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Bill O’Reilly is still the undisputed king of US nonfiction

Bill O'Reilly books
AP Photo/Jim Cooper
Still on top.
Published This article is more than 2 years old.

US conservative commentator Bill O’Reilly was ousted from his massively watched news show last year after revelations that he paid millions in settlement money to women who accused him of sexual harassment. In one moment, he lost access to nearly 4 million nightly viewers.

Despite the investigations, which show O’Reilly’s settlements now total about $45 million (paywall) across six women, people are still happily buying the O’Reilly brand elsewhere. His latest history book, Killing the SS, out Oct. 9 and co-written with Martin Dugard, has, just like 10 of his other books in the past decade, hit the No. 1 spot on the New York Times nonfiction list.

According to rankings from the New York Times bestsellers list going back to 2008, O’Reilly has had the most books hit the No. 1 spot of any single nonfiction author. Second to O’Reilly is Dugard, his frequent collaborator. The overall list is made up other conservative commentators, like Dinesh D’Souza, author of The Big Lie: Exposing the Nazi Roots of the American Left, and Ann Coulter, author of In Trump We Trust: E Pluribus Awesome!

RankAuthorNo. 1 books
1Bill O’Reilly11
2Martin Dugard9
3Michael Savage7
4Dinesh D’Souza6
5Ann Coulter5
6Dick Morris5
7Eileen McGann5
8Jimmy Carter5
9Mark R. Levin5
10Michael Lewis5
11Bob Woodward5

Even if you remove those titles with spurious sales, O’Reilly is still the top author. The New York Times marks titles with † to indicate possible bulk sales, a tactic authors and publishers use to create the illusion of genuine public interest. When bulk sales are removed, Coulter and D’Souza fall in their rankings, for example.

RankAuthorNon-bulk No. 1 books
1Bill O’Reilly11
2Martin Dugard9
3Jimmy Carter5
4Michael Lewis5
5Bob Woodward5
6Ann Coulter4
7Chelsea Handler4
8David Sedaris4
9James Patterson4
10Jeff Pearlman4
11Jon Meacham4

O’Reilly’s sheer output is obviously a big contributor to his top status, but the fact remains: In spite of everything, if O’Reilly writes it, they will come.

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