“Sure, Dan Brown and Sarah Palin are topping the best-seller charts, but the breakout of the holiday book-buying season just may have been an elaborate, richly illustrated tome that records the dreams and spiritual questing of an author who has been dead for nearly half a century. The list price for this 9-pound, 416-page volume? $195.

While committed Jungians have been waiting decades for the book, there are only about 1,000 analysts who follow Jung’s principles in North America, according to Stephen Martin, co-founder and president emeritus of the Philemon Foundation, a Jungian nonprofit group that raised money to help prepare “The Red Book” for publication, helping to finance Mr. Shamdasani’s translation, among other things. Booksellers say that buyers have extended outside Jungian interest groups.

“The thing I find interesting is that I’m not even sure that a lot of people buying them” have shown any previous interest in Jung, said Sarah McNally, owner of McNally Jackson Books in Manhattan. “There are a lot of $15 Jung books that they haven’t ever bought.” [NYT]