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The Globe and Mail

Random House, Penguin lead the way with most Canadian bestsellers in 2011

Author Neil Pasricha

Kevin Van Paassen/The Globe and Mail

Toronto literary agent Denise Bukowski is offering her clients interesting guidance for the New Year by ranking the comparative success of the Canadian publishers in whom they are most likely to entrust their fates.

Looking at which Canadian publishers earned the most places among the top 100 books of 2011, as determined by the weekly Globe and Mail bestseller list, Bukowski recorded a statistical tie between Penguin Canada and the Random House group (incorporating such imprints as Knopf Canada and McClelland & Stewart), both of which accounted for 23 of the top 100.

Fellow multinational HarperCollins scored 16 bestsellers, followed by Simon & Schuster with 13 and Hachette with 11.

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As for which publishers did best by their Canadian authors, the analysis shows a clear win for Penguin, which made the list with six Canadian-authored books (albeit three of them variations on the same theme by Book of Awesome author Neil Pasricha).

Although it publishes no books in Canada, Hachette scored a hat trick with three different titles by Malcolm Gladwell. Likewise HarperCollins earned two of its four spots with internationally published editions of work by Canadian resident Emma Donoghue ( Room), who is known to most of the world as an Irish novelist.

All told, less than a quarter of the top 100 bestsellers in Canada last year were authored by Canadians, with only three of those books (by authors Esi Edugyan, Patrick deWitt and David Suzuki) published by independent Canadian houses.

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