Donald Trump Jr.—or whoever wrote it—has a new book with a long title designed to pander to his daddy's base, published on November 5th.
It has mysteriously found its way to the top of The New York Times Best Seller List for hardcover nonfiction.
That means it's a wildly successful book, right?
Maybe, since Don Jr. made several appearances begging his father's fans to buy his book and send it to the usual members of Congress his father harasses online: women, minorities, anyone who criticizes Trump Sr.....
But The New York Times tracks books which received large bulk orders, and Don Jr.'s book is among them.
Notice that little dagger at the bottom? Hmm.
In fact, Don Jr.'s book is the only one in the top 15 with that symbol next to it to indicate the bulk orders.
The methodology section of The New York Times Best Seller website describes how they calculate and track these bulk orders:
"Sales are defined as completed transactions by vendors and individual end users during the period on or after the official publication date of a title. Institutional, special interest, group or bulk purchases, if and when they are included, are at the discretion of The New York Times Best-Seller List Desk editors based on standards for inclusion that encompass proprietary vetting and audit protocols, corroborative reporting and other statistical determinations. When included, such bulk purchases appear with a dagger (†)."
While this situation could, hypothetically, just be a bunch of book club orders, it is much more likely that someone placed a large order to boost the sales numbers.
This has happened many times before with other books, which is why bulk purchases are tracked and indicated on the listing for the book.
Many folks on Twitter were dubious of the sales numbers for Triggered.
@PageSix @davidfrum MAY have?? For probable deniability he no doubt had someone else make the purchases (Dad's reel… https://t.co/f6V5y8CrhD— Jukesgrrl (@Jukesgrrl)1573785089.0
@PageSix “May have”... https://t.co/YnBabOlLqU— slippery slope (@slippery slope)1573796964.0
Model and author Chrissy Teigen took advantage of the opportunity to poke fun at Trump Jr.
“Errrrr durrrrr pleaze send 5000 books to DTJR Books, 1600 Pennsylvania ave basement” https://t.co/s2VKZcP5A1— christine teigen (@christine teigen)1573794858.0
Other Twitter users followed Teigen's tweet with further evidence that all is not as it seems with Trump Jr.'s sales numbers.
@chrissyteigen @TheRickWilson Even his Amazon reviews (currently at 4.8/5) are suspect - according to Amazon. https://t.co/MRAKC7Hcpv— Christian Long (@Christian Long)1573825607.0
Some speculated that the RNC might be behind the bulk purchase, as they are offering the book as a donation incentive.
@chrissyteigen The RNC is giving a “free” copy to anyone who donates $50+ So, election/campaign donations going in… https://t.co/PyF1GF3h8B— Diane Gray (@Diane Gray)1573806928.0
However, party spokesperson Steve Guest told the Associated Press that they were not buying the books in large bulk purchases, but "to keep up with demand."
Some thought that Trump Jr. or his father might be the one behind the bulk purchases.
@chrissyteigen I know what every single person who knows DTJR is gettin' for Chrissssstmasss!— SarahtheGreat (@SarahtheGreat)1573794989.0
@chrissyteigen It was so blatantly obvious! The books that are on that list are phenomenal and thoughtfully written… https://t.co/tzG5VHJ2NE— Rachel B. (@Rachel B.)1573817053.0
Because The NYT doesn't track or disclose exactly who made the bulk purchases, we may never know.
But it is safe to say that the book would not have shot to number one on the list without them.