The New York Times Fiction Best Sellers of 1963

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This is a list of adult fiction books that topped The New York Times Fiction Best Seller list in 1963. The list is notable for being blank for part of the winter as the New York Times, like many other newspapers in the city, worked its way through a major newspaper strike. When the strike ended in March, the political thriller Seven Days in May led the list, having also been at the top at the start of the strike in December 1962. It lasted there only one week before being overtaken by J.D. Salinger's second No. 1 bestseller in 18 months, the anthologized novellas, "Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters" and "Seymour: An Introduction".

Salinger's book led the list for 14 weeks through the spring of 1963. Daphne du Maurier's The Glass-Blowers then spent six weeks on the list, followed by Morris West's novel about the Vatican, The Shoes of the Fisherman (14 weeks). On October 6, Shoes gave way to Mary McCarthy's semi-autobiographical novel The Group, which would spend the next 20 weeks at the top, closing out the year.[1]

Two of J.D. Salinger's novellas, anthologized as Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour: An Introduction spent 14 weeks in the No. 1 spot on the NYT fiction list in 1963
Date Book Author
January 6 Not published due to the Newspaper Strike
January 13
January 20
January 27
February 3
February 10
February 17
February 24
March 3 Seven Days in May Fletcher Knebel
March 10 Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters J. D. Salinger
March 17
March 24
March 31
April 7
April 14
April 21
April 28
May 5
May 12
May 19 The Glass-Blowers Daphne du Maurier
May 26
June 2
June 9
June 16
June 23
June 30 The Shoes of the Fisherman Morris West
July 7
July 14
July 21
July 28
August 4
August 11
August 18
August 25
September 1
September 8
September 15
September 22
September 29
October 6 The Group Mary McCarthy
October 13
October 20
October 27
November 3
November 10
November 17
November 24
December 1
December 8
December 15
December 22
December 29


  1. ^ John Bear, The #1 New York Times Best Seller: intriguing facts about the 484 books that have been #1 New York Times bestsellers since the first list, 50 years ago, Berkeley: Ten Speed Press, 1992. pp. 85-89