I decided to do some market research for my books by going to the local Barnes & Noble. I asked the ladies at the Customer Service desk for help finding latest best-sellers that might relate to my book. They just pointed me to the shelves with Sci-Fi and the displays with new releases. Told me they could not help at all looking for bestsellers about time-travel or zombies. Much less helpful than just searching online on Amazon.
I found one book in new releases that looked interesting, though didn't really relate to mine. Thought about buying it, but searched my library and saw it was available, so doing that instead. The copy at the store apparently was "exclusive to B&N" and had some extra bit at the end by the author, which was cool. If I really like the book, I might go back and get it from the store.
Honestly, I was hoping that a brick-and-mortar shop would be more helpful to people who come in looking for in-person assistance.
So, how else can I find out comparable books for mine to include in a query? Because I know the rankings on Amazon are easily gamed, and if I want to attract a major publisher, I would like to know who's publishing books similar to mine.
Source: reddit post