Vatican botherer-in-chief Dan Brown has been awarded the accolade of most-donated fiction author to Oxfam shops, the charity announced today.
Brown's offerings may sell in their millions, but clearly they leave people feeling the same way as an ill-advised one night stand - good idea at the time, but now you don't them hanging around your house making you feel bad about yourself.
He's followed in short order by John Grisham (not too much of a surprise), Ian Rankin (more surprising perhaps) and Danielle Steele. Helen Fielding rounds out the top five. Presumably readers go out, have a bottle of Chardonnay and wake up in the morning with her outpourings fresh in their mind, then head straight down the charity shop.
Brown may derive some comfort from the fact that he is also the second best selling author in Oxfam shops, just behind Ian Rankin. The top five best sellers is rounded out by Sharpe author Bernard Cornwell, teen vampire specialist Stephanie Meyer and Terry Pratchett.
Just to rub it in for Brown, the Bible - authorship disputed, but furiously promoted by the Vatican - doesn't figure in either list. And if that isn't evidence of a conspiracy, we don't know what is.
The chain has yet to release a similar list for non-fiction publications, but it would be interesting to see how exactly Guides to 123, DOS 5, and Windows Vista stack up. ®