Driven by strong sales of a host of new titles, unit sales of print books rose 10.2% last week at outlets that report to NPD BookScan.
The biggest gain came in the young adult fiction segment, in which unit sales jumped 120.5% over the week ended August 1, 2020. The category received a huge boost from the August 4 release of Stephenie Meyer’s Midnight Sun, which sold more than 524,000 print copies in its first week on sale at BookScan outlets. (Publisher Little, Brown Books For Young Readers reported that more than 1 million copies of the book were sold across all formats).
Two new releases drove up sales in the adult nonfiction category by 8.5% last week: Sean Hannity’s Live Free or Die: America (And the World) on the Brink sold more than 184,000 copies, while Isabel Wilkerson’s Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents sold over 78,000 copies, putting it in third place on the adult nonfiction category bestseller list. Mary L. Trump’s Too Much and Never Enough was in the second spot, selling almost 98,000 copies. Too Much is nearing 1 million print copies sold at outlets that report to BookScan.
A fourth new title that scored well last week was Jeff Kinney’s Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Adventure, which sold nearly 46,000 copies in its first week on sale, helping increase sales in the juvenile fiction segment by 4.7%. Another new title, Sucker Punch by Laurell K. Hamilton, had a solid first week, selling more than 19,000 copies and put it in second place on the adult fiction list. The category had a 5% gain in unit sales last week; Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens was #1 in adult fiction, selling more than 32,000 copies.
The strong unit sales performance last week was substantially better than sales in the week ended August 10, 2019, with print units up 24.8% over a year ago. In the year to date, print unit sales are now up 5.2% over the comparable period in 2019.