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Sword Art Online #1 Tops U.S. Weekly BookScan Sci-Fi List

posted on by Egan Loo
Yen Press shipped English version of Reki Kawahara's light novel in North America last week

Yen Press reported on Thursday that the first English-language volume of Reki Kawahara's Sword Art Online light novel series ranked #1 on Nielsen BookScan's list of the top-selling science-fiction books in the United States this past week.

The light novel series follows Kazuto "Kirito" Kirigaya, who enters a virtual-reality massively multi-player online (MMO) game called "Sword Art Online," but soon Kirito and the other 10,000 players in the game find they are permanently stuck in the world until someone clears the game, and where "game over" means the death of the player.

ASCII Media Works' Dengeki Bunko light novel imprint published the first Sword Art Online light novel volume with illustrations by abec in April 2009, and Yen Press publishes the novels in North America. The book reached #4 on Barnes & Noble's Science Fiction & Fantasy bestseller list.

The light novels inspired a 25-episode television anime series in 2012 that Aniplex of America is releasing on home video and that also aired on Adult Swim's Toonami block. A second season is in production, and will premiere in July.

The BookScan rankings represent sales at Barnes & Noble and other book chains, independent bookshops, and online purchases — but not sales at comic book stores, Walmart.com, and some other venues.

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