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Ylvis book tops New York Times bestseller list

"What Does the Fox Say?," the children's book based on the viral YouTube hit by Norway's Ylvisåker brothers has debuted at the number one spot on the New York Times bestsellers list, Billboard magazine reported on Friday.

Ylvis book tops New York Times bestseller list
The front page of the Norwegian edition of the book, with a picture of its illustrator Svein Nyhus - Svein Nyhus
According to the coming issue of the New York Times' Book Review supplement  the book, which pairs the song's nonsense lyrics with illustrations by Svein Nyuhus, one of Norway's leading illustrators, is now the bestselling children's book in the US. 
 
The book, published on December 10, and is already in its sixth printing, after it was widely tipped as a Christmas gift for children.  
 
Christian Løchstøer, Managing Editor of Tonight with Ylvis, the brother's show is credited, along with the brothers with writing the lyrics. 
 
The Fox topped out at Number 6 on the US charts, and has received more than 300m hits on YouTube, making it this year's most viewed video. 
 
Bård Ylvisåker yesterday downplayed the importance of further US success to him and his brother Vegard. 
 
"We'll return to our office in Norway and still be happy. Everything's a bonus. And we won't be disappointed if we're kicked out of the country," he told The Hollywood Reporter. 
 

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MUSIC

GALLERY: Ten great songs about Norway

How many artists have serenaded Norway in song? Richard Orange scours YouTube and Spotify to find ten great tracks, one of which is little more than an angry stream of obscenities.

GALLERY: Ten great songs about Norway
Norway popster Maya Vik from the video Oslo Knows. Photo: Screen grab/YouTube
Bruce Springsteen's longtime guitarist Steve Van Zandt, or 'Little Steven', is so captivated by Norway's music scene that he set up a record label just to sign up Norwegian bands.   So far he's signed up four, the most famous being the all-girl punk outfit Cocktail Slippers. 
 
"Who knows why but Scandinavia is the rock ’n’ roll capital of the modern world," he maintains. 
 
This month saw Oslo pop duo Nico & Vinz reach number four on the US charts, the second year in a row a Norwegian act has hit the Billboard top ten.  Last year, Ylvis's YouTube smash The Fox peaked at number six. 
 
But how has Norway gone down among international rock acts. Not always so well, judging by Half Man Half Biscuit's sweary diatribe, Stavanger Töestub (with its confusing Swedish accent), or by Velvet Underground founder John Cale's song about escaping the country, or indeed by Of Montreal's description of sleepless summer nights.
 
Norwegian bands, on the other hand, tend to dismiss Oslo as a small-town backwater.  Somehow, though, it all adds up to some pretty good music. 

LOOK AND LISTEN: Ten Great Songs about Norway

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