Southern California Rating:FICTION1 BACK WHEN WE WERE...

Southern California Rating:

FICTION

1 BACK WHEN WE WERE GROWNUPS by Anne Tyler (Alfred A. Knopf: $25) A fiftysomething widow and loving mom, coping with midlife, begins to question the decisions she has made.

Last Week: 2; Weeks On List: 5

2 P IS FOR PERIL by Sue Grafton (Putnam: $26.95) Kinsey Millhone is hired to find a missing doctor with skeletons in the closet at work and a dysfunctional family at home.

Last Week: --; Weeks On List: 1

3 THE COLD SIX THOUSAND by James Ellroy (Alfred A. Knopf: $25.95) Mobsters, cops, government agents and provocateurs collide in the midst of America's turbulent 1960s.

Last Week: 1; Weeks On List: 4

4 DEATH IN HOLY ORDERS by P.D. James (Alfred A. Knopf: $25) In East Anglia, a theological college is torn apart by a string of sacrilegious and horrifying murders.

Last Week: 3; Weeks On List: 8

5 THE BONESETTER'S DAUGHTER by Amy Tan (Putnam: $25.95) A ghostwriter uncovers her family's anguished past in China as her mother struggles with Alzheimer's disease.

Last Week: 30; Weeks On List: 16

6 ON THE STREET WHERE YOU LIVE by Mary Higgins Clark (Simon & Schuster: $26) In a sleepy resort town, an attorney believes that a serial killer from a century ago has returned.

Last Week: 7; Weeks On List: 7

7 CHOSEN PREY by John Sandford (Putnam: $26.95) Minneapolis Deputy Police Chief Lucas Davenport hunts for the killer responsible for a field of corpses thawing in the spring.

Last Week: 4; Weeks On List: 4

8 THREE APPLES FELL FROM HEAVEN by Micheline Marcom (Putnam: $23.95) Lives engulfed in the 1915-1917 Armenian genocide by the Ottoman government.

Last Week: --; Weeks On List: 1

9 THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF KAVALIER & CLAY by Michael Chabon (Random House: $26.95) In World War II Brooklyn, two Jewish cousins break into the comic-book business.

Last Week: 5; Weeks On List: 15

10 CHOKE by Chuck Palahniuk (Doubleday: $24.95) A medical school dropout devises a complicated scam to pay for his mother's expensive elder care.

Last Week: 15; Weeks On List: 2

11 THE LAST TIME THEY MET by Anita Shreve (Little, Brown: $24.95) Two poets sustain a lifelong passion though they've been together only three times.

Last Week: 12; Weeks On List: 10

12 THE DYING ANIMAL by Philip Roth (Houghton Mifflin: $23) An aging cultural critic recalls a devastating, all-consuming affair he had with a 24-year-old ex-student.

Last Week: 8; Weeks On List: 4

13 HIGH MAINTENANCE by Jennifer Belle (Putnam: $24.95) After divorce, a women trades her Manhattan apartment for a Village tenement and builds a new life.

Last Week: --; Weeks On List: 1

14 A COMMON LIFE by Jan Karon (Viking: $24.95) The villagers in Mitford celebrate, from pre-nup counseling to the walk down the aisle, when Father Tim marries his next-door neighbor.

Last Week: 13; Weeks On List: 8

15 A PAINTED HOUSE by John Grisham (Doubleday: $27.95) Tensions between two groups of farm workers result in a brutal murder in this tale of an Arkansas boyhood in 1952.

Last Week: 14; Weeks On List: 14

NONFICTION

1 JOHN ADAMS by David McCullough (Simon & Schuster: $35) The story of our second president, a man Thomas Jefferson called "the colossus of independence."

Last Week: 11; Weeks On List: 3

2 WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? by Spencer Johnson (Putnam: $19.95) The co-author of "The One Minute Manager" uses the parable of mice in a maze to show people how to manage change.

Last Week: 4; Weeks On List: 64

3 GHOST SOLDIERS by Hampton Sides (Doubleday: $24.95) How a small group of elite American soldiers made a daring rescue of British and American war prisoners in 1945.

Last Week: 8; Weeks On List: 3

4 A SHORT GUIDE TO A HAPPY LIFE by Anna Quindlen (Random House: $12.95) The columnist reflects on what it takes to "get a life" by living deeply rather than merely existing.

Last Week: 3; Weeks On List: 29

5 SEABISCUIT by Laura Hillenbrand (Random House: $24.95) How three men transformed a thoroughbred horse from a neurotic also-ran into an American sports icon.

Last Week: 5; Weeks On List: 14

6 FRENCH LESSONS by Peter Mayle (Alfred A. Knopf: $24) A celebration of France's wine, cheese and other gastronomic treasures. Reviewed by Susan Reynolds, Page 11.

Last Week: 9; Weeks On List: 4

7 POSITIVELY 4th STREET by David Hajdu (Farrar, Straus & Giroux: $25) The story of Richard and Mimi Farina, Bob Dylan and Joan Baez during folk music's golden age.

Last Week: 11; Weeks On List: 3

8 NAPALM AND SILLY PUTTY by George Carlin (Hyperion: $22.95) Carlin offers a series of his unique comedic meditations on life's annoying universal truths.

Last Week: 12; Weeks On List: 5

9 FAST FOOD NATION by Eric Schlosser (Houghton Mifflin: $25) A journalist exposes the fast-food industry's strategies, from meatpacking to the boardroom, to control American consumers.

Last Week: --; Weeks On List: 14

10 STOLEN LIVES by Malika Oufkir with Michele Fitoussi (Talk Miramax: $24) A young woman spends 20 years in jail after her father tries to assassinate the king of Morocco.

Last Week: 10; Weeks On List: 2

11 A YEAR IN VAN NUYS by Sandra Tsing Loh (Crown: $23) Coming to terms with writer's block and growing older in the San Fernando Valley. Reviewed by Tony Peyser, Page 8.

Last Week: 2; Weeks On List: 5

12 IN HARM'S WAY by Doug Stanton (Henry Holt: $25) The sinking of the USS Indianapolis by a Japanese submarine and the testimony of survivors of the disaster.

Last Week: 6; Weeks On List: 4

13 KILLING PABLO by Mark Bowden (Atlantic Monthly: $25) The story of the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar, a Colombian drug lord and one of the narcotics trade's first billionaires.

Last Week: 14; Weeks On List: 3

14 TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE by Mitch Albom (Doubleday: $19.95) A sportswriter's story of the life lessons he received during weekly visits to an older dying friend.

Last Week: --; Weeks On List: 168

15 COMFORT ME WITH APPLES by Ruth Reichl (Random House: $24.95) The "Tender at the Bone" author describes her coming of age as a celebrated food writer.

Last Week: --; Weeks On List: 3

PAPERBACKS

FICTION

1 GIRL WITH A PEARL EARRING by Tracy Chevalier (Plume: $12) The woman who inspired a Vermeer painting.

2 THE RED TENT by Anita Diamant (Picador USA: $14) The blossoming of Dinah, Jacob's only daughter, in Genesis.

3 ANIL'S GHOST by Michael Ondaatje (Vintage: $13) An anthropologist investigates murder in Ceylon.

4 BRIDGET JONES'S DIARY by Helen Fielding (Penguin: $12.95) A thirtysomething Londoner's quest for a mate.

5 THE FEAST OF LOVE by Charles Baxter (Vintage: $13) Love, sacrifice and redemption in Michigan lives.

6 BEE SEASON by Myla Goldberg (Vintage: $13) A young girl wins her family's attention after excelling at spelling bees.

7 A LIGHT ON THE VERANDA by Ciji Ware (Ivy: $6.99) A Southern belle's troubled homecoming from Manhattan.

8 WINTER SOLSTICE by Rosamunde Pilcher (St. Martin's: $7.99) A rural Scottish estate is a haven for soul-searchers.

9 THE BOSTONS by Carolyn Cooke (Mariner: $12) Stories of the offbeat, flawed folk living in a coastal town in Maine.

10 GIRL IN HYACINTH BLUE by Susan Vreeland (Penguin: $12) Eight stories linked by a Dutch master's painting.

NONFICTION

1THE WORST-CASE SCENARIO SURVIVAL HANDBOOK: TRAVEL by J. Piven & D. Borgenicht (Chronicle: $14.95)

2 ME TALK PRETTY ONE DAY by David Sedaris (Little, Brown: $14.95) Wisecracking essays on life in Paris.

3 KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL by Anthony Bourdain (Ecco Press: $14) Tales from the culinary trenches.

4 IN THE HEART OF THE SEA by Nathaniel Philbrick (Penguin: $14) The tragedy that inspired "Moby-Dick."

5 RICH DAD, POOR DAD by Robert T. Kiyosaki with Sharon L. Lechter (Techpress: $15.95) Adventures in fiscal parenting.

6 A HEARTBREAKING WORK OF STAGGERING GENIUS by Dave Eggers (Vintage: $14) A 22-year-old raises his brother.

7 THE GREATEST GENERATION by Tom Brokaw (Dell: $12.95) The generation that came of age during the Depression.

8 THE WORST-CASE SCENARIO SURVIVAL HANDBOOK by Joshua Piven & David Borgenicht (Chronicle: $14.95) S-O-S!

9 THE GHOSTS OF ECHO PARK by Ron Emler (Echo Park Publishing: $15) A pictorial history of the neighborhood.

10 ETHICS FOR THE NEW MILLENNIUM by the Dalai Lama (Riverhead Books: $13) Achieving a spiritual revolution.

Rankings are based on a Times poll of Southland bookstores.

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