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The Bestselling Book on Amazon Every Year Since 1995

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One for the Books

Amazon has come a long way since 1994, when Jeff Bezos began hawking books online from his garage. We took a deep dive into Amazon's bestseller lists to see what was popular with buyers every year since Amazon's founding — both the No. 1 book in terms of sales plus a second notable title from that year's ranking. Some of the books have become modern-day classics; others reflect the trends of their time and have faded from memory. Got any of them on your bookshelf or know of someone who needs a copy?


Prices and availability are subject to change.


Related:
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How to Set Up and Maintain a World Wide Web Site: The Guide for Information Providers
Amazon

1995

“How to Set Up and Maintain a World Wide Web Site: The Guide for Information Providers”
By Lincoln D. Stein 
Price: $6 and up
Shop Now

The internet was still shiny and new to most people back in 1995 (if they even had internet access) and ecommerce was in its infancy. So it's no wonder a lot of readers — especially the ones who had enough tech savvy to know how to buy books online — might be interested in learning how to build a website with this book.


Also popular that year:
"The Road Ahead" by Bill Gates


Related:
The 50 Greatest American Inventions of the Past 50 Years

Creating Killer Web Sites
Amazon

1996

“Creating Killer Web Sites: The Art of Third-Generation Site Design”
By David Siegel
Price: $8
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By the mid '90s, it was pretty obvious that this web thing was here to stay — and that people wanted to see more than just pages and pages of text. This book was one of the first to show how to design a website just as you would a magazine or newspaper and make it not just readable but engaging and entertaining.


Also popular that year: "The Dilbert Principle" by Scott Adams


Related: Cool Gifts for Old School Gamers Who Miss the '80s

Cold Mountain
Amazon
A Man in Full
Amazon
Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban
Amazon
Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire
Amazon

2000

“Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire”
By J.K. Rowling
Price: $14
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Book four in the Harry Potter series was just as popular with Amazon shoppers as the previous volume was in 1999. Readers thrilled to the action of the Quidditch World Cup and Triwizard Tournament, following Harry's adventures as he dodged You-Know-Who.


Also popular that year:
"Rich Dad Poor Dad" by Robert T. Kiyosaki


Related:
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Who Moved My Cheese?
Amazon
Good to Great
Amazon
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Amazon
The Da Vinci Code
Amazon
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Amazon
Good to Great
Amazon

2006

“Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don't”
By Jeff Collins
Price: $14
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Business was booming, so no surprise a business-oriented text like this would be back on top four years after winning its first status as a bestseller. Even more impressive: Collins also held the No. 3 spot on Amazon's bestseller list with a related book, "Good to Great and the Social Sectors: Why Business Thinking is Not the Answer."


Also popular that year:
"The Audacity of Hope" by Barack Obama


Related:
Businesses That Nobody Saw Coming

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Amazon
A New Earth
Amazon
The Lost Symbol
Amazon

2009

“The Lost Symbol”
By Dan Brown
Price: $33
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Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon returns in Dan Brown's follow-up to his smash novel "The DaVinci Code." This time the intrigue takes place in Washington, D.C., where nothing fishy ever transpires (yeah, right).


Also popular that year:
"Going Rogue: An American Life" by Sarah Palin

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest
Amazon
Steve Jobs
Amazon
Fifty Shades of Grey
Amazon
StrengthsFinder 2.0
Amazon
StrengthsFinder 2.0
Amazon
First 100 Words
Amazon
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Amazon

2016

“Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts 1 & 2”
By J.K. Rowling
Price: $6
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The eighth installment of the Harry Potter series — which follows Harry and his Hogwarts friends as adults with children of their own — began life as a short story that morphed into a big-budget play in London's West End in 2016 and arrived on Broadway two years later.


Also popular that year:
"When Breath Becomes Air" by Paul Kalanithi

Wonder
Amazon
Becoming
Amazon
Where the Crawdads Sing
Amazon
A Promised Land Barack Obama
Amazon

2020

“A Promised Land”
By Barack Obama
Price: $26
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The election year was dominated by books on politics and race, but this hope-filled memoir by former President Barack Obama topped them all, even though it was released late in the year. Other books in Amazon's top 10 included "White Fragility" by Robin DiAngelo and "The Room Where it Happened" by John Bolton.  


Also Popular That Year:
“Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World's Most Dangerous Man” by Mary L. Trump, Ph.D.


Related:
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American Marxism Mark R. Levin
Amazon

2021 (So Far)

"American Marxism"

By Mark R. Levin

Price: $16

Shop Now


Fox News host Mark R. Levin's latest book shot to No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list in July with the sale of more than 300,000 copies in the first week. Other books in Amazon's top 10 include "Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones" by James Clear and "The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom (A Toltec Wisdom Book)" by Don Miguel Ruiz. 


Also popular this year: "Peril" by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa