• Dylan Kling

Essential Legends Collections Amazon rankings after one day

Yesterday the first wave of the Essential Legends Collection hit the shelves. This included new Trade Paperback Editions of Heir to the Empire, Darth Bane Path of Destruction and Shatterpoint. All would receive new cover art and Shatterpoint would even get an unabridged audiobook. Now as any longtime readers know last month I used the Amazon best sellers ranking system to track how well the once lost novel Heart of the Jedi was doing. I wanted to do something similar with these books just to see how they do in their opening week.


I wasn't expecting much to be honest as these are rereleases of books many already have, not a lost novel that only a handful of people had the chance of getting six years ago and is now available again. So if you are expecting anything like the Heart of the Jedi numbers you won't find it here. But I do think that what I found was interesting and worth talking about.


Like with the Heart of the Jedi tracking, all I did was update the listing page and mark down the rankings numbers on the various best sellers lists. Amazon seems to update these every three hours or so, so each data point is representative of that 3 hour window. And of course there is a long gap in the data from when I was sleeping. The times I tracked in the charts are in GMT and I was checking the Amazon U.S. site. I did not however archive these pages on the wayback machine, at least not initially. This was due to the internet archive being down all of yesterday making archiving impossible, so you will unfortunately have to take my word for it when talking about the first day of data.


This is a screenshot of the very first data points I have from June 15th at just before noon EST

(Left Heir to the Empire, Center Path of Destruction, Right Shatterpoint)


As you can see these 3 only share two lists, the Space Opera's list and the Best Sellers Rank. Because of this I chose to use these two as the primary point of comparison of the three, However, I also collected data from the lists that they perform the best in too see how they do in a best case scenario. This being Galactic Empire Science Fiction for Heir to the Empire and Classic Action & Adventure books for Path of Destruction and Shatterpoint.


From this we get these three graphs


General trends are that these books picked up steam in the mid to late afternoon but have started to drop off as of last night. Interestingly, Heir to the Empire started out at near the top of the three books but was quickly passed by Path of Destruction and as of this morning Shatterpoint is now also out pacing Heir to the Empire for second place among the three. Path of Destruction is the only one to eclipse the top 10000 mark on the overall list which it did very briefly. You can also see on the graph combining their best performing lists that Heir is struggling, though that may be due to the fact that it has a harder list to compete in than the other two.


But what was more interesting in my opinion was how each was doing in comparison with their mass market paperback equivalent. Many have feared that the switch to trade paperbacks would be the beginning of the end for the MMP format so, I thought I'd see how each was doing to see if the TPBs are outpacing the MMPs.


For Heir to the Empire the answer is kind of. The MMP started out on top but was outpaced by the TPB in the afternoon, only to be passed again late into the night and is pulling away as of this morning. It seems there was a short wave of people getting the new edition in TBP and now that those people got their copies the MMP has taken back its spot ahead of the TPB.



Path of Destruction had its TPB take the lead early and maintain it all the way until this morning. More interesting about this one in my opinion, is that up until when the MMP passed the TPB this morning they seemed to be almost mirroring each other, as if the sales of the TPB was directly influencing people to also get the MMP. Then when sales of the TBP dipped so did the MMP.


Finally with Shatterpoint it is no contest here. The TPB is far outpacing the MMP. This is likely due to the Shatterpoint TPB being the hardest to find in physicals stores and people are resorting to buying it online. So it will be interesting to see if this continues.


Finally on to the best performer so far, that being the Shatterpoint Audiobook, which is the only thing about this wave that is new, as there hasn't been an unabridged audiobook of this novel until now. Amazon tracks audiobooks a bit differently than physical novels so I only have 4 lists to go off of and none have any of the TPBs on them to compare.

(Screenshot of Shatterpoint audiobook rankings, taken along side previous screenshots)


Overall it has done the best of all of these though it has failed to make the top 100 in Audiobook originals so far. In fact it seems to be on the downswing.


This also shows on the other 3 lists


Though one silver lining is that on the Movie, TV & Video game Tie-In Fiction it has been at #2 for almost a full day. Though on the more competitive lists it is starting to fall.


Overall after a day this wave did about what I expected, with the books having a push at the beginning and the audiobook doing the best. I wasn't expecting however the MMP editions to overtake them as quickly as they did. But keep in mind that this is the American Amazon site and that the dips started during the night. Time will tell if they will rebound or not but I will continue to track this for at least a week, maybe more if things start to get a bit more interesting.


[This article is part of a series of articles about the Essential Legends Collection Amazon rankings. Click here for the next article in the series]

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