Book sales fell 1.6% in May, to $1.09 billion, compared to the same month last year. However, sales rose 2.3%, to $4.29 billion, for the first five months of the year, as compared to same period in 2013, according to the AAP’s monthly StatShot program. In the major trade areas, January-May sales for adult books were off 3.6%, but sales of children/YA titles jumped 30.5%.
Within the adult trade category, for the first five months of 2014 sales were down in all the print formats with hardcover off 9.5%, trade paper down 1.9% and mass market paperback down 8.4%. Sales of e-books dipped 0.2%, and at $531 million represented 30.8% of adult trade sales compared to 29.8% in the first five months of 2013. The 30.5% increase in the children/ya segment was driven by big increases across all formats with sales of e-books up 53.3%, to $110.2 million. Even with the big jump in sales, e-books still represented just 15.8% of all children/ya sales in the first months of 2013, up from 13.5% in the same period in 2013.
In the other categories, the StatShot report found sales of religious books down just 0.1%, while sales in the professional category were down 2.2% and sales in the K-12 segment fell 1.6%. Sales of higher educational materials rose 3.4%.
Sales are from 1,209 publishers.