The numbers are in for Hunter Biden's "Beautiful Things" book sales, and they're not so hot.
As Fox News' Brian Flood reported, citing Publisher's Weekly, the memoir ranked 12th last week, selling 10,638 copies. It was released on April 6. In other words, it was hardly a stellar debut. At the top spot of nonfiction book sales was Amanda Gorman's "The Hill We Climb: An Inaugural Poem for the Country," which came out on March 30. It sold 42,318 copies last week, for a total of 256,985.
Other rankings are a bit more suspect, however.
Despite heavy promotion on CBS News and Jimmy Kimmel, Hunter Biden’s book sells just 10,600 copies - somehow enough to find itself #4 by the shady metrics that determine the New York Times’ Best Sellers List.https://t.co/woUrXh4WVz— Steve Krakauer (@SteveKrak) April 15, 2021
Biden probably purchased half of them for gifts.— Debra Foreman (@debra122ann) April 16, 2021
Biden's memoir places fourth on the New York Times best-selling nonfiction list, while Brandi Carlile's "Broken Horses" placed first. On the Publishers Weekly list of non-fiction book sales for that week, she placed third, with 24,097. It was released the same day as "Beautiful Things," and sold more than double the amount of copies.
Steve Krakauer isn't the only one to question this best-seller list. Matthew Schimkowitz of Hopes & Fears detailed confusion and feuds over rankings. The rankings "involve secret formulas, unknown booksellers, a cottage industry dedicated to manipulating the system, and a little bit of luck," he offers.
In Dennis Prager's column for Townhall, "The New York Times Best-Seller List: Another Reason Americans Don't Trust the Media," he writes that "In other words, The New York Times best-seller list is not a best-seller list -- which even The New York Times once acknowledged."
What makes the unimpressive sales numbers even more embarrassing is how much publicity Biden had done. He gave interviews to Anthony Mason on "CBS This Morning and Tracy Smith on "CBS Sunday Morning."
WATCH: @AnthonyMasonCBS spoke with Hunter Biden about whether his business dealings ever crossed a line — including work for a Ukrainian company that became a big issue in President Trump's first impeachment — and whether he regrets putting his father's political future at risk. pic.twitter.com/ImbuBil1sw— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) April 5, 2021
Biden also sat down with late-night host Jimmy Kimmel, for an exchange which was also full of giggles, bashing the Trumps, and selective discussion of all of the controversy surrounding Biden. Neither could seem to acknowledge that Biden is in the position he is in because his father was vice-president and is now the sitting president.
Both me & Hunter Biden obviously benefitted from our famous last names, but unlike him, I never used my dad's connections to sit on govt. boards or become a swamp lobbyist. Hunter made a career out of selling access to Joe's taxpayer funded public office!https://t.co/aOmDifZpAV— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) April 10, 2021
This went on all while Biden escaped blame and went unquestioned by Kimmel. For instance, Biden stuck by an excerpt Kimmel read. "Did I make a mistake by taking a seat on the board of a Ukrainian gas company? No. Did I display a lack of judgment? No. Would I do it again? No." He told Kimmel that "what I didn't take into account was the way in which they would use the perception against my dad. And for that, I wouldn't do it again for that reason."
In Elisabeth Egan's "Hunter Biden’s Memoir: 7 Takeaways From ‘Beautiful Things’" for the New York Times, one such takeaway is "When it comes to Ukraine, Biden’s account is as dry as toast."
Her take provides an even deeper glimpse into Biden's lack of self-awareness.
He then proceeds to cover the incident in an 18-page chapter that reads like a research paper compiled by a reluctant student. Was Biden appointed to the board because of his last name?
Perhaps, he writes, but: “My response has always been to work harder so that my accomplishments stand on their own.”
Did he display a lack of judgment? “No.”
Would he do it again? “I did nothing unethical, and have never been charged with wrongdoing.”
Another example is how Biden casually emphasized to Kimmel that he didn't know if the laptop was his, and called it "a red herring." It very much is his laptop, though.
Perhaps the most glowing review came from CNN's Brian Stelter, who nearly fell over himself as he and panelists heaped praise upon the book during a "Reliable Sources" segment.
As Flood pointed out "CNN did not have a conservative on the panel to offer an opposing viewpoint," though this is hardly unheard of from the network.