Suppose she gave a book and nobody came?
Actually, we don’t have to suppose — that’s pretty much what happened earlier this month when Missouri Democrat Rep. Cori Bush’s political memoir hit the streets on Oct. 4.
“The Forerunner: A Story of Pain and Perseverance in America” sold just 729 copies in its first week, according to an NPD BookScan report cited by the New York Post. Nowhere to go but up, right?
Wrong. It sold 288 copies in its second week, for a grand total of 1,017 copies sold. That averages out to fewer than two copies per day in each state in the country — and since I expect most of the few copies they did manage to unload were sold to customers in D.C. or Bush’s home state of Missouri, I’d be willing to bet that she didn’t see a single sale in many states.
Cue the sad trombone.
There are multiple possible reasons why the book failed to launch, of course, but the most obvious and most likely is also the most simple: No one cares.
“It’s not the book. It’s just there’s a lack of interest in her,” one unnamed “progressive” who has worked with Bush told the Post. “She just hasn’t built a strong enough brand to sell books yet.”
I mean, I do this for a living, and I had to remind myself that Bush was even a member of The Squad when I thought about what I knew about her, other than the fact that she’s a former Black Lives Matter activist (actually, she probably still considers herself one today) and one of the most openly un-American leftists in Congress.
According to the Post, Bush wrote of her time as a protester in Missouri following the justified shooting of Michael Brown in 2014, claiming that the events of that time caused her to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.
“When I wasn’t in Ferguson, I would still see armored vehicles, even when they were not there,” she wrote. “At random moments in the day, I would smell tear gas, even when none had been sprayed.”
That was as much of the book as the Post’s article was interested in quoting, and frankly, that seems like plenty.
Her delusions apparently didn’t stop with armored vehicles or tear gas, as she seems to have seen an audience for her life story when that didn’t exist, either.
The Post said that industry insiders considered it “unlikely” that publisher Knopf would make back the $50,001 – $100,000 it paid Bush as an advance on the book. The exact amount of the payment was unreported, but Bush listed the advance on a House financial disclosure form as falling within that range.
For Knopf’s sake, I hope it was at the lower end of that range. On the other hand, they should have known better, so I guess any loss they suffer is on them.
The Post called the publisher’s marketing of the book “intense,” so the advance to Bush doesn’t even represent the entirety of Knopf’s investment in this dog.
Marketing efforts “included fawning reviews from friendly outlets like New York Magazine and Forbes Women. The book received glowing testimonials from Whoopi Goldberg, Margaret Hoover and Joy Reid.”
Sadly for Bush, all five of those were probably given advance copies of the book for free. Otherwise she might have sold 1,022 copies in the first two weeks.
Despite Bush appearing on those leftist favorites “The View” and “The Daily Show,” she just can’t seem to move the product, and she’s undoubtedly mystified by her failure to connect with the American reading public.
The brilliant polymath Jerry Pournelle could have told you why that happened, however. He co-wrote a couple of novels about a fictionalized struggle between Marxists and libertarians, “Go Tell the Spartans” and “Prince of Sparta.” In them, he detailed the importance of speeches and video footage in propaganda aimed at the left. His reasoning was simple.
The poor, uneducated members of the proletariat that would-be Marxist leaders seek to influence often can’t read.
I don’t know whether Bush’s voters can read or not. But apparently, they don’t. At least not if she’s the one doing the writing.
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