The number of books sold in Canada in the second quarter of 2012 was down just under 1% from the same quarter last year, but booksellers still managed to squeeze 3.12% more dollars out of those sales, according to the latest figures from BookNet Canada.
The fiction category got a small boost of 2.81% in units sold and a 9.13% in the dollar value of those sales during the quarter. BookNet CEO Noah Genner said that the sales spike of E.L. James Fifty Shades of Grey series began to have an effect in this quarter’s figures.
The juvenile category had a similar but even bigger difference in it figures. The number of books sold was up just 0.84%, but by 13.53% in terms of value over last year’s Q2 sales. Genner said sales of The Hunger Games series were an important part of the numbers in this quarter in both 2011 and 2012. Last year, the third book was released in this quarter, and this year sales were buoyed by the release of the movie. He noted that sales of higher priced items such as a box of The Hunger Games helped raise the value of sales.
Nonfiction was down significantly from 2011 — by 9.59% in books sold and by 10.77% in dollars. Genner noted that this quarter’s non-iction category lacks a big bestselling hit like last year’s biography of Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.
BookNet Canada’s sales data is based on year-over-year sales from a fixed panel of 665 retail locations, a subset of 1,600 reporting stores across Canada. It tracks about 75% of the Canadian book market.