This week's list of New York Times best-selling books proves as usual that the Times doesn't review conservative best-sellers. The nonfiction list was topped by "Things That Matter," a collection of columns by Charles Krauthammer and then by "Killing Jesus" by Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard. The children's middle-grade list is led by Rush Limbaugh's "Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims." There has been no Times review of these books.
All were mentioned by Gregory Cowles in his "Inside the List" briefs. O'Reilly drew this barb in the October 13 newspaper: "Bill O'Reilly's killing machine shows no signs of letting up -- ''Killing Jesus,'' his latest collaboration with Martin Dugard (after ''Killing Lincoln'' and ''Killing Kennedy''), jumps right to No. 1 in its first week on the hardcover nonfiction list." Fox host Brian Kilmeade was at number eight with "George Washington's Secret Six" and Sarah Palin was at number nine -- no reviews. But Cowles slammed Palin in this Sunday's paper:
O, Come Ye: Sarah Palin's ''Good Tidings and Great Joy: Protecting the Heart of Christmas'' enters the hardcover nonfiction list at No. 9. As an artifact of the culture wars, the book is pretty threadbare on arrival; it's even padded out with recipes for Rice Krispies treats and the vaguely sacrilegious-sounding ''Merry Christmoose Chili.'' (''Heck,'' Palin writes, ''I suppose you can use beef.'')
As if the Times were vitally concerned about sacrilege at Christmas time! Cowles did like her joking about Tina Fey.
It's worth recalling that when Erik Wemple of the Washington Post asked Times book review editor Pamela Paul about a review for O'Reilly's books, she replied, “I have not read Mr. O’Reilly’s books myself, so I can’t really comment on them.”
At number 7 on the paperback nonfiction list is Dr. Ben Carson’s “America the Beautiful” – but there’s been no review since the book came out in January. Up next (on the December 8 list) of nonfiction bestsellers list is “Miracles and Massacres” by Glenn Beck with Kevin Balfe and Hannah Beck – expect no review.
Instead, the Times is offering back-scratching book publicity to its own contributors -- like the Monday piece on how Deborah Solomon's new biography of Norman Rockwell strongly implies without much evidence that the revered American artist "could have been secretly gay or harbored pedophilic impulses."