Unit sales of print books cooled somewhat last week, but still managed to increase 10.9% over the week ended February 22, 2020. Total units sold topped 13 million last week at outlets that report to NPD BookScan. And while that was a considerable increase over last year, it was a decline of nearly 18% from the week ended February 13, 2021. For the year to date, print units were up 20.5% over the comparable period in 2020.
Adult fiction had a solid week, with unit sales increasing 20.5% over the comparable week in 2002. A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas was the top-selling title of the week, selling nearly 95,000 copies in its first week on sale. In second and third place on the adult fiction bestseller list were two Kristin Hannah titles—The Four Winds, which sold more than 46,000 copies, and Firefly Lane, which sold over 20,000 copies.
The adult nonfiction category had the smallest increase in the week, with unit sales up 2.5%. How to Avoid a Climate Disaster by Bill Gates was the top title in the category, selling over 37,000 copies in its first week on sale. Another new release, Heather McGhee’s The Sum of Us, was in fourth spot on the category list, selling over 21,000 copies.
Juvenile fiction and nonfiction sales rose 14% and 14.1%, respectively, over 2020. Amelia Hepworth’s I Love You to the Moon and Back was #1 in fiction, selling almost 17,000 copies. Vashti Harrison’s Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History was in the #1 spot in nonfiction, selling over 6,000 copies.
Young adult fiction print unit sales jumped 47.7% over 2020 as E. Lockhart’s We Were Liars remained #1 on the category list, selling more than 15,000 copies. Adam Silvera’s They Both Die at the End was second, selling just over 11,000 copies. Stamped by Jason Reynolds continued to lead the young adult nonfiction list as the category posted a 55.4% increase over 2020.