Weak nonfiction sales dragged down total unit sales of print books last week. Unit sales dropped 3% compared to the week ended January 16, 2021, at outlets that report to NPD BookScan. The drop was the second consecutive week sales declined at the start of 2022, resulting in an 8.7% decline in the first two weeks of 2022 compared to last year.
Adult nonfiction sales fell 7.8% last week and once again it was softness throughout the category, rather than a lack of a big bestseller compared to last year, the fueled the drop. Indeed, the two top sellers last week in the category--Baby Steps Millionaires by Dave Ramsey and Glenn Beck’s The Great Reset—sold about 65,000 copies and 58,000 copies, respectively last week, easily topping Barack Obama’s A Promised Land, which led the category last year, selling about 33,000 copies.
Juvenile nonfiction sales fell 11.6% in the week as all of the segment's largest subcategories had double-digit declines. The #1 title remained My Little Golden Book of Betty White by Deborah Hopkinson, which sold almost 12,000 copies. Juvenile fiction sales also fell, dropping 2.9%. Little Blue Truck’s Valentine by Alice Schertle was the category’s top-seller, selling over 21,000 copies; it was #1 at this time a year ago, selling about 28,000 copies.
Adult fiction continues to be the industry’s brightest spot in early 2022, with sales up 12.7% last week. Colleen Hoover books took three of the top four spots on the category bestseller list led by #1 It Ends with Us, which sold nearly 39,000 copies. To Paradise by Hanya Yanagihara was the bestselling new release, selling just over 16,000 copies, putting it in fifth place on the category list.