The 20 most ‘well-read’ cities in America

The locale topping the list bought a whole bunch of copies of the 50 Shades trilogy.

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For the last three years, Amazon has compiled its list of the most well-read cities, based on its sales of books, newspapers, and magazines per capita in cities of more than 100,000 people. The sales data includes materials in print and on Kindles.

Of course, this list is more PR stunt than qualitative ranking. What makes someone well read is highly subjective, not to mention the ranking is skewed because cities with more brick and mortar booksellers would likely not make the list.

Still, it’s a talker, plus the data from Amazon reveals several interesting things about readers.

For instance, the top-selling book in Alexandria—our nation’s most well-read city, according to Amazon—is “Gone Girl,” followed by the novels in the 50 Shades trilogy. In a statement, Amazon’s editorial editor of books and Kindle, Sara Nelson, acknowledged the enduring popularity of E.L. James’ steamy books.

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