $23.95) Hollywood style, as demonstrated by the success, and excess, of movie producer Don Simpson. Last Week: 6 ; Weeks on List: 4

6. WE ARE OUR MOTHERS’ DAUGHTERS by Cokie Roberts (Morrow: $19.95) Female activists, politicians, soldiers and others who are challenging the role of women in society. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 1

7. APHRODITE by Isabel Allende (HarperFlamingo: $26) Ancient and modern stories and lore about the aphrodisiac powers of good food and drink. Last Week: 4 ; Weeks on List: 5


8. THE GIFTS OF THE JEWS by Thomas Cahill (Nan A. Talese/Doubleday: $23.50) How a nomadic people heard the Almighty’s voice and transformed the world. Last Week: 8 ; Weeks on List: 6

9. IF YOU’RE NOT OUT SELLING, YOU’RE BEING OUTSOLD by Michael St. Lawrence and Steve Johnson (John Wiley & Sons: $22) Pump up your business. Last Week: -- ; Weeks on List: 2

10. TOUGH JEWS by Rich Cohen (Simon and Schuster: $23) The story of a Brooklyn gang, as told by the author’s father and his group of cronies. Last Week: 11; Weeks on List: 3

11. CENTRAL AVENUE SOUNDS edited by Clora Bryant et al (University o California: $29.95) Oral histories about the heyday of jazz in L.A. from the 1920s to the 1950s. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 2


12. THE MILLIONAIRE NEXT DOOR by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Lanko (Longstreet Press: $22) Lives of the rich and famous, including their golden parachutes. Last Week: 9; Weeks on List: 19

13. STILL ME by Christopher Reeve (Random House: $25) The actor looks back on his career and on the rebuilding of his life after the accident that paralyzed him. Last Week: --; Weeks on List: 1

14. THE NINE STEPS TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM by Suze Orman (Crown: $23) Practical tips for avoiding stress, making good savings plans and managing money. Last Week: 5; Weeks on List: 7

15. ANGELA’S ASHES by Frank McCourt (Scribner: $24)A lyrical, bittersweet memoir about a poor Irish childhood in a gray, rain-soaked city. Last Week: 14; Weeks on List: 80



1. INTO THIN AIR by Jon Krakauer (Anchor Books: $7.99) Risk and recklessness on Mt. Everest.

2. PERSONAL HISTORY by Katharine Graham (Vintage: $15) The heiress at the helm of the Washington Post.

3. UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN by Frances Mayes (Broadway: $13) Feasts in a glorious Italian landscape.


4. JAMES CAMERON’S TITANIC by James Cameron, Douglas Kirkland and Ed Marsh (HarperCollins: $20) Keeping afloat.

5. A NIGHT TO REMEMBER by Walter Lord (Bantam: $5.99) A historian retells the Titanic tragedy.

6. A CIVIL ACTION by Jonathan Harr (Vintage: $13) David versus an industrial Goliath in Massachusetts.

7. THE HARLOT BY THE SIDE OF THE ROAD by Jonathan Kirsch (Ballantine: $14.95) Bible stories, raw and uncensored.


8. AMERICAN SPHINX by Joseph J. Ellis (Vintage: $14) A historian’s pursuit of the private character of Thomas Jefferson.

9. LEONARDO DICAPRIO by Grace Catalano (Dell: $4.99) A bio of a modern day Romeo.

10. THE COLOR OF WATER by James McBride (Riverhead: $12) A black musician’s homage to his white mother.

Rankings are based on a Times poll of Southland bookstores.