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9/11 REPORT ONE OF SUMMER'S HOTTEST READS

A dense, 600-page government report wouldn't seem like a best seller.

But bookstores locally and nationwide are having a hard time keeping the " 9/1 1 Commission Report" on store shelves.

"We're sold out right now," Tony Nowak, an employee at Media Play in Hamburg, said Friday. "It sold out fairly quickly."

"The 9/1 1 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States," has been a popular seller since the $10 paperback first hit stores July 22.

The book's distribution coincided with a bipartisan panel's release of a report on the deadliest terror attack in U.S. history. Stores nationwide ordered more than 500,000 copies of an initial printing of 600,000, and the book quickly climbed to the top of best-sellers lists, ranking No. 1 in online sales at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.

As a comparison, readers interested in President Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky bought more than a million copies of "The Starr Report" in 1998; the 1964 Warren Commission report on the John F. Kennedy assassination sold about 65,000 copies; while the Tower Commission report on the Iran-Contra hearings sold about 600,000 copies in 1987, according to Publisher's Weekly.

Some local stores received the first shipment of the " 9/1 1 Commission Report," sold out, received more copies, and again sold out -- or at least will soon.

"I can't give you numbers, but it's been selling very well," Rich Inserra, manager for the Barnes & Nobles on Niagara Falls Boulevard in Amherst, said Friday. "I'll probably be out by the end of today."

Bookstore managers weren't surprised by the brisk sales, considering the price of the book, the subject and that it's well-written and readable.

"This is an issue everybody is really interested in no matter which side of the issue you're on," said Stacy Orlando Lopez, sales and service manager for Borders Books, Music & Cafe in Cheektowaga.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

e-mail: jrey@buffnews.com

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