Who is Colleen Hoover and why does she have so many books on the bestseller’s list?
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Colleen Hoover is the author of more than 20 novels and novellas. She came to my attention because I read USA Today. Week after week, I have seen her name on their list of “Top 150 Weekly Best Sellers.” Amazingly, her name is on the list more than once each week. On April 4, 2022, as I write this, she has two books in the top ten and two more books if I look at the top twenty.
I’m thinking this fact makes her intriguing both to fiction lovers and to writers. Exactly what’s the deal with Colleen Hoover?
A story in AP News tells us that her earliest books were self-published on Amazon.com. Even with her current success, she still self publishes some of her books. Additionally, much of her success has come from word of mouth. It Ends With Us “has been selling tens of thousands of copies a week and topping bestseller lists thanks largely to it popularity on #BookTok, the TikTok niche where young readers talk up their favorite works.” Her other books have come along on the joy ride of success.
Here’s my take on It Ends With Us:
This is the story of Lily Bloom, a twenty-three-year old woman in Boston. She has just opened a floral shop after having inherited money when her father passed away. There was no love lost between parent and child. Lily hated her dad for all the years he physically abused her mom. During those years, Lily could never understand why her mom stayed in the marriage.
When Lily falls madly in love with Ryle Kincaid, a soon-to-be neurosurgeon with less than a year left in his residency, all seems to be blooming. But when he loses his temper and shoves her one night, is it a one-time thing or history repeating itself?
In an author’s note at the end of the book, Hoover tells us her parents’ marriage was the basis for the novel. Her parents divorced when she was two-years-old because of the dad’s abuse. The author never understood how her strong, independent mom had gotten herself into that situation. Writing the book helped her explore the topic. She says, “I write to entertain, I don’t write to inform or to educate. But this book was a different beast.”
In this book, Lily – and the reader – get an up-close look at how such a situation evolves and why a woman may choose not to leave.
While the USA Today list calls all of Hoover’s books general fiction, BookRiot tells us more. It says she writes mainly romance and that her books fall into many categories including New Adult, Young Adult, and Women’s Fiction.
To give you more of an idea about her work, here are the positions she holds on the USA Today list right now. I have included the release date of each book, how many weeks it has been on the list, and a one-line description written by USA Today:
Title: It Ends With Us
- Currently 4th on the list
- Since its debut in August, 2016, it has been on the list 57 weeks.
- Description: Ryle Kincaid’s relationship with Lily becomes complicated when a man from her past shows up.
- Currently 5th on the list
- Since its debut in May, 2020, it has been on the list 45 weeks.
- Description: A struggling writer is hired to complete the works of a permanently injured author.
Title: Ugly Love
- Currently 15th on the list
- Since its debut in August, 2014, it has been on the list 43 weeks.
- Description: Tate Collins and Miles Archer have nothing in common but their attraction for each other.
Title: November 9
- Currently 18th on the list
- Since its debut in November, 2015, it has been on the list 27 weeks.
- Description: An aspiring novelist and his muse meet as teens and then reunite again, once each year.
In my comments on It Ends With Us, I neglected to say I gobbled it up in only two nights! But beyond this, I will probably read more of this author’s work. It’s kind of like reading the Fifty Shades of Gray trilogy, I want to know what everyone’s talking about!