A much-hyped biography of the former Fox News host Tucker Carlson has struggled to find favour with readers, a leading US publishing authority said, listing just over 3,000 copies sold in the first week of its release.
According to Publishers Weekly, Tucker by Chadwick Moore sold just 3,227 copies in its first week after publication on 1 August.
Carlson cooperated with his biographer, giving extensive interviews. Moore promised to tell Carlson’s side of the story regarding his shock ejection by Fox last April, in the aftermath of a $787.5m settlement between the rightwing network and Dominion Voting Systems, regarding the broadcast of Donald Trump’s election fraud lies.
In the book, Carlson says he “knows” he was removed from the air as a condition of the settlement. Fox News and Dominion both strongly deny that.
Moore’s biography contains much more on Carlson’s controversial career as a face of the American hard right, much of it trailed or reported on by outlets including the Guardian.
Striking passages include Carlson denying being racist but saying to be so is not a crime, and the host’s defence of using the word “cunt”, a preference which came up in the Dominion case regarding a description of Sidney Powell, a lawyer advising Trump about supposed electoral fraud.
In Moore’s biography, Carlson says the abusive term is “one of my favorite words … super naughty, but it’s to the point”.
Carlson has kept a high profile by broadcasting a one-man show on Twitter, to the chagrin of Fox, to which he is still under contract.
But on the Publishers Weekly hardcover nonfiction list, Tucker placed only 15th, ahead of another offering from a Fox News host, The King of Late Night by Greg Gutfeld. Yet Tucker was more than 15,000 copies short of the bestseller, Baking Yesteryear: The Best Recipes from the 1900s to the 1980s, by B Dylan Hollis.
On Tuesday, Tucker did not feature on the New York Times bestseller list for hardcover nonfiction, an industry standard Carlson has made with books of his own.
On Amazon.com, five-star reader reviews included comments such as “Great book and well written!”; “I became aware of Chadwick on Tucker’s show. I thought he was sober, bright, articulate and well spoken. Also, importantly, unafraid. This book demonstrates all of that”; and “Fox left me when they took [Carlson’s] show off the air. He made me think and I mean really think and I appreciated that. He is still here and his voice is being heard. Thanks Tucker!”
On Twitter, Moore said Amazon had “sold out of Tucker TWICE now! As of this morning, only four copies remain from Amazon’s second shipment of books. Thank you all for your support and thrilled that so many of you are enjoying it.”
In Amazon’s overall books sales rankings, however, the biography placed 595th.
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