The most popular author in Nebraska is not Willa Cather or Alex Kava or Rainbow Rowell, but Ken Follett, the historical fiction writer whose best-selling books (including “The Pillars of the Earth”) have sold more than 160 million copies worldwide.
The reading subscription service Scribd crunched its data to determine the most popular author in every state. Scribd has more than 500,000 subscribers and more than 100 million active readers each month.
Follett (pronounced like “wallet”) being really popular in Nebraska makes a certain kind of sense. The bulk of his later books are immersive historical epics, many of them doorstop tomes coming in at around the 1,000-page mark. And that sounds like an awfully good way to kill a long Nebraska winter. Around here, the season lasts about 1,000 pages or so.
Overall, Mark Manson (“The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”) is the most popular author in the U.S., claiming the top spot in seven states.
Stephen King came in at No. 2, being the most popular author in four states. And Hillary Clinton and Ernest Cline (“Ready Player One”) are each the most popular authors of three states.
A little closer to home, Iowa’s most popular author is Malcolm Gladwell, Kansas’ is David Baldacci and South Dakota’s is Anne E. Schraff (“Leap of Faith”).
The most popular reading genres in America are personal growth books and mysteries/thrillers.
The most popular author in each state is …
Alabama: Angela Duckworth (“Grit”)
Alaska: Ernest Cline (“Ready Player One”)
Delaware: Samantha Irby (“We Are Never Meeting in Real Life”)
Hawaii: Tobias S. Buckell (“HALO: Envoy”)
Idaho: Sami Lee (“Unforgettable Summer”)
Illinois: Ruth Ware (“Lying Game”)
Indiana: Sylvain Neuvel (“Sleeping Giants”)
Kentucky: Kate Whitsby (“Montana Prairie Brides” trilogy)
Louisiana: Bernard Cornwell (“The Pale Horseman”)
Massachusetts: Hillary Clinton
Minnesota: Simon Sinek (“Start With Why”)
Mississippi: Dale Carnegie (“How to Win Friends and Influence People”)
Montana: Mel Odom (“Apocalypse Crucible”)
Nevada: Harry Harrison (“The Stainless Steel Rat”)
New Hampshire: Philippa Gregory (“The Last Tudor”)
New Jersey: Vishen Lakhiani (“The Code of the Extraordinary Mind”)
New York: Hillary Clinton
North Carolina: Gucci Mane (“The Autobiography of Gucci Mane”)
North Dakota: Orson Scott Card (“Ender’s Game”)
Ohio: Jessica Knoll (“Luckiest Girl Alive”)
Oklahoma: Megan Miranda (“All the Missing Girls”)
Oregon: Gabriel Tallent (“My Absolute Darling”)
Pennsylvania: Stephen King
Rhode Island: Kurt Vonnegut Jr. (“Slaughterhouse Five”)
South Carolina: Angela Duckworth
South Dakota: Anne E. Schraff (“Leap of Faith”)
Tennessee: Kathleen Kent (“The Heretic’s Daughter”)
Utah: Dave Ramsey (“More Than Enough”)
Vermont: Krista Bremer (“My Accidental Jihad”)
Washington: Robert Wright (“Why Buddhism Is True”)
West Virginia: Tracie Peterson (“A Promise to Believe In”)
Wisconsin: Randi Davenport (“The End of Always”)