Rankings are based on a Times poll of Southland bookstores.

*--* SO. CAL. RATING Fiction 1 The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards (Penguin: $14) A father hides the birth of a twin from his wife.

2 The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho (HarperSanFrancisco: $13) An Andalusian shepherd boy searches for treasure in Egypt.

3 The Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai (Grove: $14) A retired judge is caught up in Nepal's independence movement.

4 The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (Riverhead: $14) A writer returns to Kabul to rescue the son of a childhood friend.

5 Memories of My Melancholy Whores by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (Vintage: $11.95) A man reflects on his life.

6 The History of Love by Nicole Krauss (W.W. Norton: $13.95) A writer escapes the Nazis but loses his beloved.

7 The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult (Washington Square: $15) A Maine family unravels over allegations of rape.

8 Wicked by Gregory Maguire (Regan Books: $16) How Elphaba became the Wicked Witch of the West.

9 S Is for Silence by Sue Grafton (Berkley: $7.99) Kinsey Millhone unravels the secret of a woman's disappearance.

10 Case Histories by Kate Atkinson (Back Bay: $13.99) A private detective tackles three crime cases in and around London.


*--* SO. CAL. RATING Nonfiction 1 The Pursuit of Happyness by Chris Gardner (Amistad: $14.95) A homeless man's struggle to be a successful stockbroker.

2 The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls (Scribner: $14) A memoir of breaking away from dysfunctional parents.

3 The Iraq Study Group Report by James A. Baker III, Lee H. Hamilton et al. (Vintage: $10.95) On the situation in Iraq.

4 Dreams From My Father by Barack Obama (Three Rivers: $14.95) The senator traces his mixed-raced heritage.

5 Birds of the Los Angeles Region by Kimball Garrett et al. (R.W. Morse: $15.95) An illustrated guide.

6 The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz (Amber-Allen: $12.95) A code of conduct based on Toltec wisdom.

7 Running With Scissors by Augusten Burroughs (Picador: $14) A boy goes to live with his mother's psychiatrist.

8 Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin (Simon & Schuster: $19.95) Examining Abraham Lincoln's political genius.

9 Stop Global Warming by Laurie David (Fulcrum: $9.95) Tips on how to help halt climate change.

10 Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins (Plume: $15) How the U.S. pressures poor countries.


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