Delia Owens’ “Where the Crawdads Sing” makes a late summer stab at No. 1 on this week’s USA TODAY Best-Selling Books list, unseating Stephen King’s new fantasy novel “Fairy Tale” from the throne after just one week. This is the book’s 21st week at No. 1 since its debut on the list in 2018.
Debut novelist Alaina Urquhart snags the No. 3 spot with “The Butcher and the Wren” (Zando, 256 pp.) The novel, told from dual perspectives, pits a notorious serial killer prone to medical experimentation against a forensic pathologist. Urquhart, who is an autopsy technician, co-hosts the true crime podcast “Morbid” with her aunt Ashleigh Kelley, who works as a hairdresser.
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Urquhart follows in the footsteps of fellow true crime podcaster-turned-novelist Ashley Flowers, whose own first novel, “All Good People Here,” debuted a month ago at No. 4. The novel follows a journalist who returns to her hometown to care for a family member. Obsessed with the disappearance of her childhood friend 25 years earlier, she investigates the recent disappearance of another young girl.
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Cookbooks to ease into fall
A pair of cookbooks debuted on this list this week, and they are all about comfort.
“Fox & Friends” co-host Steve Doocy and his wife Kathy Doocy return to the list with “The Simply Happy Cookbook: 100-Plus Recipes to Take the Stress Out of Cooking,” (William Morrow Cookbooks, 336 pp.) at No . 10. This is the third “Happy” cookbook from the couple to make the best sellers list, joining 2018’s “The Happy Cookbook” and 2020’s “The Happy in a Hurry Cookbook.”
Brian Baumgartner, aka chili-loving Kevin Malone from “The Office,” also returns to the list, this time with his first cookbook, the aptly titled “Seriously Good Chili Cookbook” (Fox Chapel Publishing, 252 pp.) at No. 102. The cookbook features recipes from chili cook off-winners, chefs and restaurant owners.
While Baumgartner has not tried every recipe in the cookbook, subtitled “177 of the Best Recipes in the World,” he does provide his own formula, dubbed “Brian’s Seriously Good Chili Recipe,” which he shared with USA TODAY’s Morgan Hines.
In addition to the recipes, the book incorporates a bit of narrative from Baumgartner, including some references to “The Office” and chili history, too.
‘Seriously Good Chili’:Kevin from ‘The Office’ shares his recipe
Contributing: Morgan Hines, USA TODAY