What Does It Mean to Rank in the Top 100 of the Amazon Kindle Store?

My fantasy novella is in the top 100 twice, but I don’t understand how it got there.


I’m a new fantasy author. Tell Us the Mermaid Story, my novella for YA and adult readers, ranked in both Amazon’s top 100 Folklore, and their Fantasy short reads categories. 

I want to believe it's really a good thing, but I don't understand how the rankings are possible. The release was only December 31, 2019 and by the end of the first day, there was one sale. 

That increased the following day, once the KDP free promotion kicked in, but as of this writing (January 3, 2020), I still don't have any reviews.

Justifiable Pride

In case I sound like I'm complaining about something that I should really be viewing as a good thing, I'm not. I'm happy about the rankings, and maybe even a little proud, but I want my pride to be justifiable. I can't see how I can rejoice in what I can only guess, amounts to some kind of crazy algorithm.  

When I first noticed the rankings, the book had a:

Before I could finish writing this post, the stats had changed, and my #30 spot had been bumped up to #23. I took a screenshot, and just as I was ready to post this information, it changed again. As it stands, the #23 went back down to a #27, but the #145 rank in the Fairy Tale Fantasy category moved up to #119.


Clearly, there's some kind of tom foolery going on that doesn't seem to have a whole lot to do with the actual book, but I could be wrong. I don't want to simply diminish my good fortune (for the time being) or my reason for having it. Maybe people have just shown a lot of interest, and Amazon sees the potential, though no reviews have materialized to confirm that yet.

As things stand right now, it looks like a "wait and see" game. If anyone has any kind of insight about how Amazon does the book ranking, feel free to leave a comment.


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