Britney Spears' memoir a million seller after just one week since its release

NEW YORK (AP) — Britney Spears' memoir “The Woman in Me” has sold 1.1 million copies in the U.S. alone through its first week.

“I poured my heart and soul into my memoir, and I am grateful to my fans and readers around the world for their unwavering support," Spears said in a statement released Wednesday by Gallery Books, a division of Simon & Schuster.

The sales figures include pre-orders, print sales, e-books and audiobooks. “The Woman in Me,” released Oct. 24, has been praised by critics as a compelling account of her rise to global fame and her ongoing struggles, including the conservatorship that for years granted her father control of much of her life and her revelation that she had an abortion while dating Justin Timberlake more than 20 years ago.

On the day of publication, Spears posted on Instagram that her book had become “the highest selling celebrity memoir in history.” It is not, so far, even the highest selling memoir of 2023.

“The Woman in Me,” for which she did little publicity beyond Instagram, was the top seller of last week. But Prince Harry's memoir “Spare,” which came out in January, sold 1.6 million U.S. copies in its first week.

Spears’ memoir helped give a strong boost to streams and sales across her music catalog, according to Luminate, a music and entertainment analytics company. In one day last week, from Monday to Tuesday, Spears’ catalog jumped 18.2% in on-demand streams, and 36.8% in album sales. The numbers continued to climb over the following days. According to Luminate, her U.S. streams increased 24% over the previous week — from 16 million to 19.8 million; her album sales were up 61.4% and digital sales 49%.

Those numbers appear to mirror another pop star memoirist: when Mariah Carey released “The Meaning of Mariah Carey” in September 2020, she also saw a similar spike — 28.6% — in during release week.

However, this year to date, Spears' streams total 657 million, down from 703 million in 2021, when she saw immense growth due to the support surrounding the #FreeBritney movement.

The audio edition of “The Woman in Me,” read by Oscar-nominated actor Michelle Williams, appears a key factor in the book's initial popularity. Williams’ reading of “The Woman in Me” has been highly acclaimed, and according to Gallery, is the fastest selling audio release in the company’s history. The publisher did not immediately announce a specific audio sales figure.

According to Circana, which tracks around 85% of the print market, “The Woman in Me” sold just under 418,000 copies, far below first week Circana numbers for former President Barack Obama's “A Promised Land” and former first lady Michelle Obama's “Becoming” among other memoirs.

No nonfiction release approaches the scale of J.K. Rowling's final Harry Potter book, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” which came out in 2007 and sold more than 8 millions copies in its first 24 hours.


AP Music Writer Maria Sherman contributed to this report.